Today was my first day back at Craic in about 1.5 months.  Seems like forever, and I definitely had some jitters walking through the doors for the workout.  The workout, as written was get to your 1RM backsquat, using some German method of some sort to get there.

John was coaching, and since me 1RM’ing today would likely frustrate me, he told me to do 6×10 front squats (shoulder won’t let me get into back squat position).  Was awesome to be back in the 6:30am class. Will definitely be targeting the morning classes now, as night time is too crazy and something always comes up.  Worked out with Sheila, who was cracking me up because she was like “I can’t do probably more than 100#” for her back squat.  She ended up maxing out today at 155.  So awesome and so happy for her.

Squatting is my favorite movement for Crossfit, so it was a great way to start back up.  No media for this one.  Just shout outs to Sheila for her 1RM and Sara McEvoy for hitting her three-year long goal of 220# BS.  It was awesome to watch.





Today, Mike “Dork” Kenndy, is being laid to rest after passing away in the line of duty, fighting a fire in downtown Boston.  He was 33.  I did now know him as well as others, but I consider myself very lucky to have known him.  He was a great friend, Crossfit coach, former Marine, Boston Fire Fighter…and so much more.

My first pair of Reebok custom nanos say “Craic Stina” because that’s what he dubbed me in my first months of Crossfit because I dove right into the Craic / Crossfit community.  It just seemed to fit.  I started Craic right as a very tumultuous time was going on in my career, and with Dork, Jarrod, John, Glen, Sara and the other coaches at Craic provided me a community where I could forget about what was going on there and focus on making myself healthier and stronger (mentally and physically).  For that, I will always be in debt to my Craic family – which Dork was a large part of.

My heart and prayers go out to his family and close friends, especially Wessmann and Ben.  RIP, Mike.  Thank you.

I found this picture on Facebook of him that his friend Kristin posted.  It’s a fitting one for me to post here on my blog.



Florian Visit

Saturday was a rest day.  The gym was closed because Craic had their holiday party the night before.  Stopped in to the party on Friday night after a great dinner with Susie Diesel and Johnny D for a bit.  Everyone was well on their way to a hangover when we arrived.  Then I became violently ill and Susie and I headed back to their house.  Not sure what caused it, but it wasn’t fun. #FridayNight

I’ve been promising my pal, Rico, that I’d drop-in to one of his classes at Crossfit Florian in Norwood.  Susie agreed to join me so we went to their Sunday class – which was a partner WOD.  It was teams of four – 200 thrusters and 200 pull-ups.  If you dropped the bar on the floor 5 burpee penalty for each team member – even during the pull-ups.  I knew I was going to do at least 50 reps of thrusters and thought it would be prudent to go light given my shoulder issues.  We paired with Michelle and Noelle – two Florian members.  Michelle also had shoulder issues and Noelle was brand-spanking new so we went with 45# (Rx was 65#).  Broke it up into 10 reps each and switched off.  Towards the end, Susie and I both did a set of 15 reps.  45# was definitely a little too light for us – but it was a good workout in that we just kept moving and our heart rate up.  Did ring rows instead of pull-ups.  We cruised through, finishing in 17:13.  Went and had fun, which was the goal in the workout.

L-R Me, Michelle, Noelle, Susie

L-R Me, Michelle, Noelle, Susie

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Look at those guns! Me and Rico

Fran with an F

So, Fran.  The dreaded workout by most Crossfitters.  Since I did a highly modified version of Fran – I don’t really consider it Fran.  But something about the name just makes my stomach churn.  I was anxious all day even though I knew I wasn’t even going to do Fran as Rx.  We had running Fran programmed – which was:

Run 400m
21 Thrusters
21 Pullups
rest 1min
Run 400m
15 Thrusters
15 Pullups
rest 30sec
Run 400m
9 Thrusters
9 Pullups

So, my PT throttled me at 45# at a max, so I put that on the bar and tried out some thrusters.  I had some sharp pain, so I bumped down to 35# and it seemed fine.  After talking to Coach Ben, I decided to do the workout with 35# because i could get range of motion of the thrusters vs. just doing front squats at a light-ish weight (for me) because I didn’t have knee sleeves and didn’t want to do 45 heavy squats.  In the warm up run, my shin started hurting, as did my ankle so I was forced to do the air dyne.  Since I took a brief hiatus from running, I need to ease back into it again.  I also did ring rows.  Overall, it was a good burner workout for me and I finished in 12:21 (10:51 if you take the rests out).

