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Posts tagged ‘crossfit’

Re-Inspired

This is one of those posts I was torn on which blog to write it under… it follows the crossfit/nutrition path I often follow with this one, but will have a large amount of MS content as well.  Anyways, it’s happening after quite some time bouncing around in my head.

2017 seems to be a year of “Full Circle” with me.  What I originally saw as full circle in terms of going from working at Sport Chek in Milton in 2005 to Henry’s and right back to Sport Chek in Milton in 2016 wasn’t even the whole picture.  Before Chek I was a professional photographer, and now I’m getting back into that scene as well 🙂  Not the same format however, but once again shooting something I’m passionate about.  It’s a whole different game now though, but exciting none the less!

Another full circle journey is my attempt to improve my life with my disease through nutrition and exercise.  I’ll come back to the exercise topic in a minute, but for now lets talk nutrition.  In 2012 I stumbled upon this: Dr. Terry Wahls – Minding Your Mitochondria and I was curious.  In 2012 I wasn’t in a good place with my mind and my health and I needed to try something, so I gave it a shot.  Cut dairy and grains from my diet and figured that was enough and don’t get me wrong, it did make a difference!  I was able to eliminate a drug I was taking just to stay awake as my energy improved and combined with exercise and just being overall fed-up with conventional medicine and the downward spiral it seemed to cause in terms of my quality of life, I eventually eliminated drugs all together.  That’s where I stand now.  A little over a year drug-free, but I still deal with the effects of my disease every day and would like to see if I can take things further to improve that.  I’ve done some of my own research lately and learned that relapsing-remitting MS typically transitions into secondary-progressive over time.  My relapses have certainly tapered off, either through my own influence with diet and exercise or simply as a progression of the disease, but the pain is still something I live with 24/7.  It used to be occasionally almost unbearable in intensity, but now it gets to that point pretty much every week and some days I just sort of crack emotionally.  Not something I’m proud of, but some days I just can’t be strong anymore.  Bright side – I have a massively supportive girlfriend who will be there for me every step of the way.  I came home last week and Dr. Wahls’ book The Wahls Protocol was waiting for me on the counter 🙂  Inspiration take 2!  This book is absolutely awesome!  So many of the things she mentions have me staring wide-eyed like “oh my god!  That’s ME!”  And you know it’s true love when your girl says “I’d try liver if it will help you” ❤  Liver!  GAG!!!  I’m weird about the odd bits you find in a boneless-skinless chicken breast!  But if it helps with the pain, I’ll give it a try.

Another part of my spring re-vamp involves the crossfit routine.  I took Coach Jen’s advice a few months ago and scaled back the WODs while introducing some lifting days back into my world.  Between the Open and helping Amanda prepare for the Festivus comp, the whole WOD portion has been all but abandoned for longer than I would have liked.  I went to a class this week and cardio-struggled (as expected) and ball hockey has been harder than I’d like.  Coach Jay and I crossed paths after the WOD Thursday and he said “how was that?!  Been a LONG time since you’ve gone a class!”  Sad face.  It probably showed!  My legs were NOT happy with the box jumps or the wallballs, but at least the cleans were a piece of cake right?  Festivus is today, so starting Monday I hope to get back into the WOD routine so I can confidently call myself a legit crossfitter again!  Oh, and I’ve added a short run to my morning routine as well.  Hoping it all helps 🙂

The Open

Oh hi! May not even remember me but yes I’m still around. To be honest, not a whole lot has changed which is good and bad at the same time I suppose. It’s Open season and my 4th time through. What a totally different experience doing it with CFC!! First, it’s a way bigger beast than CFD was just in terms of Open competitors. I think we have close to 150 athletes competing and a few with potential to make it to regionals… but everyone is so supportive 🙂  We have an in house little comp happening as well with points for team spirit and costumes, some of which there’s no way I could work out it lol!  First Open for my girl too and she’s KILLING it 😀  Recap time!

