Monday, March 10, 2014

Tigress Stripes And Crossfit New Zealand

I have been really busy and haven't been blogging much, but I had a few thoughts today that were worthy of more than an Instagram photo or Facebook status update.

Sunday was Soccer day, as usual. My team lost (as usual) but played well in general. We keep getting better and betterm and yours truly has gone from defence to playing midfeild - a position that requires a LOT of running, sprinting, and a fearlessness I already learned on defence. I'm not a confident offensive player just yet, but I'm certainly getting there.

All that said, I was feeling like CRUD on Sunday. A bit hung over from girls' night (not literally - just the cheesecake and late night got to me - I'm sure the wine was not the issue), my body was aching baddly post soccer. So bad that I almost considered canceling my Monday session. I decided to wait and see how I felt Monday morning.
Well, after a pain relieving mineral bath and some sleep, my legs were once again my friend, aside from a small mild twinge in my knee. You know, the one that looked like this last summer?
While it's recovered, it still swells up and does some weird things from time to time, so while I'm aware of it, it hasn't gotten to the point were it stops me at all.

Today was no exception. I headed into the gym. But not before taking a good long look in the mirror. I don't always note the 'flaws' now. I tend to see the picture as a whole. Today, I was reminded that I still have my stripes. You may not notice these in the bikini-clad progress photos, but I've got stretch marks to rival (dare I say) any woman who's given birth.  Seriously. In fact, about 10 years ago, I was asked by a new doctor, "So, how many kids do you have?" the very first time she saw me naked. (Don't worry - I tried to sugar coat her foot in it's way into her mouth. That moment aside, she was a great doc.)
Now, they've mostly faded to large stripes which will continue to grow for the rest of my life (thanks to my awesome keloid scarring disorder - yeah genetics!).

See those pretty white veins on my hips?
So today, Trainer Guy and I worked on my Snatches. (Before ya'll go all X-rated on me, click here to see some women competing using the Snatch lift.) It's taken probably the better part of a few months to really understand this lift and get it all together. It has a lot going on, from core strength, to shoulder and wrist strength, to mobility, to speed, and, yeah, the knees have to be happy enough to get that squat nice and deep and move onward.

It's easy for me to take for granted how far I've come. Unlike Sunshine, I don't have photos of over 100+lbs of weight loss. (I didn't have 100+ lbs to lose.) I do have photos of me in my early-mid 20's vs now, so I see how far I've come, but it's a different kind of progress. Last year, I started the swimsuit progress photos. Those have REALLY helped with this. I can see my body leaning out a lot, and, as predicted, that critical mass (muscle vs body fat) is paying off dividends. The weight on the scale is dropping again, bringing my grand total to about 14 lbs in about 15 months. One of the concerns is that weight loss means 'strength loss' but this is turning out not to be the case. It seems to have resulted in more speed.

So I got a bit of perspective today when I stumbled across this video:

These people are awesome. They probably went on to do other things that day as well! (And this also gives you a good idea of what a "bail out" looks like. It's never worth getting hurt over a lift.You've only got ONE body. There will be other lifts.)

Just to summarize, here's the bit that stuck out the most to me.
Why did this stick out to me so much?

I've only been at this thing a little over a year, and I'm not that far away from some of these ladies.

My max squat? 210lbs. That's 55lbs away from the 4th place lady.
My max press? 100lbs. That's 15lbs away from the 4th place lady.
My max deadlift? 285lbs. That's 30lbs away from 4th place...

Granted I still have a LONG  way to go before I'm considered 'competition' for any of those ladies, but it's not nearly as far away as I expected it to be.

So, while I console myself with some mint coconut milk ice cream tonight before bed, I guess I've realized that, well, I'm getting there.

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