Posts Tagged ‘WOD’

CF_open2014I am still determined. Wow, I have been so busy training and living life that I have not posted for quite a while. So much has happened that has been positive in the last several months. By now I do not even feel like I am in remission from brain cancer. The only things I notice is that my incision hurts every once in a while, I have a scar, my hair is shorter on the front of the left side of my head, and my occasional severe migraine. Thankfully, I think my planter fasciitis that I have been dealing with since last fall has calmed down in my R foot so that I can start running and being active. I started a new job last week as a nurse at one of the best retirement living communities around. Recently I discovered a miracle juice called XanGo that helps fight cancer and reduces inflammation. It’s effects are currently being studied by Mayo Clinic. I hope it works to calm down my migraines and incisional pains from my brain cancer treatment. I already feel better with only a few days on the juice. You can contact me for more information and to order this amazing juice.

I have started working with a personal trainer and dietician to get my weight down and work on my diet. This is the biggest challenge for me. I know what I need to eat and avoid but actually doing it has been a challenge. My diet is slowly improving although I have yet to lose any weight.


After several months off from CrossFit, I decided to sign up for this year’s CrossFit Open. I am excited because they will have scaled options this year. After not posting a score for the last workout of the 2014 Open. This year, I want to post scores for all workouts. The scaling options should help. I had originally signed up to compete as a member of a new CrossFit gym in town but just changed my plans to compete with my former gym. This open will be exciting because they are making it big with an event called “Friday Night Lights.” Stay tuned for new and exciting posts.


5 K Medal

5 K Medal


2 Day Challenge Prize








Last year on Memorial Day Weekend I was in the Neuro-ICU recovering from brain cancer surgery. 1 year later, I finished the Med-City Half-Marathon  in 2:52 and the 5-K, the 2 Day Challenge, to celebrate 1 year as a cancer survivor. I like to thank all those people who made this finish possible.
In the past couple of months I have been busy, so busy that I have not made time for posts on this blog. My original plans were to finish the Med-City Marathon but in April I decided to switch to the half-marathon. This was a good decision, because I finished strong, enjoyed the perfect day, and was able to walk after the race.  I wore brain tumor awareness shirts for both events and dressed in gray for both events for brain tumor awareness. My training included weekly long “runs” with the longest duration of training 3 hours and the longest distance of straight run/walk a 15K.
Of course, the respiratory bug that I had in April did not help my run training or the Minnesota Masters Swimming Short Course State Meet. I went to this meet the day after I became sick and basically showed up to the meet. I tried to swam as fast as

13.1 Medal

13.1 Medal

I was able even with less than 5 minutes of rest between some events. The only reason I walked home with medals was I was either the only swimmer or there were only 1-2 other swimmers that were better than me.
Now with my first triathlon of 2014 less than 1 week away, I feel fitter, faster, stronger, and lighter than I have in recent years. In the race next weekend, I am going to leave nothing left at the finish.
There is another event less than 1 week away, my 1 year MRI. Yes, I am a little nervous, but who wouldn’t be. I am praying everything turns out fine. The truth is after a long year, I finally got my energy back, working longer shifts at work, and getting work done in my yard. Last weekend I went to my second annual Cancer Survivors Day event. I have been blessed, to meet all the cancer survivors I have met in this past year and by all that I have learned in the past year that has changed my views of cancer and life.
Citius, Altius, Fortius

MP_stay fighting


My best in the CrossFit Open competition was not good enough. The WOD’s this year just did not support my strengths and skills. Along with great coaching, and the support of my box I was able to get on the board and put in my best effort less than three months after finishing treatment for brain cancer.

WOD 14.1
Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 10 minutes of:
30 double-unders
55-lb. power snatches, 15 reps
-started with double unders, something I gave up working on long ago. I may be fast at single jump rope but stink at double unders. My score was 7 for the WOD.

Almost to the top

Almost to the top

WOD 14.2
From 0:00-3:00
2 rounds of:
10 overhead squats at 65#
10 chest-to-bar pull-ups
From 3:00-6:00
2 rounds of:
12 overhead squats
12 chest-to-bar pull-ups
From 6:00-9:00
2 rounds of:
14 overhead squats
14 chest-to-bar pull-ups
Etc., following same pattern until you fail to complete both rounds

-can’t do pull-up so got score of 10 for the overhead squats at 65 pounds, which was challenging enough


Box Jumps

WOD 14.3
Complete as many reps as possible in 8 minutes of:
95-lb. deadlifts, 10 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
135-lb. deadlifts, 15 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
155-lb. deadlifts, 20 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
185-lb. deadlifts, 25 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
205-lb. deadlifts, 30 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
225-lb. deadlifts, 35 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
-I was able to get 97 reps. My best WOD of the open and the best WOD for my middle distance athletic type. I made a major mistake. I did not think I would get to 185 so I had to run to the racks to get the weights than load them. Probably would have gotten a few more reps if I had not made the mistake.

