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Lucky 7’s

by Meghann on October 10, 2012

Confession: I woke up with butterflies in my stomach this morning.

Technically Monday was my first official CrossFIT WOD, but that was a one-on-one private introduction. This morning was my first group setting and I was super nervous that I wouldn’t be able to keep up. Being a newbie can be very intimidating, especially in a group setting where everyone else looks like they know what they’re doing.

Fortunately, I didn’t have anything to worry about. Not only was everyone very welcoming, but I wasn’t the only newbie in the group! All of the more experienced CrossFitters were more than happy to help the newbies out and everyone was very supportive in cheering others on to reach their goals. It was pretty empowering actually. 🙂

I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I showed up about 10 minutes early before my class (do they call it classes in CrossFit? I don’t even know) and caught the tail end of the class before as they finished their WOD. Everyone was sweating, breathing heavy, and warning those of us watching from the next class that it was going to be a tough one. Gulp.


As soon as they finished up, Coach Paula pulled the next class into a huddle and started our class with a couple of announcements. She made sure to welcome back the newbies who were about to start their 3rd or 4th classes, then got to me and announced that it was my first class and made a joke on whether I was ready or not. I feigned horror (while secretly keeping the butterflies silent in my stomach) and told her to bring it on. Famous last words, right?


Warm Up: 400 m run, Burganer 1×5 w/ a light load or 1×10 w/pvc

Basically, my rule for today was to just follow what everyone else did. When she told everyone to take a lap, I followed the rest of the group (there were maybe 10 of us?) outside and did a lap of the parking lot for the 400m. I ran with two girls who introduced themselves and welcomed me to the class. One had been doing CrossFit since July and the other just started on Monday.

When we returned we all grabbed PVC pipes and started the 1×10 sets of Burganers. Paula broke the Burganers into 6 steps ( listed on the photo above on the right), which were basically the skills that eventually lead to a proper snatch when all put together. I liked having the movements broken up so I could concentrate on form and getting it right.

Skill/ focus: Snatch version 10-15 minutes to build to heavy one

Next we spent 10 minutes practicing snatches with the bar, building our weight with each round. I was paired with the other newbie (who started Monday) and a more experienced CrossFitter who helped us as we took turns trading the bar off. It was a little awkward learning to snatch with the shoulder shrug, but by the end I felt a little more confident with my abilities. I can’t thank the two other girls enough for being so helpful in my learning process.



  • 7 hs pu = handstand push ups (I did pike push ups)
  • 7 burpees
  • 7 ring dips (I did stationary dips w/ a band)
  • 7 kb snatch tot (I used 12lb dumbbell)
  • 7 rounds for time

This is where the real fun began. 😉

As you can see above, Coach Paula assisted in altering the WOD slightly to fit my current skill level, which was a huge relief. Handstand push ups? A little out of my league. Pike push ups seemed a little more manageable. She actually helped me find the proper technique for the pike push up by moving my feet closer to my hands and having me go down at an angle and not straight – felt the burn with those adjustments!

I was already familiar with the burpees (of course that didn’t make them hurt any less!) and the dips were fun with the band.


You put your knees in the band and dip down as you would normally. The goal is to build your strength up to bands with lesser resistance, until you’re eventually doing the dips band free or on the rings. However, the only downside is the bands get sweaty and slippery as the WOD progresses.

The snatches were fun. These were with one arm and I was happy we had some practice with technique before hand so I knew what I was doing. I had no idea what weight to start with, so I went with the 12lb. I think next time I would aim a little higher.

I went through all 7 rounds, taking small breaks when I needed to and trying not to kill myself in the process. You’re only doing 4 things, but doing all 4 things in a row for 7 rounds is rough. I made the HUGE mistake of taking a sip of water before diving into a set of burpees and was afraid the water was going to come back up for a second. After that I only took water in before the dips, that way I had time to let it settle before the burpees started in the next round.

The seven rounds were tough, but I pushed it through and came out the other side with a smile.


I called “time” and Coach Paula documented my finish.


My first official WOD time! I’m darn proud of that 18:58!

I should have got a photo right when I finished. I was DRENCHED in sweat. My arms were shaking so hard, I could barely take a photo of my time (I had to take 3 or 4 before I got one that was in focus and not blurry from shakiness!)


Even better, when I finished almost every person in the box congratulated me. “Way to go, newbie!” “Awesome finish, Newbie!” It wasn’t just me – every time a person finished, everyone gave a big congrats. There were high-fives, cheering, and just a huge sense of camaraderie in the group.

