Posts Tagged by clean & jerk

Schedule Changes and Additional Information for the Disney Fit Challenge


The Disney Fit Challenge is coming up in 6 short weeks (how did that happen?!?) and this week some changes were announced to the schedule.  While a big schedule change this late in the game is frustrating, hopefully it hasn’t effected too many travel/vacation plans.

When originally registering, you had the option to choice Friday or Saturday to compete. Then the top athletes in each division would go on to compete in the Finals on Sunday. Well now, there is no longer a competition on Friday and EVERYONE is competing on BOTH Saturday and Sunday.  Here is the official email from Disney Sports:

Dear Sarah,

We’re always looking for ways to ensure the best Guest experience and competitive balance at Disney Fit Challenge.  As a result, we are shifting our event dates: the first day of competition now takes place on Saturday, september 27 and concludes on Sunday, September 28.

With this change, you will now be competing on both Saturday, September 27 and Sunday, September 28.  Your first scheduled workout will begin on Saturday.  You are now guaranteed a total of (5) workouts spread across two days.  With our prior schedule, some of our competitors would have had only (3) workouts in which to compete.  With many of our divisions at or nearing sellout, this will also allow us to add competitors.

Should you require immediate assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us at…

We look forward to hosting you at the Disney Fit Challenge.

Well that is a bit vague, so thankfully I was able to speak with one of the Managers at Disney Sports to get more clarification and some additional information.  

  • There will be three (3) workouts on Saturday and two (2) on Sunday.
  • There will no longer be “Finals” to qualify for.  The top cumulative scores from both days will receive medals in each division.
  • There will be awards for age groups in each division, along with the overall top awards.
  • Heats will be announced two (2) weeks prior to the competition.  Athletes only need to arrive at the time of their heat.
  • Each day will finish by 6:00 pm.
  • All workouts will be announced two (2) weeks prior to the competition.

Some of the workouts are already being teased on the Disney Fit Challenge Facebook Event Page and they have also released the weight standards for each division.


Seeing this made me a happy.  If you saw my recent post on my Two Year WODiversary that listed my current weights, you will see that I shouldn’t have a problem competing in the scaled division.  Hey maybe I might be able to come home with one of these!


While this schedule chance doesn’t effect my travel and vacation plans all that much, I know there are many people out there who are frustrated with the change.  Disney Sports overestimated the number of people who thought they would make it to the final competition, so they figured most competitors blocked off all of Sunday for the competition.  However this was not the case.  

With all of the crazy planning that is involved in a trip to Walt Disney World (Advanced Dining Reservations, FastPass+, etc…), this has thrown a wrench in many people’s vacations.  I’ve also seen people who have flights that are booked to leave on Sunday evening making it impossible to participate on Sunday if they are in a later heat.  It’s unfortunate Disney did not take all of these things into consideration before changing the schedule so close to the event, especially when some of us registered back in March.

I’m still looking forward to the event and I can’t wait to see what the workouts are in the coming weeks.  Now to get down to training…where’s that 20 inch box for me to master??

Are you participating in the Disney Fit Challenge?  Have these changes effected your travel/vacation plans? 

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My 6 Favorite Things From The 2014 CrossFit Games


The CrossFit Games are like no other sporting event I’ve ever experienced.  I’ve been to some major events, like the Stanley Cup Finals and the Indianapolis 500, but this was something else entirely.  The community, the camaraderie, the athleticism…unparalleled!  I could go on and on about it, but instead I thought I’d share some of my favorite things about the games.

1. My First View of the Stadium


Walking into the soccer stadium for the first time was AMAZING!  I had seen it on TV in prior years, but being there and seeing the actual scale of the games gave me chills.  Also, the final heat of the Big Bob 100 started right when we walked in and it was crazy to see those teams move that sled.  I knew right away this was going to be an amazing weekend!

2. Vendor Village

You don’t find many CrossFit products in mainstream athletic stores like Dick’s and Sports Authority, so buying gear online becomes the norm.  Well not here…there were a TON of booths full of apparel, accessories and the newest in fitness equipment.  You could try things out, try things on and chat with the companies directly.  Here are 2 shirts that I got…LOVE the Kettlebell Monster one from one of my favorite apparel shops, SoRock.  I had picked up a few fun things at Regionals and was happy to see them there again!


