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Category: Stacey’s Blog

No Equipment Travel WODS

I’ve been doing a lot of traveling last month and was not always able to make it to the gym for a workout.  Here are some workouts I put together that require NO EQUIPMENT at all.  Just sneakers, your phone for music/ to time yourself, and a road (for some of the running workouts).  Most of these require very little space and can be done right in your hotel room!

The following apps are very helpful:

Map My Run app for running distances.

Interval Timer to program tabata intervals or EMOMs!

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10-1

Burpees
Pushups
Situps
(10 burpees, 10 pushups, 10 situps, 9 burpees, 9 pushups, 9 situps, 8,8,8 etc…)
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AMRAP 20
400 meter run (approx)
30 jumping lunges (alternating)
20 plyo pushups
10 V-ups
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100 Burpees for time
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100 Burpees for time with a twist
On top of every minute perform 5 sit ups (start with sit ups)
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AMRAP 20
15 Air Squats
10 Situps
5 Burpees
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TABATA
Tabata Air Squats
1 minute Rest
Tabata Pushups
1 minute Rest
Tabata Situps
1 minute Rest
Tabata Burpees
1 minute Rest
Tabata = 8 rounds of :20 work, :10 rest.
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5 rounds
800 meter run (consistent pace)
Rest 1 minute
*Use Mapmyrun for distance (app on your phone).  If not available: Do 3 minutes of running + 1 minute rest.
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3 Rounds
30 Air Squats
10 Burpees
30 Air Squats
10 Burpees
30 Air Squats
*Rest 3 minutes between rounds
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EMOTM 10
:20 plank + 10 push ups
*Scale plank time and pushups so you can do everything unbroken with at least :20 of rest each minute.
Stay consistent with the rep scheme you pick.
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50-40-30-20-10
Air Squats
Situps
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25-20-15-10-5
Push Ups
V-Ups
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EMOTM 30
5 burpees + 5 pushups + 10 alternating jumping lunges
*Aim to have at least :20 of rest every minute.
*Increase reps if too easy, decrease reps if too hard.
*Stay consistent with your rep scheme the full 30 minutes
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CORE WORKOUTS
EMOTM 10
10 V-Ups + :10 hollow hold  (scale reps so you can complete full emotm)
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5 Rounds
1 minute plank
20 Russian twists
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5 Rounds
:10 hollow hold
10 V-Ups
10 tuck crunches
10 alternating jackknives
:10 hollow hold
*rest 1 min between rounds
*scaled reps to something you can do unbroken for the full set

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Practice vs. Training vs. Competing

One of the great things about walking into a CrossFit class, is that the programming is already there for you.  You don’t have to worry about programming for yourself or figuring out what muscle group to train on what day and for how long.  It’s all written out for you with a knowledgeable trainer coaching you through the entire class.

The best questions to ask yourself or your Coach are: What is the purpose of this workout?  What is the intended stimulus? How is this going to make me better?

“Training with Intention” is a concept Coach Ben Bergeron put a name to, and I strongly believe in.  To make the most of that 1 hour at the gym, it is important to understand what your intention should be for each session.  There are 3 approaches you can take to a workout.  Each of these has value depending on the intended stimulus of the workout: practice, training, and competition.

PRACTICE

This is where you are making a conscious effort to perform the movement perfectly.  This is usually done with very light weights (under 60% of your max) or with a PVC.  If practicing body weight movement, the focus here is getting your form as perfect as it can be.

In practice, you are working skills, timing and movement patterns.  Practice should not be done at max cardiovascular or muscular efforts.  It is best performed at low hear rates, low weights, and controlled environments.

For example, say I program this:

EMOM 10

Even minutes : 5-10 Toes to Bar (1 unbroken set)

Odd minutes : 5-10 Handstand Pushups (1 unbroken set)

Record your total reps for each movement.

This is NOT a metcon.  You should not be looking at what others got on the leaderboard and trying to one up them.  If you are doing 10 toes to bar every round with an inconsistent kip, you are sabotaging yourself.  If you are doing 10 handstand pushups with 2 ab mats under your head just to get through them, you are missing the point!

