Week two of a three month Crossfit challenge

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First Posted: 12/7/2014

We live to see a second week.

We made a few changes; Sarah and Jeric tried the 6 a.m. class at Crossfit Scranton. Samantha went the later route, opting for the 6 p.m. one. Justin, well, he’s still figuring out which time works best for him.

Sarah Haase: The morning workout fits better with work. I haven’t willingly seen 5 a.m. in forever, but the Crossfit bug keeps biting. Tough workouts this week, but, let’s face it, Crossfit is tough.

Samantha Stanich: I was ready for what was to come but my body was not. I was dreading Monday night. I tried to think of excuses not to go. I should wash my hair. I have to clean my kitchen. My turtle needs his nightly walk. Nothing was cutting it so I dragged my butt to the gym.

Jeric Foulds: I switched to the 6 a.m. class kicking and screaming, sleep is my number one pastime. The most crucial parts of my work duties happen in the early morning so I had no choice. The first day took about five alarms and a few whacks to the snooze button, but Sarah and I arrived to class.

Samantha: The workout was intimidating. All I could focus on was the “Ten Rounds” written on top of the 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 squats and one “bear complex.” A bear complex is a four-step lifting ans squatting move using a bar and weights. Just writing this workout makes my body hurt. At the end of it, I felt accomplished and was certain I was adding more weight to my bar for the next workout. I am determined to continue to grow.

Sarah: Ten rounds. That’s what was on the menu. Now, 10 rounds of anything is daunting but when they involve my upper body strength, or lack there of, it’s just plain awful. Fortunately, the others in the class are so supportive.

Sarah: I can’t do a pull-up. Maybe, on a good day, I can knock out one or two push-ups. In class, we are encouraged to scale back workouts to fit our ability. My pull-ups were modified to pulling a portion of my body weight using two rings attached to straps. Gradually, as I become stronger, the rings will be lowered creating more resistance, or so I’m told. The bear complex wasn’t too bad. Could be because I only held the 15-pound bar.

Jeric: Each day brings a new set of exercises, you never know what to expect. I often find myself scaling back the weights or repetition, but I always push as hard as I can. The workouts go by so quickly, there is no excuse to not give it your all. The workouts might not be getting easier, but I’m really starting to enjoy the challenge.

Samantha: The next workout consisted of wall balls, throwing a weighted medicine ball high against a wall and catching it as you do a squat. Box overs, stepping up and over either a 12-inch or 24-inch step holding weight; burpees, a four-step all body movement involving a push-up, squat-thrust and jump; toes to bar, holding on to a pull-up bar and lifting your legs so your toes touch the bar you’re holding and a bear crawl, a walk on all fours.

“This should be fun and easy.” I saw bear crawl and was taken back to second grade gym class, fun! I was oh, so, wrong.

Sarah: This exercise sequence started as “not terrible” in my book. I didn’t know what a burpee was, then came a demonstration. “Ummmm. Really?”

We had to set up our space and just carrying the medicine ball which weighed about 15 pounds was hard. I have to do what with this? Complete dread. Terrible. Very, very terrible.

Jeric: As the girls pointed out – this workout seemed pretty attainable based on the written word. I learned what a burpee was and this is the hardest workout yet. I know, I seem to say that with each entry!

Samantha: The goal was to complete the workout in less than 25 minutes. I did not make the time cap. This was the first time I thought, “There are things I won’t be good at. I am not the super-athlete I thought I was.” It was humbling, humiliating and exhausting. The class is supportive and let me know I would bounce back.

Sarah: I certainly didn’t complete the workout within 25 minutes. A tough realization that I am incredibly out of shape set in. I was humbled, disappointed and sad for a variety of reasons. All sorts of emotions surfaced and tears began to flow, fortunately somewhat masked by my sweat.

Coach Robby Casey was by my side encouraging me, offering motivational words and stopping me when he believed my body was exhausted. The other athletes were encouraging, but I think this might not be for me.

Jeric: I like the wall ball. It got me through the workout. I looked forward to getting back to that part of the routine.

Samantha: The final workout of the week is here. Thank God. I am ready to relax on the couch and not worry about another workout until Sunday. First though, I need to get through this one. The board reads ring dips, mountain climbers, box jumps and V-twists. Eight rounds that include a 20-second intense workout followed by a 10-second rest.

Sarah: I came back. I’m not entirely sure why, maybe to say I completed a week of Crossfit?

Jeric: When we started two Friday’s ago the team told us this would be the hardest workout because nobody starts out on a Friday. I’m not sure if they meant it or if it was an inside joke. After this week though, I certainly don’t believe it.

Samantha: I want to be the best at Crossfit, but am quickly put in my place. I do the most I can but there is always someone who does it better. I want to be that person. I am pushed to lift more, complete more reps, jump higher. I am going to eat my words, but I am beginning to like Crossfit.

Sarah: I’m happy completing a workout. I’m not the fastest, nor the strongest, but completing the sets, all the reps, no matter how long it takes me, is personally satisfying.

I’m still not convinced it’s for me. I didn’t give up after a defeating workout and that’s an accomplishment itself.

Jeric: Mountain climbers are my demise. I can’t consistently do them. I don’t know if it is because they are mixed with the other exercises, or if my feet are too big. After a couple of reps my feet are dragging and it completely throws me out of the zone. Another day is in the bag, though. Rising at 5:30 a.m. became easier. The workouts aren’t.

It is enlightening discovering how out of shape you are, but the feeling of victory, albeit small, makes up for the struggle.