WOD 14.4
Complete as many rounds and repetitions as possible in 14 minutes of:
60-calorie row
50 toes-to-bars
40 wall-ball shots, 14 lb. to 9-foot target
30 cleans, 95 lb.
20 muscle-ups
-Rowing is one of my best sports and I was unsure about getting any toes-to-bar going into the WOD. Took it easy because of the weightlifting meet the next day but got 73, including 13 toes to bar.
WOD 14.5
21-18-15-12-9-6-3 reps for time of:
65-lb. thrusters

– My box had a 20 minute cap but I still wanted to do the whole workout. When it took me about 15 minutes to get though a few rounds a dropped my rx’d weight and followed the 20 minute cap. The workout was doable but it would have taken me 45 minutes with all the rest I needed. Burpees are not my thing and jumping over a barbell with weights makes it more challenging. Took me several days to recover from this workout (well the 1.25 hour strength indoor bike workout the next day did not help my recovery either). DNF

I hope my best is better next year. I know it will because I belong to a great CrossFit community in Rochester, MN at CrossFit Progression.

Survivorship and the CrossFit Games Open

This post talks about my experience in the first two weeks of the CrossFit Games Open, recent MRI results, training, the weather, and competition plans for 2014.

BT_cancer survivor


My MRI last Friday, March 7 confirmed that I continue in survivorship. The MRI appeared better than the last one and to celebrate I completed WOD 14.2 of the CrossFit Games Open with a score of 10 reps overhead squats at 65#. Double-under jump rope got me on the first WOD of the open, 14.1. Double-unders involve two rotations of the jump rope under your feet for each jump. I only got 7reps, but going into the workout I thought, will I get at least 1, will my Open be over in the first WOD? I gave up on double- unders last  Fall. Here is the link to my CrossFit Games Open Profile

Almost to the top

Almost to the top



Maybe a pull-up?

Maybe a pull-up?

My training continues to improve despite the awful weather and road conditions. Yes, the cold weather and snow have made it difficult to get to the gym to get any training done. Yes it may look beautiful, but it is darn cold and I am not going to slip on the ice with only screws and plates holding a piece of my skull in place.

Nice Winter's Day Walk Cascade Creek 2014

Nice Winter’s Day Walk Cascade Creek 2014

In addition, I have decided on a tentative competition schedule for 2014. On March 1, I competed in the Minnesota Power Pull and got 1st place (well out of 2) in the Women’s Masters Division. My time, although not a post 30 y/o PR, was in the upper percentile of all female competitors even with little specific rowing training.


MN Powerpull 1st place medal

My next big competition is the Minnesota Local Weightlifting Club Championship on March 22. Even though I have been weightlifting about twice a week, I think I have hit a plateau and my weights have not increased for several months. Although despite not increasing weights, my form is improving with continued training. It does get upsetting when everyone else improves except you. Yes, they work hard to improve but I do too. I will take a hiatus from CrossFit at the end of March to train for endurance events like my marathon and triathlons. The only thing that is improving is my running. I am running faster and longer.  I cannot wait to get outside and go running along Cascade Creek on the bike trail just a few blocks from my house. This were I spent much of my time in the early 2000’s.


Other bits of life include finishing my soccer refereeing, working on my naturopathic degrees, trying to apply to PhD school, applying to other better jobs, coaching swimming, volunteering at the hospital, working at my nursing job, and getting my wellness business, Winning Wellness Solutions, on track.  Overall, I am keeping busy and keeping a positive outlook. I am going to just keep moving ahead and not look back.



BT_keep_calm and wear gray


On January 6, 2014 my neuro-oncologist and I decided to stop treatment for my brain cancer. Now I am officially in remission and have finished the marathon that is started last summer. I have been so busy in the last few months that I have not written a blog post.

I also have had a few viruses along the way too, that have zapped my energy.  The post radiation headaches continue and now I am on preventative medication which have reduced the number of severe headaches. Now I also wake up in the morning with numb and tingling upper extremities of unknown origin which improves as I am awake. I plan to see a chiropractor again and I also am having

At this moment, I have made several changes in my life to help me accomplish my goals. The recent Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia has increased my motivation. Though it would be a dream come true to participate in the Olympics those chances are slim. What I can do is take that Olympic training spirit and motivation into my training and cancer survivorship.

