A week or so ago, my friend Meghan told me that she was competing in an amateur crossfit competition at Crossfit Unbreakable. I hadn’t heard about it but loved the concept of a low-key partner competition. I immediately texted my friend Kelly and asked if she wanted to compete with me. Kelly works out at Finish Line (she works there and does CF there) and is a badass. But she also is a lot of fun and we share a similar attitude about competitions so I hoped she would be able to team up with me! Luckily for us, a team backed out leaving an open spot. We were in!
So on a very frigid morning, we met at Crossfit Unbreakable around 8:30am for the 9am start. Meghan’s partner was Megan (so many Megs!!!) and the four of us stuck together throughout the day. There were a total of 6 girls teams and 4 WODs for us to complete. There were lots of men’s teams as well, so when we weren’t working out, we were judging one of their teams. The only other competition I have done is Bracket Buster which is a much larger competition with official judges and volunteers. This was much more relaxed and for the most part, I loved it! My nerves weren’t nearly as high and we had a chance to meet a lot of other athletes throughout our downtime. This also meant, however, that because athletes were judging, there wasn’t an official judging standard. Most of the time it didn’t matter, but we had to swallow our words when we’d see someone shorting their airsquat or not opening up at the top of a burpee!
There were 4 heats and Kelly and I were in heat 3, Meghan/Megan were in heat 4. Kelly and I found a men’s duo to judge – the Ryans – and we stuck with them throughout the entire day. It was really fun to team up with them, encourage them in their heat and have them do the same for us. The first WOD had two components: The first was a 3 rep max deadlift. (Details below)
WOD 1A. 3RM for Dead Lift. 12 min cap.
Partner 1 and 2 must both pick the same starting weight. It can be any of the following: #95, 135, 185, 225, 275, or 315.
It must be 3 TAG (Touch And Go) reps. You may only increase #10 per attempt per team at a time. If you want another attempt, then you must complete 5 box jumps (24″/20″) before each 3RM attempt. You must alternate partners. Only 1 partner need hit the next #10 increment before increasing. You can fail twice per athlete.
Kelly and I are pretty even on our deadlifts. We started at 135# and alternated going up in weight while doing our box jumps. When we got to 195#, which is more than my 1RM, I was able to get 3 reps! Kelly got to 185# on hers before failing. I tried 205# but was only able to get one rep so stopped there. But I was thrilled to get a new 1RM at 205#. My form was hideous (JD got a video – it’s ugly) but because we couldn’t go any higher, we had about 3-4 minutes to rest before the next WOD. Our score for WOD #1: 380.
The next WOD was bench press:
WOD 1B. Hanging Bench
Immediately after establishing the 3RM in Dead Lift both partners will head over to the rig for Hanging Bench.
Partner 1 has 90 seconds to get as many bench presses done as possible (#135/65) while Partner 2 must hang from the rig. Partner 1 is done if 90 seconds expire, or if Partner 2 falls off the rig, or if Partner 1 can no longer complete a rep. Partner 1 can rest the bar on his/her chest, but once he fails, needs the spotter to get it, or re-racks the weight, he/she is done.
60 seconds to rotate.
Partner 1 and 2 switch places and repeat.
Kelly started on bench and was able to get 24 reps in 90 seconds while I hung from the bar. Then we switched and I was able to pump out 20 in 90 seconds while she hung. Our score: 44.
We then cheered for Meghan/Megan as they killed their deadlifts! Both are so strong and were able to get 235# each!
Their bench score was 44 as well so after WOD #1, they were in 3rd place and we were in 4th. On to WOD #2!
Partner WOD. 10min AMRAP
Partner 1 will hold a handstand against a wall.
Partner 2 will complete as many thrusters as possible (#75/45). Partner 2 CAN ONLY complete thrusters once Partner 1 is in the hand stand hold.
Rotate partners whenever you want. Your score is the total number of thrusters in 10 minutes.
Kelly and I judged the Ryans on their 2nd WOD and they did awesome! We noticed the key to doing this WOD well was having a solid handstand. And that was good news for Kelly and I. Both former gymnasts (well she was a serious gymnast, my handstand ability came more from walking on my hands in front of the TV throughout my entire childhood), we knew we could hold that handstand for as long as necessary. Our strategy was to swap out every 10 thrusters and we stuck to that quite consistently. I started with the thrusters and they felt pretty rough. Oddly enough, they got easier for me as I went (maybe I just needed to warm up?). I was able to use the handstand to catch my breath (which is sort of difficult when upside down) and to stretch my legs. At one point, Jake asked me if I was telling time with my legs as I was constantly moving them around to try to open up my hips and stretch my muscles in between thruster sets. The beauty of having Kelly as my partner is that I know her so well, and visa versa. And when she was struggling, I’d cover for her. And when I was hurting, she did the same for me. When I saw her getting tired during thrusters, I’d do a few extra. It’s that type of teamwork which helped us stay in sync. When the clock struck 10 minutes, we had done 172 reps! The leaders did 185 but otherwise, we were in solid 2nd after this WOD!
