A CrossFit Mom and her Village

CrossFit Texas community!

 Crossfit — it’s “YOU AGAINST YOU”…. even when there are 10 others with shins to the bar ready to tackle the same work you are. At “3-2-1 Go” it is about the work YOU are going to do.  Even though we know the work is ours to do, we are all still a team.  This is best seen at the end of a WOD -one person finishes but they aren’t done… you see them at the foot of another who is still working and they stay right there encouraging them every step of the way.  I see this day after day in our gym and it defines the CrossFit Community that I love so much. 

As a Coach I can walk in the box and if I’m in a bad mood or had a bad day… you leave it at the door.  I see our members and I immediately forget my worries and thrive on seeing THEM improve, get stronger, faster or do something they NEVER thought they would able to do. 

 As an athlete myself, I have those same “just not into it” kind of days.  These last few weeks I have been blessed with receiving some of the CrossFit Community love myself. 

Every Saturday a group of us gather to train in preparation for the CrossFit competitions. An intense 2 hours of skill sets or heavy work and then a WOD to follow.  One of my favorite things about our little community is that all the kiddos are welcome.  I know my little Mekenzie has a blast!  They all tumble around the gym until we are ready to work… then off to the playroom they go ~ only a few “they aren’t sharing” moments happen -haha- but one of the many parents work the room and we are off.  My little Mekenzie has been in a CrossFit gym since she was about 2 yrs old so she knows the drill…and fits right in – usually with her own WOD right next to Mommy.

My norm is usually a few seconds during each WOD for Mommy moments between minutes of work. This Saturday, I had a little angel helping me as Mekenzie was really wanting me to stop and come play during my WOD. I have mastered the ability to talk to her when I can’t even breath because I’m mid burpee or kettlebell swing.  After a few quick stops to open a juice box or tie a shoe, my good friend Ashley just saw a Mommy moment. She saw a need and stepped in. The need for Mekenzie to have a playmate and the need for me to finish a workout. Both things provided what each needed. CrossFit is one of the sanity moments I need… after completing a WOD it gives me more than a fit and healthy body… It also provides a fit and healthy mind. These both carry over into my fit and healthy Mommy role

Saturday rolled around again.. I had to miss the first half of training and walked in as the group was about to start the WOD. I helped Coach the team and then had planned on doing it after class alone.  As I finished up working the heavy skill set I just LOST IT! I had no passion, no desire, no GRRRRR to do the WOD. I honestly just did not care in that moment. I wanted to pack up and go.  This is where my teammates stepped in and became my coaches and my motivation.  Crossfitters all know how it feels to have an “off” day, and this day they helped me through mine. 

These are the days I am remember how blessed I am to have a family in my Crossfit community. Thank you to all the “get up girl…get it done!” moments you share with me!


UnBreakable (part 2).. Sectionals Day 2



Today was all about NOT STOPPING!  The final WOD of the competition.  Of course I didn’t get much sleep last night and was running later than I wanted.  Mommy duty was my first priority of the day and getting Mekenzie to her grandparents.  I arrived to find out that the heats had changed and also the rankings had changed.  The heats had been reorganized to put all the top 30 in the final heats together…. I looked at it as HELL YEAH I gotta push with these gals in my heat! But then WHAM…. I had a ohhhh no moment and realized I was going head to head with the top 30 gals of the weekend.   

My mind now had to shift from running the WOD at 9am to the new time of almost 1pm.  I really don’t like going in the first heat, I like to watch others and use it to fuel my fire.  I have to make sure though that I take time to focus and not just be Coach and Cheerleader for others.  The first few heats made me realized OH SH*T this WOD is gonna HURT!   

My mind took an immediate ease when Pete showed up, one of the best CF Coaches I’ve had.  I lached on to his presence and fed into everything he had for me.  He is one of the best mental guys out there… oops that sounds bad.  No, he can get me into a mind-set that others can’t.  He knows my weaknesses with just a quick glance.  He also knows how far I can push better than I do.  (He would sit and deny all of the above b/c that’s how cool he is! haha)  We talked strategy a little then all I had to do was wait.  I got another lil message from across town…. “Have fun and don’t over think it!”.  Mark is always able to settle me and get my head straight and today was no different.  


15 Thrusters 65#  

100ft run  

50 – 35# single arm kettlebell snatches  

100ft run  

100 double unders ( IN THE FREAKIN’ GRASS)  

100ft run  

50- 35# kettlebell swings   

100ft farmers walk with 35# kettlebell  

15 barbell squat snatches (65#)  

This was the most nervous I had been all weekend.  I was FIGHTING to stay in the top 30…. the top 21 spots were secured due to WOD 2 yesterday, so I was against the field for only 9 spots.  As they called us to the field I summoned Pete to my sideline.  I knew I was gonna need to look at him for some “calm down” moments in this one.  The top 25 ladies all lined up as we filed out onto the field to meet our judge.  Justin was in spot 24.  We walked the course and talked standards and he asked… “what’s your rep scheme?” My answer was, “BALLS TO THE WALLS.. Don’t stop”. He laughs and I said, seriously I just can’t stop!!!!!!   

