You are browsing the archive for 2010 November.

Swimming fail and less than a week to go…

November 29, 2010 in Uncategorized

Have you ever tried swimming in the Atlantic Ocean? It’s freezing! I mean icy, icy cold, enough to make your bones feel like they’re going brittle and splintering into a thousand little pieces.

I don’t know how surfers and kite surfers do it. Granted my wet suit is only a ¾ one so I had a lot more exposed flesh that was truly ideal, but still. It’s really, really cold.

Anyway, as you can gather, I finally got around to a sea-swim in preparation for my upcoming triathlon this weekend.

 It was a bit of a swim-fail however as there were no lifeguards on duty and as soon as we headed out to sea with a group of rocks as our half-way mark, some heavy mist rolled in out of nowhere and within minutes we couldn’t see the rocks and the beach was barely visible.

Not ideal conditions to go swimming in.

The waves were also getting a bit rough and at one point there was talk of a rip tide… I’m not that clued up on sea-going-lingo but I know that’s not a good thing.

So after about 20 minutes of haphazard swimming we gave it up for a bad joke. Please God the weather is better on Sunday and the sea isn’t so volatile. As it is 600m is still frightening me, but with waves and currents and hundreds of other swimmers all around me it will be even worse.

After that I decided to hit the gym on Sunday to rather try out a mini-tri and see how my legs would hold out for the transitions. Again the swimming really floored me, I’m clearly not very swimming fit and realising this so close to the race date is more than a little terrifying. Alas nothing more I can do except practice.

I then moved onto the bike and rode that for 25 minutes before hitting the treadmill for a quick 20 minute run. It wasn’t as bad as I thought and my legs held out quite well, although I messed up my shoulder during the swimming. #swimmingfail

However I’m not kidding myself that it’s going to be that easy on the day, especially with wind and all the other delights training outdoors brings with it. For starters there’s no big white line at the bottom of the sea to follow while I’m swimming.

Can you tell how many times I’ve talked myself into and out of this race? I’m super nervous, just have to hope that all the cross-training I have done at Cape CrossFit and my running will get me through it. Words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated!

Angie ain’t no lady…

November 22, 2010 in Uncategorized

Whew, last week at CrossFit was INTENSE! It’s little wonder my arms have not packed up and left for greener pastures. You’d think by now I’d know not to underestimate anything at CrossFit right? It’s the Irish blood…

On Wednesday last week I met Angie. She’s.. well…. not the quiet, demure type… 

Y’see at CrossFit they name all the REALLY hard, nasty workouts after girls. Angie, Diane, Fran… they’re all hardcore, chest heaving, heart thumping ‘I’m-never-doing-that-again-until-the-next-time’ workouts.

Personally I think they’re all named after women so you can truly complain about what a bitch that Angie was… and mean it. Sorry-for-you if your name is also a CF workout, that’s just bad luck.

So Angie (I can’t help singing the Rolling Stones song in my head when I say Angie with that twang..)… 

100 pull-ups

100 push-ups

100 sit-ups

100 squats

See? Angie is SO off my Xmas card list…

Fortunately, since it was my first time doing this workout, I was allowed to do a half-Angie. Alas, she is just as nasty. But I can’t complain, it was 50% less horrible than the full thing and I’m guessing I would have felt 50% worse today if I’d done the full one.

I also did the pull-ups with a band (as I can’t do a full pull-up on my own yet) which I had assumed wouldn’t be TOO difficult… stupidstupidstupid. It was still hard, and as I squeezed out the 50th one I almost looked forward to the awaiting 50 push-ups.

It. Was. Hard.

But I did it in just over 15 minutes. It was the pull-ups that took forever, must work on those. And as usual, I felt great afterwards. Fifteen minutes of squealing (yes, I squeal, it’s sad) and hurting is worth the next 20 hour high, hands down!

The next day was push-presses to start followed swiftly by a main course of three rounds of handstand push-ups (21 -15 -9), walking lunges and rope climbs (3).  Needless to say my arms spent most of the weekend in a corner sulking and refusing to lift much more than my hand to my face to slap it. Not really, but they would if they could.

