Journals will be posted at 3pm Pacific:
Mondays – Ingrid Kantola of CrossFit Central
Ingrid Kantola – Athlete Journal 3/19/12
(Read Ingrid’s Bio here)
My goal for the 2012 CrossFit Competition Season is to compete in the CrossFit Games in July. In order to get there, I need to place in the top 60 during The Open and in the top three at Regionals in April. When I look at my competition timeline, I need to be at my best in six weeks, and again two-and-a-half months after that. With Regionals six weeks away, I am in an important building phase in my training.
Kelly Starrett’s closing thoughts during his interview on the Games site this week described two keys I am adopting through the Open. The first is to make sure you are getting work done during the other days of the week, outside of the Open WOD. It would be really easy to taper from Tuesday until Friday in order to be “fresh” for the Open WOD. However, that would mean I would be taking three very important days off, then needing to recover Saturday as well. That many days off would probably impact my overall fitness during a phase where I still need to be building strength and skills. I am not willing to risk my overall fitness in favor of one stellar performance each Friday. I have found I still do well, even if I go into the Friday WOD a little sore from training earlier in the week. Carrying this soreness and fatigue indicates I can still put up decent scores at less than 100%, which will be required at Regionals with the likelihood of multiple workouts per day. I am focused on being at my best in six weeks, instead of trying to peak once a week for five weeks, when I only need to be good enough.
The second point made by KStar was to cool-down after workouts. I have not thought of the concept of cooling-down since I was running the 800m in college. Pole-vaulters never cooled-down unless we had a bad day and needed to think it out with a light jog. I have not done any post WOD cool-down practices outside of occasionally stretching.
My current recovery routine is to drink a Stronger Faster Healthier Recovery shake as quickly as possible once my workout is done and then head home. I go so far as to wear a mouthpiece designed to reduce cortisol levels and compression tights to refresh my legs and aid blood flow. These routines coupled with taking fish oil post-WOD have helped to greatly reduce overall soreness and ability to push hard through the early part of the week. I hope that doing a cool-down and post-WOD stretching will help to reduce lactic acid build up and to prevent tightness initiated during the WOD.
WOD 12.4 completely obliterated the legs of some of the top athletes at my gym. They are having trouble walking even three days later and it makes me wonder what their recovery is like. I feel that by wearing my mouthpiece and compression tights along with taking a post-WOD protein shake and fish oil, I recovered extremely well. I was able to get through the wall-balls in a fair amount of time and still got in 16 muscle-ups, performed in singles. I am excited to see how my recovery progresses as I add a cool-down to my routine.
We have one week left of the Open, and we haven’t seen handstand push-ups, deadlifts, cleans, thrusters, pull-ups, or push-ups. Right now I sit happily in 11th place in the South Central Region, and I don’t have the faintest idea what is coming, but I am excited to finish strong and move on to the next stage. By taking the time to do the little things like cooling-down, injury rehab and prevention exercises, and proper nutrition and recovery, I am able to look set up my competition calendar for the next four months to properly prepare me for the CrossFit Games.