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I surprised myself

by Meghann on April 17, 2013

I surprised myself at CrossFit this morning.

I climbed the rope! I didn’t fall!

You see, the rope has always been something I’ve been afraid of. Not because I was afraid I was going to get hurt, but I was afraid I wasn’t going to be able to do it. So afraid that I’ve gone 6 months without even attempting to do it. Whenever there was a rope climb included in a WOD, I always took the modified route instead. No point attempting something i knew I was going to fail.

However, today there was no escaping it. The rope climb was part of the skill/focus and we had 10-15 minutes dedicated to learning how to climb.


Not fair.

So I stood in line and waited my turn to climb. I watched as our coach showed the girl in front of me how to place her foot with the knee on the outside of the robe and how to grip the robe with her legs for stability before bringing her knees to her chest, moving her arms up the rope, and starting all over again. Gulp. That looked complicated.

Soon it was my turn. I was waiting to fail, waiting to slip and not make it up, but that didn’t happen. For some odd reason something clicked. My feet fell into place, the concept of bringing my knees to my chest made sense, and I was able to move up the rope without really thinking about it. For once, I surprised myself with this strange rope climbing ability I didn’t know I had. I made it to the top and felt like I could do it over and over again.


I ended up climbing the rope the proposed 5 time, and by the end of our skill/focus time I had fellow CrossFitters asking me for advice on how to get up there. What? I swear that NEVER happens – usually I’m the one asking them for advice. Who knew I had this hidden rope climbing talent?

So there you have it, I surprised myself. This whole time I was afraid to try this new scary thing, when really it wasn’t so scary after all.

The rest of the class was awesome. We had a partner workout and I was paired with one of my CrossFit friends, Scott, who just turned 57 this month and can still whoop my butt at most WODS.

Here’s the WOD:

  • 10 minute run for meters
  • 10 minute max ball slams #20/#14
  • 100 weighted sit-ups #25/#15
  • *1 person working at a time

Since it was a partner workout, we traded off doing the work during the allotted time. For the run Scott and I took turns running 400 meters until time was up (we finished with 2700 meters in 10 minutes!), for the ball slams we traded off doing 25 at a time, and for the sit ups we also broke it up by 25.

The run was fun. It was basically like doing 400 repeats, which I haven’t done in forever and miss nearly. I really need to get to a track more often! The ball slams killed me (10 minutes is a loooonnnggg time), but I kept going and didn’t quit. The sit-ups were the final sprint.

And to put the cherry on top of the great CrossFit class, I RXed by using the #14 medicine ball and #15 weight for the sit ups! Another thing that NEVER happens so I’m celebrating while I can!



When’s the last time your surprised yourself during a workout?

1 Jenny April 17, 2013 at 8:33 pm

Great job on the rope!! We’ve only had it out once and I had to modify. Still working on pulling up all this body weight! LOL.

Last time I surprised myself was today! CrossFit will do that to a person!

Proud of you for sucking it up, buttercup πŸ™‚ You did it!!
Jenny recently posted..CrossFit Chronicles: Edition 7

2 Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs April 17, 2013 at 8:34 pm

Sounds like a great workout day — congrats!
Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs recently posted..New Gear

3 Hayley @ Running on Pumpkin April 17, 2013 at 8:42 pm

That’s so great – I always think rope climbing looks fun (but intimidating)! I’d love to try it sometime.

4 Kathleen@ New Version of Me April 17, 2013 at 8:57 pm

Awesome! It is so motivating to meet goals and accomplish things you didn’t know you could! Congrats!!

5 Jen April 17, 2013 at 9:01 pm

Congratulations on the rope climb! That’s one of the things I miss most about CF. I was always fine the first couple of climbs, but by the fourth or fifth time, I’d start to freak out. I think it was just fatigue and not trusting my grip.
Jen recently posted..Reflections on Boston

6 Chelsea April 17, 2013 at 9:26 pm

I’m terrified of the rope climb! Congrats on kicking butt this without – surprising yourself can sometimes be, like, the best thing ever πŸ™‚
Chelsea recently posted..Kim Kardashian is at it again

7 Kayla @ Fit Life Forward April 17, 2013 at 10:30 pm

Way to go! I surprised myself just this Sunday – I was doing my last long run so I ran 7 miles before a half marathon – and PRed by 3 minutes in the half! Crazy! Still need to get my report up….
Kayla @ Fit Life Forward recently posted..Future Mrs. B.