Open WOD 17.1

AMRAP 20 minutes:
10 dumbbell snatches 35lb
15 burpee box jump-overs 20″
20 dumbbell snatches
15 burpee box jump-overs
30 dumbbell snatches
15 burpee box jump-overs
40 dumbbell snatches
15 burpee box jump-overs
50 dumbbell snatches
15 burpee box jump-overs

Score – 200 Reps Rx  Tie break time – 16:31

This WOD kicked my butt HARD!! Not a good way to start Open season at ALL.  After the 20 DB snatches I couldn’t feel my legs at all.  Our couldn’t feel the ground under my feet? Maybe that’s a better description… Anyways, every box jump was an exercise in extreme concentration to not EAT IT!  It was hell, but no battle scars 🙂 (a miracle occurred)

Open WOD 17.2

Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 12 minutes of:
2 rounds of:
50-ft. weighted walking lunge
16 toes-to-bars
8 power cleans
Then, 2 rounds of:
50-ft. weighted walking lunge
16 bar muscle-ups
8 power cleans

Score – 78 Reps Rx  Tie break time – 7:09 

Greatest judge for this one!!  Neil tried so hard to coach me to my first bar muscle up and believe me I tried SO hard to get it!  No dice though… added to the list of things to work on 🙂

Open WOD 17.3

Prior to 8:00, complete:
3 rounds of:
  6 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  6 squat snatches, (95 / 65 lb.)
Then, 3 rounds of:
  7 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  5 squat snatches (135 / 95 lb.)
Prior to 12:00, 3 rounds of:
   8 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  4 squat snatches (185 / 135 lb.)
Prior to 16:00, 3 rounds of:
   9 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  3 squat snatches (225 / 155 lb.)
Prior to 20:00, 3 rounds of:
  10 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  2 squat snatches (245 / 175 lb.)
Prior to 24:00, 3 rounds of:
   11 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  1 squat snatch (265 / 185 lb.)

Score – 43 Reps Rx   Tie break time – 5:02

Yes, I had almost a full 3 minutes to get 1 95lb snatch!  I tried over and over but couldn’t force the confidence to drop under the bar even though i got it to my eyebrows with every attempt.  Kinda frustrating, but…. the next day I GOT it in practice 🙂  I’ll take it.  Plus… I did get through 25 chest to bar pull-ups which was a HUGE improvement over the last time I faced them in the Open.  Double win.

Open WOD 17.4

Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 13 minutes of:
55 deadlifts 155lbs
55 wall-ball shots 14lbs
55-calorie row
55 handstand push-ups

Score – 172 Reps Rx  Tie break time – 10:28

This WOD was my fave by FAR this year 😀  I mean, deadlifts are pretty much my thing and they weren’t that heavy.  To be honest, I kinda wished they were heavier cause it would have tripped people up even more.  Thankfully it was a WOD I was totally excited about cause Amanda and I got hit with the flu early in the week and I had just started eating again on Thursday and didn’t work out all week.  I actually re-did this WOD after my judge on Friday measured my HSPU line too high and no-repped all of my push-ups.  So frustrating!  I will say I loved it less the second time through cause my body just wasn’t recovered enough to go through that again, but it was totally worth it to get credit for the HSPU!!  (and I added 2 reps 😉 )

Open WOD 17.5

10 rounds for time of:
9- Thrusters 65lbs
35- Double-unders

Time – 28:10 Rx

Yucky.  Pretty much sums it up!  But WHAT?!  This kid actually pulled off 350 double unders! Yes, you read that correctly.  No idea where they came from… Also added to the list!  The funny part of this one, I pushed to get as far as I could and when the clock hit 20:00 I stopped thinking “well, I made it to round 8.  Cool”  My judge looked at me and said “are you ok?” I completely thought I was done!!  “You still have 20 minutes!!” she said and for at least a few seconds my heart totally sank!  Worst news EVER, but I picked up my rope and finished the beast.  Looking back it was probably that mistake which allowed me to finish in the time I did.  There’s always that extra push when you’re near the end of a WOD (or think you are) and I guess I kinda had a double on this time :p

Finding my rhythm 

“So, this week has been different. I figured I’d ease into the transition of WODing less and lifting more,  but when Amanda decided she wanted to try to we sorta jumped in with both feet! The game plan was (and I think still is essentially) lift Monday and Wednesday with a Coach Carson, Tuesday by ourselves, then WOD Friday and Saturday. Except yesterday’s WOD didn’t sound great so we lifted Friday too! The only problem I see that could happen is I never used to cherry pick workouts. The WOD was the only option, so I just sucked it up and did it even when it sounded horrible. Now there’s another option 😳 I mean, we still got a great workout, but I haven’t really sweat yet this week and my Fitbit thinks I’ve maybe died or been kidnapped or something. There’s a huge positive note coming… Tuesday I PR’d my snatch!!! Finally after like 100 years!! 😁 AND my girl PR’d pretty much everything. Snatch, overhead squat, deadlift (200lb club!!), strict press, back squat… it’s been a great week.  Saturday partner WOD was a sweat fest, so nice way to round things off too.

