Since day 1, Michael has been drinking the kool aide and sticking to the programming with the mindset of constant improvement. It has been awesome to watch his progress, and if it helps Michael, don’t focus on all the things you need to improve on. Instead focus on maintaining your attitude, passion, and focus during each training session. You have fun with that and your performance will improve across all domains.
CrossFit Stevens Point Competitor
What was your last competition? (Venue, Location, Most fun/challenging moment)
I took longer than I should have to fill out the questionnaire, so it went from being 2017 Festivus Games (CrossFit Themis, Wausau, WI) to being the 2017 Bullet Point Classic at SentryWorld (Stevens Point, WI). For Festivus, the most fun moment was probably watching Travis L. during the finals for the Intermediate division. I guess the challenging one for Festivus would’ve been the grind that was the wallball and 35# dumbbell snatch couplet for the Novice finals. As for the 2017 Bullet Point Classic, hands down the most challenging things were the ongoing fight against various muscles trying to tightening up between events, and trying to balance catching my breath on breaks with getting back to work. The part of the Bullet Point Classic that I’d call the most fun was the sheer amount of support and encouragement from the other attendees, competitors, and volunteers.
What made you decide to compete?
I guess my addictive personality got the best of me during my first month at the box. I registered for Festivus on January 26, having started Fundies on January 09. The draw of there being a “Novice” division, and having three months of being able to prepare for the published workouts probably pushed me over the edge. Having survived the 2017 CrossFit Games Open, Staci Galloway posted that she’d love to see CFSP on top of the Affiliate Participation, and stated that it would be a fun day… I guess I fell for it and registered 2 days later. Admittedly, Staci wasn’t wrong- the day was a blast and CFSP went from being tied for third with 4 others boxes with 2 athletes registered, to being on top with 8 athletes of the 68 total registrations.
How did your training change once you registered?
For Festivus, I knew what the weights and movements were- and could see how [not] well the individual movements felt. I did work on the individual pieces, but the only workouts I did ahead of time were the ones that the box put into their programming. Given how busy my work week was leading into the Bullet Point Classic, the only “real” prep I had done was seeing how rough the first WOD (http://www.bulletpointcompetition.com/event-item/the-lion-killer/) was a few days after it was announced- granted at that point I was “happy” with getting through two sets of the complex at 95#, and I had to breakup the sets of the 135# deadlift.
How has your nutrition/recovery changed after registering and going forward?
Nutrition really hasn’t changed, but my PR for Friday donuts for Feb/Mar/April still was 4 donuts by noon. Recovery, on the other hand, is torture. After tearing a callus during my third attempt at 17.1, and having to baby my hand some, you’d think I’d be a little more receptive to taking days off or deloading. With the two weeks between Festivus and the Bullet Point Classic, it felt like I was not really going for gainz. A few days after a competition is understandable, but deloading one week then only making it to the gym once the following week just felt “wrong.” I think taking it easy those weeks was the smart thing to do, but I am really glad I made myself bounce back after the Bullet Point Classic with a full week of 5 days at 5am, and a bonus of Barbell Club.
What was your biggest struggle in preparation?
The sheer number of things that I feel I need to get better at makes it hard to work on “just” one. If anything competitions help me focus by limiting the immediate concerns, or completely exposing a weakness that I need to [try to] address before the next one.
What did you find out about yourself in preparation or at your competition?
I felt “good” about my first attempt at “The Lion Killer” with getting through the Deadlift, [hang] Power Clean, front squat, and two shoulder to overhead (as push jerk)- twice at 95#, and being able to get through 10 135# deadlifts in 36 seconds, taking a bit of a break, and getting through 6 more before I opted to put the bar away due to my lower-back complaining. Three weeks later, at the Bullet Point Classic, I managed to get through the complex twice in 30 seconds (almost as shoulder presses), then recompose myself and manage to finish a REALLY ugly third complex. I’m talking getting the deadlift, failing the first clean attempt, getting it up to front rack on the second hang clean attempt, getting through the front squat, to then almost lose the barbell to the left and behind me on the first push jerk- recovering and standing it up, having 5 seconds to [successfully] get the second press in. There is no way I would’ve even tried to keep the barbell off of the floor and redo the hang clean, let alone the rest of the complex had it been a normal WOD at the box.
What would you tell someone who is on the fence about competing in a fitness type event?
If you can afford it, competitions help out the community. If you haven’t competed before, you owe it to yourself to see just how far you can push yourself. Personally, despite my “poor” performance on the leader boards at the Bullet Point Classic, I still enjoyed the heck out of it- and was thrilled that I managed to not be last in every event in the scaled division.