8 mi-an dela cruz April 18, 2013 at 12:15 am

i’m afraid of rope climbs too!
today, i did 140 lbs 2 max reps of back squat! who knew!

9 Jelena@ FabLifePhd April 18, 2013 at 3:26 am

I have a rope fear since high school! Congrats on overcomming yours! πŸ™‚
I was pretty surprised to do 7 km run last night, keeping the same pace outside on a hot day as on the threadmill! I was not even too dead afterwards πŸ™‚

10 Andrea R. April 18, 2013 at 6:10 am

Oh my goodness I crossfit too and when I first read your WOD I didnt see that it was partnered hahah I love partner stuff!! Great great GREAT job on the rope climb!! i was so afraid of handstand pushups…. then I finally did them for an ENTIRE WOD and by the end I had people asking me about how to do it and was even an example for the next class time!!! who would have thought!
Just goes to show that That which we are most afraid of usually ends up being the most Beneficial/worthwhile!! that holds true to anything in life!!

And I FANTASTIC job this past weekend with the race!! It sounds amazing and busy!!! So fulfilling!! : )
Andrea R. recently posted..All or Nothin’

11 Jan @ Sprouts n Squats April 18, 2013 at 6:47 am

Well done!

Last time was when I did a 25km bike ride followed by a 8km run at the gym without rest just to see if I could.
Jan @ Sprouts n Squats recently posted..What I ate Wednesday #8

12 Molly April 18, 2013 at 7:33 am

Awesome job! I’ve never done crossfit OR been presented with the rope, but whenever I see it in movies or tv shows (my high school gym did NOT have one of those…) I feel the same fear u did. Way to kick butt πŸ™‚
Molly recently posted..Athleta Iron Girl 5k

13 Natalie @ Free Range Human April 18, 2013 at 8:02 am

Great job! As someone with very little upper body strength, I’m very impressed!
Natalie @ Free Range Human recently posted..WIAW: The One With The Trail Food

14 Beth @ Running with the Sunrise April 18, 2013 at 8:44 am

Congrats on your awesome workout and discovering your hidden rope climbing talent. πŸ™‚ It’s so awesome that you not only figured out that you can climb the rope but were also able to do it five times. Way to rock out! My longer 12 mile run on Tuesday was a big surprise for me–I ran at the hard end of my long run effort and ran about 10 seconds faster than my goal marathon pace. Here’s hoping that means I’m well-prepared for my marathon!
Beth @ Running with the Sunrise recently posted..Saturday Fun: Cubs Weekend Home Opener

15 Elizabeth @ Positive Change April 18, 2013 at 8:53 am

Awesome job on the rope! I feel I could not do that at all! I was very surprised the first time I ran a marathon. I knew I had trained but to actually run the race was a whole other ball game!
Elizabeth @ Positive Change recently posted..Staying Strong

16 Caitlin April 18, 2013 at 9:05 am

Success!! That’s so great- I remember reading a long time ago that women are natural climbers because of a combo of grace + flexibility and have an easier time than men when rock climbing, despite women having less upper body strength (typically) than men. Not sure if that applies here, but you kicked ass!!

17 Becky @ runfundone April 18, 2013 at 9:18 am

So cool! I’ve been wanting to learn to rope-climb, but I don’t have a crossfit gym, and my regular gym doesn’t have any ropes!
Becky @ runfundone recently posted..Tomorrow is a New Day…

18 Caroline April 18, 2013 at 9:56 am

Hi Meghann- I have been an avid blog reader for quite some time, but lately I have not found much interest in your blog because it’s not so much about running anymore. Running, not crossfit, is a passion of mine and I can’t relate much to your posts anymore.

19 Ani Danelz April 18, 2013 at 10:15 am

I just posted on my blog about being surprised during my workout! Isn’t it amazing seeing how far your body can take you?
Ani Danelz recently posted..Have You Ever Truly Surprised Yourself?

20 Ashley @ Eat Run Live Happy April 18, 2013 at 11:53 am

Congrats! I could never climb the rope in gym class. my upper body strength is zero as of right now. (Working on it)
I surprised myself Tuesday on my run. I did an 8 miler and I could never get under a 10 minute pace. I ran 8 miles and my average pace was 9:30!
Ashley @ Eat Run Live Happy recently posted..Old School Nintendo

21 Annette @FitnessPerks April 18, 2013 at 12:22 pm

Hey that’s really cool!! great job! ANd nice that you just ‘got’ the rope climbing!
Annette @FitnessPerks recently posted..BodyPUMP Release 85 Review

22 meredith April 18, 2013 at 12:27 pm

Congrats- such a great feeling isn’t it? I shocked myself this past weekend at the Fitness Mag Women’s Half Marathon because not only did I run with an injured rotator cuff that came close to keeping me out of the race, I got myself a new PR! Totally amazed myself.
meredith recently posted..INSIDE THE FRIDGE!

23 Sara @ fitcupcaker April 18, 2013 at 1:23 pm

I cant even climb a rope, that is going to be one of my goals this year at crossfit, you go girl!!
Sara @ fitcupcaker recently posted..Crossfit Catch Up- Annie & Kettlebell 300

24 Victoria @ Reluctantly Skinny April 18, 2013 at 1:39 pm

I surprised myself at a 5K recently by coming in 4th – I run so slow!! I think I’d be afraid of falling off that rope! My fiancee slipped from a rope in the Marine Corps and dislocated his shoulder badly!
Victoria @ Reluctantly Skinny recently posted..WIAW: fruit salad with cilantro lime yogurt dip

25 Karla @ Foodologie April 18, 2013 at 1:48 pm

Awesome!! Congratulations! I haven’t tried a rope climb in crossfit yet, but I can’t wait to try it! I was super surprised last week when I would front squat over 100lbs!
Karla @ Foodologie recently posted..Epic Banana Bundt Cake

26 Caitlyn @ City and the Cubicle April 18, 2013 at 2:24 pm

woooow! go you!!! that is awesome.

27 Carli April 18, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Amazing! I’ve always been afraid to climb the rope for the same reason. Luckily I haven’t been faced with one since high school.

Virtual high fives!
Carli recently posted..I Am Healthy & Active Because I CAN Be #C9atTarget #todaysvictory

28 Karen April 18, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Congrats! Rope. Limbs have scared me since elementary school gym class!

29 Melissa @TryingtoHeal April 18, 2013 at 3:20 pm

Great job with the rope! Impressive! I surprised myself on Tuesday when I ran a sub 8min/mile 5 miler….amazing how emotions can make you run faster.
Melissa @TryingtoHeal recently posted..For Boston

30 Ja @Ja on the RUN April 18, 2013 at 4:06 pm

I would like to try the rope climb too! I always pass on that every time I see it. It looks scary. Ok, I will try to do it next time. πŸ™‚
Ja @Ja on the RUN recently posted..Thinking Of You, Boston.

31 cathy April 18, 2013 at 4:33 pm

Go Girl! Awesome job!!

32 PeachyLau April 18, 2013 at 5:50 pm

Well done! I think I would have taken the modified version without attempting it too.
PeachyLau recently posted..Nails of the week

33 Courtney April 18, 2013 at 5:53 pm

Sounds like a solid day at the box, happy for you! πŸ™‚
Courtney recently posted..New Balance Minimus MT10

34 Emily April 18, 2013 at 6:39 pm

woot! I surprised myself with my first rope climb, too! It was a few years ago but I was taken aback at how quickly it became my favorite πŸ™‚

35 Nicole @ One Running Mama April 19, 2013 at 4:52 pm

I’ve never climbed a rope before so I’m doubly impressed!

I ran a few miles in a brand new pair of Mizunos and was super-speedy (for me). When my Garmin beeped at mile 1 and I saw the split, I thought, Hm…that’s awesome. Mile 2 was even faster, so I pushed it for mile 3 and finished with an average pace under 9:00. (My usual “happy” pace is 10-ish.)

Surprising yourself sure gives a boost of confidence, right? πŸ™‚
Nicole @ One Running Mama recently posted..{Triple-F Favorites} Lunch Edition

36 Heidi Nicole April 21, 2013 at 12:22 am

I haven’t tried climbing a rope since the middle school fitness tests…I sucked at it then and I’m pretty sure I’d fall off now! That’s awesome that you made it up five times! How’d your shins handle it? I’ve seen some sore looking shins from CrossFit rope climbing!
Heidi Nicole recently posted..#BostonStrong Denver

37 Jennifer April 24, 2013 at 1:44 pm

AMAZING feeling!! I remember when I first climbed the rope all the way up for the first time. It’s terrifying!!

Jennifer recently posted..Endorphin Warrior Training Bracelets: Product Review and Giveaway!

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