 

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On the nutrition front, I’m trying to not fall into old habits in terms of mindset. When I change something and don’t see mad results after two weeks I tend to get discouraged… I don’t think my clothes are fitting any different and the number on the scale hasn’t really budged. I know there are other factors that could be affecting that (like being a GIRL), but my negativity still wants to trash talk my efforts. Anyways… I’m sticking to the plan and hoping I’m on the right path. My days are pretty routine for food:

Breakfast – 2 eggs, 1/3 sweet potato

Snack – beef protein shake, 1/4 cup oats+1 tbsp flax+1/2 tbsp chia+6 almonds+1/2 banana

Lunch – BBQ’d chicken breast, BBQ’d veggies

Snack – 1/2 chicken breast, 2 tbsp BBQ sauce, snap peas, carrots

Dinner – BBQ’d chicken breast or salmon, BBQ’d veggies

*sometimes there’s a second protein shake, or double oatmeal depending on the day/WOD. My one guilty pleasure is the BBQ sauce 😦 one days I might get over that but maybe not. Not much variety, but SO tasty and Amanda and I are both cool with it, so whatever. All works out to around 1,400 cals per day with 130-150g protein, 100-125g carbs, 40g fat. I’ve basically cut the fat in half and doubled the carbs. Now my fingers are crossed it’s the right recipe for my stupid body.

Now there’s a plan

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Let us back-track for a moment… 5 years ago I had just moved to Waterloo.  I had been living a pretty crazy life with a long drive to and from work every day and LOTS of ball hockey. Also quite committed to the global gym scene.  I had recently started the whole Paleo routine trying to fix some health crap. Oh! And I was skinny!! Not healthy necessarily despite all my efforts, but shopping for pants mad me happy for the first time in my life. Unfortunately that was the only thing really at time, but it was pretty huge. Life in Waterloo was a real change. I was 6km from my job, with an awesome gym in between. I had so much time on my hands I didn’t really know what to do with it at first, but I figured it out. Reconnected with an old friend from work who had gotten into personal training and started lifting. You probably know that drill… Monday leg day, Tuesday back and biceps, etc.  Pretty boring stuff, but I wanted to gain some muscle. Then one day I found crossfit. It was new for me, but brought the cardio element back to my world which I had been missing (Waterloo doesn’t offer the same ball hockey opportunities Toronto did!!). It was new, and scary, and exciting… and FUN!!  Downside… I slowly started to gain weight. At first I thought, all good its muscle. And in a sense I was right! But every season I was shopping for new clothes cause the old ones didn’t fit anymore. After a while I started to freak out a bit, so I tightened up my diet (which was pretty strictly Paleo already) and worked out more. But the weight kept creeping up. Could I have been going about things all wrong?! Fast forward to today and finally realizing that crossfit and Paleo could be responsible for my weight gain!! WTF!?!? I read this a few days ago which really got the ball rolling in my mind:

paleo-made-fat-pop-tarts-got-shredded/

I felt like this guy completely understood how I’ve felt!! I mean, I have a pretty decent 6-pack that I’ve worked really hard for, but there’s this layer of body fat covering everything.  I did a bit more reading and decided it was time for a change. I had already made the decision to give up nut butters, which at least had me in the right direction, but I’m increasing my carbs as well. After 5 years of quite a low carb intake, it might be just what my body needs? Or I might get fatter. I’m really hoping option A is reality.   There’s a part 2 to this rant. With dropping the fat content, my macros were in line with what Coach Jen had recommended at my nutrition consult, but my calories were still quite low.  So I asked! Explained my frustration and what I was looking for and got another response I hadn’t been expecting!  My focus had been set on adjusting the diet component once again, but Jen’s thoughts were along a different line.  Could crossfit be to blame?  Seriously??  So now it’s a matter of trying to determine wether my super-clean eating or intense workout routine is the reason I can’t shed a few pounds.  Not binge eating, or nights of drinking, or sitting on the couch… a clean diet or exercise.  What. The. FUCK.  Jen is also looking to lean out before a very important event in June, so she is readjusting her workout routine with the same goal in mind.  “We could lift together!  Misery loves company, right?” she said haha!  Anyways, her plan involves just lifting 3 times a week and cutting the WODs to 2 per week MAX.  They are great, but they cause stress on your body (says Jen) Some people handle stress by loosing weight, some bodies go into panic mode and store everything as fat!  So… sitting on the couch might actually be a more effective way to lose weight?  I don’t know… so confused.  What I DO know is crossfit keeps me sane and happy, so I’m making some adjustment to my workout routine for now but focusing more on the nutrition part.  Last night we went to Olympic lifting class instead of the WOD for the first time in ages 🙂  It’s kinda strange how I used to feel like I was ripping myself off from the sweatfest I needed and just went through the motions of the class without much enthusiasm.  Last night was so different!  I loved it 🙂  and Coach Carson is amazing!  The crossfit side of things will benefit SO much from working with him too.  Plus if I can actually lean out a little the gymnastic parts should improve as well.

Anyways… long rant.  I have always had a goal, but now I feel like I have a plan too.  Hopefully that’s the difference this time.  To be continued…

right for right now

So I’m pretty excited 🙂 When this week’s Open WOD was posted yesterday morning I knew I had a great chance of improving on my score from the last time. I think almost all Crossfit boxes are great in their own way, but each person needs to find one that best suits them. When I joined CFD, I needed the community above everything else and it gave me that. Also gave me a really solid foundation, but CFC has given me a push to be better and the timing is perfect.

Open WOD 16.2
On a 4 minute clock complete as many reps as possible:
25 Knee raises
50 Single unders
15 Squat cleans #55
If completed before 4 min, add 4 min and proceed to:
25 Knee raises
50 Single unders
13 Squat cleans #75
If completed before 4 min, add 4 min and proceed to:
25 Knee raises
50 Single unders
11 Squat cleans #95
If completed before 4 min, add 4 min and proceed to:
25 Knee raises
50 Single unders
9 Squat cleans #115
If completed before 4 min, add 4 min and proceed to:
25 Knee raises
50 Single unders
7 Squat cleans #135

Score – 423 reps

Last time, I got to the #115 squat cleans with TONS of time and couldn’t manage 1 rep. Same thing kinda happened again, only I made it through the 115 without any troubles and got stuck at the 7 at 135. I give myself a little credit here… 135 would have been a PR, and I’d already done 48 reps at that point. I started at the bar for a minute after several failed attempts and said “eff it!”  Stripped back down to 115 and completed the last 7 lifts. 🙂

I stood for a moment in the change room last night and caught a look at my reflection in the mirror. Something needs to change. I need to find a solution before I go crazy again. I work hard at my job now, to the point I’m pretty tired when I get home. Then most nights I change quick and head to the box to work really hard. I lift heavy, we do LOTS of metcons, I eat really clean… but I still have so much fat on top of all my could-be-hot muscle. Jen suggested months ago that I’m drastically under eating… I think I’m at the point where I’m actually going to take that in to consideration and add more to my routine. I AM tired a lot since starting at sport Chek again, but I figured my body just needed to get used to the labor-intensity. I also get home most days soooo hungry. So I’m going to give it a try…

Happy Halloween :)

 

havoc16-1

Sat. Oct 29:

