2011 Firefighter Games, CrossFit Conquest: 7:30am
“You smell like cotton candy.”
“You smell like cotton candy.”
To be precise, I smelled like Lemon Summer Vanillas by Bath & Body Works but that’s not the point.
The point is that I showed up at CrossFit Conquest this morning ready to represent my company, sell some jewelry, and support our local firefighters. My hair was blow-dried, I was wearing knee socks strictly for fashion not for function, and as the helpful gentleman pointed out earlier, I smelled like cotton candy. Oh what a difference a few hours makes…
As soon as I arrived, Event Coordinator/Firefighter Tom Hill (aka Bull) asked if I would be participating today. “No I don’t think so. Think I’ll just run my booth and focus on Fashletics.” This was the plan all along and besides, I had two dinners last night, the second being something called a “Macho Burger” (with fries) which I purchased from a food truck at about 11pm. Not exactly how I like to prepare for competition.
Like any truly passionate CrossFitter, Bull was relentless in his attempts to convince me to join in the “fun” (see whiteboard below). As the hours passed it was getting more and more difficult to say no and I realized I really didn’t have a good excuse. Things were under control at the Fashletics booth, I needed to get a workout in today anyway, and I had a delicious Paleo chicken wrap from SAR Events & Caterling which I am convinced helped negate the effects of last night’s Macho Burger. Still I hesitated. I didn’t feel mentally prepared and sometimes I still get anxiety about WOD’ing with “spectators” (which I will admit is completely stupid).
A few things, in addition to Bull, led to my convincing:
1. I am a CrossFitter. This is what it’s all about. Being ready for any challenge any time. Forget about what you ate last night or how much sleep you didn’t get. Nobody cares. Rally and get it done.
2. “You will always regret not working out. You will never regret working out.” This is something I often tell the athletes that I coach. To be honest I think I heard it on an infomercial for a Kim Kardashian workout video (which would explain the awkward grammar). Let’s be clear, I was not doing the Kim Kardashian workout, I was just watching her talk about it. Not sure if that’s any better but still, don’t judge me. You can’t deny it’s sound advice.
3. No man shall WOD alone. Pretty sure that's in the Constitution. There was only one guy in the last heat. If no one signed up he’d be WOD’ing alone. I couldn’t let that happen.
4. Amy, one of the women I train with, is 4 month’s pregnant with her second baby. Amy is a total bad a@$ and (when not pregnant) a total beast in the gym. She was standing on the sidelines and I heard her say “Uhhhh I wish I could compete SO BAD!!” I immediately thought about all of the people in this world who would love to do something like this and actually can’t for a myriad of reasons. First of all, I am alive and that is a gift in itself. I can walk, I can lift, I can breathe, and my heart beats steady and strong. This is a luxury in life and not a guarantee. I don’t ever want to take my life or my health for granted. I know it’s just a WOD but as soon as I heard Amy express her desire to compete coupled with her inability to do so… let’s just say I felt like an idiot for hesitating in the first place.
5. Rally the troops! Misery loves company! Four more of my friends/training buddies were also at the event either working or supporting in some way and had not planned on competing. I only had to ask once or twice before flip flops were traded for running shoes and the ladies rallied. If I make a commitment to a friend there is no way I will back down. This is sort of a way I have learned to trick myself into committing to things that I might otherwise shy away from. I remember days where I’d roll out of bed at 5am and my husband would ask; “How are you getting up right now???” “I have to meet Ann!” I’d reply as I sprang out of bed. “I told her I’d be there!” I am committed to my own training but I am probably more committed to my friends. The phrase “I’ll do it if you do it” has been key to my athletic development.
3…2…1… GO! The rest of the story plays out just as you would expect. It was excruciating, I felt like I was going to throw up half the time, I couldn’t walk when I was done…. and I loved it. The best part was competing beside these amazing ladies that I have come to know and love through CrossFit. I will be competing with Shondelle, Clancey, and Kelly at the CrossFit Southeast Regional on our Affiliate team in just a couple weeks. I can’t freaking wait. Today we technically competed against each other but when it was all said and done we were there because of each other and for each other. Even when we are individuals we are a team.
I got home later that afternoon and as my husband leaned in for a hug he lovingly said; “Uhhh! You stink!!” Oh yes, the cotton candy scent had faded long ago, my hair was piled in a sweaty mess on top or my head... and I was smiling ear to ear.