I’m back! And musings on 2017 Intrabox Competition

I’m delighted to say that my recovery from recent ACDF surgery is going well! Today was my first true test of speed and endurance, and I passed the test. With flying colors, I might add.

But first, I have returned to working out at the box, although I’ve modified every workout to date. For example, I completed workout of 10-9-8…3-2-1 wall ball shots and thrusters using 10# wall ball and 9′ target and 15# DBs. And it was good. I also completed workout of 10 RFT of 100m row, 10 Abmat sit-ups, 10 box 16″ box jumps, 10 DB (15#) hang power cleans, and 10 95# deadlifts. And it was good.

This morning I ran 5.5 miles on the ATT at a relatively fast pace of 7:37 mpm. And it was very good. It felt incredible to run unencumbered.

And now my musings on the 2017 Intrabox Competition.

Well before we even considered moving to Asheville and selling the box to Nick, I scheduled and began programming for the competition. This year teams consisted of 2 males and 2 females. All teams completed 4 workouts and the final 3 teams qualified for the final 2 events.

Each team designated a captain, and the captains randomly selected order, i.e., from 1 to 8.

EVENT 1 | Burpee Relay
7-min AMRAP
– Team member 1 runs 10m and completes 1 burpee
– Team member 1 runs 10m (back to starting line) and hands off baton to team member 2
– Team member 2 then runs 10m, completes 2 burpees, and runs 10m to starting line and hands off baton to team member 3
– Continuing in this same manner, members 3 and 4 complete 3 and 4 burpees, respectively
– Members will always complete the same number of burpees, e.g., team member 3 will always complete 3 burpees when it’s her/his turn

It was immediately apparent that those who don’t adhere to proper movement standards on a daily basis have a difficult time adhering to movement standards during a competition. “No rep!” was justifiably called by all of the judges. Full extension, folks. Jump and clap. And don’t argue with the judges.

I was surprised that the event ended in a 3-way tie!

Just as I was getting ready to announce Event 2, I attempted to turn down the music. The music continued to play, and I then realized it was “So Long, Farewell” from “The Sound of Music.” A group of friends, led by Susie, performed a flash mob! It melted my heart (and made Jeff cry). My favorite part was the added burpee. Ha! Thanks, all and in particular Susie!

EVENT 2 | Barbell Team Challenge
Take 14 minutes to establish 4RM deadlift (M/F) and 2RM front squat (M/F)
– All 4 members may work together but only 1 member may lift at any given time
– The weight of lift will be scored, and not total weight lifted, e.g., not DL x 4

Some truly amazing lifts were performed, and numerous PRs were achieved!

EVENT 3 | Trifecta
– Team member 1 rows 150m
– Team members 2 & 3 complete 10 box jump overs (24/20”), alternating turns (2 boxes set to prescribed height)
– Team members 3 & 1 then complete 10 American KB swings (53/35), alternating turns (2 KBs at prescribed weight)
– Team members 2 & 1 complete 2 rope climbs, alternating turns (1 rope)

There were four workstations, and teams transitioned through the workstations each round.

I told folks to expect the unexpected, so just before the competition I announced that the athlete rowing had to place both feet on the floor and tag one of the athletes completing box jumps. Athletes completing box jumps and KB swings had to tag between turns, as did both athletes climbing the rope.

“What happens if we lap someone?” What happens if the rower/box/KB/rope isn’t available because another team is using?” “Have you thought this through, Paul?”

As I repeatedly stated, “Trust me. I’ve thought this through. The equipment will be available.” And I was right. This was a very competitive event, and all teams finished in under 12 minutes. I felt sorry for Athlete 1 for each team. That was tough!

Power Snatches
1 male & 1 female
150 power snatches (75/53)

EVENT 4b | Overhead Squats
1 male & 1 female
100 overhead squats (95/63)

8-minute time cap



Again, I told competitors to expect the unexpected, and just prior to the event I informed them that they would be completing a total of 75 power snatches and 50 overhead squats, i.e., half the amount. There was a sigh of relief! There may have also been a change in strategy.

This was an amazing event to watch. Although not recommended, some athletes completed muscle snatches, and Craig began by completing 45 reps. Wow. Just, wow.