This is a great time to be PRACTICING these movements for perfection.  If you don’t have consistent toes to bar, you should be working on your kip before anything else.  Scale this to knees to parallel or knees to elbows, focusing on a perfect kip and breathing patterns.

If you don’t have handstand pushups, you should be going off a box, taking some body weight off.  Get yourself upside down and understand the movement pattern.  THIS is the time to practice getting upside down.  Unless you have a condition where you can’t be upside down, or you have some sort of injury, you should be practicing handstand pushups by being upside down and going through the full range of motion.

Stacking multiple abmats under your head is not good.  You are not going through the full range of motion and you will never develop the necessary strength to do hand stand pushups.  Think of this, if you want to get stronger at your back squat – you would squat at a percentage of your max for a given amount of sets and reps for a period of time.  You wouldn’t put more weight on the bar than your max and start doing quarter squats… so why put abmats under your head and do quarter handstand pushups?

 

TRAINING

Training is what we do in most of our metcons.  This is the most effective way to train for physical adaptions and improve your fitness capacities: such as your engine or strength.  It is performed at high heart rates, heavier weights, and maximizing intensity.

You should be focusing on the quality of the movement and at the same time pushing that intensity to be better for tomorrow.  At the end of a workout, you should feel like you moved well and were able to maintain a relatively high intensity.

This is not the time for practice.  This is where you scale the movements or weights that you are giving you trouble.  If you are struggling with toes to bar, you should not go into a workout with 10+ toes to bar in each round and do singles or toes to bar with a terrible kip.  Not only is this a recipe for injury, but you’re also losing the intention of the workout, which is intensity!

Another example is weight.  Let’s take the workout Grace as an example.

Grace

For time:

30 Power Clean and Jerks 135/95

Just because you can lift the prescribed weight, does not mean you should do it as prescribed.  No, you will not get stronger doing this workout as RX, and no you will not be “practicing” doing that weight.  If you want to practice, then take that weight and do 2-3 perfect clean and jerks every minute on the minute for 10 minutes.  That’s practice.  If you’re doing it in a metcon, you should be training, meaning – lower the weight and do 30 perfect clean and jerks at a high intensity instead of doing 30 clean and jerks at the “RX” weight with terrible form and major fatigue.  Doing 30 reps of 135/95 pounds with crappy form is not the same as doing 30 reps at 95/65 with great form.

Let’s take a look at Regional level athletes.  The average male time for Grace is 1:44, and the average female time is 2:02. Strength wise, the average clean and jerk for men is 318, and 202 for females.  This means that they are using about 45% of their 1 rep max for this workout.

Realistically speaking, for non competitive athletes, 135/95 does not seem very heavy or intimidating.  However, in a workout like Grace, where the focus is on 30 consecutive clean and jerks performed at high intensity, this weight becomes very heavy if you’re lifting near your 1 rep max, but more importantly, it becomes dangerous.  If your 1 rep max clean and jerk is 135 as a female, you should not be doing Grace at 95 pounds.  That is 70% of your 1 rep max!  You should be doing 40%-60% of your 1 rep max and focusing on good, clean form.

“But Coach, I want to get better!!” is something I often hear when I literally take the extra weight off of people’s bars.  You get better when you practice and improve your technique, NOT when you increase your load/ weight and just go as fast as you can.

 

COMPETING

This is where you just go and try to finish first.  Things can get a little sloppy, your technique may break down a little.  Your main goal here is to win.  As long as the rep counts, you’re good.

When you’re competing, it is a completely different mindset.  You want to see how hard you can push yourself physically and mentally.

Competition does have its place from time to time: you can be testing a max lift (when programmed), you can be testing a benchmark workout, or literally participating in a competition.  This is a great time to see what you are really capable of when you put your mind to it.

That being said, you should not be “competing” more than a few times a month.  Competition does not encourage positive training adaptions, it can actually be detrimental to your progress.  It drains you physically, emotionally, and mentally.