I have already signed up for a few races USAT National Championships and Med-City Marathon and have a pretty good idea of my event schedule for the year. One of the toughest decisions I had to make was to cut down on my coaching hours to accommodate training.  If I want to be a champion I have to put in the work. My nutrition is changing too and is another way to achieve my goals for survivorship and athletics. I have been reading about the role of nutrition in brain tumor survivorship. Maybe I will write a blog entry just on that.  In January, I joined the Cyclone Triathlon Team and l will be using their coaching starting in June. I have already started doing some swim training and bike training with the team. My longest run work out was last Friday with a 2.5 hour workout (2x (30 min of 2′ walk/3’run, 30 minutes Precor trainer) +30 min walk on treadmill at 15′ mile pace). The bike  trainer workouts are 1.25 hours including some intense intervals at race pace. The CrossFit Games Open starts next week but my CrossFit training is lacking. Overall, I have lots of expectations but I am willing to work hard to achieve my goals.

See you at the finish line,


MP_learn to fly

Today marks 6 months since my craniotomy. My head and incision finally feels like it is healed. I am not getting and stabbing and jolting pain like I use to get when I landed from jumping or running. I had a few severe headaches in the past few weeks but none this past week not even mild. Work around the home that I left to the side is finally getting done. I took the Passion Test last weekend and found out my passions in life. The results have given new meaning to my life.  Last week I began my applications to PhD school for Nursing.  My Med-city Marathon prep plan is written but I have been lacking consistency in my training. I must get better at this.

My mouth is healing well from my oral surgery and back to normal with eating. Life is getting better but I am still feeling lonely, scared, and a little worthless. The Holiday season is coming and so is my next MRI.  All I want for Christmas is to be healthy and have a friend. Thanksgiving is upon us. I am thankful for everyone’s support in getting me to this point.

PS. Been too busy with life to make more posts to this blog so this is what you get




I am wearing the red swim cap

Luther College Alumni Meet

Women's Session 2

Women’s Session 2

MN Open snatch

MN Open snatch

MN Open Clean and Jerk

MN Open Clean and Jerk

So October has had its ups and downs.  My athletic pursuits have included Luther College’s Alumni swim meet and The Minnesota Open Weightlifting Championships in which my performance was hampered by a bought of bronchitis and asthma exacerbation that need antibiotics. I also was on the last day of a 5 day oral chemotherapy course for the weightlifting meet and worked night shift the night before. I am happy,  I got a total on my lifts for my first weight lifting meet even though I missed 1 of my snatches and 1 clean & jerk.

I also went to the ER last week with a strange cluster of symptoms likely cause by a number of things working together. At the ER I learned my lymphocyte count was low which makes me a little worried especially when I work with sick people. My energy is low and I have been so busy that and little time I have I need to sleep or relax. My house chores are not getting done.

Today marks 5 months since my brain surgery. My incision has healed and my hair is starting to grow back. I just hope my tumor is not growing back. Although my last MRI showed a contrast enhanced area on the border of where my tumor was removed. My physicians are leaning towards scar tissue but are uncertain. Only time will tell if this is tumor growing back. If it is tumor, hopefully chemo will shrink it. I have my next MRI in about 1 month.

Today also marks the beginning of marathon training. The only way I can stay focused on exercising is if I have a goal.  My goal is to run the Med-City Marathon and 5K to mark the anniversary of my surgery and brain cancer diagnosis.  The Med-City Marathon weekend is Memorial Day Weekend the last weekend in May. May is also Brain Tumor Awareness Month. I am already planning to wear grey for the marathon and run the marathon to raise funds for brain tumor research.  Gotta  get my strength and endurance up to help find a treatment and a cure for this awful disease that is the leading cancer killer among youth under 20, the second leading cause of cancer deaths among males 20-39, and the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths among  females  20-39. These statistics are unreal since only about 25,000 people are diagnosed in the US each year with a malignant brain tumor and the majority of the people diagnosed are 40 and over.  Although the term brain cancer also includes some non-malignant tumors.  1 step closer to 26.2 and 1 step closer to a cure.

The WOD 10/24/13: CrossFit then 30minutes of 200yd run, 200yd walk

~ dmj

Thanks Coach!

Thanks Coach!


