The AMBAP

I used this term this morning when I posted, but tonight was my first AMBAP…”As Many Burpees As Possible”. 

This is the Week 1 Workout for the 2012 CrossFit Open, an open competition for CrossFit competitors and athletes worldwide.  I’ve been stewing over this workout since it was announced on Wednesday–daily checks of the leader boards, an obsession with burpee technique, and an unhealthy paranoia that I’ve never felt about burpees before.  I don’t know why I was so damned nervous today but I was happy to hear I wasn’t the only one.

The paranoia and nerves were unfounded, and I think that’s what bugged me more.  I’ve done 50 burpees in a row before, several times actually and I’ve done 75 straight once.  Give me a number to do and I will do it, but I think the AMBAP concept and the competition aspect put the nerves on edge.

I had originally said to myself that I wanted to complete 75 burpees but after the few days of stewing and seeing where other people worldwide were placing, I reconfigured my number to 60.  I would be very happy with 60.  For the sake of this competition, there would be a bar/ring/target 6″ above the highest point of your static reach.  Stand straight and put an arm straight up in the air.  Now measure 6″ from that and place your target.  I came up with 60 for one basic reason–I checked the worldwide leader boards and discovered that 60 would keep me off the last page; remember, I said my goal was to not be last in the world and I’ve since started to think that maybe staying off the last page is do-able.  I didn’t check everyone out but I’d be curious to know how many 300lb+ guys are competing though I found 4 or 5 so far and I have to say that it’s pretty cool that I’m not the only big guy giving this a shot…

All that talk about burpee form and technique though gets shot out the window by burpee #2.  At that point I stopped thinking about where my hands were, where my feet were, and just did burpees.  After watching two rounds of people get beat up before I worked up the stones to go I just tried to get in a zone and get it done.  To say I was still anxious is an understatement, I’ve never been worked up like this about burpees or any other single workout before.

I was happy that I kept going, I never felt that I “took a break” and felt that I kept a pretty decent pace for myself.  All said and done, I completed 57…3 short of my goal.  I missed the jump target a few times though late in the workout and that would have made up those last 3.  I have until 5pm on Sunday to submit a score so I’ve decided to do this again on Sunday morning and I’m going to do 60, dammit.  I’d do it again tomorrow, but it’s my birthday tomorrow and I don’t want to do 60 burpees on my birthday! 

One big thing I took away from this was hope.  I actually completed a workout in a fitness competition and I surely never would have bet on that.  I believe that although I’m heavier, I’m in much better shape now than I was playing football in high school, and if I can do 57-60 burpees in 7 minutes now, I can’t wait to see how many I can do at 220lbs.  I have a funny feeling it will be a little easier without having to wear an 80lb back pack…

How’d you do?

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