16.4 Accomplished 

Whew, what a weekend! My parents came down to Calgary for a visit on Thursday.  We met them for a very late dinner at Open Sesame (dinner was so-so, but conversation was good).  I was beat from our 20 min AMRAP earlier in the day, and getting up at 5 AM for work, but somehow managed to stay awake until midnight visiting once we got home.

Friday was a marathon shopping day! Mom and I spent pretty much the entire day at Chinook shopping up a storm.  After months and months of living frugally (see: Dana gets laid off), having some new things to wear feels wonderful.  My sister came to join us shopping mid-afternoon and helped me find some different things to wear.  She’s good at picking a million things off the rack at nightmare stores like H&M so that I can at least find a few awesome items.  I don’t have the patience for that kind of stuff on my own.  For dinner, we hosted a family dinner at our place.  In a brilliant stroke of genius, Mom suggested ordering food in, instead of frantically cooking after a day at the mall, and so we ordered pizza from Village Flatbread and it was so, so good.  For dessert, Haley made a cookie layer “cake” with peanut butter icing and it was EVERYTHING and more.  I live for cookies.  And peanut butter.


Saturday morning, Mom and I went for a walk, then Dana went to our niece’s bday party and my folks went to Haley’s Iron Ring ceremony. She is finishing her engineering degree this semester!  While the house was empty, I got busy crafting a wearable box costume for Sunday’s 16.4 Intramurals (our team is “Jacked in the Box”).


After I got cleaned up, we all headed to the Hyatt for the engineering grad banquet.  It was actually more entertaining that it sounds.  #wine  Also, the guest speaker was a U of C alumni who is an astronaut.  So that was pretty cool.

And then it was Sunday! Mom and I walked Penny, then Dana and I raced out the door to CrossFit Sunalta to get warmed up for 16.4.

I was feeling super nervous about it since I knew I was doing the RX, but was scared about hurting my back again.  All the other ladies in my heat were scaling which made me second-guess my original plan to RX, but I stuck with it.  Coach Tim came over before we got started to help me get my handstand push-up (HSPU) station set up, although I wasn’t sure that I would get that far in 13 minutes.  The pressure was on because Dana and I had a team of spectators come to watch – his parents, my parents, my aunt, and Haley and her boyfriend (thanks for coming guys!).

3,2,1… go! The deadlifts actually felt pretty light!  I did them in sets of five, with 5 seconds in between (roughly).  It was definitely a manageable way to break them up.

My wall balls weren’t horrifying. I stuck with my plan to do small sets of roughly 5-6 per round.  Slow and steady.  I only got no-repped a few times.  Which was entirely fair.

The row though. I knew it would be an eternity and it was!  I think I got on the rower at 8:30 (ish).  I reckoned the row would take about five minutes (sad but true) so I definitely didn’t think I’d make the HSPU at that point.  The row was hard – I was tired and out of breath.  As the pros say, I was redlining.  Dana kept telling me to take deep breaths and to do big, hard pulls.  Occasionally I would actually stop rowing because I was dying, but Dana and everyone else kept yelling at me to keep going.  I remember peeking over my shoulder at the clock and realizing I had a minute left and less than ten calories to go – that really helped push me as there was a chance I could finish the row!  I pulled hard and just as the buzzer was going my 55th calorie turned over on the rower.  Yay!

Score: 165

Out of all the 2016 Open WODs, I think I’m most proud of 16.4. I really felt like it was my jam, despite the rowing.  My only regret is not getting to the wall – I know I could have done a few HSPU at least.  But I never would have guessed I would finish the row, so there’s that.


Dana and I actually tied scores for 16.4. He finished his row with about 2 minutes remaining on the clock, but he’d never done a HSPU before so didn’t set up a station beforehand.  Quickly, his judge, Laura, and I raced over to the wall to measure out his HSPU target, and Dana got in a few attempts before the buzzer went.  It was exciting!

After the WOD, we hung out for a bit to cool down and cheer. I got to explain a bit of crossfit stuff to my family, who are pretty new to the whole Open/crossfit thing.  It was nice to share a bit of my world with them.


#bicepslikekait #tomatoface

 We took some Jacked in the Box team photos, and then went to National for a late lunch with my family. After saying good bye to my parents who were flying home, Dana and I headed home for Epsom salts baths.  We were both so bagged from 16.4 and the crazy-busy weekend.  I took Penny out for another walk, then made this AMAZING recipe for supper.  We watched Walking Dead then headed to bed.  It was one helluva weekend!


CrossFit Total & Weekend

Whew, another busy/relaxing weekend over and we’re in to February!


On Friday, I was just on the tail end of the cold I’d had all week (and subsequently had missed crossfit because of), so I was dying to get to class after work. We went to the 4 PM and it was a real doozy, especially because I couldn’t fully breathe.

For the jerks, I shared a bar with Meg and McKensi, and we worked to 105#. Which felt pretty dang heavy.

The WOD was what really slayed me though. I got through 4 rounds and 19 reps into the fifth, panting the whole time.  I did RX it though, double unders and all.  (Although I’m sure they weren’t pretty!)  I can string together about 10 at a time now, so I’m slowly making progress.  Sometimes they really click and I can do more!

For my first WOD since Monday, I certainly felt the pain more than usual. It took a long “after WOD moment” (AWM for short) with Meg and Dana to cool down and get my heart rate normalized again.  We’ve started doing group AWMs after crossfit to work on our mobility and actually cool down.  And socialize.


Dana and I were absolutely wiped after. We’d had big plans of cleaning the house and maybe going to a movie, but we voted in favor of dinner in and a couch night.  We’re pretty exciting these days.  The movie of the night was “About Time” on Netflix which is equal parts wonderfully British and hilarious, but also terribly sad.  I was sobbing by the end.  But it is a great movie, I swear!