3-2-1…GO.  15 thrusters at 65# fresh I knew I was gonna do these unbroken.  I had the majority of the other athletes in my sight and when I saw a barbell hit the ground for a rest it just made me push harder and not stop.  The ground was a little challenging, being in one of the last heats of the day after many bars and bumpers and chewed up the ground was a new challenge on core strength!  15 unbroken and done….   

100ft run, HOLY crap this already didn’t feel good and I had only just started.  50 KB single arm snatches.  I had gamed this a little knowing that my left shoulder was still tweeked from training.  I figured I’d do as many on the right as I could then use the left as my active rest all while chipping away at the reps.  I don’t even have a clue how many I did before switching but by looking at the pictures people took…. it must have hurt.  I do remember my Judge Justin with his constant calm voice… ” keep going, just get to the next station…”  Right – left -Right and then all of a sudden the left took over and my shoulder stop hurting (probably b/c my right was screaming!)….  100ft run (walking the green mile is more like it…) into 100 double unders….. IN GRASS.  I am confident in my du’s, as I can usually knock out 40 or so in a row.  So when I only got 5 then failed… uh-oh. My shoulders where on FIRE, my legs wouldn’t jump and my mind….. creeping in was DOUBT.  I could hear other athletes counts and I was way under their’s.  I look up and there was Pete.  He just gave me that “calm down” look and I tried.  What my mind was actually doing was thinking about how I was trying to motivate Chanel earlier in the day to push through these and yelling for her to “DONT STOP”…. talk about having a moment of guilt.  haha.  I just wanted to tell her “Sorry Chanel, these SUCK ! Now I know”.   I had to just get comfortable with the 2-3 I could link together.  This element is one I thought I would breeze through…… wrong. 100ft run ( this was slooooow) to 50- 35# KB swings.  

 Again, I thought this would be a catch up moment and as we all know in CF, when you think it’s gonna be easy it will actually kick your butt.  The standard for the KB head was “bell up” so you had to swing the bell overhead, show your ears and have the bell straight up.  I just stood there and swung the hell out of it.  In these moments I think rep scheme but the truth is it comes down to grit.  Push till you wanna puke then do another one.  

 100 ft kettlebell farmers walk into the barbell area.  I was soooo ready for the last element.  15- 65# barbell squat snatches. I love this lift.  I had thought about the elements of the ground being unstable, and how  tired I was. I figured in order to have NO WASTED REPS I had better play if safe.  I would power snatch then overhead squat it.  I am totally comfortable in the bottom of the squat with weight overhead.  So I hit the bar with the HELL YEAH I’m gonna nail this….. errrrrkkkk. Damn I couldn’t breath.  I ended up doing them one at a time for about the first half. Then I heard 

the little voice in my head say…  

WHAT ARE YOU DOING>>> STOP WASTING TIME.  Shins to the bar… and squat snatch the hell out of it….. DONE and it felt great! I finally had gotten in a groove.  One at a time with my rest only being following the bar to the ground.  One failed rep… uhg. Back on it. I was in PAIN, my lungs burning, my legs screaming to stop but my mind was COMFORTABLE IN THE UNCOMFORTABLE! TIME = 17:04.   


All I could think about in that moment of being done was how bad it hurt and how much I wanted to lay down. I also remembered Mikko Salo the 2009 CrossFit Games Mens Champion, saying that he didn’t lay down after a wod because he refused to lay down in defeat. So there was NO way I was gonna lay down after this one.  Now, curled up in a little ball – sure 


Again, I was disappointed in my time and knew that it may not have been fast enough  to hold on to a top 30 qualifying spot.  Pete was there and we had a great debriefing on getting my mental game in check with the physical game of my wods.  Now it was the waiting period.  


All the athletes gathered around as Jeremy Thiel started preparing for the final announcement of the top 30 Men and top 30 Women who qualified to move on to Regionals in May.  I had no idea if I had been fast enough to hold my spot so I just convinced myself I had not made it.  ……….HOLY CRAP… they just said my name! I had snagged 29th place. I’ll take it!  In that moment I finally realized that all that time I doubted that I could hang with the 20 year olds who lived and breathed CF…. I really could!  I was so proud that I was able to stay true to who I was. #1 a MOM and a balanced role model for my daughter.   

After many ranking changes due to the scoring in WOD 2 and the Handstand pushups… I was moved up to 26th and 4 other athletes from CrossFit Texas made it through to Regionals.  Congrats to all the athletes that competed and left blood-sweat and tears on the playing field! We had an awesome group represent!  


