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Pushing my Travel Comfort Zone

March 20, 2012

I just returned from a conference in Fort Worth, Texas. Besides having a very successful academic conference, I also got in a WOD at a new crossfit gym while there. Even for me, keeping up my training plan while traveling requires pushing outside my comfort zone. Below: photo of me post-WOD at Brandt Crossfit.

I remember years ago when planning for workouts on vacation was easy. Either I was completely taking the time off (no planning!), or I just threw a pair of running shoes in my bag, and figured I’d do whatever I did. Needless to say, my training takes a little more time now. It starts with making sure I’ve packed everything I need: medical tape (two sizes), compression socks, running shoes, swimsuit, goggles, gps watch, interval timer, jump rope, ipod.

But the more critical part is planning where the workout facilities will be. First and foremost, I needed to figure out when I was going to do to the crossfit games WOD. The WOD is announced Wednesday evening and has to be done by Sunday afternoon. My home crossfit gym normally does it on Thursday and Saturday, but I would be leaving early Thursday morning and getting back late Sunday night. I talked to one of the coaches at my gym about doing the WOD on Wednesday night, right after it was announced, or on Sunday afternoon. He said that might be an option, but recommended I look into a crossfit gym in Texas.

Okay. I hadn’t considered that. I got online and found a gym about 1.4 miles from my hotel. I knew I had nothing to do Thursday afternoon (conference started Friday), so I would have time to walk there. But it was super intimidating to email the gym owner. I have only done crossfit at rowfit. I know everyone there. They know me. They know my strengths and weaknesses. I had no idea what to expect from a new gym. I had no idea if I would be completely out of my league. The little voice in the back of my head said, “it doesn’t matter, this is crossfit, and even the strongest athletes support the weakest athletes.” But I was still nervous.

The owner of Brandt Crossfit was happy to have me over to do the games WOD. And I’m glad I went. I showed up about ten minutes  before the class started, so I could sign the forms, introduce myself, etc. They asked about my crossfit experience and introduced me to the crossfitter who would be judging my WOD. They’re a smaller gym than my home gym, less people. There were maybe 6 or 7 people there on Thursday, but I was the only one doing the games WOD.

This week’s WOD involved 12 minutes, as many rounds as possible of 150 wall balls, 90 double unders, 30 muscle ups. But I was only concerned with the wall balls. Pickup a 20 pound medicine ball (lighter for women), do a full squat (with legs below parallel), stand up with it and throw it at the wall, center of the ball has to hit a line 10 feet off the ground (9 feet for women), catch and repeat. I got through 116 of the 150 reps. It was frustrating how many times I was close, but just a little short of the 10 foot target. None of those counted. But most importantly, I felt the same kind of support I would expect at my home gym. The coaches and other athletes there were super supportive. And the crossfitter judging me, who looked stronger than I am, told me that I completed more wall balls than he did when he tried it earlier in the day! (and he noted that he had very few misses, so I did way more work if you counted all my missed attempts.) I didn’t end up needing my jump rope, but it was sitting at my feet while I did wall balls, in case I finished my wall balls and had a chance to move on to the double unders.

Before I left for Texas, I also used google maps to help me find a YMCA with a swimming pool about .6 miles from the hotel. The hotel had a swimming pool, but the online photos showed it was not really going to be fit for laps! It was a curvy, recreational pool. And expectedly, full of kids. Unfortunately, I did not have enough time to get away from the conference to get in a swim. I knew that might be the case. Conference schedules are busy. But I was glad I had at least done the leg work to know where the pool was in case I had the time. But I did get in a second workout at the gym workout room. And instead of just running on their treadmill, I did my own sort of improvised crossfit-type WOD. I did 4 rounds for time of: 15 goblet squats (35 lbs), 12 pushups, 4 dumbbell thrusters (35 lbs), 15 situps, and 60 jump rope (I can’t do double unders yet).

Looking up a new crossfit gym, looking up a new pool, thinking about how to do crossfit-style workouts on my own in the hotel gym? These were all new things, pushed me a bit outside the “just put on my running shoes” comfort zone. But I’m glad I put in the leg work. I felt good keeping my training plan on track.

243 days till Ironman Arizona.


From → life, training

  1. So glad you enjoyed our gym! I will forward this to Kyle. Thanks for posting about us!

    • jbkosbie permalink

      Glad you found my post. Please do forward it. I had a great time there. I had also been meaning to post a yelp review, which I just did (a slightly modified version of this post). If I find myself in Fort Worth again, I’ll be sure to look you up!

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