Meghan and Megan went after we did and rotated every 5 reps. They got 122 reps and at the end of this round were still in 3rd place while we were still in 4th.
Meghan on the wall and Megan thrusting
The last WOD was a long, painful chipper.
Competition WOD 3: Turkey Chipper
Partner chipper. One partner works, while the other partner rests. Get the work done AFAP.
Row 1863 meters. You can set the dampener at any setting. (President Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday in 1863.
102 Wall balls #20/14, 10′/9′. (There were 102 people on the Mayflower.)
66 Med ball, ab mat partner sit ups. #20/14. Do a wall ball sit up and pass the ball directly to your partner. (The Mayflower journey lasted 66 days.)
50 Burpees. (50 Pilgrims were at the first Thanksgiving.)
90 Air squats. (There were 90 Wampanoag Indians at the first Thanksgiving.)
Row 1621 meters. Set the dampener at any setting. (The first Thanksgiving was in 1621.)
Successfully complete 2 football passes. 35′/25′. (The first football game on Thanksgiving was Yale Versus Princeton in 1876, Yale won 2-0)
While judging the Ryans on this WOD, I started to get nervous. This WOD was TOUGH! Though our boys did awesome, one of them puked right after. All but the sit ups were high intensity and heart-rate inducing movements. It was going to be hard.
boys be rowing
I have anxiety over rowing so asked Kel if I could do that first (this is where she stepped in and covered my weakness!) I rowed 930 meters and then jumped off to rest while she finished the first portion of the workout. We then raced over to do 14# wall balls on a 9′ target (which I had never done before – we do the wall at our gym). Since Kelly just got off the rower and was winded, I did 20-25 wall balls at first to let her rest. Then we alternated every 10 wall balls. The sit ups were a godsend as they let us catch our breath. You really can only go so fast in that movement so we just tried to stay consistent. When we got to the burpees, we did 5 each and both of us knocked these out fast. Then we alternated the airsquats every 10. Kelly jumped back on the rower with 6ish minutes to go. Our plan was to swap out every 400 meters. So far, no girls team made it through the entire workout so our goal was just to go as hard as possible. Again, I hate rowing so when it was my turn, I kept saying “I am Jen Kaido. I am Jen Kaido.” Jen is an Olympian Rower who is a coach at our gym. She is incredible at rowing and I tried to channel her strength! At 800 meters, I jumped off and Kelly jumped back in to 1200 meters. Then I was back on with less than 2 minutes to go. I pushed as hard as I could and the best part was that every Naptown athlete there were surrounding our erg cheering us on. Nick reminded me it was about quality pulls, not quantity and though I was dying, I was hovering in the 1:47-1:55 pace. When the clock beeped, we had done 1490 meters – FIRST place in that WOD!!! Kelly and I were thrilled, but we still had Meghan and Megan to go. Kelly was trying to leave as she promised to be home hours ago but she decided to stay just in case our performance was enough to put us in the top 2 overall – which would mean one more final WOD.
We stuck by Meghan and Megan throughout their WOD and cheered them on. They killed the row and chipped away at the workout at a great pace. They got to the final row and were beasts. When Meghan was on her final pull, she hit paces in the 1:30s for about 20 seconds! As tired as we were, that was just amazing! I can’t remember what their overall total was but it was impressive!
When Coach Jim calculated the totals, Kelly and I were in 2nd place! We were going to the final WOD!!!! We were up against a team that had killed every WOD and were from Hoosier Crossfit. Luckily, it was a very short WOD and Kelly and I were thrilled with that. We were tired, hungry and didn’t have much left in the tank! The 2nd place teams went first and the 1st went right after. The best time won the competition. So Kelly and I had to each do 2 farmer’s carries across the gym carrying 22KG kettle bells. Then we had to do 30 total Russian style kettle bell swings and then flip the tire 3 times each. Since I had never flipped a tire, Kelly quickly taught me and off we went. The only mistake we made was how we broke up the KB swings. We should have done 15 each rather than 10, 10, 5, 5 so less transition time. But we finished at 2:08. The winners finished under 2 minutes. We got 2nd place and were absolutely thrilled!
Meghan and Megan tied for 3rd place! So it was a solid showing from Crossfit Naptown and the Perfect Strangers.
It was a really great day with awesome results. I got a new PR on deadlift, flipped my first tire and got 2nd place with one of my closest friends. I got to know Megan G. much better and got to cheer another one of my closest on to her 3rd place finish! I met new CF friends from other gyms and everyone was so supportive and encouraging. Thank you to Crossfit Unbreakable for a great competition and a lot of fun.
Huge congrats to Megan and Meghan for their awesome finish. And to Dan, Dave, Nick and Mike from CFNT! Thanks to Jake and JD for being official cheerleaders and photographers!
Thank you to Kelly for being an amazing partner. For encouraging and inspiring me. For laughing and cheering. I love you!
Next up? Snow Brawl on 12/14 with my Below Parallel team! i can’t wait!