Top 30 women Qualifiers: Terilyn, Lauren, Shannon, Ashley

Top 30 Men Qualifiers : Rob

 Now all the hard work, training, dialed in nutrition, supplements…….was NOT what we were thinking! It was CELEBRATION TIME!!!!! Hula Hut on the Lake or BUST! I hadn’t had a margarita in ….. I have NO idea how long much less Mexican food.  I wasn’t sure if this celebration meal was gonna make me regret it later… haha.  


On to the Next One! 


UnBreakable ….Sectionals Day 1

CrossFit CST Sectional Camp Mabry

This past weekend amongst 200 other Firebreathers I dripped blood-sweat and tears to try to find my place.  What is a firebreather you ask…. To some it’s the “balls to the walls” Crossfitter, to some it could be defined as one who “eats-sleeps-walks-talks” Crossfit.  I see a “CrossFit FireBreather” as ANYONE willing to lay it all on the line and JUST TRY and NOT QUIT.  That’s the spirit of CrossFit that I feel.  Yes, I define myself as competitive and always up for a challenge.  If you say I can’t…. BACK UP BUSTA’  because I’ll try!  What was the “place” I was trying to find? It was MY place at the Central Southern Texas Sectionals , the qualifier for the next competition Regionals in Dallas this May.  They were taking the top 30 men & top 30 women to the next level.   

CrossFit Texas Women Competitors

Last May after only 5 months of doing CrossFit I headed up to GSX CrossFit in Dallas for the Southwest Regional Qualifier.  That was walking into the complete unknown.  Over the past year and 3 months I have used that competition more and more to prepare me for each and every WOD I do.  Being able to have gone through the “experience” was just a taste of what is needed to try and figure out what you need to do to prepare.  Competing in Dallas at the CrossFit FXTX Unleashed Games this past February was a great precursor to this weekend. That one cold Saturday I had to put my mind and body through 4 BRUTAL CrossFit WODs.  I knew where I gassed, where I could have done more and where my strength, endurance and grit levels where.  Placing 4th was good, but not good enough.   

Now onto the Grrrrrr moments for me.  I have been struggling with feeling “broken” and torn on my training and the competing side of this “Games Season” in the CrossFit world.  I knew that the field of women that was coming to compete was going to be FIERCE! My goat is my mind.  My confidence can be easily exposed to show the constant “IN MY KITCHEN” mindset I carry with me.  I am a single Mom to a wonderful 3yr old little Red headed doodlebug, I am a full-time RN, and I Coach CrossFit 5 days a week. So when I thought about the chances I had to actually hold my own against the 20-something yr old Full Time CrossFitter with a totally different game than me….self doubt flooded my kitchen.  I choose to spend time outside the CF box and try to find balance with all these roles.  Thankfully I have a wonderful support system  that allows me to follow my passions.   

Friday night approached and the nerves started with the sporadic moments of butterflies.  Then Mark just told me “HAVE FUN”.  Wow. It worked! I decided that I had done all I could do to up to this point and I had to control what I could and let go of the rest.  (How about I tatoo that on my forehead…. maybe I won’t forget it).   

Saturday started out nice and cool then the heat came before the sun was even over the horizon.  I was in Heat 2 for the 1st WOD.  


Dead Man's Row

2kilometer Row for time, you then had 10 sec to walk to your barbell and complete as many 185# Deadlifts as possible before the 12min time cap elapsed.  I had never rowed a 2k for time before, I was gaming this WOD off how I feel after a 5oom.  I was confident in my Deadlifts and just wanted a competitive row time so that I would be high enough in the standings moving into the 2nd WOD of the day.  I planned to stay in the 2min/500m pace window then pick it up around 1ooom.  The problem was I had no idea how I feel at 1000m straight, I can’t remember the last time I did a long row.  1st 500 I was on pace… moving into the 2nd 500 I was feeling good and every once in a while I wanted to pull and sprint.  My judge was great at reminding me that I had found a “happy place”.  This was probably the most comfortable I have been in an uncomfortable situation.  1000m done – half way now baby.  I hit that half way mark and realized I was still OK!  The last 500 I wasn’t sure how soon to sprint and when to be in the active rest mode to get my legs ready for the deadlifts.  2k DONE… I hear my judge starting the 10sec countdown.  It was chalked up & was just waiting on ME!  


3-2-1… LIFT….hmmm not bad.  A short rest at the top (no rest allowed at the bottom) and off I go.  My grip was solid, my back was in check and my legs felt good.  I was shooting for 10 lifts and when I actually hit them I wanted 15… in my 13th lift my grip failed before my hips opened.  Row=8:40 and I pulled 12 Dead’s.  THEN I realized I couldn’t breath.  Thanks to Scott w/McTeer Fitness Training, he caught my suck factor on film.. haha.  Kinda strange to watch yourself and not even remember rolling around the ground trying to catch your breath.  With the 12 DL’s I had shaved 1min off my row time.  I was now standing in 18th place out of 65 women.  


