Monday, May 7, 2012

Balancing Act

It’s now been almost three weeks since a plumbing disaster forced us to hole up in a hotel -- and we’re still weeks away from being able to move back home. It’s not ideal, but it’s not the end of the world, either. We’re coping pretty well, all things considering. But there is one thing that annoys me to no end: We no longer have room for our designated babysitters (read: parents) to spend the night, which means I’m now unable to regularly attend the 5 a.m. class at CrossFit Palo Alto.

Major bummer.

Still, there is one silver lining: I get to sleep in.

I missed Friday’s workout, and this morning’s, too. Five days without exercise makes me a dull boy. I was antsy to get back into the gym, so I scrambled to wrap things up at work today so I could squeeze in an evening workout. Tim promised that today’s WOD was “gooooood” (with six -- count ‘em: SIX -- o’s), so I raced down to the gym in time for the 5 p.m. class.

And here’s what we were treated to:

For time:
  • 30 sandbag floor-to-shoulders
  • 400-meter run with sandbag
  • 30 wall ball shots (20lbs / 14lbs, 10-foot target)
  • 400-meter run with medicine ball (20lbs / 14lbs)
  • 30 plate ground-to-overheads (45lbs / 35lbs)
  • 400-meter run with plate (45lbs / 35lbs)
  • 30 overhead kettlebell swings (70lbs / 53lbs)
  • 400-meter run with kettlebell (70lbs / 53lbs)
As Trish instructed us about each of the movements and standards, the only thing going through my mind was: “Really? Six o’s?”

The sandbags were fine, though I can’t say I ran with lightning speed with the floppy weight draped across my right shoulder.

The wall balls were, well, wall balls. They’re not my favorite, but I survived them. But I’d never run with a medicine ball before, and had a difficult time trying to find a halfway-decent way to hold the sucker. I tried carrying the ball in front of me -- but it was too cumbersome and draining. I tried carrying on my shoulder -- but again, I found it too awkward.

Finally, I stuck the damned thing on top of my head, kept it steady with my hands overhead, and ran. I’m not saying it was easy -- my arms lost feeling after a while -- but it was less uncomfortable and imbalanced than the other methods I tried. The ball is soft(ish) and weighs only 20 pounds. Besides, people all over the world carry stuff on their heads, right?

I was actually feeling pretty decent as I grabbed a bumper plate and started my ground-to-overheads. The first 10 felt pretty good and strong. But after that, the 45-pound weight began feeling increasingly heavy. And running with the thing was not fun. I tried to stick the plate on my head, but it felt like it was going to crush my skull, so I opted for the good ol’ cradle carry.

Up until the kettlebells, I’d gone RXed, but I knew that hoisting a 70-pound kettlebell over my head wasn’t in the cards for me today. Even with a 53-pound kettlebell, I found myself pausing a few times between swings to catch my breath. With my grip strength shot, I wasn’t relishing the thought of lugging that thing with me on that last 400-meter jaunt. I farmer-carried it as best I could, and made it out of the parking lot before Kerry shouted out that it was easier to shoulder it. With the kettlebell pressed against my ear, I finished the course and collapsed just inside the gym’s open rolling door.

“Uh, you may not want to be sitting there when the next person comes in and drops their kettlebell,” Trish advised.

Result: 22:38.

(And yes, I’ll admit it: It deserved six o’s.)