I’m not the only one with those feelings about Fran.  One of the funniest moments I’ve seen is that fellow Craic Head posted on Facebook during a Friday Night Fran something to the effect of making Fran his bitch.  And this poor woman, who was also his Facebook friend (who doesn’t do Crossfit) posted “You mean Fran from church?  What did she do?”  HAHAHA.  Love it.  Maybe I’m not expressing this story as well as I could…but just thinking about it makes me chuckle a bit.






Today was a productive and relaxing day all at the same time.  It was all about self-improvement – physically.  I got up and Niko and I went to the 9:00AM class with everyone else at Craic.  I think that there were 25 people in class today.  Ben was coaching because most of the other coaches are all at the Crossfit Games.  And when Ben is coaching, mobility is the focus!  Since it was only a 15 minute AMRAP we did a whole circuit of mobility.  Couch stretch, lacrosse ball, hammies, foam rolling.  It was kind of lovely.  And then the workout started.  I was kind of sick after dinner the night before and I think that made for a bad workout.  I struggled today.

Workout was:

15min AMRAP
Run 200m
10 KBS 53/36 – I did Russians at 44#
10 Pike Situps – I modified to these and did knee touches
10 Pushups – Bench push-ups

The run was okay, as were the KBS and sit-ups.  The PUs are where I lost the most time.  I only managed to get 4+run+11.  I just couldn’t get through the push-ups unbroken.  And they were on a bench.  I know I’m just starting to do them again, but man, I wish I didn’t struggle so much.  It’s like I’m back to square one.

After the gym, I went and got my hair done, then a manicure / pedicure…and then I took a nap.  It was a much needed relaxing day after a series of weekends away and busy weeks at work.

I hope that the rest of the weekend is like this.


Bikram WoD

We are going through a heatwave here in the Northeast and…wow…Craic gets HOT. I started sweating as soon as I walked into the gym. The stretching / mobility we did before the workout exhausted me and I was sweating up a storm. The onto the workout, which was kind of a long one.

A1) 10 Push Press – rest 10sec (I subbed in dumb bell skull crushers at 15, 20, 20, 20, 20 per arm)
A2) 10 Deadlifts – rest 2min x 5 – increase the weight on each movement each set (95, 115, 125, 135, 145)
3min AMRAP – rest 2min x3
10 KBS 53/35 (I did Russian swings at 44#)
10 Burpees (I subbed in bench push-ups)

3 / 3 / 3+2

It was really hard to catch my breath in between the AMRAPs and also my arms / shoulders are just weak. Ugh. Glad I got the workout in, but it was a slog.

Short post today. It’s just one of those workout posts. Lots to do.

Addendum to post: so to commemorate how hot it is, I took a picture of the temp from Niko’s car.


I showed the pic to Niko and he said “Stina, why were you driving and taking this pic?!”

To which I replied “I wasn’t! I was in the parking lot!”

To which he responded “Oh really? So why does the speedometer say 30 MPH and the car is in the drive gear?”