MP_cancer death

Yesterday I went to the gym to row 15 minutes and got to Olympic weightlifting skills class. I was stronger than last week so that was a positive.
I feel so alone. I have posted the picture “no one fights alone” but I feel like I am fighting alone. Everyone asks how they can help but the most I need is someone to understand what I am going through. I can not find someone who understands that I feel to whom I can share my fears and needs. I feel guilty asking people for help with chores. I felt guilty and took a hit from my employer when I asked for a 40 hour work week and no 16 hour shifts. I am hired for 32 hours/week. It took several notes from my doctor to get this restriction. Is alopecia from radiation and surgical scar not enough evidence. Do I really need to go on disability? People have offered to help but then when I ask for it I get turned down. Other people I met with this disease have caregivers to help but feel like I am all alone. No one to listen about my fears of uncertainty. Yes, I can workout, complete a scaled WOD but in the big scheme of things I feel alone, scared, weak, and frustrated. I am stuck in a moment that I can not get out of.


PS. If you have an answer on why I can’t upload new images from my desktop to Facebook and WordPress gallery please let me know. What is a blog with the same images?


I  have not written an entry for a while. I have not had a significant workout since my last entry. That is if you do not count my four hour of referring soccer last Saturday or several games in the past two weeks, 10 minute rides to satisfy my Whole Life Challenge (WLC) requirement, tennis lessons, or running around at work . Yesterday September 19 was my first time at CrossFit in a few weeks. No I did not do the WOD, but went to weightlifting skills class to prepare for my weightlifting meet the Minnesota Open on October 12, 2013. The meet is being held at my home gym CrossFit Progression. Prior to lifting, I rowed for 15 minutes. In addition, I had a 30 minute tennis lesson at 1 PM where I did pretty poor, maybe OK for my 3rd day of tennis.
The WLC challenge has been difficult. I have little energy or motivation to prepare meals. So I have eaten little. Not to mention my craving for Dr. Pepper to settle my stomach. Last week’s chemo cycle was challenging. I went to work several days with nausea. Zofran only took the edge off. Since I work night shift as a nurse I would take my chemo in the morning. Fatigue was also present and I literally could not go for more than 10 minutes without yawning. Still cannot take my Spark energy drink, which is much needed due to little antioxidants on chemo. Unable to work out at the gym, I have been using my stationary bike at home to get a 10 minute workout in then followed by stretching and foam roller. The only thing I have had the energy to do is come home, sit in front of my computer and go on FB or check emails. I notice the effects from the Decadron steroid have worn off, in that I have less energy.


 I also wanted to include in this post that there is a very special event happening in Rochester on Saturday October 5, 2013 at RCTC. It is the Brains Together for a Cure walk to raise awareness and funds for brain tumor research at Mayo Clinic. If you would like to walk, donate money or goods for the silent auction please go to Also, if you own a business or know of a business who would like to donate goods for a silent auction let me know or go to the above website. I am hoping the coming week is better and my blood counts from today’s test remain normal.

My motto for the next 8 weeks

My motto for the next 8 weeks

Today I did the WOD for the next Whole Life Challenge. Tired after a night shift,  I went to CrossFit Progression at 10 AM to complete the WLC WOD. The WLC is a lifestyle game that requires one to eat clean, my healthy lifestyle choices including exercise. One records their score for the day on a point system. One loses points for eating unhealthy items not on the accepted list. One gets a point for exercise, mobility, supplement, and completing each healthy lifestyle activity. The final score is based on points, improvement in body measurements, and WOD score improvement. One competes against others in their box (gym) and ultimately against oneself.   For more info on the Whole Life Challenge go to



CrossFit Progression and Whole Life Challenge

CrossFit Progression and Whole Life Challenge

10 minutes of
500 meter row
50 air squats (butt must touch med ball)
40 sit-ups (hands must touch heels)
30 walking lunges (knee must touch ground)
20 hand release push-ups (knee push-ups OK)
Row for calories to finish out 10 minutes (each calorie=1 rep)
My result=150

Next I went to the Rochester Athletic Club (RAC) and went 1x through my upper body strength circuit. Next I went to my first day of tennis lessons. I went with my $15 dollar racquet I got a few years ago at Wal-Mart. I found out that I was the only person in the class. Individual lessons-cool! The last time I played tennis was in one of my phy ed skills classes in college-a while ago. Learned forehand and backhand and how to put spin on the ball. The RAC is known for its tennis programs so I feel good about my choice. It was fun, but I still need a lot of work before I can play in a league.

My day ended as a soccer official (AR) for a girls varsity game. It was a good game to practice and improve my skills. Got a workout running up and down the sidelines. The hardest part of the game was driving the 20 miles back home in the dark, on a one lane highway, and with little sleep. It was, the longest I had driven since last December. Made it home safe. Do you think I slept well that night?