Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Norcal Regionals - Team: My Experience

The NorCal CrossFit team @ NorCal Regionals

The top thirty teams in each region were invited to compete at Regionals, the final step in the road to the CrossFit Games.  Each team consisted of six athletes, three women and three men.  I was lucky enough to be on the NorCal CrossFit team this year, along with Cheryl, Gary, Liz, Nate, and Sal.  A first for all of us!

There were six workouts total, two workouts per day.  All teams were required to participate the first five workouts and then the top twelve teams advance to the final workout.  Each member of the team must participate in one of the two workouts each day.  The top three teams overall get to compete at the CrossFit Games in July!

Some of the photos below were taken by Gymnastics WOD and Angela.  Big thank you to them for taking photos!

WOD 1: Deadlift/HSPU.  2 males, 2 females.  15min cap.  For time:
  • 20 Partner Deadlifts 455# (men)
  • 20 Handstand Pushups (men)
  • 20 Partner Deadlifts 315# (women)
  • 20 Handstand Pushups (women)
  • 20 Handstand Pushups (men)
  • 20 Partner Deadlifts 455# (men)
  • 20 Handstand Pushups (women)
  • 20 Partner Deadlifts 315# (women)
Nate, Sal, Liz and I did this workout together.  Huge props to Liz for taking most of the weight on the deadlifts so we can get it done unbroken!  Our plan, at least on the ladies side, was to have Liz do a snatch-grip deadlift so I can do 19 of the 20 handstand pushups.  Haha, deadlifts are my nemisis.  Things did not go quite as planned though since the wall used for HSPUs was really high.  This made it hard for me to kip my HSPUs without falling through.  Regardless we adapted and worked our butts off for 17th place!

2. The guys on the deadlifts.

3. HSPU.

4. Teams on HSPU.

5. Check Liz's snatch grip deadlift, haha.

WOD 2: Row/Pistol/Hang Clean.  2 males, 2 females.  25min cap.  Only one person can be working at each station.  For time, relay style:
  • 1000m row
  • 25 Pistols, alternating legs
  • 15 Hang Cleans 225#/135#
Cheryl, Liz, Gary, and Nate did this workout.  When we practiced this workout, we did not finish in the time cap.  At Regionals, not only did we finish in the time cap, but we were also not the last to finish in our heat!  Awesome, awesome job to Nate for moving so quickly, and for his work on the cleans!  Basically this workout is the time it takes all four members to row plus the last person's time on the pistols and hang cleans.

6. Liz on pistols.

7. Relay style: Liz on cleans, Cheryl on pistols, Nate on the rower.

8. Cheryl on the rower.

9. Cheryl rocking the cleans!

10. Nate for the finish!

At the end of day one, we sat in 23rd place.  Based on practice, we knew the first day was going to be rough.  We were super stoked that we finished the second workout and as for WOD 1, we probably should have practiced and reviewed the transitions more.  I went home happy and motivated to kick ass in Saturday's chipper.

WOD 3: Dumbbell Snatch / Sprint.  1 male, 1 female.  12min cap.  Three rounds for time:
  • 10 DB Snatches 100#, alternating arms (male)
  • Sprint (male)
  • 10 DB Snatches 70#, alternating arms (female)
  • Sprint (female)
Liz and Gary crushed this workout!  Way to make the DB snatches look easy!  This was our best performance at Regionals, in terms of standings.  We won our heat and came in 12th!  This put us in the middle heat for WOD 4 and we were stoked!  Unfortunately I left my camera at home for this workout.

11. Liz making the DB snatches look easy!

12. We got a Hawaiian on the team!  Gary on DB snatches.  Represent!

13. Man-handling!

14. Sprinting.

WOD 4: Chipper. 2 male, 2 female.  25min cap.  Barbell may not touch the ground at any point (human rack).  Women complete their portion of the WOD first, then the men go.  For time:
  • 75 Back Squats 135#/95#
  • 50 Pull Ups
  • 25 Shoulder-to-Overhead 135#/95#
  • 75 Front Squats 85#/65#
  • 50 Pull Ups
  • 25 Shoulder-to-Overhead 85#/65#
  • 75 Overhead Squats 65#/45#
  • 50 Pull Ups
  • 25 Shoulder-to-Overhead 65#/45# 
Only a couple teams in the world were able to complete this workout within the time cap.  Cheryl, Nate, Sal and I did this workout in the hot afternoon sun.  We thought this was going to be a great workout for us since both our practice runs went very well.  In fact, Cheryl and I shaved three minutes off our portion of the workout the second time we did it.  Unfortunately, when it came time to do it for reals, things did not go as expected :(.  Not because of no reps, but because of the heat!  It was so damn hot.  Growing up in Hawaii did not help me at all.  I was delirious and it was hard to just breath.  During practice, fives were our smallest sets of pull ups, and at Regionals, we were doing doubles near the end =/, just to give an example.

