1000 Meter Row
50 Thrusters (45)
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Coaches Corner – Rachel Martinez
My Experience as an Individual Competitor at The CrossFit Games
Since I have been back I have been asked many questions. Some are very easy to answer and some questions have had me pause and think. It is amazing to get to reflect and share my experience with all of you. All of you, my Crossfit New England Family, backed me 1000 % and it makes me feel so incredibly lucky and fortunate to be a part of this amazing community!
Here are some of the questions I have been asked:
- How does your body feel?
My body held up pretty well through the week. I had been training with a lot of volume so I was not super sore with the long days. More than anything my body felt tired but not hurt. I had a little bit of a foot issue going on before the games so that doesn’t feel any better but if I lay off of it for a few weeks I will be just fine.
- How was it different from your experience last year with a team?
It was surprisingly very different. Last year we had the most unbelievable team as people and athletes and it was so amazing to go through my first experience with them. I think this year I was not super confidant or positive I belonged with these other athletes. Before I left for California I had spoken to Ben, Montoya, Becca Voigt, and Michelle Letendre about my confidence issues and the common thing they all said was don’t forget where you are at any point of the Games and don’t forget you earned a spot just like anyone else. They said even when it gets really hard; remember you are at the Crossfit Games. I was able to do that better than I expected, it got hard a lot and I kept reminding myself of this unbelievable experience. I think because I was able to do that the experience was 10x greater than I even expected.
- How was the swim?
It is no secret that I am not a very good swimmer. Most of you knew that through my training when I would come in and tell you about my “not so fun” swimming experiences. I had definitely gotten better but by better I mean I could survive a 200 m swim in a lake with only a few tears. When the swim event was announced (250 m ocean swim, 50 thrusters, 30 burpees, 500m ocean swim, 30 burpees, 50 thrusters, 250m ocean swim) needless to say I was terrified. It got even worse when Castro announced to us that if we didn’t enter the water at any point of the workout “our Crossfit Games was OVER.” I wanted to break down immediately, literally I started shaking and wanted to leave the room we were sitting in. I didn’t think I could do it. The next day when the workout started and I completed the first 250m swim it was harder than I expected. I swallowed a lot of water and the water was rough, I felt like I was swimming and gaining zero distance. I came out of the 250 and felt defeated, I honestly don’t even remember the 50 thrusters and 30 burpees because all I was thinking of was “there was no way I could make the 500m swim.” I got to the water to start the 500m swim and just froze. Every single athlete passed me and I still stood there staring at the ocean. I knew if I didn’t get in my Games was over. I went in, swam about 5 feet and came back out. I stood there for what felt like another 20 minutes but I finally convinced myself to get in, there was no way I worked that hard for it to be over. I still can’t believe I finished that 500 m swim. I was doggy paddling, doing some kind of funky one legged swim, I’m sure I made up a few strokes just to survive it and I did just that, I made it! I took dead last and of course that’s never fun in the first workout but I did it and I was still in the Crossfit Games. So to answer your question the swim was so awful and so rewarding at the same time!
- What was my favorite workout?
I was looking forward to the midline march (3 rounds of 25 GHDSU, 50 ft handstand walk, 50 ft OH walking lunge 115#) the most and even though that was my highest place finish it actually didn’t turn out to be my favorite workout. The clean ladder was my favorite and I give full credit to it being my favorite because of the crowd. The crowd was so loud and every single person in there wanted you to make your lifts. It’s rare that 1000’s of people are on their feet for you to make one lift. I failed 200# and on my next few attempts everyone was screaming, when I got under the bar the crowd got even louder and I stood it up! What an awesome crowd of support. I wish I could go back there anytime I wanted to PR a lift!
- Am I going to go individual again next year?
I wish I could answer that. It was one of the most unbelievable experiences of my life. Team was also an amazing experience last year. I do think I am a better team athlete than an individual athlete but maybe that will change. I am lucky to have had the opportunity to experience both so I can’t answer this question yet. I guess we will see how this year goes and where training and life takes me!
I want to thank all of you. I wish I could somehow show all of you what you mean to me. I am lucky, I am fortunate, I am grateful, and I am full of emotion. The endless emails, phone calls, and conversations I had with all of you have been amazing and I wish I could lock them up in a box. CFNE is my home and you are all my family, my parents were amazed at how much support I receive. They see how happy I am with my life and it is because of all of you. Love you all and again I cannot thank you all enough.
I will leave you with this video that Joe and Lara Vukson sent me because it made me cry. Amazing to see how many of you stopped your busy lives to watch me compete.