So Thursday was fun. Decent times at the gym, then having some real fun representing Crossfit Durham with friends from the box at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.

Handstand Pushups
3-5 reps on the minute for 12 minutes
So Coach Ashley T made it clear that if we were capable, she would much prefer that we do wall HSPU’s over band assisted. While I like the bands, I was curious to see what I could do on the wall and I generally do as I’m told, so I grabbed a pair of AbMats and went to work.

I was pleasantly surprised to discover I could do a few handstand push ups at a clip when I only have to descend to the depth of two stacked abmats. I haven’t been able to do that before, so that’s progress. Over the course of 12 minutes I did six rounds of 3 reps each and 6 rounds of 2 reps each. 30 Total reps. The last four reps across the final two sets were VERY difficult.

Max Rounds in 3 minutes of:
3 Push Press (135/95)
6 Pushups
9 Situps
Rest 1 minute between rounds for a total of 5 Rounds.

This was a VERY fun WOD. It’s one made of exercises that lean towards my strengths. Basically, with no running, rowing or jumping of ropes, so I’m good. 😉  I scaled the push press to 115#. After 30 HSPU’s 135# was not going over my head. Over the course of 15 minutes of work, I knocked out 17 complete rounds. I was very satisfied with that.

Funny enough, the best Crossfit moment of the day for Thursday happened outside the gym. The family went to the Durham Bulls baseball game Thursday night. As we were traveling the concourse we crossed paths with Dave, the gym owner and his sister. We chatted for a few moments and went on to our respective seats. I took note that his seats were just a few sections over from ours.

While out picking up food for the family, I discovered that a local Marine recruting group had a table set up on the main concourse and they were erecting a pull up rig. I thought, “Oh, this could be highly entertaining.”  I headed back to my family’s seats and along the way made sure to stop by Dave’s seats and tell him about the pull up rig. His response was immediately, “Really? Cool. Do they have prizes?”

I told him, “I don’t know. I didn’t stop and ask.” We agreed that we should go investigate. So I dropped off my family’s food, reconnected with Dave and his sister and we all headed off to scout out the Marines.

In talking to the recruits/recruiters they explained that you had to do deadhang pull ups, no kipping. The voice in my head said, “Damn, this just turned into a MUCH shorter WOD.” But I wasn’t about to back down. I would have a turn.

15 pull ups earns you a water bottle, 20 earns you a Marine’s T-shirt. In my head, I know without a kip, neither of those levels is attainable for me, but I was still determined to take a turn.

Dave went first. I don’t tell other people’s stories and talk about their results here. Those are their stories to tell, if they choose to do so. Therefore,if you want to hear how Dave did, you’ll have to ask him. 😉 I will say, that’s one strong fella and he did leave with a prize! I was impressed.

Me, I went up and down 7 times. We’ll call it 5 reps. I’m reasonably confident that any CrossFit judge and certainly any Marine Drill Instructor would have “no repped” my ass for at least two.

Even better than Dave and I taking part, almost immediately after I finished, Jayme and Cliff Dyer, two more CFD members came by on their way to their seats. Jayme got right in line, signed up and took a turn. She’s also very strong and impressed me with her set! Awesome. After that, we all separated and went on to our respective seats.

But it was so cool to run into some friends, connect with them and take on the challenge together. Very cool.

Later in the evening, I was chatting with my father at the game and telling him how we all did. I told him, “yeah, I only got 7, but I’m good with that.”

Dad’s observation was, “a year ago, would you have even tried to do pull ups on the concourse of a crowded ball park?”

The answer was obvious and immediate, “No. Hell, no.”

Dad’s response was also immediate, “Then you did a hell of a job, Son.”

Thanks for keeping it in perspective, Dad.


Editorial note: I looked it up at home after the game, for a 41 year old male, 5 pull ups would be enough to pass a Marine Physical Fitness Test. Not excel, but pass. That’s a damn far cry from the person I used to be a year ago too.