Monday, November 30, 2015

Escape the day with Fran - by Josh Dawson




6am- Alarm goes off. 6 hours of sleep is not enough. Shouldn't have stayed up watching Netflix. Roll over. Snooze alarm. Time for that mental battle. Need to wake up now if I'm going to make breakfast before work. 2 slices of bacon, three eggs, protein shake, out the door. Traffic is heavy. Drown out the drive with some Pandora radio. 

2pm- The day has been dragging. Between the lack of sleep and a busy work day, 4pm can't come soon enough. The weekend was filled with fall cleanup and family events causing this Monday to drag. 

4pm- Coffee hasn't done enough to keep me awake throughout the day. My eyes are heavy as I make the long drive home. 5pm- Get home and go online to pay some bills. Frontier internet, cell phone, car payment, student loans. Feed the cat. 

6pm- Optimum nutrition amino energy. Time to get ready for the gym. Mental battle- convince myself to go to the gym rather than take a nap. "Man this day dragged." Throw on my tri-blend Hammerhead t-shirt and high socks- maybe it's rope climbs today. 

630pm- Walk into the gym. Everyone is stretching and warming up. Members are talking about the events of the weekend and checking out the board. There is a nervous buzz throughout the gym. People are talking strategy and setting goals- Fran day. 

645pm- Warm-up is complete. Time for the lift. 4x3 thrusters- great Fran warmup. We pair up with someone who has a lift close to us. Stomachs tight as we lift, making sure we go below parallel. The stress of the day goes into each lift fueling a PR. Everyone is cheering as I hit my 3 rep max thruster. Great start for Fran. 

7pm- Everyone is setting up for the workout. The pit starts to develop in my stomach. Nervous energy percolates the gym. Strategies keep flying around. "Are you going to butterfly kip?", "do you go unbroken or go 8/7 second set?" "I'm worried I'm gonna burn out". The energy is incredible, the stress of the day starts to fade. 

3-2-1-go! The day is gone. No more bills to pay, no more work problems or rush hour traffic, just the barbell and myself. Heart rate spikes as I try to hold onto the bar for 21 reps- "don't drop the bar". Bar down. I did it. Get to the pull-ups before Matt, "man he is moving fast"- a healthy competition. 

21 pull-ups down, have to go unbroken on these thrusters to keep up with Matt. 8 reps in I'm breathing hard, I don't want to drop the bar- time to go to that dark place. My chest is on fire as I reach the pull-up bar after going unbroken on the thrusters- another victory. Arms are heavy and I feel as though I weigh more than when I started the workout. The only way to beat Matt is to do this final 9 unbroken. I'm so close to finishing now, just have to push through- time to go to that dark place again. Muscles ache and sweat runs down my face. Chalk is wet on my hands like I'm back in primary school art class, "push the distracting thoughts away-focus on your breathing". 

5 reps down and I really want to drop the bar. Legs burn as the instructor yells out "keep pushing; you're almost there". 

Push on, the end is in sight. 9 pull-ups, can't butterfly anymore, my hips are gone. Standard kip, drop off at 5. 4 more reps to go and I'm done. Push through as it is all catching up to me. I yell out "time" as I fall to my knees. 

A mixture of pain, excitement, and relief surround me as I assume the yoga child's pose trying to catch my breath. My chest burns and I can't catch my breath. My head is spinning and I feel sick. I look over and Matt has assumed the same position after finishing a few seconds behind me. Everything stops, then comes rushing in. 

Members are just finishing up and there is a plethora of poses being assumed from lying flat, to walking around, to rolling on the floor. Members are realizing that two people have not yet completed the workout. We peel ourselves off the floor and walk over to cheer them on- "just 9 more and your finished, stay on that bar". 

They complete the workout in unison and drop off the bar assuming the position that the previous members had. I look around and everyone has the same satisfied reaction on their face. It was painful, but so worth it. Members start to walk around, making their way to water fountains and outside to get some fresh air. Congratulations are all around accompanied by high fives and hugs despite the sweat that covers our bodies. 

It doesn't matter if someone finished first or last, we all fought the same battle, all endured the same pain, and all completed the workout, successfully escaping our lives for the day. In Crossfit we come from all walks of life. From stay at home moms, to CEOs, to college students, we all have different obligations. We come from all different fitness levels. From elite athletes to weekend warriors to those looking to be able to get off the couch. We find a common ground in one thing- the desire to be better. We are bound by the desire for improvement and the challenge that Crossfit brings. We come to the gym each day knowing that it is going to hurt, that we are going to feel it tomorrow, and that we may question our commitment but at the end of things we do it for that escape. The box affords an escape from the everyday grind of life and gives us a chance to interact with people of the same mindset, people who want to challenge and better themselves. This community allows us to be part of something, to escape for a moment in the day, to strive for longevity and self-improvement. 

This is Crossfit. x