Pairs comp #2 in the books 🙂  When we first signed up for a Halloween comp and new costumes were a must, my first comment to Amanda was “I just want to wear a cape.”  LOL!!!  After a few weeks of trying to come up with something that was good and wouldn’t get in the way of working out, we settled.  No cape 😦 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Raphael and Donatello took on Halloween Havoc at Crossfit Outlaw North.  Super fun day in a totally new environment with lots of great people!  I really give my girl some huge credit!  Just started crossfit in July and she’s a great WOD partner already 🙂  Trying to come up with some highlights from the comp… quote from Amanda “Made it through and no one barfed.  That’s a victory in itself!”  Touché!  Although, post WOD 1 that was questionable from my side.  Don’t know why rowing kicks my butt SO hard, but I kinda wanted to curl up in a ball somewhere after it was over.  Oh!  And in WOD 2 Amanda dropped the bar during a 115lb jerk attempt and I walked over all “I got your back!”, cleaned it, and put it back in the rack for another try.  Matched my current power clean PR without even thinking about it.  That’s some brain trickery I might try again sometime…  Definitely talk myself out of lifting more often than not when things get heavy.

havoc16-2

Halloween Havoc #crossfitoutlawnorth

WOD 1 – Fitness & Skill

AMRAP, 15 minutes:
 Row 500 meters
15 Pull-ups OR 30 Jumping Pull-ups

 Score – 5 Rounds + 57m  (2nd)

WOD 2 – Heavy Hitters

 10 minutes for both partners to establish MAX complex:
Front Squat + Jerk
*Bar comes from rack

 Score225 (120 K + 105 A)  (3rd)

WOD 3 – Hard, Fast, NO Cuddling

 8 Minute Power Clean Ladder:
30 Reps at 35, 55, 75, MAX reps at 95
*At 0:00, 3:00, 6:00 teams must perform 20 Sit-ups combined

Score – 111 Reps (3rd)

WOD 4 – One:One Sprint

 200m Sled Push #45
50 Deadlifts #105
50 Burpees over the Bar

Time – 5:42 (2nd)

havoc16-3

Made the podium again!  3rd this time and very narrowly edged out of 2nd.  The team that took first was solid!  They won every event 🙂  Another highlight was hearing one of the winners mention after the last workout that they were chasing our time!  And we only came 2nd in that one 9 seconds behind the leaders  🙂  Like anything, it’s nice to take inventory of the areas to work on for next time and from this experience heavier and faster are one the list.  In my opinion the most important parts of any partner comp are 80% communication and 20% badass… I think we’ve got both of those pretty much under control!  We didn’t really struggle in any of the workouts, but succeeding with a heavier 1RM for WOD 2 and moving through the deads and burpees faster in WOD 4 are goals for future comps together.  There will be many 🙂  Next year I’m wearing a cape.

**Only nutrition note from the day – pretty much ran on carbs until all 4 WODs were complete.  Half a sweet potato w/1 tbsp flax seed and some cinnamon for breakfast, a “Kind” bar after WOD 2 cause I needed some more fuel in the tank, and a few mouthfuls of butternut squash before WOD 4.  Then we crushed some chicken on the way home and had big veggie filled omelets for dinner.  Seemed to work!

untitled.

I have a TON of crossfit logging to catch up on.  To the point I almost didn’t bother… until last night when I wanted to compare to the last time I did hang cleans for multiple reps in a WOD and I had nothing to compare too.  With the Halloween Havoc comp in 2 days I didn’t have a workout to get to this morning, so I drove to work in the pitch black 😐 andgot to work on catching up before my shift started.  I’m a Mac junkie, but blogging on my work PC is still the easiest method…  Not much else is new really.  Work. Eat. WOD. EAT. Sleep. Eat…  So lucky to have a girlfriend who’s completely on the same page!  Actually one little newer bit… I brought my guitar to Burlington this week cause I’ve really missed it 🙂  AND… I’m booked to start shooting at CFC in November!!  So excited to get shooting again and finally getting paid for all the hard work I put into it.  I was so worn out “crossing oceans for people who won’t jump in puddles for me”.

Wed. Oct 26:

7:00 am 5km Run @ World Gym

7:00pm @ CFC
BUY IN – Gymnastics, Every Minute for 16 Minutes
Min 1 – 5 Strict Pull-ups
Min 2 – 5 Handstand Push-ups
Min 3 – 10 Pistol Squats
Min 4 – 5 Ring Dips

WOD –
Part A – 4 Minutes:
12 Deadlifts  #65
9 Hang Power Cleans
6 Front Squats
*3 Rounds
MAX reps Burpee Box Jumps

Rest 3 Minutes

Part B – 4 Minutes:
12 Deadlifts  #85
9 Hang Power Cleans
6 Front Squats
*2 Rounds
MAX reps Burpee Box Jumps