Unfortunately, a lot of CrossFitters fall into this category instead of training or practice.

If you’re looking at the leaderboard and trying to beat them by several seconds in a workout, you are competing.

If you are using weights too heavy for you, just to put RX or RX+ on the leaderboard, you are competing.

If you are rushing to pass someone else in a class, you are competing.

If you are doing higher skill gymnastics movements as single reps in a workout just to get that RX, you are competing.

 

 

Yes, competing is fun.  That’s part of what makes CrossFit so appealing, especially for competitive people.

Pick a few workouts a month, and push your limits there.  Benchmark workouts or repeat workouts are a great time to do so.  Otherwise, you should be focusing on practicing and training.

If you are wondering why your toes to bar, handstand pushups, or pull-ups aren’t getting better after years of CrossFit, it’s time to reevaluate how you train.  If you’re wondering why you aren’t getting any stronger in your lifts, it’s time to reevaluate.

This is why I started adding time caps to workouts, to give you an idea of the intention of the workout.  If you are being time capped with 1/4 of the workout still remaining, you scaled incorrectly (weight, movements, or the rep scheme itself).

Our coaches advise what your intention should be before any given workout.  To practice excellent movement at low heart rate, to push yourself, or to compete and try to get the best possible time.  If you’re unsure of how to approach a workout, always ask a Coach and we will be more than happy to help!

 

The take away:

Practice skills and lifts with low heart rates and perfect technique/ form.

Train with good form, high intensity, and weights/ skills that are appropriate for your current fitness level.  This is NOT the time to practice.

Compete a few times a month in benchmark or repeat workouts.  Put it all out there and see what you’re capable of when you put your mind to it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Pre- & Post-Workout Nutrition

You spend 1 hour of your day in a CrossFit class, the other 23 hours are spent outside the gym.  You work hard for that hour whether your goal is weight loss, building muscle, better body composition, or just general health.  That hour is very important in helping you meet your goals.  The other 23 hours, however, are even more important.  

If you are not fueling your body correctly, you are not recovering as well as you could be.  There are a few other factors besides nutrition that go into your recovery, such as sleep, stress levels, and body work (stretching, foam rolling, chiropractic adjustments, massages etc).  Nutrition, however, is a huge factor and something that you can control.

Dialing in the timing of your meals and their composition around your workouts can help you with recovery, and in turn help you reach your goals much faster.  The better you recover from a workout, the better the next workout will be.  You will make that hour at the gym a lot more productive with the proper nutrition.  

Start with focusing on your pre- and post- workout nutrition one day at a time.  

Pre-Workout Meal

  • 1-3 hours before working out
  • Provides you with physical and mental energy from all the macro and micronutrients from your food.  
  • If you train very early in the morning, (5:30am classes), you may not have time for a pre-workout meal.  Make sure that your meal the night before was nutrient dense and well balanced (carbs, proteins, and fats).  

Protein

Eat plenty of lean protein before your workout.  You literally break down your muscles during exercise and weight training.  Protein keeps amino acids stocked while promoting protein synthesis.  

Carbs

Fill up on slow digesting carbs.  Exercise depletes your glycogen and glucose levels, so you need carbs to replenish them!

Fat

Keep your fat intake low in your pre-workout meal.  Fat slows down digestion.  You don’t want to feel uncomfortable in the middle of a hard WOD!

Immediately Pre-Workout OR During Workout

  • 30 minutes to immediately before a workout
  • My 5:30 classes, this option is ideal for you!
  • Only refuel mid workout if it’s a very long workout.  

Protein

Whey protein shake.  It is a very fast digesting protein.

Carbs

Stick with really fast digesting carbs such as gatorade, coconut water, Vitargo.  If you’re doing multiple sessions, eat foods such as white rice, fresh or dried fruit between.

Fat

Avoid fats completely as they slow down your digestion.

Post-Workout

Have this meal within an hour of your workout.  This meal helps with your recovery tremendously.

Protein

To promote muscle maintenance and growth.

Carbs

To replenish glycogen stores and help with recovery.