Then today, a fresh new week, I finally felt like my bursitis was starting to get better when one of my favourite exercises came around again… back squats. Last time I tried them my hip was too sore to do very much weight, but today I was feeling strong-like-bull and managed to get my one rep max of 60kg!! Not too shabby huh?

Well I was happy Cool

At the weekend I also finally bought a wetsuit for the upcoming triathlon which is a freakishly close 2 weeks away. So now I just have to practice some swimming and fit in at least two toe-curling cold swims in the bitterly cold Atlantic Ocean.. easy!

Any tips are welcome… please!!!



Three weeks till triathlon. Commence freak-out…

November 16, 2010 in Uncategorized

Ok I think it’s close to the time I start to freak out about this looming triathlon. It’s now three weeks away and I have not still not had a chance to hit the pool yet, although I am really going to try my best this afternoon (fingers crossed the pool is quiet and there aren’t any kids there peeing in it… we all know that’s what they do!).


Apart from that I also got food poisoning this weekend from some dodgy sausage at a braai. It. Was. Horrible.

You can’t fake stomach cramps like that and I was floored for the whole of Sunday and Monday because of it.


Thanks Pick’n Pay


This of course meant that all plans of cycling and running went out the window and I also missed CrossFit. It really sucks.


However, that is all now gone and I do tend to work better under pressure so here’s hoping I will be able to get my derriere back into gear and hit the pool and road a few times before the race on December 5. Which, incidentally is also the day before the CrossFit Diane and Nutrition Challenge finals. Awesome.

The day before they STARTED I ran my first half marathon, now I’m doing my first triathlon the day before the finals. Not such a wise idea but it’s just how it happened so I’ll just have to make the best of it!


We had a super-fun CrossFit class on Friday though, I honestly felt like a kid again. Albeit a very clumsy, awkward kid with zero coordination and the grace of a stoned elephant, but a kid nonetheless!


We did forward rolls… where you stand at the top of a mat and then roll over like a roly-poly. Lots of fun!


It is SUPPOSED to look like this:

But I think I looked a lot more like this:


Then we had to do it from a handstand… which was still lots of fun, but a bit more painful. Only if you landed like I did with a big thud every time. You know it’s bad when everyone goes ‘oooh!!’ and then there’s quiet when you get up.

To be honest though I think it sounded worse than it was cause my head felt fine afterwards.

Then again I have a sneaky suspicion I was dropped on my noggin more than once as a child after several times I have caught my family out with a “remember that time she fell on her… oh, wait… no, never-mind…” story.

Explains a LOT I tell you. A LOT.


After that it was a gruelling workout with handstand push-ups, lunges and squats that I felt all the way into Saturday afternoon. You know it’s been a hard workout when the next day you go to sit down and it feels like your leg and bum muscles are made of balls of fire. Oddly enough it’s a good feeling, one that you miss when you haven’t had such a hard workout.


Tomorrow though, I will be back at it all again.

No more sausages forever though, that stuff’s now an officially banned substance in my diet… it never was a regular feature cause I always worry about what exactly is in them, but they’re now on the no-go list.


Apart from that the paleo nutrition challenge is going well. A few hiccups here and there but nothing major. I am still missing cheese and in this heat I would kill for a soft-serve, but I haven’t done so yet… only a few more weeks left and I am feeling quite strong.

I was thinking this weekend that I doubt I will go back to eating the way I did before now either. I doubt I will manage to be 100% paleo all the time, but generally I like the food and have noticed that I’m not tired or lacking in energy at all.


Even though a lot of people have commented that my lack of ‘carbs’ should be making me feel exhausted, I think they all forget that carbs are also found in vegetables and fruit, both of which I still consume. I made myself the yummiest smoothie yesterday when I could finally stomach food again… made from coconut milk, frozen berries and a banana.


Oh.My. Word. You don’t KNOW how amazing that was. It’s just full of yummy goodness and I could actually feel my body soaking it up and enjoying every sip!