Rest 3 Minutes

Part C – 4 Minutes:
12 Deadlifts  #105
9 Hang Power Cleans
6 Front Squats
*3 Rounds
MAX reps Burpee Box Jumps

Score – 43 Burpee Box Jumps, Rx

Part C was SO F#$KING HARD!!!  I totally love that we do hang cleans a sh*t ton at Connection cause they are not one of my strengths!  9 reps at 105lbs were probably totally ugly, but I went into that round aiming for 1 burpee box jump and I got through 13.  More than a little victory there!  Now 2 rest days in preparation for the comp on Saturday.

Tues. Oct 25:


7:30 am @ CFD
Row 250m/500m/1000m/500m/250m
*Rest 1 minute between rounds
Times – :50 / 1:50 / 4:12 / 1:54 / :53

7:00 pm Olympic Lifting Class @ CFC

5×5 Behind the Neck SOD press
*Increase weight each round  15-20-25-30-35

Power Snatch, 3 reps
35-40-45-50-55-60-65-70-75-*85lbs
*Only managed 1 rep @ 85, then the wheels fell off.

Snatch-grip Deadlift, find 5RM

By the time we got to the snatch-grip deadlift chunk I was DONE.  And thinking about dinner…  So tried a bunch with 55lbs but couldn’t wrap my head around the “scoop” part of the movement so I called it a day.  So much to learn 🙂

Mon. Oct 24:


BUY IN – Every minute for 7 minutes complete 3 Strict Press
*Increase weight each round 35-45-55-65-75-80-85

WOD – Lucky 7’s
7 Hang Power Cleans #75
7 Push-ups
3 Rounds

7 Push Press #75
7 Sit-ups
3 Rounds

7 Hang Power Clean + Push Jerk  #75
7 Push-ups
7 Sit-ups
3 Rounds

Time – 8:23 Rx

Kinda loved this WOD.  My forearms hated it, but whatever.  In the first portion the push-ups were a piece of cake, but in the final chunk it was all I could do to string 4 together lol!!

Fri. Oct 21:

Open WOD 12.4/13.3
AMRAP, 12 Minutes:
150 Wallballs
90 Double Unders*
30 Muscle Ups*
Score – 241 reps

*Scaled version – Double Unders=1 minute attempting + remaining reps as bar hops, Muscle Ups=2 pull-ups + 1 dip.

Now that the weather in Canada is getting colder, Hero Fridays have changed to Open WOD Fridays.  To get everyone prepped and ready for the Open in a few months we’re doing past Open WODs which translates to reliving the horrors of Opens past.  When 15.5/16.5 reappears I might need therapy.

Thurs Oct 20:

BUY IN – 5×5 Bench Press    95-100-110-115-110

WOD – 3 Rounds, 3 minutes each:
250m Row
15 Deadlifts  #65

10 Hang Cleans  #65
5 Front Squats  #65
MAX reps Burpees

Rest 3 minutes between rounds

Score – 54 Burpees Rx

Wed Oct 19:

BUY IN – Every minute for 8 minutes complete 1 Snatch-grip Deadlift + 1 Hang Snatch + 1 Squat Snatch
*Increase weight each round  55-60-65*-70*-75*  *2 rounds
WOD – For time, *21-15-9:
*Overhead Squats #65
*Toes to Bar
400m Run
Time – 14:14 Rx

My shoulder just might be recovering 🙂  Toes to bar felt awesome today!  Plowed through all of the OHS unbroken as well.

Tues Oct 18:

BUY IN – Every 90 seconds for 15 minutes complete 1 Push Press + 1 Push Jerk + 1 Split Jerk
*Increase weight each round  35-45-55-65-75-85-95-100-105-110

WOD – AMRAP, 8 minutes:
Clean and Jerks  #95
Bar hop Burpees
2-4-6-8-10-12…

Score – 60 reps

Mon Oct 17:

BUY IN – Every 2 minutes for 12 minutes complete 4 unbroken Deadlifts

WODAMRAP, 12 minutes:
6 jumping Chest to Bar Pull-ups
12 Box Jumps 20″
18 Sumo Deadlift High Pull #35
Score – 5 Rounds +11 reps

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