Boston via Roma i Venezia

I’m currently sitting on a train as I type this, headed from Roma to Venice for the second leg of our vacation. Grateful that I have this opportunity to spend some quality time with my husband and experience parts of the world that I know I’m lucky to be able to explore.  However, as I sit on the train, my heart is heavy.
On Monday, I awoke in Rome, thinking about my friends who were running in the Boston Marathon.  All of them were fellow Craic heads. I knew that while I was six hours ahead, they were all getting up in a few hours to start the race in Hopkington.  Carleen, who’s been chronicling her ups and downs via an email blog and was about to become a 2-time Boston Marathoner…I remember meeting her when I was in Jarrod’s on-boarding class and she was training for her first marathon. She had stopped in to Craic at the tail end of her run and waited for Marc (her cat-loving husband) to pick her up.  Karen, who is one of the best female runners at Craic. She does Craic’s run club at always gives the gents a run for their money on the running WoDs. Her mom, who looks like an older sister of Karen’s flew in from Colombia just to watch her daughter in the Boston Marathon.  Jay, who is a fellow 6:30am guy. He’s the “old guy” of the group, usually kicking everyone’s ass in the workout.  Hence, my putting “old guy” in quotes. He usually smokes all the young ones in the workouts. And finally Brian “Burger” – for the longest time, I thought that Berger was his last name and we called him “Burger” because of that.  Turns out that in the 2012 Boston Marathon, he ran for the b.good foundation, and ran the entire race with a burger around his waist.  He was doing the same thing this year and Jay was running with a burger around his waste as well.  I am so proud of my friend’s hard work and dedication that got them up to the marathon and was sending them good thoughts from Italy.
After a nice breakfast at the hotel, we met up with one of my best friends, Katy, and her boyfriend, Aaron at the Colosseum. Just by coincidence, our Italian trips were overlapping for one full day in Rome and we opted to spend it together.  We really had no set plans and spent much of the day wandering around the city, stopping occasionally for a beer or a snack.  We walked to the Trastavere and weaved through the endless alleyways and did some sightseeing and more snacking.  We ended the day eating a delicious meal at Sora Lella, a restaurant featured on Anthony Bourdain’s The Layover.  Quite honestly, that day with Katy was  the highlight of our trip and a time that I will hold dear forever.
Stuffed and exhausted from our day, we arrived back at the hotel and turned on the television.  The only stations in Rome that are in English were news stations, so we tuned to CNN.  What I saw on the television did not process in my head.  Two bomb explosions in Boston.  No wait, Niko said, looks like old footage from some other bombing that happened…Wait, is that the Prudential?  We watched the television for a few more minutes.  Yes, there was a bombing during the Boston Marathon.  Casualties unknown.  Definitely 2 dead, 45 injured (the number has since risen to 3 dead, 145+ injured, some critically). I immediately went on Facebook.  My brain thought of all my friends back home – Carleen, Karen, Burger, Jay – and the countless others that were at the race cheering them on.  They kept on replaying the explosion on the news and as I was in Facebook updates from friends and loved ones were streaming in.  I was panicked.  I texted and massaged everyone I could. Constantly refreshing my feed and watching the news.  I texted Leila, knowing she had a huge posse with her of Craic heads, everyone was fine.  Statuses were trickling in.  All my friends and family were safe…but so saddened and heartbroken that a day that was supposed to be about personal triumph and happiness was marred by this act of terror.
But my friends and the city of Boston are full of resilient people.  Many are running the last five miles of the Boston Marathon on Friday in tribute to those that were killed or injured…and to show the world that an act of terrorism like that cannot keep us down.  I will still be in Italy at this time, but will be thinking of everyone back home. They are not letting the fear over take their lives.  They are finishing the race on their own terms and for those that could not.  As for me, I’m going to take everything I can in on these last few days in Italy.  I am not going to let what happened ruin the rest of my trip.  I’m going to relish every moment spending it in one of the most romantic cities in the world with my husband. On Friday we celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary and as my friend Kelli always told me, “Live once, live well.”
Sending mad love to all my friends and family back home.


Game of Thrones, Mad Men, and a missed Alarm

Went to Craic both days this weekend and didn’t really get a lot of working out in.  Mainly went in to get some judging credit and then had a ton to do getting ready for our trip to Italy.

Inspiring to watch my friends at Craic finish strong and finish the Opens.  All of them had some firsts, some PR’s, and pushed themselves a little further than they thought they could.  I hope that I will be rehabbed and healthy enough to be able to participate next year.  Also, I personally know four people who made it into the Games and I’m so incredibly happy for them!  Elaine Polito, Annie Michel, Brian Curley, and Paul Teehan – woohoo and congrats!

Craic heads warming up for 13.5

Craic heads warming up for 13.5

Diesel and Johnny D closing out the opens

Diesel and Johnny D closing out the opens

Did some mobility yesterday (I have this huge kink in my left lower back) and my shoulders needed some love from a lacrosse ball.  After, did a dumb bell rotation (bicep curls and skull crushers) and some external rotations.  Nothing major.  Went home, did a bunch of chores, played the amazing Bioshock Infinite, and got ready to watch Mad Men and Game of Thrones.  They are two of the few shows that Niko and I actually agree upon.  I made this Game of Thrones sigil for represent our house:



Stayed up pretty late watching both shows.  Laid out my clothes for today’s workout…and forgot to set my alarm.  Instead of working out at 6:30AM, I looked something like this:





It was a back squat workout, which is my kind of workout.  Alas, it didn’t happen for me today.  I’m way off track with my training.  Ugh.  My own fault.  No excuses.  Going to hit it hard when we get back from Italy.  No Bread 5.0 and back to 3 days on, 1 day off.  I think I have a small break from travel so it will help me get back into a routine.

I realize today is a lot of pictures.  I think it’s to compensate for my non-workout report. 🙂


Judging and a Firehouse

This weekend I was really focused on getting some judging sessions in.  I missed last week (only got to judge Ann) due to being in Dallas.  I basically judged all weekend.  A lot of people PR’d this workout and I was really happy with them.  13.3 is an easy workout to get no repped on, and I’m pretty sure that every athlete that did 13.3 got no repped at least once.  Some people had trouble getting to depth, but the biggest problem for most was hitting the target properly.  I judged this one guy, Dave twice this weekend.  He came in Friday and got the same exact score he got last year on 12.4. He had a loose plan, but just couldn’t get that muscle up.  I was judging some people at Craic today and in walks Dave, determined to get at least one muscle up.  On Friday, he was just too gassed to get one.   Today was different.  He had a concrete plan. 10 wall balls every 30 seconds.  He pretty much stuck to it and his pacing was great.  Finished the double unders and had a little over two minutes to do the muscle-ups.  Man, was he determined.  He failed the first one and I was a bit worried for him.  But then he got up!  It was awesome.  Everyone was so pumped for him.  Then he got a 2nd one!  Just proof what good planning can do for you going into a workout.

This morning, I got to Craic early to judge Stacy.  After I judged her, I went home and helped Niko assemble the latest addition to our Lego Modular City Set that he and I are working on.  The series started in 2007 and they come out with a new building once per year.  We have the Grand Emporium, Pet Shop/Apartment, and now the Fire Brigade complete.  We have the Town Hall and the Movie Theater to go.  We don’t have the earlier ones because we were a little late to the game and they go for like thousands of dollars on eBay.  We’re addicted to the series…but not that addicted! Later that morning, I went back into Craic to get some more judging in and got to judge 3-4 people.  It was a great weekend overall.  Niko and I went to a nice dinner for his birthday.

Have to go and finish packing.  Off to San Francisco tomorrow (let’s hope I don’t get sick!)

Lego Town...so far!

Lego Town…so far!

Live from Craic

Good morning!  Blogging here live from Craic 🙂  I had to bring my computer in so that Jarrod could download something for the rowing machines.  (It uses a PC only)  Here’s my view right now:


I decided to do today’s blog as I wait for him to finish up with a client.  I think his client is like 10 years old and his jerk is 10x better than mine.

Today’s private session with Jarrod was a tough one – focused on some mobility, but mostly strength.

First part of workout was:

  • 4 rounds of 4 x one and a quarter front squats, increasing weight
  • 10x  one step ring rows between sets

It was a new movement for me.  You’re in the front squat position, dip down to the bottom, essentially “bounce” to just at parallel, go back down, and then straight up to complete the front squat.  I started at 95# and got a feel for the movement.  Definitely took a ton of core stability, keeping a straight back, and keeping your chest up.  Moved to 115# for the first set of the workout.  This just got exponentially harder!  Got through and did my ring rows.  Jumped to 135# (Jarrod was dictating weight, I wasn’t).  Last rep was excruciating, and I was a little light headed at the top.  Jarrod told me that if I needed to gather myself and pause for a moment up to if I needed to between reps.  For the third round I went with 145# , I paused way too long and almost failed the third rep and failed the fourth rep.  But it was a legit failure where I pushed as hard as I could.  Did the same weight for the 4th round and took a minimal rest and busted through the first two reps and kind of the 3rd rep.  4th rep failed again, just could keep my mid-line stability.  Great workout and legs were toast.


For those of you that don’t know what this is, here is a video of Coach B explaining the how and why of the 1 and 1/4 squat:

After we did some core work with 12 hip extensions on the GHD and 30 seconds of ring planks.  The ring planks SUCKED.  Jarrod was “counting” the 30 seconds … and I KNOW I did more than 30 seconds.  But I definitely I need to work on my core muscles.  We did two rounds of that.  I hate the rings.  Here’s my set-up.

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Great workout this morning with Jarrod.  Great to be back at it.