By it’s very title the word Superhuman might conjure up images of fantasy figures with special super powers like Superman and Wonder woman, not your average Joe like me, so when I entered this event it was never because I thought I was actually Superhuman! It’s a mixed team event where you take part in crossfit workouts (WODS).
It’s not so uncommon nowadays for ordinary people and women to lift heavy weights. There are still some who just don’t ‘get it’ or who think that lifting weights will make you bulk up like a guy, but since crossfit has evolved over the past few years, this type of training has become more the norm for the general public and gives ordinary people, like me, a chance to enter into something special like the Superhuman Events. But what exactly is Crossfit? Sometimes I am asked when talking about it, what is it, and it’s hard to explain to people. Some people love it and some people hate it.
Here is the textbook description for Crossfit: CrossFit is a fitness regimen developed by Greg Glassman over several decades. Glassman, CrossFit’s Founder and CEO, was the first person in history to define fitness in a meaningful, measurable way: increased work capacity across broad time and modal domains. He then created a program specifically designed to improve fitness and health.
Having completed the Superhuman Games in 2015, I had considered myself fit enough to take part in this competition, but today’s event was on another level!
The day consisted of 3 WOD’s, the first was the Overhead Squat, to establish your 3 rep max. I was practicing this in the gym earlier this week and managed a 30kg lift (also a personal best for me) but on the day I managed to increase this by a further 2.5 and lift 32.5kg. That’s almost 65% of my own bodyweight lifted overhead. I’m pretty happy with that.
The second WOD was a 400m (each of the 4 team members) team sprint relay. This was by far the toughest one for me and the one I thought I would be better at. I’m ok for 100m maybe even 200m but that final 200m it felt like I was running in slow motion. I clearly don’t use this energy system of my body often enough! I felt totally sick afterwards and my legs did not know what had hit them, they really were like bambi learning to walk! I have to admit though there is something great about running on a track again.
The final WOD turned out to be my favourite. A real team effort, we had to complete 300 reps between us of ground to overhead with a 30kg bar, box jump overs and American kettlebell swings with a 16kg KB and then as many thrusters as we could to finish in the remaining time (15 mins all in).
Our team didn’t make the semi finals, we didn’t expect to, some of the people there were lifting probably twice what I was, they would likely warm up with my PB, but everybody has to start somewhere. I was in awe of some of the athletes there, some amazing strength and physiques on show. It is the taking part that counts and a great experience from which to build on.
It’s amazing what your body can achieve if you put your mind to it and with a bit of team camaraderie and motivation. Adrenaline plays a key part at these events too I’m sure, but the feeling you have when you achieve something like this is a natural high that I wish I could bottle.
I am looking forward to the next Superhuman event in the calendar, The Superhuman Games in May, I have some training to do!