the spaz of fitness has arrived

The Unofficial Stages of Burpee Delirium

In General, Training, WOD on November 24, 2012 at 3:39 pm

I’ve now completed 100 burpees in a row three times in my life. Those of you who’ve heard me wax poetic about burpees might be surprised by this. But, as much as I delight in one of the most notorious (entirely skill-less) moves of CrossFit, even I’m not masochistic enough to regularly attempt full-out, long burpee sprints. The first two times I did 100 burpees was during the Open. For those of you who might not know, the first WOD of the 2012 CrossFit Open was 7 minutes of burpees– as many rounds as possible. Being the burpee freak that I was in those 98-lb-bodyweight-days, I may or may not have giggled in delight when I saw the workout released. Since then, I’ve had many questions about the wisdom of starting with a burpee AMRAP and then following with a “snatch ladder” (12.2). The two events created a sort of bottleneck effect where one rep could separate literally hundreds of competitors– so many people can do burpees that the difference between 100 reps and 101 was hundreds of competitors, and snatches (on the opposite end of the spectrum) require such precision that a wealth of athletes could plateau at 95 lbs, putting hundreds of athletes at the same score. I think it might have made for an uneven start to the scoring system, possibly preventing perfectly skilled athletes from regionals. But I’m not an expert, so don’t go around saying the Jomad is railing against CrossFit HQ ;). Besides, as a non-serious competitor, I did delight in the 7 minutes of burpees in a terrible, terrible way.

The Open WOD had pretty exacting standards. At the top of the jump, the athlete had to touch a target 6 inches above his/her max reach. Because there was no stationary target in the gym six inches above my reach, I (and many of the women) had to use a ring that had been adjusted to the correct height. Of course, the huge disadvantage of the ring is that is swings each time you strike it… and some number of burpees in, your ability to coordinate your jump with a spinning, swaying, dangling wooden circle really deteriorates. So my first attempt at 12.1 was 98 reps, but I had two missed “no-reps.” Two days later, I repeated the WOD out of anger and managed 100 official reps. It’s a deceptively taxing WOD. For me, my respiratory system took the brunt of the beating. For days afterwards, I felt like I’d been breathing sandpaper. Though my shoulders and neck also suffered.

Today, the box’s WOD was the following:

For time:

100 Burpees

2 Minutes rest

100 Double-Unders

Actually, it was significantly easier than 12.1– but only because we didn’t use a 6-inch target. I finished the burpees in 5:12, and the clock read 9:42 when I dropped by jump rope (my double-unders need smoothing out). I would like to be able to do the “burpee challenge” (100 burpees) in under 5 minutes soon. However, the fact that I was so much faster without a 6 inch target makes me wonder how much I’m cheating my jumps and if I have muted hips at the top of each burpee. ANYWAY, having experienced 100 burpees 3 different times now, I feel confident in providing you with the unofficial “Stages of Burpee Delirium” (and yes, I experienced this all three times)

The Jomad’s Unofficial Stages of Burpee Delirium

Reps 1-20: “This is quite fun. I like burpees. What a delightful WOD”

Reps 20-30: “Okay, I could see this getting tiring soon… I hope I’m not slowing down.”

Reps 30-40: “How has it only been a minute something? At least I’m moving quickly…”

Rep 41: “Almost halfway there!”

Rep 42: “God, how am I not halfway there?”

Rep 43: “This is the longest anyone has burpeed. Ever.”

Rep 44: “WHERE IS 50?!”

Rep 45: “Must. Keep. Burpeeing.”

Reps 45-55: “God this was stupid.”

Reps 56-60: “Why did I do this? I could be… not burpeeing right now.”

Rep 61: “Really, I could just stop jumping and stand here.”

Rep 62: “No, it appears I’m stupid enough to finish this thing.”

Rep 63: “WHY AM I SO STUPID?”

Rep 64: “Who programmed this shit?”

Rep 65: “Why do they hate me???”

Reps 66-70: “I HATE THE UNIVERSE.”

Reps 71-73: “THIS IS HOW I DIE.”

Reps: 74-75: “I should have told everyone I loved them… I LOVE EVERYONE”

Burpee Nirvana

Reps 75-95: “Wow… look at that poor girl doing burpees. How lovely it is to be a floating head who feels nothing. The world is such a beautiful place. How wonderful it is to be alive– even better not to be that girl who’s–”

Rep 96: “Oh shit that’s me.”

Rep 97: “Fall. Stand. Hop.”

Rep 98: “Fall. Stand. Hobble.”

Rep 99: “Fall… crawl…. roll… stumble… hop.”

Rep 100: “…”

“….”

“… wait, really, that’s it? Where’s my fucking parade?”

… and there you have it. For any of you who would like to try this at home, now you know what to expect. All homicidal/revelatory manic-depressiveness is perfectly normal.

That’s all for today. I’m still mired in essays, so I’ve been spending actually very little time in the gym… and very little time outside of my chair, not drinking coffee.

Keep calm and burpee on.

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