Why did I have those butterflies this morning? There was no need to be nervous, everyone was extremely welcoming and encouraging, even to a newbie. I can see why people really get into this, the sense of community alone is a mood booster.

After class was over, I stayed and talked a bit then headed home for breakfast.


Two-egg omelet with avocado in the middle.


And a side of apple slices.


Polished off with two GIANT cups of water. (I’m still thirsty!)

The only problem is now my body wants to nap. I’m pooped and the day has just begun! I was told the first week is the worse, but recovery gets easier. Let’s hope!

1 Megan October 10, 2012 at 10:26 am

great job!! I’m glad you crossfit experience is positive so far. Sounds like Paula is a great coach that recognizes the modifications. you are going to be busting out HSPU in no time! 🙂

2 NYC Fit Girl October 10, 2012 at 10:33 am

I am glad you liked your first WOD! I started crossfit 3 weeks ago and I am hooked.. Like addicted hooked! lol! I have started doing HSPU with a band and it really helps!

Great job on your second WOD!
NYC Fit Girl recently posted..Picky Eater

3 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats October 10, 2012 at 10:37 am

I’m glad you had a great experience at crossfit! I think that’s something I’ll try next year, when I hopefully live somewhere with a car and a job… haha. Dreaming big.
Katie @ Peace Love & Oats recently posted..WIAW–Marathon Day

4 Dori October 10, 2012 at 10:37 am

Exercises with names like snatch and burganer… that’s where I get lost. I assume they explain and show you how to do these at the beginning of class? I guess you pick it up easily when you start doing it all the time. That’s why CrossFit seems so intimidating to a lot of people I think. I work out all the time and those terms scare me!
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5 Meghann October 10, 2012 at 10:46 am

The names are what intimidated me too! I was afraid that they would just write the workout and walk away, but they really do take the time to explain how to do everything and offer a modification for the newbies. I was also told that the morning classes are a little smaller and allow a little more time to introduce newbies to everything. They have several classes in the afternoon that are “advance only” where they dive directly into the WOD without much explanation.

6 Courtney @ Journey of a Dreamer October 10, 2012 at 10:43 am

Awesome job on your first WOD! That is a tough one. Snatches still feel awkward for me. I absolutely LOVE the community of CrossFit. Whether you finish first or last you always have people cheering you on and encouraging you. That pushes me to be even better!
Courtney @ Journey of a Dreamer recently posted..#PrettyMuddy Tampa – November 10th

7 Kristy @ Kristy's Health Revolution October 10, 2012 at 10:56 am

I wish I could try Crossfit! I just cannot afford it. There is absolutely no way. Guess it’s just old-fashioned heavy lifting for me! Maybe when it’s closer to the wedding I’ll buy a month as a wedding gift to myself!
Kristy @ Kristy’s Health Revolution recently posted..My Favorite Place to Run

8 Meghann October 10, 2012 at 11:02 am

I know I can’t afford it long term, so I’m considering this as a wedding gift for myself too. Also, my box had a great deal going (Buy one month, get one month free), which helped a lot!

9 Sam @ Better With Sprinkles October 10, 2012 at 11:16 am

Looks like you had an awesome time!
Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted..WIAW–Holiday Guilt.

10 Natalie @ Free Range Human October 10, 2012 at 1:19 pm

That looks like a ton of work, but really fun! Wish I had one close.
Natalie @ Free Range Human recently posted..….And Give Strength To Body and Soul Alike.

11 Laura October 10, 2012 at 1:22 pm

Crossfit training is INTENSE. I only tried it once. I loved it, but it was WAY too expensive. You should post your workout on my new weekly link up 🙂 It’s called Hella Good Hon Workout Wednesdays. Check it out!
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12 Annette @FitnessPerks October 10, 2012 at 1:22 pm

Yay for a great class! I love that everyone is invested in your success 🙂
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13 May October 10, 2012 at 1:26 pm

I unfortunately had a not so positive experience with CF. I talked with one of the coaches and told him I really wanted to try it but that I really needed to work on my confidence-I had a surgery awhile ago and while I’m back to doing everything physically I was doing before, I’m still a little timid. I told him I really wanted to make sure that modifications could be made to suit my needs and he said yes.
But then the head trainer called me a few days later and told me not to show up because the guy wouldn’t work with me after all. I was definitely kind of hurt! I mean, it’s not like I’m handicapped. I’m 100% healthy and really active. I don’t know, left a bad taste in my mouth.

14 Meghann October 10, 2012 at 1:28 pm

That’s horrible! I would try another box. There was a guy in my class today who had an injury or some sort of handicap (I didn’t ask) who was doing a modified WOD based on what he was capable of doing. I would keep looking until I found a coach who is willing to work with you, but I can understand feeling scared after that experience.