Fat

Slows down digestion, so keep this very low.

 

Protein Sources (low fat sources)

  • Chicken breast (skinless)
  • Lean ground beef
  • Egg whites
  • Lean steak
  • Turkey
  • Egg whites
  • White fish
  • Low fat greek yogurt
  • Low fat cottage cheese
  • Whey protein
  • Casein protein (best at bedtime because it is slow digesting)

Carbs

Slow Digesting

  • Sweet potato
  • Oats
  • Brown rice
  • Whole grain pasta
  • Whole grain breads/ cereals
  • Vegetables
  • Quinoa (also has a great source of protein)

Carbs

Fast Digesting

  • White potato
  • White rice
  • Fruit
  • Gatorade
  • Dextrose or Vitargo 
  • Rice cakes
  • Pancakes
  • Waffles

Fats

  • Olive oil
  • Avocado
  • Butter
  • Coconut oil
  • Nut butters
  • Nuts
  • Cheese

In summary, avoid high fat foods around your workout time.  

Have a meal with lean protein, slow digesting carbs, and low fat 1-2 hours before your workout.

Bring a shake with carbs + protein to your workout (Whey Protein + Gatorade or coconut water). Drink half of that shake within 30 minutes of your workout.  Drink the other half of the shake directly post workout. 

Eat your post workout meal within an hour of your workout with lean protein and a mix of slow and fast digesting carbs.  

Your food portions play a big role as well.  Every single person is different.  Different body types, different metabolisms, different daily activities, different stress factors.  This is where my one on one nutrition coaching comes into play.  What works for one person, will probably not work for another.  For example, Ectomorphs have a very high carb tolerance, while endomorphs have a very low carb tolerance.  If you’re an endomorph and you’re following the numbers I gave to an ectomorph, you will be eating macro ratios completely wrong for your body type.  

If you’re not counting your macros, just make sure you are eating a well balanced diet full of fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, carbs, and fats.  Use the pre- and post- workout nutrition guide to help you make better choices around your workout time.  Do this consistency and see for yourself how much better you will feel.

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Core Training Beyond the Situp

What is the “CORE”?

The core is much more than just your abdominals.  It is actually a group of muscles in the lower back, stomach, and hips.  These muscles work together to keep your spine stable and your body upright.  They are always active and work in every movement you do.

There are so many benefits of training your whole core vs. just your “abs.”

Your core is your foundation.  Having a strong foundation will translate into heavier lifts with proper form.  It also helps in preventing injuries, especially to your back.

The core’s purpose during a lift is to brace the rest of your body not to move.  Doing sit-ups is definitely a good abdominal exercise, but it won’t get you the results you’re looking for if you want to be able to lift heavy weights safely and efficiently.  Think about when you put a heavy barbell on your shoulders (back of front squats), your entire core (hips, low back, and stomach) are working very hard together to keep your posture correct while lifting.  Having 6 pack abs does not necessarily mean you have a strong core.

With the summer season, everyone is asking me for core workouts for 6 pack abs.  Abdominal exercises alone will never get you visible 6 pack abs if your body fat is high.  You can see your abs when your body fat is below a certain percentage, so yes, visible abs are made in the kitchen… strong abs are made in the gym.

I made a list of some great core exercises to help with bracing and stability.  These will help you build a strong foundation that will help with your strength, injury prevention, and posture.  If your nutrition is on point, then yes, you will be able to see a 6 pack (which is only a small part of your core)!

Scroll down for some great core workouts!

 

VERTICAL PALLOF PRESS

For core stability and resisting spinal extension (arching your back).

Face away from the rig holding the band with both hands.

In a half kneeling position, press the band up and away from your body.

Keep a neutral spine, brace your core, and don’t let the band pull you back.

Hold extended position for 3-5 seconds with a neutral spine.

Start with 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps with a 3-5 second pause. (per side)

*Great for activation of your core before workouts!

LATERAL PALLOF PRESS

For core stability and resisting lateral flexion (side to side).

Keep band at chest level.

Press the band out and up overhead.