Some of the vendors has also set up mini-challenges at their booth which attracted a lot of attention.  Human X (the company that sponsored the contest I won) had a great rig set up with a few barbells for people to test their strength.  It was really fun to watch!


3. The GIANT Reebok store


The highlight of the Vendor Village was the GIANT Reebok.  There was so much great CrossFit gear…I just wanted to buy everything!  However since the Games actually started with the Masters competition 3 days prior, a lot of sizes were gone and mainly only XS and S was left.  Yeah this girl isn’t fitting into either of those sizes!

While there I got to try on the new Nano 4.0s and instantly fell in love!  I didn’t think anything out beat my 2.0s but these seemed magical!  I didn’t love any of the colors they had, so I going to splurge and make a custom pair….totally worth it.  I also tried on a pair of the Lifter 2.0s since I’ve been really wanting a pair of lifting shoes.  Again I didn’t like the colors they had available there, but it did lead to this purchase as soon as I got home 🙂


4. The Air Conditioned Beer Tent


I don’t really think this needs explanation.  There was beer AND air conditioning (yes it was pretty warm at the Games) which made it an awesome place!  You can see a lot of other people agreed.

5. Seeing My CrossFit Idols


Front and center in that photo are Rich Froning and Jason Khalipa…two legends in the sport of CrossFit and I got to see them in action.  Super cool!  I was especially excited to see Jason Khalipa because not only is he an amazing athlete, but he is a stellar businessman and just an all around humble and nice guy.  He is someone I look up to in many areas of life.


And let’s not forget the kickass ladies!  Seeing women in the team competition deadlift over 350 pounds was stunning.  Then to see some of my idols like Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, Julie Foucher and Annie Thorisdottir not only do things I could never dream of doing, but also have all 3 land on the podium was probably the most inspiring thing of the weekend.  We ladies can kick some serious ass and they somehow manage to still look good doing it!



6. Watching the Final WOD…My Favorite WOD   


To get into the tennis stadium to see the final WODs of the day, you needed a fancy gold band.  Well on our last day, those amazing folks at Human X were nice enough to give B and I two of theirs.  WOW.   


The final WOD was Grace…my favorite WOD, so this was even more exciting!  Grace is 30 clean & jerks for time at 135# for men and 95# for women.  This is my favorite WOD because those are my two favorite movements.  I first met Grace at the Barbells for Boobs charity event last year and let’s just say these athletes put my performance to shame.  Plus, not only did they do Grace, but they did DOUBLE Grace!  Most athletes completed that in less time than it took me to do the normal version…super human I tell ya!


If that wasn’t exciting enough, we also got to see Rich Froning dominate the last 2 events and take the title of Fittest Man on Earth for the 4th year in a row,and Camille Leblanc-Bazinet finally won her first Games after years of competition.  Want to see it for yourself?  Check it out:

And those are my favorite things.  There was so much to see and experience that weekend that it’s still kind of hard to wrap my brain around the fact that I was actually there.  Now the questions is, do I start saving now so I can go again next year???

Were you at the CrossFit Games or did you watch it?  What were your favorite things?

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Getting Ready for the Disney Fit Challenge

My flights are booked, my room is secured and I’m registered for the Disney Fit Challenge! This is going to be my first real CrossFit competition and I am both extremely excited and nervous!  Yes, I’ve done a few events for charity, but this is totally different.  Those were for fun and it didn’t really matter how long it took me or what place I finished in.  This is an actual competition…yikes!

Last week Disney Sports released this new video that went through some of the movements we can expect.

Here are some of the new details that were revealed:  The Recreational Division will see things like running, lateral bar hop burpees, weighted wheelbarrow pushes and push-ups. Scaled (my division!) will be doing kettle bell swings, snatches and weighted lunges (my least favorite thing!).  Lastly Rx will find clean & jerks, dogsled pull and pistols.  Other movements that can be seen in the video are farmers carry, box jumps and sandbag sprints.

