I couldn’t have done this if I’d tried

I did the open WOD twice again this week. I know, I know, I vaguely recall swearing that, after 13.1, I was never, ever, going to do that again. But my attitude going into this was so different, it doesn’t really count. It all started when I saw toes to bar in this week’s WOD on Wednesday night. Fuck. Toes to bar. I would rather it have been pull-ups, and that’s saying something if you have any idea how bad I am at pull ups. 

I have short little fingers. They’re REALLY short. Dawn, everyone’s adopted CrossFit mom, thinks they’re the funniest thing ever and likes to call them fetus fingers; since I love Dawn, I’m okay with this. But I prefer to think that they are like cute little sausages. Cute little sausages that have trouble holding up my, ah, not-insignificant body weight. So I figured I was going to be doing my toes to bar about two at a time, and not beating anybody in particular, or possibly anybody at all. And suddenly my score didn’t matter anymore.

What a relief. It didn’t matter if I did it twice, or if I did it six times between Wednesday and Sunday. It was just another WOD, and I was just going to muddle through it the best I could manage while trying not to slip off the bar and land on my butt. So, when L suggested we just do both WODs on Thursday night, I was like, “Why not? After all, one of them is only seven minutes long.”

But we obviously weren’t going to miss out on Saturday’s weekly party after the open. I mean, when have I EVER passed up food? Really. Is that even a question? And if I was going to go on Saturday, I was definitely going to work out. I can’t be expected to sit still for that long.

When I did the first open WOD twice, I planned ahead for round two like it was my job. I took it easy and didn’t work out at all the day before, I endlessly practiced my technique for the required lift, and I was absolutely determined to get at least ONE MORE REP. I might even have lost some sleep over it. And in the end, of course, I didn’t get one more rep. Or one less rep. Everyone was incredibly amazed that I somehow managed to scrape EXACTLY the same score. They all congratulated me on being so consistent. I just grumbled and mumbled and was generally pretty cranky about it.

This time, I made no such sacrifices prior to Saturday. I went all out in Friday night’s workout and readily agreed to meet L at the park Saturday morning to run six and a half miles with her. (Though I might not have agreed so quickly if I’d realized the mountainous hills she planned to torture me with.) I showed up at the box with sore shoulders and knees that were just about seizing up after my run. I fully expected to get a lower score than my first attempt had earned me, and I was okay with that.

But no. Folks, I got EXACTLY THE SAME SCORE. Again.

I’m a freaking machine. I’m not a particularly well-oiled, speedy type of machine. Not the high-tech, useful kind you really want to have around. But I sure can churn out mediocre to average numbers with mechanical consistency. Last time I may have grumbled and mumbled when I realized what my score was, but this time I couldn’t stop laughing.

There’s no moral to this story. Sometimes, life is incredibly hilarious. I couldn’t have done this if I’d tried. 

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it’s okay, nobody noticed

I’m perpetually amazed by the weird stuff I can get away with doing right in front of people who are either extraordinarily unobservant or just so used to my strange behavior that it completely fails to register. Two things that I did today, while actually carrying on a direct conversation with someone else:

1) I was peeling an orange into the trash can, accidentally dropped half the orange INTO the trash, and then quickly snatched it out again as if nothing had happened.

2) I pulled an entire jar of almond butter out of my purse, pulled out a fork, realized that the fork wasn’t a spoon, and started eating the almond butter out of the jar with my finger instead.

Absolutely no reaction from either of the people that I was talking to. Amazing.

can you even have a bad hair day if your hair is always crazy?

It’s pretty much a universal rule that you have to wake up with horrible hair on any day when you have to get your picture taken for a photo ID. Or is that just me? I tried to compensate by wearing makeup, but I still looked really goofy in the picture. What was I thinking? There’s just no way to counteract being extremely non-photogenic.

Also, I didn’t smile to keep my eyes from doing that weird, uneven squinty thing they only do in photos, but now I just look really grumpy and kind of emo (because my hair kept falling in my face) in the picture. Whatever. I can rock grumpy and emo. I’m just that good.
Anyhow, more super cool stuff happened in conjunction with the photo ID, but I don’t think I’m allowed to talk about it on the internet. So, on to other things.

