CrossFit Workout, etc.

Last night’s workout was frustrating. Part of the workout involved power cleans, three sets of 21, 15, and 9 reps, alternating with dips. I hadn’t practiced the clean enough with an empty 40-pound bar to start doing multiple weighted reps for speed. The gym was crowded enough that I didn’t get enough help—not that no one tried to help, but they didn’t have much time. I ended up taking the 20 pounds of weight off the bar and using just the bar. But then I went to do some dips, and when I came back for my next interval of cleans, a guy had taken my bar, weighted it, and was using it. I had to get another empty bar to use. This turned out to be a much lighter one, so light that doing cleans with it was almost pointless. In the end I felt like I neither did the workout as prescribed nor practiced the move constructively.
On the bright side, I spent a lot of time practicing handstand wall-walks. That means: Turn your back to the wall and put your hands on the ground. Walk your feet up the wall and your hands gradually closer to it. End up with your body touching the wall as needed for balance, and walk sideways on your hands, still using the wall for support.
In reality, I didn’t get nearly as close to the wall as it felt, considering how nervous I was about falling backwards flat on my back. If I concentrated on getting my hands closer to the wall (as I was urged to do), then my hands ended up so planted that I couldn’t or wouldn’t pick one of them up to start stepping. When the assistant coach told me “Now pick up one hand,” I said, “No!” He kind of laughed and backed off. I soon found that as I adjusted my distance from the wall, and moved my feet up the wall correspondingly, I could adapt into stepping sideways if I never stopped moving my hands. But if I got more or less balanced and planted my hands, I was unable to make myself pick them up. As I got fatigued that resistance got worse. Later I tried some more and made progress at getting up and down into that scary position a lot more confidently. All those mobile handstands were a real workout in themselves.
We practiced some other gymnastics moves, but it seemed like our coach was crabby, and I was irritable (maybe it wasn’t him at all), and so I was disappointed with the whole thing. I definitely have to practice the clean with the weighted bar. It’s just a matter of practice and patience and staying calm. The place was too noisy and full of pep talk/haranguing. It was more my mood and the noise level than any actual haranguing, but that was how it felt.
First thing this morning I found out that a close friend’s mom died, in Chicago, so I’ll be leaving tomorrow to attend the wake and funeral and spend the weekend. By nine A.M. I had arranged a flight and a place to stay at another friend’s house. As the day went on, I felt more and more wound up in the details of getting out to Park Ridge from Midway Airport without renting a car, what clothes to bring, and all the usual pre-trip anxieties. That was added to the waves of emotion every time I thought about my friend and how close she and her mom were. I spoke to her on the phone twice today as well as to the friend I’m staying with. It’s great to be able to get together in spite of the distance and I’m so glad I’m going.
By the end of the workday my mind was starting to whirl, prioritizing tasks to accomplish tonight. Pack? Yes. Go Christmas shopping, as I’d planned? Maybe not. (Definitely not.) Get my other friend a hostess gift for putting me up? Hmmm. (I let myself off the hook because of so little advance notice. I have something in mind to send her afterwards.) My carpooling friend kindly let me ramble on about this stuff on the way home from work, and finally she interjected, “You know what? I think you should go to the boxing gym and let off some steam by punching the bags.” Right on! It felt good to have that kind of validation for how I felt and what I needed to do for myself.
I didn’t do any better on the crunches than I did on Tuesday. But we did those awful burpees again and I completed each one, though slowly. There’s no good point to sneak a momentary rest during those. If I try to rest in the crouch before extending my legs out for the squat-thrust, the blood gets trapped in my folded legs and I get lightheaded afterward. So I “rested” for a few seconds at the top of the push-up position—not much of a rest! I was glad I at least pushed myself to get through that drill with each part of the move correct, even if I tried to sneak in little rests between parts.