When I registered for the event, I was really debating on what division to register for.  The weights in the scaled division are going to be light for me, but even by September I won’t be able to compete in things like pull-ups and rope climbs.  Also, now that I see that pistols are in store for Rx…I think I made the right choice.  However clean & jerks are my favorite movement and I’m kind of bummed I won’t be doing those 🙁

So now I know a few of the things I really need to focus on for the next few months.  I’m getting better with snatches and I’m enjoying them more each time I do them.  I’m going to keep practicing and work on my form.  I’m going to assume the weights won’t be too heavy so form will be key.  


Due to my tight hips, lunge steps are the bane of my existence so seeing those in my division was not a welcome sight.  I really need to focus more on stretching those muscles more and getting that mobility back.  I also need to get over my fear of box jumps and improve my running speed.  I have a lot to do in the next few months…it will be here sooner than I know it.

What do you think of the new information from Disney Sports?  Are you competing? 

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My First CrossFit Weightlifting Clinic!

Last weekend I attended my 2nd CrossFit clinic.  The first was on pull-ups and double unders…two things I’m horrible at.  I learned a lot of tips to improve my skills, but I’m still a ways off from mastering them.  This time the clinic was on two olympic weightlifting moved…the Snatch and the Clean & Jerk.  FUN!

When I first started CrossFit I hated lifting weights.  The repetition was SO BORING!  What I didn’t realize was that I wasn’t challenging myself and once I started doing that, everything changed.  Now all I want to do is lift heavy things!  So when I heard there was a Ladies Only weightlifting clinic being held at my gym…I immediately signed up.

We started by going over the game plan for the day from our rad coaches Gina and Amanda.  We did a quick warm up and then moved right into the Snatch practice.         



This is a VERY challenging move.  You need to go from the ground to overhead in one explosive movement.  This is all while having your hands very wide on the bar, which (at least for me) isn’t the most comfortable position.  We went through numerous drills on positioning and ways to improve balance and posture in the lift.  Super helpful!   

In a full snatch, you land in an overhead squat position and then stand.  Here is a good breakdown of the movement:

My overhead squats are not the best as my hip mobility is lacking, but I’ve been able to get a few of these at a light weight.  During the clinic I focused mainly in Power Snatches, which is landing in a quarter squat position.  It’s not as techcnical, but allows you to get good practice with the lift.  




The coolest part of the day was that the coaches were able to film us using Coach’s Eye.  I have to say I was a bit weary about the recording at first, but after seeing that my technique wasn’t all that bad…it was awesome!  Here I am at 65 pounds:

Plus the app allows you to watch in slow motion, frame-by-frame, and use drawing tools to see how your body is aligned.  I think I need this!

We kept practicing and building.  I only got to 75 pounds which was my 1 rep max going in…plus it took me 3 tries to get it!  For some reason I have a mental block with this lift and fail when I go to drop under the bar.  I have a lot of practice here for sure. 

Next we moved onto the Clean & Jerk…one of my favorite moves.  For some reason, I always feel strong with this move and it’s always fun to throw around a lot of weight over head.  Remember when I did Barbells for Boobs??

Unlike the Snatch where you go from ground to overhead in one movement, the Clean & Jerk is two movements…the Clean and the Jerk.  Here’s another fun tutorial:

Again, in a full Clean you land in a squat position, but ultimately the end goal is to get the bar overhead, so Power Cleans work as well.  I prefer Power Cleans anyway because I lose my balance in with Squat Cleans…again, more work to be done there.  

We moved through the practice and drills fairly quickly with this movement, focusing most on the landing position of the Split Jerk.  This position can feel unstable if your legs aren’t wide enough and your balance is off.  Oh and look…here I am again.  This time with 85 pounds.

I built up to 95 pounds and was about to go for 100 but we ran out of time.  

We all sat and reviewed the videos to see where we could improve.  I got a great idea about what I’m doing well, what I need to work on and how to get there.  Super excited!  It was so helpful to get this individualized feedback plus have a lot of fun with some great women.  Like the first clinic it was full of laughs and jokes only the females understand 🙂

Have you ever tried weightlifting?