I didn’t feel good at all today. Probably I just need to sleep more, but I was worried I might be getting sick, so I drank a lot of tea and took a lot of Tylenol. Don’t ask me why I though tea would be a cure-all for general unwellness that had nothing to do with a sore throat. But the real cure turned out to be 45 hand-stand push ups.

My draggy self was sort of regretting having told L I’d do a double WOD night with her tonight. But somehow, being upside down and having your friends shouting at you, “Go Anna! I can see your six pack abs!” is fantastic medicine. Even if they’re only able to shout at you because you’re so dreadfully slow at hand-stand pushups that EVERYONE else finishes first.

I still won though, because I did all those handstand pushups without dislocating my shoulder, which is what usually happens. Win! 

Know what happens when you drink tea ALL day? You have to pee ALL night. Good thing it’s hard to be embarrassed in front of crossfitters . I think I peed twice before the first WOD even started. And then you bet I had to pee as soon as it was over. Thank goodness there weren’t any double unders. Those things are the worst:

Me: “Have you ever peed your pants a little doing double unders in a WOD?”

L: “Uh, no … but now I guess I won’t feel bad if I ever do.”

Hey, guess what? Coconut milk instead of real milk is great in tea! I’m a tea addict. I love any kind of tea that I can add milk to, but almond milk is gross in tea. I love almond milk, and I love tea, but when you put them both together it’s like mixing filet mignon and rainbow sprinkles. They’re both great on their own, but they just don’t go together. (Yes, I have eaten rainbow sprinkles on their own. Yes, I DO know they are mostly made of wax.)

But I ran out of regular milk today, and roomie didn’t have enough for me to steal any without being noticed (I know, I’m horrible for thinking of doing this), but I had about a cup of coconut milk in the fridge leftover from a can I’d used to bake with a while ago. Kind of a really long while ago. It had taken on the texture of sour cream, which seemed a little suspicious. But it didn’t smell bad, so I just stuck it in there, and voila! Delicious.

winter, you’ve overstayed your welcome and need to leave

The bad weather is my fault. Sorry everybody. For the last month, I’ve been saying how I think spring is almost here. Each day that I suggest this is followed by rain or snow or a combination of 30 degrees and wind. What the heck?

I’ve clearly gotten on the bad side of someone important with all my hopeful talk of spring, and the wintery weather is happening to spite me. It’s supposed to snow tonight. Mother Nature, this sucks and I need you to fix it. Please?

Mostly I’m getting nervous for my half marathon in April. I’ve already discussed my many strategies for getting in shape for this race. But they’re not working. I’m just not a winter runner. It’s not that I can’t run in the cold, or that I don’t have an option for running inside; it’s just that I hate it. I find running to be a nice block of time for thinking about stuff or for socializing, depending on whether or not I’ve persuaded (coerced) a buddy into coming with me.

But when it’s cold and windy, or if I’m trying to run inside, the only thoughts I really spend all that thinking time on are things like, “When is this run going to be over?” and, “I wish I was still in bed.”

Also, I’m beginning to worry that the weather won’t even have improved by the time my race rolls around. I’m obviously going to be running it no matter what, but what if it’s cold and sunny? Please don’t let the weather be cold and sunny. It will just solidify the weirdness of my tan lines if I have to wear a shirt with sleeves! Gah! The world would end. I just know it.

Actually, what I should be worrying about is the weather for the weekend before that, when I’m signed up for a Tough Mudder. But I haven’t quite wrapped my brain around what exactly that race is yet, so it’s somehow escaped my radar up to this point.

In other news, I finally caved in and bought a pair of Nanos. I’m so ridiculously excited to have them, and so ashamed of having paid that much for shoes I don’t REALLY need. This is pretty much the first time I have EVER (for once, I’m not exaggerating) bought shoes I don’t need. I even used to let my old riding boots fall apart at the seams before I would invest in new ones.

I was trying to explain this purchase to a non-crossfitter the other day (it was probably Roomie, but I don’t actually remember), and when it boiled down to it, this was the best reason I could come up with for needing the shoes: “I’m not entirely clear on what they do, but everyone else wears them, and they look really cool!”

I’m so ridiculous. And so psyched. I can’t wait until they get here.

New shoes. The obvious way to rid yourself of the winter blues.

bad-for-you food is the best

My butt hurts y’all. I’ve been waddling around for the last three days periodically clutching at my bum like it’s going to fall off. Okay, I had to get that of my chest. On to things I’m enjoying more than my sore behind.

