Slow, Like Ox.
I've said it before but it bears repeating. I'm so, so slow. In the past two years in an effort to take back the power from all those kids who picked me last in gym class; I've taken up distance running. I've run three Half-Marathons, two Tough Mudders, and one Marathon. I ran the Marathon and Halves for me. To teach myself that if I put my mind to it I can run and it is possible. I ran the Tough Mudders because my boyfriend wanted to run Tough Mudders and I want him to love me. What I've learned in these two years is that yes, I can run long distances but at a glacial pace. I'm not built to bound across The Serengeti to catch my prey then spend the rest of the day napping. I'm built to be hooked up to a heavy wagon and trudge across the Great Plains...and then spend the rest of the day napping.
If you've ever watched a long distance race you know there's always that one old guy running. I don't mean the old guy who's reclaiming 50 and elegantly strides along like the silver fox he is. I mean the guy who's wearing khaki shorts, wool knee socks, and a sweat band. He's got a widows' hump and runs not unlike a penguin walks. When spectators see him, he's the guy that get's them whispering "That's just so inspiring. At his age, to get out there and even try." THAT guy passes ME!
Tuesday at Crossfit Blackfriars we did the Hero WOD Loredo. As I've said before, Hero Workouts are named after fallen American Soldiers. Edwardo Loredo, was an Army Staff Sargent who was killed at age 34 in Jelewar, Afghanistan, when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device. I only bring this up to drive home the fact that these workouts are named after real people who died too young. Sergant Loredo's WOD is 6 rounds of:
-24 Walking lunge steps
-Run 400 meter
We had a 35 minutes to complete all six rounds. It's one of the work-outs where you look at it and think "That won't be so bad" But by round 3 or 4 your legs start to feel like jelly.
Usually on these sorts of WODs my thought is to go in hard and hope I can keep pace and if I can't the hopefully when I drag myself to the end my time is, hopefully, a little faster because of my speedy start. But for this one, I remember what Rich said is his Psychology of Performance lecture about pacing and trying to keep your heart rate down for as long as possible; I thought, Fuck it. I'm just going to let myself be slow. And slow I was. I didn't rush it. I kept and even pace throughout the WOD I finished dead last in class at 36 minutes and 52 seconds. Nearly two minutes over the prescribed time.
I was surprisingly ok with that. I kept my form. I did everything the best I could and because I wasn't dragging my sweaty, breathless body around the block on that last 400 meter run. I wasn't frustrated at the end of the WOD even though I finished last.
I hope eventually, I'll teach myself to speed up. Maybe my slowness linked to stamina. Maybe it's linked to my body weight. I don't know, it's probably both. But for now, I can tell you it was a much more satisfying workout to go at an even pace then to go fast as possible and run out of steam at the end. Even if said even pace was slower.
BTW. Double-Unders...still can't do them.