The next 4 hrs I had to stay focused and make sure my nutrition and hydration stayed on track.  Our CrossFit Texas Team was huddled under a tent and making sure everyone was Trigger pointing, taking their Advocare Rehydrate  (*big Thanks to Joel Holcomb for your help with supplement timing) and refueling (Mary thanks for your nutrition guidance) for the 2nd WOD of the day.  My support system grew and showed me how blessed I am.  My mom brought Mekenzie to the event and she was one of my biggest fans.  Mekenzie is around CrossFit almost everyday and she is a true lil follower… only a CrossFit kid breaks out into burpees during her ballet class.  As Mekenzie stood with Mark and the gang during WOD 2, she was repeating all the yells from around her.  My 3yr old lil girl started shouting “GO MOMMY, push your head through”…guess I need to work on my head thru on my handstand pushups – haha.  

Mekenzie and Jack cheering on their CrossFitting Mommy's

WOD #2: “MABRY MELODY” – 3 rounds  

2 Handstand Pushups   

(hands within 30in taped area, head to ground, full lockout and heels on wall at full extention)  

6 Ground to Overhead – 95 lbs. (Clean & Jerk)  

10 burpees  

Thankfully we have been working on our HSPU’s in the box (Thanks Rob & Brannon for making sure we did it!)  But I still hadn’t gotten the timing perfect w/my kip.  I met w/a friend on Thursday and I was able to nail it! Nothing like the last-minute.  I was excited about this WOD. A little nervous on how my shoulders would feel in the second round.  I had a great Judge, Carl kept me on the wall and my head in the game.  1st round was great, then…… 2nd rnd HSPU’s ate my lunch. Either I couldn’t get locked out elbows or my dang heels kept popping off the wall.  I could feel how close I was but Grrrrrrrrrrrrr it wouldn’t go.  FINALLY 2nd HSPU done and onto the C&J’s and burpees.  I was able to get one of my 3rd rnd HSPU’s before thee 12 min cap.  I was SERIOUSLY disappointed in my performance here! It exposed a weakness and all I can do is… MORE WORK!  


WOW, day 1 was done and two WODs done.  I was in 25th place at the end of the day and knew that I had to work my a** off on Sunday to stay in the top 30.  I felt like I had left it all “out there” and even though I wasn’t 100% satisfied at my performance I knew I had pushed through every uncomfortable spot as best as I could.  The day couldn’t have ended better.  Now home to put my tired lil girl to bed & put myself through my next prep phase ….. hot shower, Rehydrate, Night Time Recovery and Catalyst – what a nightcap huh.   

On to the Next One 


2-a-day…sure doesn’t keep the soreness away!

Wednesday was a 2 -WOD kinda day.  These are no fun, but now and then it just happens.  Monday and Tuesday it was all about Coaching and being Mommy.  Everyday I struggle with making the best decision for my precious little girl and for myself.  Over the last year my family and my good friends would tell me to do things for myself.  “If you are happy, she will be happy” they would say. WOW that’s hard to put yourself 1st, well it is for me.  These last few months when I want to train harder than ever, it’s harder than ever to do just that.  I finally just realized that I have multiple “hats” that I wear on  a daily basis and BALANCE is everything! I strive to be the Best Mommy, the Best nurse, the Best Coach, the Best companion but is it best to spread yourself so thin that areas suffer?

  I’m ok with not being the ” BEST” Crossfitter and ok with not being the “BEST” ICU nurse, but I will  NOT relinquish the drive to be the BEST Mommy to my little girl.  On Sunday we celebrated Mekenzie’s 3rd birthday and boy-oh-boy am I BLESSED!!!!!!! When Mekenzie stopped playing, tilted her little red head and said, “Thank you Mommy for my party, I Love You!” I melted and all the stress of the “balance” went away. 

Wednesday was a double WOD day.  The 1st WOD of my day I hit after Coaching the 9am – I was able to twist Brannon’s arm to workout with me.  It’s always better with someone else gutting it out with you!

WOD#1  21-15-9 HandStand push-ups, single arm dumb bell snatches.

I am trying to take all the extra opportunities I can to train a weakness. So the HSPU’s included some EROM (extended ROM) on paralletts and a little heavy on the DB snatches. The fun factor was that I got to play with my doodlebug.  Mekenzie off to the side swinging  away on the rings next to me then entire time.  She made sure I had the chalk bucket handy and I even got a “YOU GOT IT MOMMY”.  That is the best bit of motivation I could ever hear!  This workout was not a strict clock run. There was the extra few seconds to untangle the straps on the rings for MK, or a little longer of a look when I heard “look at what I can do Mommy”. So 18 min , a good sweat and a happy little girl is all good by me!