Homemade walnut butter. Where has this been all my life?! The homemade stuff is way better than store bought, because you can throw things like cocoa and honey and coconut butter and sea salt in there.  I’ve been eating it like ice cream. Seriously, for the last three nights I’ve been lying in bed with my book in one hand, a spoon in the other, and the container of walnut butter balanced on my boobs.

This doesn’t strike me as a healthy life choice.

Last night, I finished the batch that I made on Sunday (I didn’t make THAT much, just so you’re not judging me too badly), so I thought I was out of the woods as far as resisting temptation goes. But then I just made more tonight! I have no will power. In fact, I tried to make a BIGGER batch than I did last time, but even though I added more walnuts, I somehow ended up with the same amount. It may have had something to do with how much I ate during the process.  It takes a lot of food processing and scraping and food processing and scraping to make nut butter. I got bored. Taste testing ensued.

Of course, I’ve found a way to thwart the system. Sure, I eat paleo. That’s healthy, right? What’s the most unhealthy food I’m allowed to eat? Nuts and honey all the way baby! Whatever. I’m not in it to be skinny. Which is good, since I had to wear my short shorts to CrossFit today (laundry crisis again) and was noticing how not skinny my thighs are looking. Good thing I don’t care about that, right?

the week in which I try really hard not to become a caffeine addict

I haven’t posted all week! How have I not posted all week?? Well, I did actually write one, but I wrote it because I needed to vent, and even though the only person that my post was venting about was ME, I thought everyone might get annoyed with all my word vomit. I mean, even I was getting annoyed, and I’m usually an avid audience for my own rantings.

Here’s what I’ve been doing instead of writing this week:

Working. Yeah, there’s been a lot of that. Deadlines are eating my life. Wow. I mean, I like to think I function well under pressure, but I’m pretty sure my erratic behavior is beginning to worry the people who are forced into my vicinity on a daily basis. Sleep deprivation is causing me to burst into prolonged hysterical laughter at remarks that are distinctly NOT funny. It’s very embarrassing.

Still being slightly obsessed with CrossFit. Considering the excess of work and shortage of sleep, you’d think I could make an effort to get home at a reasonable hour. Which I do. Make an effort, that is. I always MEAN to leave the box promptly at six, but somehow I haven’t managed to get myself out of there before six forty-five all week. After working a bunch of 11-hour days though, I think I really just needed the extra time to MOVE.

Winning at Monday-night trivia! Okay, I actually contributed very little, but the boys kicked ass. Lizzy and I were too busy watching The Bachelor and Biggest Loser, respectively, on different TVs at the bar to be much use. But we weren’t embarrassed about it, because we had already disgraced ourselves by showing up late and still in our gym clothes, and then stretching (this was mostly Lizzy) before we sat down, AND then repeatedly demonstrating the arm-movement portion of a snatch at the table (that was all me).  But I still got my one answer of the night; it was a question about cooking steak, because, obviously, the only thing I know anything about is eating.

Making increasingly “interesting” combinations of food for dinner. Remember when I decided I was going to start writing down all the things I spent money on? Well, it turns out the only thing that really gets out of hand is my grocery spending. So I refused to go grocery shopping properly last weekend (buying eggs and apples doesn’t count) because, somehow, that makes it seem like I’m spending less on food. I choose not to acknowledge the fact that I’m probably going to consume the same amount and same type of food no matter how often I actually go shopping. By Friday night, I was at such a loss that I ended up eating (drinking) a smoothie for dinner (laziness may have factored in here as well), which contained an odd assortment of frozen berries, spinach, almond milk, peanut butter, and protein powder. It was delicious. No, I’m actually being serious; it really was.

Being unreasonably ticked about my perfectly reasonable score in the open last week. Ughhh. I will not being doing the WOD twice again this week to try and get a better score. I had two people whose judgment I highly value warn me against this, and, as usual, I ploughed ahead with blatant disregard for practical advice and did what I wanted anyway. With the exact same result as the first time. Yes, exactly the same, down to the last rep—it was weirdly amazingly consistent, except that I was too grumpy to notice.