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The Day I Met Grace – Barbells For Boobs

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I first heard about Barbells For Boobs last year at the beginning of my CrossFit journey.  I had no idea who this Grace person was or why everyone was having such an issue with her.  Oh right…Grace was one of those benchmark WODs I had heard so much about and at that point in time I was not ready to meet her, but this year I was.  

The signs started popping up around my gym for the event some time in September and I knew I wanted to be a part of it.  Since 2009, Barbells for Boobs has provided 1,123 procedures for 749 individuals and 30 cases of cancer have been detected.  That’s 30 lives saved that would not have been otherwise because those people didn’t fit the mold of who should get a mammogram.  This is so important to be aware of and something I feel very strongly about, particularly even more so after my Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago.

So I began fundraising and was able to raise $420 for the event in a very short period of time!!  Thank you so much to everyone who donated!  As the event got closer I was getting nervous about what weight I should attempt for the workout.  Grace is 30 clean & jerks at 95# for women.  I really didn’t think I was ready for that, so I was considering 75#.  But a few days before the event after practicing for a bit, I decided to give it a try.  I was doing this to support breast cancer awareness…survivors have gone through SO much more than this.  I couldn’t let a barbell intimidate me…

We arrived at CrossFit New Haven the morning of the event and my nerves were getting worse…what if I couldn’t do it?!?  But even with all the doubt, I registered for the Rx weight and crossed my fingers.     

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Yeah for mascots!

Yeah for mascots!

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We had a great turnout from CFM so it was pretty awesome to have a solid cheering section 🙂

The event started with introductions from Zionna Munoz, Founder of Barbells for Boobs, who shared the story of why she started the organization in support of her best friend.  Then the survivors shared their stories and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.  This is why we were doing this…  

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Then the heats started!  There were some great outfits and a TON of determination.  It was great to watch these athletes struggle through the reps and meet their goals.  

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017 B4BThere was one heat dedicated just for survivors…now that was something to watch!  A fellow CFM member, Megan Adams, was diagnosed with breast when she was just 26 years old.  This is the 3rd year she participated in Barbells for Boobs and this year she did it at the prescribed weight for the first time…beyond inspiring!  Read Megan’s story here.

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After that, I was anxious for my turn.  I headed to the warmup room and jumped on the rower for a bit and also tried out the 95# bar…damn that thing was heavy.  What did I get myself into???

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I was up next and I was sweating.  Hysterical side story…when I took my sweatshirt off, my sweat mixed with the fuzz and decided to stick to my arm pits…it looked like I had thick black hair.  GAH!  Kat & B looked at me in shock and then just started dying laughing…I was about to lift a bunch of weight over my head with fake hairy armpits!!!!!  I sprinted to the bathroom and was able to get it off just in time for my heat to start…I am SO glad they saw that!  Sadly, there are no photos…I would love to look back and laugh at that now.  

My name was called and I found my judge.  I can’t remember what her name was, but she was awesome, encouraging and helped calm my nerves a bit.  All I had to do was one rep at a time until she told me to stop…got it!

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Really, can I ever not make a goofy face??  3…2…1…GO!

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 And somehow I did it…I clean & jerked 95# 30 times and I did it under the 8 minute time cap.  6:42 to be exact…WHOA!  Who is this person??  I was the last person to finish in my heat and in CrossFit that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  All the judges and competitors in my heat were crowded around me cheering me through those final reps.  All of the spectators were watching me and while that normally would make me hide behind a tree and cry, their screams motivated me to keep going.  I JUST COULDN’T FAIL!  So thank you for every clap, every shout, every single person telling me to PICK UP THAT BAR!  I don’t think I would’ve made it through without you.

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After I was done we stayed and cheered on the final heats and also check out the vendors outside.  

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Oh and guess what…free cocktails!!  CHEERS!

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So I met Grace.  And while she was a bit rough around the edges, I ultimately showed her who’s boss.  Maybe when we meet again next year, I’ll do it in around 5 minutes 😉  

Make sure to check out this great video from the event…you know you will want to be there for the next one!

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