Competition – what Competition?

Competition

Noun – the activity or condition of striving to gain or win something by defeating or establishing superiority over others:

Masters at War Competition, at Train Manchester.

I am pretty sure Caroline, Sharon, Chris and I were not going to this event to ‘defeat others’ and ‘establish our superiority’. We are not natural athletes; just normal people who deal with the daily pressures of life (shopping, kids, work, etc.) and happen to enjoy a shared interest in Crossfit, mostly at HG3.
The Masters at War event for me was an opportunity to test my skills, strength and endurance with a group of like minded individuals in a ‘competitive but supportive’ environment. Maybe we weren’t going to win but we were going to try hard – very hard.
We talked in advance of strategies for the WoDs and acknowledged a few ‘challenges’ to confront.
Everyone who rows hard knows the feeling of intense lactic acid build up and the overwhelming feeling that your lungs may explode. Jumping on and off the rower to undertake American Kettlebell swings and Thrusters in WoD1 made it even more interesting.
The big question for WoD2 was how to split the 100kg – 50/50kg, 60/40kg or 70/30kg? An ideal would have been 65/35kg but in the end Chris and I settled for the option of 70kg. The ladies powered through their sets and we both did our best to keep up. The fourth round of six front squats, followed by three overhead lifts made my legs wobble.
Spirits picked up as we broke for lunch and chatted with our enthusiastic spectators – Gabe, Jess, Juice, Rudds and Sarah but we all knew what was coming. WoD3 was a twelve minute time caped chipper, with 60 pull ups being our major challenge.
The outcome was interesting and proved to me why we compete. I am immensely proud of the gutsy way that Sharon continued to try and muster a pull-up in front of the crowd. I am immensely proud of the determination from Chris to finish them off (raising a massive cheer), despite ripped hands. I am immensely proud of Caroline giving her all and not stopping when she was ‘no repped’. I am also proud of managing to get my 100kg bulk over the bar with decent form.

When the twelve minutes were up on the final WoD I felt absolutely bloody brilliant.
We didn’t finish the WoD, we didn’t defeat the others and we didn’t win a prize.
We did it to prove that we could and weren’t afraid to confront our fears.
It is a wonderful feeling and I recommend it to all.

Speak to Pete and Rudds at CrossfitHG3 about how to prepare.

Train Manchester was a great venue, industrial, functional but welcoming – just like me.

After WoD1

Caroline KB swing

Chris prep STOH

Job done

Me and Caroline, after WoD1

Me rowing...hard

Sharon and Chris

Sharon prep STOH
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Another star in the sky

Yesterday I lost a good friend.
I met Keith when I started motorbike riding with the York IAM and we went on many outings together.
He and his wife Trisha were soon close friends and became surrogate grandparents to both our children.
His health deteriorated over the last few years but he always managed a smile.
I will miss him dearly.

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Frazer does a full WoD

Due to drama rehearsals, Frazer will miss most Teens sessions at HG3 this term, so Rudds/Pete kindly allowed him to go along to the Tuesday 7pm session with me.
It was a long conditioning WoD incorporating 10 rounds of Cindy, 1km of running and another 1km of rowing.
Prowler pushes to finish.
He pushed his way through it frazer wod

KB swings
and was exhausted but exhilarated at the end. Proud!

Sore Saturday but great work from the kids

Missed squats on Wednesday as I was in London due to work but attended the Thursday session. Enjoyed the WoD and the power cleans were ok at 50kg.
Friday was max effort deadlifts and I did ok up to 200kg. Tried 220kg and felt a click and pain down my left hamstring  and glute when it was half way up. Called it a day, came home to an ice pack and rest.
Sore this morning and tight but managed to take Zara down for some fun and awesome squats at the kids’ session.
Pondered why my deadlift hurt and realised my previous weeks were done at 7am. I think my one rep max weights have been done with a rush of adrenaline and I need to tweak it down slightly when working out my percentages. This article sums it up – http://www.t-nation.com/workouts/531-how-to-build-pure-strength 
Setting my 1RM at 90% of my ‘best 1RM’ sounds like a good idea.

Hoping to rest this weekend and be back on it next week. Slightly less weight and great form – like the kids.

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A good Monday for a change!

Have been enjoying the HG3 strength cycle and new programming. The extra mobility and stretches really help.
Last day of summer hols and busy this evening, so attended the 7am session with Rudds and 7 guys. I am not normally at my best at this hour.
Great atmosphere and managed to push up my strict press to 80.5kg.
Lots of good lifting going on.

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One week on…

It has taken me a week to accept the fact that I am not going to be like Bill Robbs. Also tough to realise that I am losing 1% of my aerobic capacity every year.
Still managed a circuit around Derwentwater in the kayak and it was tougher than last year, due to the wind.
Enjoying a break and will read a non-fiction book for the first time in 25 years.

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