The Muscle-Up. Arguably, the hallmark of a CrossFitter. Arguably, one of the toughest and most demanding movements in CrossFit. Not arguably, the muscle-up was the first movement of Open workout 15.3. The question transitioned from ‘Rx or scaled?’ to ‘Can you do a muscle-up or not?’.
Could I, or could I not?
When the workout was announced on Thursday, I had never done a muscle-up (MU) before. I could do a MU on a pull-up bar, called a bar muscle-up, but not on the rings. To be fair, I hadn’t attempted many MUs because my box’s current set-up doesn’t have the capability to hang rings high enough for 6’2” me to swing on them.
So, the question to me became, do I do the Rx version of the workout, with 7 muscle-ups to start with and try and get a score, or do the workout scaled where there were no MUs? The answer was both for me.
Much like 14.2 last year, I wasn’t sure I could get one rep. But, I was going to try. I was going to work towards adding a new movement to my CrossFit repertoire. I was going to attempt to get my first MU and therefore an Rx score for 15.3, or else I would do the scaled workout at the end of the day.
Sidebar: I’m not going to debate if 15.2 wasn’t scaled enough and if 15.3 was scaled too much. I’m not going to debate if a super low Rx score is silly or wrong versus getting a high scaled number. No debate here… at this time.
As usual, I did my due diligence and read tips and tricks for 15.3. I devoured muscle-up progressions and mental cues to think of during the half-second while you are moving on the rings. I envisioned myself atop the rings with my arms locked out.
I found myself atop the rings with my arms locked out.
Oh yeah, I got my first muscle-up baby! So… that makes me a legit practitioner of CrossFit, right?
Seriously though… look at the blurry happiness on my bearded face! =)
Once I got my MU, I had my 14-minute clock started for the actual workout. I couldn’t count my MU because I wasn’t technically “on-the-clock”. I had to get my SECOND muscle-up within the next 13:59 or else I would have a zero for my score.
… I didn’t get one more…
I got TWO more. Boom! =)
I got those two within the first four minutes. I spent the remaining 10 minutes trying to get a third, to no avail. In fact, all I got in those 10 minutes was a nasty burn from the ring straps.
I’m pretty happy I got my first muscle-up. That burn is definitely worth it. But, for those keeping score at home, my 15.2 workout lasted all of 3 minutes and my 15.3 was two reps. Not exactly powerhouse scores or workouts.
So what did I do? I tackled the scaled version, just to make sure I experienced the suck.
OMG guys, 14 minutes of wall-balls and single unders (regular jumping rope) SUCKS. I ended up with a score of 526, which was less than I thought I would get. Today was one of those days when I just didn’t have it and maybe I could get more on a better day. But maybe not.
My 2015 Open experience has been overwhelmingly positive this year. However, I don’t feel like I’ve had a very strenuous one. (see above) I think my Open scores reflect exactly where I am with my daily normal CrossFit. I’m generally capable of doing Rx, but that does not give me the optimal workout. So, from the aspect of a normal WOD, I still need to scale at least something most days.
I am proud of my accomplishments like this first muscle-up. I’m happy with improving over last year with my 15.2 performance. The Open is giving me that competition push to try new things and push my limits. And yes… my limits may be a lot lower than some, but I’m starting to understand and accept that they are MY limits and if I’m pushing them, that’s the same as the best in the world pushing there’s… just on a different scale.
On that note, I just want to say thank you to everyone that left thoughtful comments on my last post. Like I said, I wasn’t looking for support, but y’all left it and while I haven’t responded individually yet (I’m working on changing my view on the average issue) each comment meant a lot to me and I appreciate it greatly.
Your turn -> Did you get your first muscle-up this weekend? What’s one badass display of fitness that always impresses you?