The rest of the day included lunch with Mekenzie at her favorite… Chick Fil -A! It was not so much a Paleo lunch for me, but I can at least Zone a pretty good meal there.  Grilled chicken sandwich with the bun removed and a side of fruit. I caved and had a big O’ Diet Coke. A quick run in the rain just “because” and we were off to the house for  nap time. YEAH NAPS!

WOD #2

I love when I can jump into the evening class with some of the other gals.  I sure do miss working out with my girl Kerri, but I can’t get there as early as she does.  So today it was the 6pm class.  Ashley, Lauren and Terilyn – what a great group of women to knock out a WOD with…. oh yeah the guys did awesome as well 🙂  Today’s WOD was about keeping the weight a little heavy all while maintaining the MetCon component. 

3 Rounds: 50 abmat sit ups, 30 box jumps (not enough room on the big box so I volunteered for the “big boy” 28″box), 10 Deadlifts (115# womens rec. weight – I threw on 155# for the challenge)… and yeah I let my back slip a little at the end…. Grrrrrrrrrrr. 

Brannon grabbed some film of the class and I wanted to share the blood-sweat-tears of the day.


The obligation to demonstrate and take responsibility for performance in light of agreed expectations. There is a difference between responsibility and accountability: responsibility is the obligation to act; accountability is the obligation to answer for an action.

For the past few weeks Kerri and I have talked about what it takes to make ourselves accountable in our training for the CrossFit Games Central Southern Texas Sectional competition March 13th.

  CrossFit Games Widget Central Southern Texas Sectionals – March 13th 2010 – Camp Mabry. Click HERE to come watch and support the athletes right here in Austin on March 13th!

We are always talking about our nutrition – the good days and the bad. The gals at CFTX are zoned in on training, lifting heavier, running faster and getting closer and closer to nailing our individual goals! Kerri and I decided we would take before pictures in the start of this new year and continue to press forward hard and fast.  We both laughed at how long it was taking us to get brave enough to actually post them on our blogs.  When she returned from vacation, she told me she had posted them that night…UHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH that meant I HAD to! Boooo.

Well I sat on them for a while after sinking a little in my training.  I am still trying to figure out just how to manage it all.  A full-time Single-Mom to Mekenzie my beautiful 3yr old, a full-time RN, and Coaching at CrossFit Texas Mon-Fri.  I love it all and seem to forget about myself sometimes and then I get super beat up by my frustration. 

My last post talked about this blog and all the little nuggets in it are not for anyone else but me.  Does that sound selfish??? I can’t post something and worry that other people are going to knock me for my times, my nutrition mishaps, or that I’m not the fastest or the strongest.  It is what it is and all I can do is WORK HARDER!

I reluctantly sit here in “chick” mode, if that exist… LOL and REALLY don’t want to post these pictures. I know that some will think good and some will think bad of what I have done and where I am.  I am happy of where I am! I CrossFit and damn it don’t complain.  (ok, so I may whine a little).  Here are my before shots taken earlier this month.  We all have struggles, we all hit walls and slumps, but it’s the climb out of those holes that is important.  So everyday I strive to add to my training.  It might be dialing in the nutrition better, getting more than my normal 4-5 hrs of sleep a day, and staying as consistent in my workouts as I can. ACCOUNTABILITY….. It’s takes WORK!!!

In case you are looking for my “accountability pictures” I had to remove them due to my ex husbands new wife inappropriately posting them on her blog as the link to my daughters name.  So I will show you all what is truly important to me. MEKENZIE PAIGE ISBELL.  Thank you Scott for giving me the best part of you!

*click picture for more of my babygirl.

Today’s WOD:

21 -Thrusters (85#) 21- supermans

50 Doubleunders

15 -Thrusters (85#), 15- supermans

50 Doubleunders

9 -Thrusters (85#), 9 -supermans

Running off minimal fuel from working the last 3 nights in the ICU and less than optimal sleep I was counting on my AdvoCare supplements to get me through this WOD.  I loaded with the usual – ThermoPlus, Catalyst, Arginine and of course O2 Gold.  All taken at their respectable times for optimal benefit in this killer of a WOD. 

Lauren and I decided to go heavy with this one. Focus was getting stronger!!!!!  So Brannon loaded us up with 85# each.  The Rx for the WOD was 65# and I know what I feel like after Fran at 65# so the SUCK FACTOR today was gonna be HUGE!  3-2-1-( this is gonna SUCK) GO!

Gaming my wods is what I like to do – Ashley and I decided we’d shoot for at least 15 before dropping in the 21’s – after 2 reps I realized I gripped the bar way to wide! I tried to push a few more out but was loosing power in the press.  DAMN IT dropping the bar was NOT what I wanted to do so early, but I knew I’d be stronger with the correct grip.  So down the bar goes for a quick reset.  All I could think about during the thrusters was “this better not feel heavy Shannon, because you need to lift a heck of a lot more weight at a faster pace !” I finish up the 21 a little slower than I liked, dropped for the supermans and thought I was gonna puke already! Grrrrr. Luckily my double unders are quick so I was just pushing thru as fast as I could. 