Hold at the top for 3-5 seconds while resisting your torso’s urge to bend sideways.

Start with 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps with a 3-5 second pause. (per side)

*Great for activation of your core before workouts!

GHD PALLOF PRESS

Attach a band to a nearby rig same height as the GHD

Go face up on the GHD in an extended position

Hold the band at chest level, keep your torso straight, and press the band away from your chest.

Hold for 3-5 seconds and bring the band back to your chest.

Start with 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps with a 3-5 second hold. (per side)

*Great for activation of your core before workouts!

YOKE WALK

For all over core strength and stability.

Place the yoke on your back (like a back squat), brace your core, and take small steps forward without shifting your hips.

 

  • Heavy + short distance + (3-5 sets) (30-40 feet)
  • Mid weight + mid distance + (5-10 sets) (60-90 feet)
  • Light + long distance + (5-10 sets) (100-180 feet)

*Yoke can also be placed in a front rack position, overhead position, or zercher carry (on your forearms)

BEAR HUG CARRY

For all over core strength and stability

Grab a sandbag/ Dball, bear hug it, and walk with it.

  • Heavy + short distance + (3-5 sets) (30-40 feet)
  • Mid weight + mid distance + (5-10 sets) (60-90 feet)
  • Light + long distance + (5-10 sets) (100-180 feet)

BACK EXTENSIONS

A weak lower back increases the chance of you compensating movements with your spine.

Go facing down on the GHD with your hips on the pad.

Lock in your hips and hinge up and down with only your back.

Start with 3 sets of 8-12 reps

HIP EXTENSIONS

Go facing down on the GHD with your upper thighs on the pad.

Hinge up and down with your hips keeping spine neutral.

Start with 3 sets of 8-12 reps

WEIGHTED HIP EXTENSION

Should be done only after perfecting weightless hip extensions.

Go facing down on the GHD with your upper thighs on the pad.

Hold a plate at your chest or a very light barbell on your back.

Hinge up and down with your hips keeping spine neutral.

Start with 3 sets of 8-12 reps

STRICT LEG RAISES

Focus on contracting your abs to lift your legs up vs. rounding your lower back.

Start with 3 sets of perfect 5-10 reps – using only your abdominals to lift your legs up. No kipping and no rounding your back.

 

 

 

 

CORE WORKOUTS

*Scale these as needed (loads and reps)

 

EMOTM 10

40′ bear hug carry

*Use a stone, Dball, or Sandbag

 

4 Rounds

100′ yoke walk

25 GHD situps

(yoke walk and situps to be done unbroken, so scale load/ distance)

 

3 Rounds

20 back extensions

10 strict leg raises

 

50 Sandbag/ Dball Squats for time

*Bear hug a sandbag and squat below parallel

 

5 Rounds

10 Calorie Ski Erg

15 GHD situps

(scale so situps are done unbroken)

 

AMRAP 12

100′ Yoke Walk (50′ out and 50′ back)

10 Dball over yoke

 

5 Rounds

10 calorie ski

20 Weighted Russian Twists

:30 hollow hold

(Rest 2 minutes between rounds)

 

3 Rounds

15 Dball/ Sandbag Squats

100′ Dball/ Sandbag Carry

 

5-8 Rounds

50′ Farmers Carry (as heavy as possible for an unbroken walk)

50′ Walking Lunges

50′ Bear Crawl

 

 

 

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Reflecting on Your Performance After a CrossFit Competition

After the chalk dust settles, your sweat dries, and your adrenaline wears off after a long competition, it is important to take some time to reflect on your own performance.  Evaluate yourself.  What went well and why.  What didn’t go so well and why.  All of this should be done without even looking at the leaderboard.  

The best kind of feeling is a sense of accomplishment in yourself.  It can be after a class workout where you went unbroken on the pull-ups, finished under a time cap, or just completely surprised yourself with how great you felt during the workout.  The moment the workout ends, you sit there reflecting on how proud you are of yourself.  When you go to put your score on the whiteboard, it doesn’t even bother you if you’re last place in the class, because you know that you gave the workout your 100% effort.  That is the sense of accomplishment I’m referring to.  