Iris and Greg, two of the newest members of the box, completed overhead squats for their team. Greg struggled, not due to strength but because of issues with flexibility. Iris also struggled, not due to strength or flexibility but because she was getting tired and frustrated. Whilst attempting to complete required reps within the timeframe, both were failing. Until Greg’s flexibility improves, there was little I could do to help him. I made direct eye contact with Iris, I had a somewhat lengthly conversation with her (I won’t share what I said), and I watched her as she completed the final 7 overhead squats in unbroken reps! The crowd was cheering her on, I was coaching through every rep, and she completed the last rep with just a few seconds remaining. Everyone was jubilant, and it was wonderful to see Iris and Greg hug. This truly was the highlight of the day.

Three teams advanced to the final event: The WODding dead (Anthony, Ashlee, Jay, and Lauren), Saved by the Bell (Alex, Brian, Heather, and Nick), and Beaver (Kelli, Marni, Stephen Cline, and Steve Dodge (#poorstevedodge)). Beaver advanced to the final by eking out a 3-point lead over The Fertile Four. Uhm, I do believe that some folks were surprised whilst others were disappointed and perhaps even angered. We confirmed the results, and I announced the first of the final two events.

The final three teams advanced to the final events with a clean slate, i.e., previous placement and scores were not considered. I included a tie breaker for Event 6 in the event of a tie.

FINAL EVENT 1 | Timed Mary
– 1:15 chest to bar pull-ups, handstand pushups, pistols
– 1:00 chest to bar pull-ups, handstand pushups, pistols
– :45 chest to bar pull-ups, handstand pushups, pistols
– :30 chest to bar pull-ups, handstand pushups, pistols
Score = total reps
All 4 team members complete 1 of the 4 rounds
Team member 1 will complete 1:15 minute each of pull-ups, HSPUs, and pistols, 2 member 1 minute of each activity, etc.

I had hinted that there would be an event similar to this, and every competitor should’ve expected some type of challenging pull-ups, handstands pushups, and pistols to be included in one of the final events. It was interested to see teams determine who would complete the most work, as the first athlete worked 5 minutes whilst the final athlete worked only 2. Can’t complete chest to bar pull-ups, handstand pushups, and/or pistols? Your score is zero. Saved by the Bell completed 183, WODding Dead 175, and Beaver 71.

10-min AMRAP
– 70 (35/athlete) wall ball shots 14/9 (females)
– 70 (35/athlete) wall ball shots 20/10 (males)
– 100 (50/athlete) double unders (females)
– 100 (50/athlete) double unders (males)
– In remaining time max rep bar muscle ups

If team members were unable to complete a bar muscle up, she or he had to complete 5 chest to bar pull-ups before the next team member could take her or his turn. The chest to bar pull-ups were not counted as a rep.

I had certainly strongly suggested that athletes master bar muscle ups.

Saved by the Bell completed 16, WODding Dead 7, and Beaver 1 rep(s). Saved by the Bell was the clear winner of both of the final events. And some people were pissed. I overheard two of the competitors bitching about the results. Uhm, they quickly turned their backs and walked away when they noticed me.

It’s not how you start it’s how you finish. There, I said it.

And then the digs began. “WODding Dead won 4 of the 6 events.” No, they tied for 1 event,  won 3 events, and finished in 2nd place overall. Saved by the Bell tied for 1st in 1 event and placed 1st in the all important 2 final events.

And then the following hashtags were used:

#cleanslate 🤔

No one can make you experience an emotion, it’s merely your reaction to something they have said or done. Nonetheless, this angered me.

I couldn’t begin to tell you how much time and energy I put into programming and then emceeing this event. Whilst the overwhelming majority of folks were grateful, I’m nonetheless, well, just over it all. I shan’t reply to any comments on social media, but this is my fucking blog so I’ll say whatever I want to say.

Here are my hashtags:


I’m not a person that you want to anger. I’m angered.

Okay, enough of the negative!

I’m very excited about the upcoming Ragnar Trail Race and am looking forward to finally running the trails!

As I say repeatedly, the world needs more pictures of cats. Meg!




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