2nd set of thrusters…honestly I don’t even remember those. All I could hear was Howard quietly fixing my form one rep at a time. Trying to train my rest periods was crazy hard. All I wanted to do was stand there a little longer and catch my breath.  I made myself grab that bar before I had completely settled so that it becomes the comfort zone!  My eyes scanned the floor to see where the other girls where in the rotation… having such awesome athletes right in front of you is a great motivator to NOT STOP!

set of 9: I knew I wanted to knock these out without dropping the bar. My freaking legs where TOAST but it was only 9 more so GET IT DONE SHANNON!  5 reps – bar down- again I hear Howard quietly say “pick it up” and last 4 done straight for the last set of supermans and TIME: 11:30. Grrrrrr. NOT happy with that! But I worked the heavy so I’ll take it.  Now…. TRIGGER POINT is calling my name.

Pukie made a visit to my WOD one day…

What does my Friday mean? It’s back to another WOD, another 2 days before my next rest day. Fresh muscles, any soreness hopefully gone, and ready to hit it hard. 

0715 worked all night in the ICU- leaving the hospital and headed to CFTX

0800 Home to feed my Chocolate Lab Hunter, quick change and rummage for some protein and an Advocare Spark drink

0900 Coach at CFTX. Another day with an awesome group! Welcome to the newest faces Amber, Tammy and Anthony.

1030 race home to get some sleep before my doodlebug Mekenzie comes home @ 1pm. 

6pm back to CFTX – lots of new faces so my WOD is postponed a little. Brannon and I get Elements and the CF classes rolling. 

7pm Brannon and I throw some weight on the bars and do a quick review of the WOD… “yeap, got it. Ok . WAIT, I’m not ready, too bad 3-2-1- GO!”  hehehe.

WOD: OHS 10 rnds of 10 reps

Rnds 1-5 Challenging – Rnds 6-8 TOUGH – Rnds 9 & 10 barely making it!

I knew I had to pick just the right weight to start with. My shoulder usually gets angry at me after a heavy OHS day but I had recovered from the last max so- load it up.  I started with 95lbs. with the idea I would add weight somewhere in the 6-8th rounds.  The plan was a 3010 tempo: 3 sec down, no rest and 1 sec to raise and no rest between reps. We started out staggering our lifts so we could coach the other. Great fun to coach when you are still recovery from your own lifts 🙂  Overhead squats are one of my favorite lifts to tackle.  Something about heavy weight over head that just makes ya’ feel strong!

So 10 reps of 95# unbroken, no problem, slow and stready is the way to go.  I was able to remain unbroken through round 6. During my rest, I went to grab more weight and whoooooooooooooosh— hmmmm what was that I thought. I had the feeling Pukie was knocking at my door. WHAT? I wasn’t running Murph or Eva or pushing thru Cindy…. WHY did I feel the need to race to the trash can and make it an offical PUKIE station.  So round 7 I decided to stick with 95#.  Bar UP – and my minds sets up the lift…. shoulders engaged (check), pull bar apart (check) … remember what Sage B. said on her blog…. and the info was swarming around in my head, feet set, deep breath…GO.  I don’t even remember if I dropped the bar in this round… what I DO remember is finishing the 10th rep and ditching the bar as my dinner from 2 1/2 hrs ago suddenly wanted to make an appearance. So out the door I go… yeah I’m gonna leave it at that.  My other nurse pals could probably stomach the details, but why go there when not at work. HAHAHA.  Well, as I walk back in Brannon was done w/his round — ahhh that meant it was my turn again.  That wasn’t the kind of “active rest” I’m wanting to train!   Bar up and 3-2-1-GO.  I just had to get thru 3 more rounds.  Round 8 DONE – sprint outside – Hi Pukie (again)…. sprint inside…. Rnd 9 – broken UHHH , Rnd 10 DONE.

So doing Overhead Squats at ANY weight with a sudden onset of food poisoning has a HUGE SUCK FACTOR! But I was NOT about to get a DNF on this WOD. 


Who said using a ladder was easier?

 Last day of my 3 days on. This week of WODs has been good to me.  I was looking forward to this one – three different elements and it looked quick! Chest 2 Bar pull-ups HELL YEAH! I’m actually more comfortable with these. lately… not as fast as I would like to be, and this is where my clients hear me say….TRAIN YOUR WEAKNESS, so shall I.

*pic of Dustin’s sweat angel after killing another WOD.


Build to your 1RM Power Clean in no more than 7 min.

Rest 60 sec.