When you have the satisfaction of a job well done and you are so focused on your own self, you won’t need to compare yourself to others.  

There are times where I get first place in a workout, but I don’t feel satisfied, because I know that it was not my best effort.  On the other hand, I can be dead last in an event, and be the happiest girl in the world because I know that I gave it my very best at that moment in time.  Event 3 at Regionals was the handstand walk obstacle course.  When I cleared the first obstacle, I felt like I was on top of the world.  I didn’t care that everyone else was already on their third or fourth obstacle.  I was proud.  I worked so hard to teach myself how to walk up and down that incline and up and down those steps.  It all came together on the competition floor.  I placed 32nd out of 40 women on that event (my worst finish), and yet I was the most satisfied with myself.  

It’s hard not to compare yourself to others, especially in a competition.  However, you don’t know how long your competitors have been training for, what sports they played, how many hours a day they train, or what supplements they take.  All you know is everything about yourself.  Where you started and how far you’ve come.  That should be your only focus.

Comparing yourself to others doesn’t change anything.  It only makes you feel worse about yourself.  You’re wasting your valuable energy on things you can’t change.  Instead of wasting that energy on someone else’s life, take that energy and use it on your own life.  

Sit down and make a list of everything that made you proud and satisfied in the competition.

Did you hit a PR?  Did your judge no rep you but you were able to remain focused?  Did the music cut out and you were so deep in concentration, it didn’t bother you?  Were you able to stick to your plan?  Did you beat your own score when you tried the workout in practice?  Were the voices in your head positive and reassuring? 

Then make a list of all the lows, everything that gave you trouble. 

Was the weight too heavy?  Did you lose good technique and start leaking energy?  Did you have to fight a negative mindset?  Did you go out too hard and weren’t able to catch your breath? Were you constantly talking down to yourself?  Did you have a negative attitude?  Did you get angry at your competitors or judges?

Take a look at that list.  Be proud of all the positives and remember them every time you go into a workout.  Are you your own best cheerleader?  Use that!  Were you able to cycle a barbell like never before?  Great!  Practice that more with confidence.

What about all the negatives?  If it’s strength or skill related, don’t be so hard on yourself.  Keep following your programming and make sure you show up on days when your weaknesses are programmed.  Take some time before or after class to work on these weaknesses with a Coach.  Strength takes time to build, and so does gymnastics.  If it is your attitude or your mentality, that is something that you can consciously work on every day.  If you talk negatively to yourself, figure out why you do so and get in the habit of positive thinking and positive self talk.  

A competition is a great way to learn about your strengths and weaknesses and your mentality/ attitude.  Use what you learned about yourself and let that drive your training and focus.  

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Tips For Your First CrossFit Competition

You finally did it!  You signed up for your very first CrossFit competition, you’re excited, you’re nervous, you’re not sure what to expect.

First of all.. Congratulations on signing up!  It takes a lot of courage to put yourself out there for the first time.  You ran through all of the events, practiced all the movements, and came up with a game plan for yourself.  Or maybe you didn’t, and that’s OK too.

As the days are getting closer and closer, you start getting a little more anxious about it, and that’s perfectly normal.  Everyone is anxious going into competition day.  The best thing you can do is focus on preparing yourself physically and mentally.  Focus on everything you can control and let go of everything else.  You can’t control what the weather will be like, but you can control what you’re wearing to keep yourself comfortable.  You can’t control if a judge miscounts your reps, but you can control your mindset and not letting that bother you in the middle of the workout.  You can’t control how other athletes will do in event, but you can control your own workout.

Go into competition day prepared. Pack your gym bag with all your essentials, bring a lunchbox with snacks and meals, and bring a lot of water!

What’s in my lunchbox on competition day?