Your should try it! ALMOST better than chocolate… almost…..



Paleo challenge heats up at CrossFit. Week 5.

November 9, 2010 in Uncategorized

It’s week five of the CrossFit Nutrition Challenge and so far things are going well. However, things seem to be going even better for my fellow CrossFitter and challenger Joanne Youens…. it would appear she has self-control built of steel and will-power that’s almost super-human in its strength. Check out her blog here.


She doesn’t look mean, but don’t let that sparkly smile food you, she’s a CrossFitting demon!


Which are awesome qualities, except when they’re in someone who you’re up against in a challenge. Added to that she’s managed to strike a weird balance between being very strong and elegant at the same time.


Not sure how she does it, but when she is in a handstand she is so graceful compared to my help-me-I’m-drowning mess of legs all akimbo and beetroot-red face spluttering all over the place for a grand total of 10 seconds upside down.


So yeah, in hindsight, perhaps she wasn’t the best person to take on.

However, that’s too late now.

We’re halfway through and I’m just gonna have to step up my game.


Which is easier said than done..


Why? Well the stupid hip bursitis is just not going away. I’m so over it now. I have one more appointment tomorrow with the physio which I’m hoping will miraculously heal me forever of all current and future injuries (a girl can hope…). *Fingers crossed*


Until then though the bursitis is still hurting. Yesterday morning when I woke up it was niggling which was odd considering it had been fine for a few days. I even took the dogs for a very short run with hubby on Saturday (he has expressed a mild interest in running and that’s too good an opportunity to pass up).


 We’re trying to train them to run next to us and not criss-cross behind us or trip us up in front while they sniff something or to chase a cat or bark at another dog.


It was hard work cause our dogs aren’t really training-friendly… they are smart (and TOO cute), don’t get me wrong.

But once they realise that you’re trying to teach them something that might change how they currently do something they go out of their way to refuse to learn it. Until the treats come out of course…


Anyway, back to the hip.

So I just thought it was because I’d slept funny on it and carried on as normal at CrossFit until we got halfway through some back squats which are one of my favourite exercises.


Belinda and I got up to about 42kg and then my hip started feeling extremely sore so I had to stop and roll around on the foam roller while everyone else carried on . Sucked I tell you.


Then the workout was wall balls and burpees… and just my luck my hip wasn’t too affected by the burpees. Nope. I had to do all of those, 50 of them too. It really sucks. No-one can really say they like them. I mean seriously… I get that it’s a good workout and afterwards you feel great, but look at the face of ANYONE doing a burpee and if they’re smiling they are clinically insane and need immediate sedation.


So I skipped Pilates this morning and my hip is feeling much better now. Apparently it takes up to six weeks to heal and I’m in week five so here’s hoping…


Until then though I will just have to make sure my paleo eating is spot-on or dear Joanne will continue to have the edge on me with her gruelling 5-days-a-week CrossFit regime and that is just not cricket…


Back on the road again, yee-ha!

November 4, 2010 in Uncategorized

Woo hoo! I finally broke in my new running shoes… and they felt fab-u-lous thanks very much! (Which is a relief to all considering I had to break the piggy bank to pay for them…)


I took them out last night for the first time since my efforts on Tuesday were thwarted after the pummeling the physio gave me on Monday evening. My one bum cheek was quivering like a lump of jelly and when I tried to run while walking the doglets I think even they stopped to have a laugh. So it was not to be on Tuesday.


However, it’s been almost a month since I last ran (the last run being the half marathon) and WHO KNEW that my body had forgotten how to do it???!?!?

It was ridiculous. I took off all bouncy and shiny-shoed and after a grand total of two minutes I had to stop because I had a stitch.

Nooooo,” screamed my body (she’s awfully dramatic), “what IS this evil thing you’re making us do???”


Fortunately I’ve grown used to such grumbles and after a good 2km’s of some very weird-looking stop-start, YES!/NO! arguments with myself my muscles finally remembered what running was and I gradually ceased to look like I was fighting off a demon-possession and found my running rhythm again.