1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 Ladder  Chest to Bar pull-ups

Rest 60 sec.

DB Burpees (25#)

It was out of my norm to get to a 1RM so fast.  You gotta kinda know where you stand before you get started.  I knew my Clean 1Rm was about 135#, so I knew I wanted to start heavy and move quickly.  Over the last year I have found out by listening to my body and paying attention to my performance, I do better when I’m really warmed up.  So, of course today Brannon, Rob  and I decided to do this wod after we had coached the evening classes, so our warmup was literally moving around the box and lifting all the equipment in cleanup mode. We both raced thru weight additions and just over 7min had to call it and count it.  I mustered up a 115# Power Clean before time ran out.

Rest 60 sec….. which was walk to the bar/chalk up/ and GO!

Chest 2 Bar pullup ladder w/no rest between rounds. 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10.  The first few were good. Trying to train my weaknesses, I have gone back to a prone grip on both hands, and then on a few rounds tried to get C2B with my butterfly.  Back to good ol’ kipping to finish in 7:07.

REST 60 sec…… walk to the mats, grab a set of 25# dumb bells.

AMRAP in 2 min DB Burpees…. Howard on the clock.

HOLY CRAP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and we yell at Howard “How long has it been?”  Should have known it was not gonna be good when he answered…”Just keep going.”  Then I see Rob out of the corner of my eye and he hasn’t stopped…. UHHH.  So as I hear the count down I race thru a few more, I had a # already set in my head when I started. TIME… AMRAP=20.

These 3 elements together proved to be a great mix and an awesome WOD with the guys.

Add weight and DO IT AGAIN!

Getting back into the swing of things at the CrossFit Texas box and I LOVE IT!  I took almost a week off and at first it was hard to train my brain to rest for so long.  After training  3 days on -1 day off -2 days on-1 day off for the last couple of months  it was a good rest.  Like Mary always says “Respect the Rest”.  My bum shoulder from Max OHS and working on my butterfly pullups was happy to have a week off.  So hear it is….2010… getting REAL, getting SERIOUS and staying accountable!  Keeping my training log up to date and my nutrition in check is what’s going to keep me accountable.  The plan to compete in the CF sectional in March right here in Austin is in full swing.  So here’s how the 1st week of January 2010 started out.

WOD: Max Clean & Jerk (including a 2-2-2-2 ladder and technique work to my 1RM). 

I knew what I had to do! I am determined to raise the bar for myself and GET COMFORTABLE with the UNCOMFORTABLE!

Heavy cleans = uncomfortable!

My great Coaches Brannon and Rob stood by with the inside “get under the skin” words of wisdom to help me gut it out.  “HEAD DOWN” …..”GET AGGRESSIVE”….. “do i NEED to tell you to PULL THE S*** out of THAT or are you gonna do it right?”  Working through each round of 2 reps felt really good today.  Before I knew it I was at 115—- 125–and it felt good.  Technique ….just go back to technique. 135 – LIFT-GOOD!  Then I got a little hot-headed and threw on 10# more… 145 failed… drop 140 failed.  Okay today it’s 135.

PR’d: 135# Clean & Jerk. 1RM


My 1st Year of CrossFit!


October 2008…… 2 months before my CrossFit journey began…… June 2009 Cabo San Lucas


Tonight I was about to sit down and update my blog on some recent WODs and training.  Then I realized…  a year ago, Dec 1, 2008 I walked thru the doors of the CFTX box and officially had my 1st CrossFit WOD.  A year ago I fell in love … with CrossFit.  WOW, I don’t even know where to begin on my experiences over the last year, what CF has done for me and where I am a year later.  I have a feeling this is going to be a long one!  How about I start with WODs… keep it simple.

Wed. Dec 2, 2009

What a GREAT day today was!  A recent decision to lay low allowed a relaxing morning with my little girl, plenty of time for a Paleo breakfast, stories and all kinds of princess dress-up.  All bundled up and off to the local discount bookstore for a Christmas book for Mekenzie.  Then off to the gym.  I missed my last 2 days of WOD’s so I had to try and pull off  2 in one day.  It’s always fun to have the box to myself and let Mekenzie just run wild while I get a great workout in. 

So on the docket today was AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) in 20 min: 7 Hang Squat Cleans 65#, 7 burpees, 7 Chest to bar pullups.  I was actually looking forward to this one.  I have been making myself do chest to bar as much as possible to make it the norm, so I was excited to see how I’d hang. 

Time was crunching and Mekenzie’s nap time was hot on my heels so it was game time.  The cleans felt great at just 65#, focusing on technique with the lighter weight.  Burpees— well they are burpees, not much to say except YEAH BURPEES! C2b pullups…. I just feel strong when I hit that bar… “HELL YA” was what ran thru my head each time.  That high didn’t get old.