Bananas

Orange slices

Granola bars with added protein

A light, easily digestible meal (grilled chicken, white rice, a vegetable – zucchini/ cucumbers/ broccoli)

Whey protein powder (Ascent)

Gatorade or Vitargo

Swedish fish and/or gummy bears

Gallon of water, water bottle, shakers (for mixing)

BCAA’s, electrolytes, Nuun tablets

Fuel for Fire packs

Pre workout (Ascent or C4)

What’s in my gym bag on competition day?

Change of clothes for every event, you don’t want to be sitting in your sweaty clothes between heats

Mobility tools: foam roller, lacrosse ball, voodoo floss, bands.

Shoes: Nanos, Running shoes (if there is running), lifters

Belt

Grips

Tape

Jump rope

Wrist wraps

Knee sleeves

Biofreeze

Headphones and a good playlist

 

Here is a list of things that helps me prepare for game day!

  1. Pack my gym bag and lunch box 
    • (See my list above). Make your own list, write it down, and mark off the items that you pack.  This way you know you are prepared and have everything with you.
  2. Eat a good breakfast
    • Stick to a meal you know won’t give you any digestive issues.  You may need to eat it earlier than you’re used to, but make sure to eat!  That is your main fuel for the day!
  3. Arrive on time.
    • Give yourself plenty of time to get there.  You don’t need the extra nerves from running late.  This also gives you time to set up, check out the venue, and ask any questions you may have.
  4. Don’t try foods/ shakes/ pre workouts you haven’t tried before
    • You may get goody bags/ samples and be tempted to try it right there and then.  Don’t.  Stick to what you have tried and tested before.
  5. Hydrate well!
    • Keep sipping on your water/ electrolytes all day.
  6. Drink your recovery shake after every event and try to eat a light snack shortly after.
    • My recovery shake is usually gatorade and ascent protein.  I pack 1 shake and have a little bit after every workout.  Any protein + carb shake will do the trick.  Fuel for fire packs are excellent as well.  I know you won’t feel hungry from all the adrenaline, but your body needs food to recover between workouts.  So eat small portions between your heats.
  7. Stick to your strategy and don’t look at other athletes when competing.
    • It is easy to get carried away in the first minute of competition and go all out.  Don’t.  Pace yourself well.  You know your strengths and weaknesses, you have no idea what other athletes are like.  Stick to your own strategy.
  8. Warm up for every workout.
    • 20 minutes before you need to line up for your heat.  Do some active stretching.  3-5 minutes of light cardio (rowing/ biking). Then 5-10 minutes of movement prep for the next event.
  9. Cool down after every workout.
    • This speeds up recovery and helps you be better prepared for your next event.  Hop on the rower or bike for 5 minutes at a very light pace.  If that is not available, go for a 5 minute walk.  This helps flush out all the built up lactic acid and recover better for your next event.  If something is particularly sore, use your mobility tools.
  10. Judge is always right.
    • Don’t argue with the judge in the middle of your workout.  Yes, they may be wrong, but there is nothing you can do about it.  Accept it and move on.  If you have time before the heat starts, clear up any questions you have on the standards/ flow of the workout.
  11. Focus on what you can control, let go of what you can’t.
    • You can control your attitude, recovery, nutrition, and your effort on game day.  Let go of everything else.  Don’t waste your energy worrying about things you can’t change.
  12. Bathroom stop before each workout.
    • This is self explanatory. 🙂 But seriously.. you will be so well hydrated, don’t forget to use it before your event!
  13. Have a positive attitude and enjoy it!
    • You’re here for fun.  It’s your first competition.  The more positive you are, the better you will do.
  14. Celebrate your accomplishment!
    • It’s your very first competition, you should already be proud of yourself.  Reflect on all the positives, learn from all the negatives.  Enjoy the moment.
  15. Set new goals for yourself a few days after the competition.
    • Give yourself enough time to reflect, then set new goals.

Remember, you are doing this for yourself.  Be proud of yourself for signing up and being there.  If you don’t do as well as you wanted to on an event, reflect on it yourself or your Coach, learn from it, and move on!  Don’t dwell on mistakes or bad events.

Celebrate your fitness and what you are capable of doing from when you first started.  This is YOUR unique journey, so focus on YOU.

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