15. All day!

16. Cheryl busting out some sweet butterfly pullups.

17. Me on the first set of shoulder-to-overhead.

18. Tight space.

19. yea pullups.

20. Human rack.  Guys waiting on the girls to finish their pullups.

21. Sal on pullups, with plenty height to spare!

22. Cheryl on jerks.

23. Nate on pullups.

I was so bummed out after this workout.  We knew we had to do well in both workouts on Saturday to be in the running for WOD 6.  After completing WOD 4, I knew we did not do nearly as well as we expected.  I did not even check the standings until that night, which only made me more sad.  Being an engineer, I analyzed the crap out of our performance and how it ended up being so different from what we practiced.  The back squats and first set of pull ups went as planned, and then we just tanked.. and really all because of the heat!  But you know what, we worked our asses off out there and that is all anyone can ask for.  It was a great learning experience and you bet working out in uncomfortable climates is on my list of things to work on.  

WOD 5: Snatch Ladder
.  3 men, 3 women.  All the men/women on the team have 50 seconds to complete the lift.  Athletes who made the lift may advance to the next platform.  10s transition.  Score is sum of each athlete's last completed snatch.
  • Female: 105, 115, 125, 130, 135, 140, 145, 150, 155, 160, 165, 170, 175, 180, 185
  • Male: 155, 165, 175, 185, 195, 205, 215, 225, 235, 245, 255, 265, 275, 285, 295
My teammates did an awesome job on the snatch ladder!  Big congrats to Liz and Nate on their PRs!  Unfortunately for my petite ass, the entering weight on the snatch ladder for women is my bodyweight.  My goal going into the snatch ladder was to make that 105# snatch.  For the snatch, I am pretty much at the point where my technique needs to be spot on for me to make a lift near my PR.  Both my attempts were close, but not stable enough for me to stand up with the weight.  I was really bummed :(.  Being able to do a bodyweight snatch is one of my longterm CrossFit goals I set for myself on my CrossFit anniversary.  It would have been nice to make that lift at Regionals.  But that being said, I still have time, and I definitely will have a bodyweight snatch by the end of the year.

24. Cheryl 115#.

25. Liz 125# PR!!!

26. Gary 185#.

27. Nate 195#.

28. Sal 195# at the last second!

29. Nate so had 205#. 

30. Danny from TJ's Gym.  295#, twice!

We finished in 20th overall in one of the toughest regions!  For all of us, it was our first time participating in the CrossFit Games Regionals.  We really wanted to place top twelve so that we could advance to the final WOD.  That would have been our workout!  Unfortunately, that did not happen and we pretty much knew by the of the second day.

My experience at Regionals was really great and memorable overall.  Definitely one of a kind, and I am super thankful to have the opportunity to compete at that level.  As said in my post about the Open, my goal was to make it onto the NorCal CrossFit team, and I made it.  Because of that, I pushed myself really hard and did things I did not think I could do.  Sure, I was bummed out about not making it to WOD 6, but I know everyone on our team worked their asses off, even after we knew top twelve was out of reach.  I am so proud of our team's performance at Regionals!  We tried our best, and that is what matters most.

This post mostly covers the NorCal CrossFit team and my feelings at the NorCal Regionals.  However, I also want to add a HUGEEEEEEEEEE congratulations to CrossFit 808 for taking home FIRST PLACE!!!!  No ka oi!!!!  Way to represent HAWAII!  Ask my team members, I totally called this!

31. CrossFit 808 in FIRST PLACE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Related Posts:
2013 CrossFit Games NorCal Regionals
2013 CrossFit Games Open
2012 CrossFit Games Congratulations Jason | Summary
2012 NorCal Regionals: Summary | Individual | CrossFit 808 | Pre
2012 CrossFit Games Open
2011 CrossFit Games: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3

Other CrossFit Comps I Participated In: 2013 CrossFit Games Open | 2013 SacTown Throwdown | Occupy Strength NorCal | 2012 CrossFit Games Open2012 Sac Town Throwdown | 2011 OktoberFit  
Other Oly Comps I Participated In: 2014 Cal Strength Meet2014 Senior National Championships2014 Hassle Free Open & Invitational2013 American Open Championships | 2013 Ensign Gray Invitational | 2013 Fall Classic | 2013 Senior National Championships | 2013 PWA Senior Open | 2012 Redwood Empire Championships