Here’s what I have NOT been doing with myself this week:

Putting laundry away. Thankfully, I did DO some laundry last weekend, so my clothing combinations have not been getting as bizarre as my dinners. However, it’s still sitting in a laundry basket in the middle of my room, and I’ve just been rummaging through it whenever I need something. Instead of getting piled neatly in the laundry basket where they belong, the dirty clothes are now in various heaps around my room (and possibly the bathroom) where I threw them and thought, I’ll pick them up once I put the clean laundry away.

Running. I kept having to get up at five to get to the office early this week, so I thought I would run at lunchtime instead of before work. But then work kept getting in the way of that too, and I only made it out once. I sure can pick those ideal running days though. Just kidding! I went on the coldest, yuckiest, windiest day of the week, let me tell you. I also got terribly lost and didn’t really run the whole time, because I kept having to take time-outs to stop at intersections and stand there looking confused for a while.

Freelance working. Yeah, about that extra writing I do so I can afford things like CrossFit, or almond flour, or another pair of athletic shoes. That didn’t happen. Or, to be more accurate, it happened for about two hours all week. So I had a reenactment of my time in college on Friday night, and, instead of doing cool stuff, or even just uncool stuff that I actually WANTED to do (like sleeping) I wrote about tax fraud, Halloween cocktails, and adult acne. I kid you not, those were the exact topics. The Halloween cocktails were kind of fun. I really want to try a ‘bayou slime.’

Actually though, I kind of love being this busy; at least my guilt complex leaves me alone. I just like to pretend I’m all overworked and such. Besides spring is almost here! I can smell it. And Roomie bought us corned beef and cabbage for St. Patty’s day dinner tomorrow. Life is good.

crossfit crossfit crossfit open open open (and just a little bit of obsession)

I got close enough to sniff the bagels at work yesterday. All morning, I saw everyone munching bagels while they worked, and I knew if I just walked down the hall to the coffee bar, I would see a bag of fresh Panera bagels with cream cheese that some kind soul had brought in as a Friday morning treat.

So I tried to resist going over there. It’s really the only way I can ever keep myself from eating this stuff. Eventually, though, I had to walk in that direction for some other reason, and I stopped, and I looked in the bag at the delicious selection of fresh-baked goodness, and I sniffed them. Yes, I really did. I sniffed the bagels like I was trying to inhale the taste through my nose. And then I walked away.

That’s not something I would ever usually be able to do. But this week was the first WOD in the CrossFit Open, and I am obsessing. Not about doing well in the competition; I have no illusions on that front. Just about CrossFit in general. About being part of something that tens of thousands of other people are also part of. And maybe a little bit about getting a good score (let’s face it, we all know I’m ridiculously competitive).

I feel like every crossfitter who has a blog, or ever blogger who crossfits, eventually ends up writing at least one post about their love affair with the sport.

The funny thing is, though, it’s not my favorite sport in the world. If I had the option, it would take me about three seconds to pick riding horses over CrossFit (and I would only be spending those three seconds trying desperately to figure out if I could do both). But what I really love about CrossFit is crossfitters: these people who can be madly competitive and, at the same time, completely encouraging (and inappropriate, and hilarious, and everything else).

“Man, this is the only place where you can call a woman a beast, and she’ll take it like the complement it’s supposed to be,” a buddy informed me the other day.

It’s also one of the few places where it’s alright come in and immediately find a friend with whom you can share the fact that you’re not wearing any underwear today. Or share other stuff too.

A: “Hey ladies, does anybody have an extra sports bra with them?”

Me: (As I’m rowing away, and already sweating) “Uh I don’t know if this would gross you out, but I’m actually wearing two right now.”

A: (No hesitation) “Can I have one?!?”

Having the open workouts just gives me even more of an excuse to hang out with these people, to collaborate, or commiserate, or whatever. Yesterday, it was all of 6:30am before I was texting a friend about the open workout. But I felt okay about it because she was the first one of us to confess, “I couldn’t sleep last night. I was obsessing about being able to snatch 100lbs.”

In the afternoon, the two of us showed up at the box with no intention of actually doing the WOD. Instead, we just pulled out some weights, and our wonderful trainer volunteered to spend almost 45 minutes critiquing our snatch technique, or else yelling at odd intervals, “GET UNDER THE BAR!” I ended up staying for almost two hours doing I-don’t-know-what. Chatting? Lifting? Stretching? Who cares? I just couldn’t think of anywhere else I’d rather be.