15 May October 10, 2012 at 1:33 pm

I live in a small town so there’s no other options. It really sucks because it made me feel like “not hardcore enough” and that’s exactly what I was afraid of. Not fitting in!

16 Megan October 10, 2012 at 3:20 pm

that’s horrible!! I’ve never heard of a coach flat out refusing to work with someone! I have a broken wrist and my coach writes out separate WODs for me to do…

17 Lauren Jamison October 10, 2012 at 1:27 pm

I have my first crossfit workout next Monday and I am very nervous! But also very excited 🙂 Loved reading your experience. Makes me feel better!
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18 Kathy October 10, 2012 at 1:33 pm

I am so out of it I don’t even know some of those exercises you are talking about. Handstand push ups? (video?)
Ring dips (exactly what?)

I guess I am a visual kind of learner. 😉 Good job on a great wo.

19 Karen October 10, 2012 at 2:42 pm

My personal trainer used to do these kinds of workouts with me and I loved them. I may need to find a Crossfit in Tally! Such a good workout.

20 Beth October 10, 2012 at 3:04 pm

Great job! That’s a serious workout lady! I feel like that every single time I go to Crossboot. You’ll have to go to a session with me. First one’s free!
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21 Cher @ Weddicted October 10, 2012 at 3:07 pm

This post made CrossFit sound both intimidating and welcoming, lol. I’m still not sure how I feel! Saying you were dripping in sweat definitely makes me want to try it out though, sounds like you got an amazing workout! And nothing makes me happier than a great workout in a short amount of time.
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22 Emily N October 10, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Great job with your first official WOD!
Emily N recently posted..Less about Running, more about Skittles

23 Lydia October 10, 2012 at 3:35 pm

I love that you are enjoying it! I have been crossfitting for almost a year now…faithfully at least 3-4x a week for the past 6 months and have seen my body change tremendously(my before and afters are embarrassing and amazing at the same time)! I’m sure if you stick with it, you’ll get the results you are looking for by wedding day! Way to go!!!

24 Heather Wilson October 10, 2012 at 4:04 pm

This is awesome! I have been wanting to try crossfit for awhile now, knowing a few friends who do it. I have been scared that I wouldn’t do well, or that people would look at me like im cray cray!

Thank You for sharing with us, may give me the little push I need! ; ) Sometime soon I shall do it… (sigh)

Look forward to reading more posts on your crossfit journey!
Heather Wilson recently posted..Progress Track: Gain Weight ?

25 Meghan @ After the Ivy League October 10, 2012 at 5:40 pm

I love reading about people’s first CrossFit experiences! My roommate started a little over a month ago and has been trying to convince me to join. I can’t justify the cost right now, but I want to try it! Looks like a fun, challenging way to mix up your workouts. Love the sense of camaraderie everyone showed you!
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26 Jayme October 10, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Crossfit sounds like so much fun. I’d be terrified to do, because my fitness level isn’t really up to par for most of that, but I’m going to work up the nerve one day to do it. Thanks for the recap of your first class.
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27 Kristina October 10, 2012 at 8:16 pm

Sounds like taking on Crossfit while training for an HIM would be tough! Good luck with that.
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28 Kristy October 10, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Despite the talk of it being welcoming & encouraging… CrossFit still intimidates the crap out of me! I would totally be the last one to finish and I have this anxiety about being last for anything. Last for a wod, last for an exam, last in line, last for a race…. It’s a weird thing!

29 Angela October 10, 2012 at 11:48 pm

Ahhh! I love that we get to follow your x-fit journey! I’ve been trying to decide between x-fit or yoga memberships… so maybe you’ll help me choose! I’ve done them both, but I always get intimidated in the boxes. Great job so far!

30 Sarah October 11, 2012 at 1:33 pm

I love crossfit, I have been doing it for a little over a month. I love the attitude of my box and all the members, everyone is always really nice and encouraging. The first week I was there the owners invited my to a cookout they were having. It’s been great!
I do have one piece of [kind of weird] advice: I know your wedding is coming up so the week or so before try to avoid clean & jerks, hang power cleans, and maybe even front squats. They are fun moves but they always leave me with big bruises on my collar bone. Giant purple on your shoulders and neck will not look so great in your wedding photos.
Otherwise crossfit is great!

31 Katie @ A Full Plate October 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm

Congrats on your first CrossFit class! I just started a few weeks ago and am really loving it. I wrote about the same butterflies feeling on my blog before I started my first newbie class, then my first “real” class. I called it the “first day of school” feeling lol.
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