Mommy duty- Home, nap, pack for the afternoon and off we go again.  Off to Coach Boot Camp with the awesome ladies of Windermere Primary School in Pflugerville. 

I am having a blast with this group of ladies! Twice a week they show up and get it done!  Today was all about cleans.  With the wind blasting outside in 47* weather, I was glad to see that we were allowed inside and could stay warm.  Lots of shrugs and drops happening today…. along with LOTS of laughs.  That is one of the best parts of this bootcamp…. we laugh & have a good time.  Yes, the emails come in on how sore they are, but they finish up with “loving it…see ya Wednesday”. 

The evening was wrapping up and I still had to get the benchmark WOD in! BARBARA…. she was calling my name.  I have been thinking about her all day.  I could remember the last 2 times I tackled this WOD and I was determined to nail her to the wall again.  I headed into my warmup as planned… all pullups Chest to bar.  NO EXCUSES! All body weight elements… all possible.  I had put my body thru many WODs that I didn’t know how I’d finish but today all I could think about was BLOW THIS OUT OF THE WATER!

BARBARA: 5 rounds 20 pullups, 30 chest to floor pushups, 40 situps, 50 air squats. ALL FULL ROM or a NO COUNT!

rnd 1: hell ya.. pullups were sailing,  then I hit the floor – pushups felt like I could push all day—  I was liking how it was going so far.  “GAME IT” I said, I knew that if I failed or slowed down that I could pick up pace in my squats. 

rnd 2: things are still on pace… lost my grip a little on the bar but easy fix.

rnd 3: situps starting to slow down… then Mekenzie thought I might need some tape so as I try to keep them unbroken, she was such the cute little helper holding my arm down applying the athletic tape.  Crocked situps do wonders for adding a strawberry to the  rear end!

rnd 4: switch grip, kipped  push-ups at end, situps still trucking, squats=comfort zone

rnd 5: 10 pullups in and Mekenzie is looking up at me “Mommy I need to teetee”  Well, SHE is my priority NOT keeping my spot on the  board or getting a new PR.  Yes both would be great, but my little girl needs her Mommy. So I drop down from the bar – swoop her up and we race to the bathroom as the class keeps going gaining on my time.  I think MK and I set a personal record for the fastest potty break…. lol.  I swoop her back to the whiteboard so she can continue to color. I leap up on the bar and did the fastest last 10 pull-ups I’d done all night.  I was determined to make up that time.  I knew I could push one more round out.  Everything was flying… and finally my last 50 squats… unbroken until 40… UHHHHGGGG. … 10 more… TIME.   SO with the helpful tape application, and the potty break I DID IT! I PR’d by 3 mins!!! *clarification… C2B for all warmup- not all of them in the WOD were C2B 🙂

My YEAR IN REVIEW.  I look back  over the last year and where I was emotionally & physically and I’m most proud of the place I am now.  I was determined to show my little girl that her Mommy was NOT going to let her down.  What I had come to realize was that the end of my 13 year marriage was not going to define me.  When my friend Mark introduced CrossFit to me way back in 2005 I was only familiar with the .com workouts but I was still wrapped up in the ‘globo-gym’ world. So after I had my daughter and had decided to leave teaching for the globo-gym world, I sought out CrossFit in December 2008 and had a whirlwind year.  I fell in love with the physicality of it, the nuts and bolts of what it was doing for people emotionally and physical transformation it gave me after having my daughter.  The community of CrossFit has embraced me and all the roles I play in a day…. Single Mom, Nurse, Coach, teacher to my lil girl, athlete, friend, follower at times, leader at times…. opinionated -yeah probably too much. 

When I started CrossFit last year I just looked at it as an outlet, a way to get back in shape.  It provided me with more than I could have imagined.  Confidence in myself again, an extended family that had similar goals and challenges & a support system to help reach those goals.  Then all of a sudden I was headed to get my Level 1 to train others in this awesome sport!  Regional’s – a competition amongst other CrossFitter’s as a stepping stone to the CrossFit Games in California.  This was AMAZING, it showed me how far I had come and how far I still had to go… or could go! I had some gut checks that weekend but I had an awesome group of friends that helped me keep smiling.   Then it was off to California….THE GAMES! WOW is all I can say! That was a CROSSFIT dream.  Seeing the elite athletes and being able to step onto that stadium floor at the Ranch and gut it out…. words can not describe what  it was like to be part of the FIRST CROSSFIT TEXAS Affiliate Team!

So a year later….where am I? A coach, an athlete, a single Mom, a teacher, a friend. Roles don’t seem to change but the level of knowledge in each do.  I hope that I am a better Coach, a better athlete, a better Mom , a better friend.  I strive to constantly improve in all roles. So I’ll just keep riding the CrossFit wave and let it be a part of my life as long as it stays kind to me. I hope I can share the love and passion with others.

*thank you for all your encouragement! twib.