I don’t believe we’ll be getting any dinner invites from the neighbours anytime soon though *cringe*


It felt great to be back on the road though, and the new shoes felt great! I am so thrilled I’m going for another run tonight (weather-permitting of course, it is Cape Town after all…). What’s that about everything in moderation??!?!


I also went back to Pilates this morning to stretch out what is clearly a body that needs stretching. However there was a lot of balancing and co-ordination required this morning, neither of which are my strong points… alas.

But I guess it’s doing the things you’re not so great at that make the things you’re better at just that much easier.


I dunno… it’s been a long day…..


By the way, I’m working on a story about farting in the gym -yes, that’s right, everyone’s done it so stop being bashful - so how’s about giving a girl a helping hand and sharing some of your stories with me (about you or others)? I will keep you anonymous if that’s what it takes…pretty please?!?!

E-mail me and I’ll keep it hush-hush..


Dignity be gone, you have no place here….

November 2, 2010 in Uncategorized

Shew, haven’t been here in a while! Work has been a million different kinds of crazy lately so getting time to even make that second cup of coffee (milk and sugar free of course…) has been a mission, let alone finding time for blog updates.


I’m sure you’ll all be mightily relieved to know that I am now in week four of the Nutrition Challenge for CrossFit and so far the paleo eating regime is going well. The chocolate bar in the cupboard remains untouched and has stopped whispering my name at night. My cooking has become a lot more imaginative, much to hubby’s nervous delight… sometimes it’s a winner and sometimes not. But I am enjoying finding different ways of cooking different vegetables and meat.



Physio has been ongoing for the damn bursitis in my hip, but thankfully that’s starting to clear up. It’s taken a lot longer than I had hoped and even though I now have a brand spanking new pair of awesome running shoes, they remain untouched and shiny.



Today however, I am going back to the WCAC where it’s the time trial tonight so I’m hoping to break them in there. I won’t obviously be breaking any records (as if that was ever my goal anyway..) but I will be taking an easy, relaxing run to see how it goes.


Physio has consisted of lots of massage, which in theory sounds nice, but when your muscles are as knotted as an old lady’s arthritic fingers it’s really quite unpleasant and has almost reduced me to tears several times. Cry


And just when that started getting a little bit easier and my hopes lifted that perhaps I was on the brightly-lit path to recovery, out came some very long, sharp needles and a sado-masochistic side to the sweet physio I hadn’t yet seen.

Tangent: I really should just pack up my dignity and ship it off to a far away land with lots of sunshine and white beaches because I clearly have no use for it anymore….


So down came my pants and the three long acupuncture-style needles got stuck in my bottom and I was left with bum in the air for a good half an hour.

See? Dignity has no place here…



However it turns out that it did actually work quite well. It’s called dry needling and is similar to acupuncture where the needles are stuck into very tight muscles to ‘release’ them faster than massage would. It was very sore, don’t get me wrong.


And the next day my bum muscles were very stiff, but it was only after this therapy that I began to feel some relief.


Yesterday I went again and she massaged all the way down my leg to my knee and then up along part of my back, again frowning at the weird tension my body seems to hold, making all my muscles so tight and inflexible. I swear I should just spend my whole day stretching.

However, I did get the all clear to start exercising again – even though I have still been at CrossFit where they have been keeping an eye on me and making sure I didn’t do anything that would put pressure on the hip – but I am ITCHING to get back to the other things too.


Swimming is something that I really need to get going at for this damn triathlon in December (*freakout*), but apparently that’s really not so awesome for a sore hip so that might have to wait till next week.


Even then I will only be able to practice in the gym pool because have you SEEN the prices of wetsuits? Holy crap! And out my side of town even the sea is so cold your feet go numb after a few seconds in the water so I’m a bit worried about how immersing my entire body in it with anything short of a thermal suit with a built-in fireplace will feel.


Anyhoo, I’m, off to munch on some carrot sticks and drink yet more water. At this rate I should grow fins, or perhaps a tail, would make the swimming a lot easier….hmmm….




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