I woke up and felt like I’d been hit by a truck from crossfit, but seeing that the CrossFit Total was programmed… well, I had to go!

The Total is your combined best lifts for back squat, strict press, and deadlift, and is a great benchmark to see progress on.  I did the Total back in July and was eager to see my #gainz.  In July, my Total was 480.

With my new Christmas present lifting belt on, Meg and I shared a bar and worked up to our max. back squats. I was really happy to PR by 5# for a total lift of 190#.  It felt really good!

Strict press is a bit of a write-off for me as I don’t have much of a range. I worked to 85# and called it a day, but maybe I could have done 90#?

I was excited to test my deadlift, and really pleased when I successfully lifted 240#.

My new Total is 515 now! I’m very happy with my strength #gainz of late.  Dana PR’ed his strict press which was big news for him because with his shoulder issues, anything overhead is a royal pain.  Yay Dana!

When we got home, we had a cleanathon. Poor Dana.  Two hours later, the house looked 110% better.  Turns out owning a dog leads to a lot more vacuuming and floor washing… especially in the winter.

Dana elected to stay home, but I took Penny out for a very icy walk after and we both enjoyed the sunshine. It was 3 o’clock before I was eating my lunch!

Eventually I made us fish tacos from my Performance Paleo cookbook for supper, but I’m sad to say they were pretty mediocre at best.

Sometime after that we fell down the extended edition Lord of the Rings rabbit hole and watched part of the first movie. I love those movies!



After a brilliant sleep, I got up early-ish and let Penny out, and eventually hustled Dana out of bed for a big 5-6 km walk with Penny near the reservoir. It was really nice out, although still quite icy in places.

The soreness of our workouts was really catching up with us, and by the time we got home, we were both pretty tired!


We got ready, and headed down south to Milestones for brunch with the Kinnaird siblings. SO GREAT to see those guys and the kiddos.  Brunch was so-so (I could only eat the fruit bowl and bacon though so I’m not the best judge), but after we went to see Dana’s sister Jenna’s new home.  It’s beautiful!  We got to play a bit with my nephew Kade after which was very entertaining.  He just started walking!  We had fun letting him walk back and forth between us, then applauding his efforts which made him exceedingly proud and happy.  So, so cute.

After, it was the usual adult weekend business of grocery shopping, but then we took a Lord of the Ring break and didn’t get up from the couch other than to make dinner. I made Ottolenghi’s roasted butternut squash with za’atar chicken thighs and OMG it’s so good.

Back to the couch we went for more LOTR until bedtime.


Now another week has started and it will be a busy one for me as it’s month end in the accounting world. Hopefully I’ll be back soon with another post!

Chicken & Wins

Today’s post is pretty random but my brain seems to be all over the place.  So I’m going to share some chicken ideas and tell you about some workouts recently.  There’s something in my post for everyone.

Chicken Ideas

Baked chicken breast

Yesterday Google taught me that baked chicken breasts don’t have to be dry or tough.  Thanks Google (and The Kitchn)!

  • Heat oven to 400*.
  • Mix “marinade” for 3 chicken breasts.
    • 2 TB olive oil
    • Juice of ½ lemon
    • 1 TB chopped herbs (I used rosemary)
    • S&P to taste
  • Cover chicken in marinade then place breasts in pan with extra marinade.
    • I used a 9”X9” pan so they were snug.
  • The important part: parchment paper.  Place a large enough piece of parchment paper on top of chicken breasts to cover, and then tuck under outside of pieces.  Press parchment paper down on chicken (it will act like chicken skin this way).
  • Put pan in oven and cook until baked through.  25 minutes was about perfect for me.
  • Ta-da!

One Pan Chicken

Carrying on the chicken theme, I also found a killer chicken thigh recipe!  And it even makes Brussels sprouts taste good!

So many interesting flavours: fennel, paprika, nutmeg, sage, apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar… This recipe is on my weekly rotation now!

Plus it only dirties one pan so that’s a win in everyone’s books.  Right Dana?

Personal Victories

Somewhat by mistake, I did a 235# deadlift on Friday.  Although my previous 1 rep max (RM) was 210#, after I did three touch-n-go reps at 210# at Rep the Box last month, I knew I could re-test my 1 RM.  I was aiming for 225# on Friday but on account of bad math, I got a bonus 10#.  And that’s what I call good accounting.

math in the gym

On Saturday at Rep the Box, I did the 3 RM back squat event.  My hips were feeling good.  I kept adding (we had 20 minutes to test)  and I ended at 175#, which is only 10# off my max. back squat.  Which probably means I could re-test that one too at some point.  I’m coming for you 200#!

Why do I look so concerned?

Climbed a freakin’ 21 foot rope at Rep the Box.  That’s all the way to the rafters!  Never mind that I was scared shitless, I did it!  (Of course I was trying to talk myself out of it even as my hand was tapping the rafter.)  Then the boys made me look bad by climbing it leg-less.  As if it wasn’t hard enough!



  • A blogger I’ve followed forever quit blogging this week.  Healthy Tipping Point is no more!  And it makes me sad, because her blog was so approachable and I liked reading about her triathlon training, kid-raising, and everything else.  But of course I understand her need for more privacy, and the fact that sometimes in life, you’re just out of words.  Add her to the list that also includes my old beloved Young House Love.  RIP.
  • I have a huge crush on this blog and really enjoy their discussions of healthy eating and CrossFit.
  • Excited to see the new James Bond movie!  We re-watched Skyfall a few weeks ago and it is my fave Bond film, but I’m willing to see if the new one makes the cut.