Hang Power Snatch 2-2-2-2-2 (Technique Limited)
Every Minute on the Minute for 12 minutes of:
3 Hang Power Cleans (~55% of 1RM Back Squat)
4 Bar Facing Burpees
- Jamison “Still Need a Moniker” Mize
I believe on a day to day basis most of us go through some kind of adversity, whether mental or physical, and are able to adapt pretty easily based on the experiences we’ve had in the past. Every once in a while though, we are faced with something unexpected, uncomfortable, and upon first glance, unachievable. Applied to Crossfit, we all have those days or those WODs that kill us. We look at the make up and say to ourselves, “This is going to suck.”
In addition to these workouts not making us feel great, in a sucking air, feel like you’re going to pass out sort of way, we still want to compete. While competing we will inevitably reach a point where we have a choice to make: Will we pause to take a 5 second break to catch our breath and make ourselves feel momentarily better alleviating the pain for a little while? Or will we accept the pain, push passed the uncomfortable feeling in our lungs and muscles, and finish the movement?
Recently I returned from Tanzania, Africa after having climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, the roof of Africa. I have never needed to dig as deep physically or mentally in my life. To give a short and quick preface, I love the outdoors. Always have. Climbed and hiked a ton of mountains and trails all over the US so giving a popular tall mountain in Africa a try was a natural gravitation. I spent the money, bought the gear, and sat on an airplane for 20+ hours to get there.
This trek was a 7 day accent and decent of the 19,341ft. mountain on the border of Tanzania and Kenya. Seems easy enough, one foot in front of the other and chip away until I’m back down drinking cheap ½ L bottles of beer.
Day 1 and 2 were a breeze climbing up past 14,000 ft. where I would remain climbing around the face of Kilimanjaro before summit day took me the last 5000 ft. on the other side of the rim. Then when I felt like I was on top of the world already, on Day 3, I was taken down by some kind of stomach bug. Chills, diarrhea, loss of appetite, dehydration, extreme fatigue, muscle soreness, and dizziness. I spent the next 3 days with these symptoms while continuing to hike the 6+miles we had to cover daily. It was torture.
Day 6, summit day, I had mostly recovered after a 3 day regiment of antibiotics, but was a frail shadow of myself. I made the decision to push on. Already exhausted, and to make matters worse, our summit day was packed with fun environmental obstacles such as 60mph winds, sub-freezing temperatures, zero visibility, and snow.
After 20 minutes of climbing I was covered in ice and breathing heavily. After 2 hours of climbing, I was fatigued, constantly thirsty, and becoming delirious; whether it was due to the altitude or the dehydration and malnourishment, I do not know. After 4 hours of climbing, my water bottles had frozen and I was in a trance like state really only able to follow the feet of the person in front of me. I was lacking fine motor control and had a strong desire to stop and head back down to lower elevation and warmer temperatures. After 6 ½ hours of climbing I finally reached the summit, snapped a picture with my group, and headed back down.
The funny part about it was, during and afterward, I was telling the guide how I felt. His most common reply: “You’re climbing a mountain.” Apparently the way I was feeling wasn’t necessarily anything he hadn’t seen before, he knew I’d be ok afterward. His main concern was getting me to believe I had something left. As my word and partially frozen camera lens picture proves: