What the Fran?

When I saw we were going to be doing Fran today at CrossFit Continuum, a number of words came into my head. Some of them may not have been appropriate for public consumption. As a result, I think “What the Frak?” is now going to become “What the Fran?” WTF for the win.

franFran is one of those workouts that I have come to strongly dislike over my three plus years with CrossFit. It’s touted as one of the “girls” and as a benchmark in the community, but all it does is show me how my cardio sucks. Every time.

Mickey and I walked in for the 8:30 class this morning and saw Drea, Larry, and Stacy chatting – a trio of trainers. 😉 Stacy had us under her wing today. It was Mickey, me, Anna, Ellen, Carrie, Larry, and Jenny. A solid group to tackle this fickle Fran.

If you don’t remember Fran it’s 21-15-9 reps for time of:

  • 95/65-lb. thrusters
  • pull-ups

We began with a lovely 400m jog around the parking lot and came back in to do one-armed thrusters with a kettle bell (I used a 35#), then some hollow body & superman holds on the rig, some ring rows, and some lunges with a twist. After that it was some thruster warm-up with an empty bar and discussing scaling.

Scaling was the operative word. The goal? You have a 7 minute hard cut off. Scale until you can get it done in under that.

Yeah, I’ll let you stop laughing before you continue.

fran4letter_thumbIn November 2015 we did Fran twice during the “In the Zone” challenge. I did it Rx in 16:49 the first time and 17:45 the second. (See “Fran is a Four Letter Word.”) This is not one of my better benchmarks. Inevitably I run out of wind.

When I walked in, I didn’t know about the 7 minute time cap. I had a 10 minute target in my head. And I think I would have made that. Once I knew about the 7 minute time cap however, it got in my head. I scaled to 75# on the bar and set up so I could bail to jumping pull-ups if I needed to. Guess what? I did.

When the timer started, I went pretty well for a bit. I think I finished the 21 thrusters in under 2 minutes and that was with a brief pause after 15. Got to the bar for pull-ups and did sets of 5 with long breaks in-between. I could not calm my breathing and get past the pain point on the pull-ups. By the time I got back to the thrusters, we were near the 5 minute mark and it took over a minute to get 15 of them done 5 at a time. I even dropped the bar a couple of times. And when I got back to the rig I had maybe 40 seconds so i started doing jumping pull-ups. I got 8 in.

dnfSo that was:

  • 21 thrusters 75#
  • 21 pull-ups
  • 15 thrusters 75#
  • 8 jumping pull-ups

64 reps in 7 minutes. I would have needed another couple of minutes to get done in the time we had, even scaling to jumping pull-ups.

It sucked. I ran out of time. And I consider it a DNF.

Meanwhile my daughter Mickey did it with a 35# barbell and ring rows and knocked it out in 5:11. Other folks also did well.

When we were all done, we did a #romwod. I am neither “swole” nor “flexy” (#swoleandflexy) but I did a lot of child’s pose and worked through the positions as best I could.

Not my best day – and apparently it’s not the only benchmark we’re doing this week. Um. Yay?

Great work everybody! And thanks Stacy for the encouragement. I got stuck at that pain and breathing point and just couldn’t move past it. Maybe next time.

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