Jul 22 2014
Today was the last day to get some quality work done before winding things down a little before Wednesday and the beach. We kicked the morning off with the daily WOD at CrossFit Karma which was really good for the team and enabled them to get in a class environment and not be too consumed with what is ahead. We have practised what has been released so far a lot and slight change in focus to a more strength bias was fun. After finishing the 6am class we spent a bit a time knocking over some of the Games specific stuff with the most pleasing things to come out of that, a new PR for Mel and Gibbsy coming out unscathed with some heavy deads after carrying a hamstring injury for a while now. We have been super spoilt with CFTSV super physio Tanya joining us for the trip and she has been fantastic not just on this trip and looking after Gibbsy, but through our whole Games preparation where at some stage or another she has spent some time with each member of the team. Tanya you are a champ (but brace yourself for the weekend coz you will be busy)!! After a couple of hours free time to chill out (code for the girls to get pedicures) we headed down the track to do some homework set by Coach O'Reagan. This was another test for Gibbsy to see how the hammy was coming along and she passed it with flying colours. The team has a 6 mile relay on Friday and the running pairs will be Jordan and Nick who we expect to get us a great start, Mel and Wadeo who will hang tough the entire trip and then Gibbsy and Bryce who will bring it home. The arvo session was an opportunity to do some pacing with their respective partners at roughly the pace they will be aiming to hold on Friday morning. To round off the day we dropped into a supermarket to pick some things up for dinner and who should we run into but the big man himself - Dimitry Klokov. Dimitry is a fine specimen of a man but the girls seemed rather unpertubed by coming across a Weightlifting/CrossFit internet celebrity but the boys on the other hand, I don't think I have ever seen them move so fast to jump in and get a photo. Jordan's quote of the day "that was too good!". Until next time..
Jul 21 2014
So today was the day to check out the water and put any nerves about open waters to bed once and for all. We ventured down to beautiful Manhattan Beach for a 6am swim-run WOD. Now it is supposed to be the middle of summer here in LA but you could of fooled me with a very brisk 16 degrees greeting us as we got down to the beach. The water has the reputation for being very cold as well and there was no disappointment there either with plenty of carry on as young JP entered the fray. After knocking out a few rounds in and out of the water and we had breakfast and then got set for a trip into Hollywood to do some celebrity spotting. It was amazing first there was batman, then superman, then darth vader, then batman again and thor even turned up just as we were leaving. What an eye opener for everyone indeed and nice to cross that off the list and we will leave it at that. Tomorrow we have a pretty serious training day planned with the boys having withdrawals about not hitting it as hard as normal and the girls are keen to blow the cobwebs out as well. Damn them and their crazy work ethic, looks like I will be training too.
Jul 20 2014
Today Gibbsy, Mel and Bryce got in to LA as well so the team are finally altogether and last preparations can be laid out before things get underway on Wednesday. After being picked up early the gang headed off to CrossFit Karma, an old Tropic Thunder stomping ground from previous campaigns, and hit their Saturday morning WOD. Some heavy snatches and a short met con with some rowing, handstand push ups and shuttles were on the menu and it again highlighted one of the truly great things that CrossFit offers by allowing you to fly half way around the world to drop into someone else's gym and workout the same way you do back home. If you have never been a visitor at someone else's box make sure you do so when you get the chance. It is a great experience and opportunity to learn from someone else and best of all leaves you no excuse not to train on your holidays.
After training we headed down to Manhattan Beach for a little bit of sightseeing and much to the distress of the team we saw a big dark shadow from the pier. Now this would normally be a pretty ordinary event but with the team hitting Manhattan Beach for the first WOD of the CrossFit Games on Wednesday there has been a little bit of nervousness enter the ranks. No fin was spotted but our resident marine expert Brycey was very confident that it was indeed a shark but I am sure there will be nothing to be concerned about... Well we'll see tomorrow anyway because we are going to test the waters (pardon the pun) with some ins and outs first thing. Unitl then..
Jul 19 2014
As a bit of fun I thought I would try and do a blog every couple of days to update you on what the team is up to. After all, you guys have been enormous with your support and I am sure everyone is keen to hear what is going on.
With the team on slightly different schedules we had to split up the travel arrangements with Wadeo, Jordan, Reecey and myself taking the trip early Friday morning. The other half of the team (Gibbsy, Brycey, and Mel) shoot off early Saturday morning. Our adventure began in Townsville on the 5.55am flight to Brisbane. We got into Brisbane no troubles and headed straight to customs. After a small panic from JP with the amount of food he was carrying on board, we went straight through to the departure lounge and managed to swindle our way into the Air New Zealand lounge where we smacked down the best dairy free smoothies I have ever had.
After 5 movies and very little sleep we got into LA in great time and before we knew it were hitting the streets in our fuel guzzling, all American Dodge. We had a nav man, then we didn't, then we did again, then we didn't again and finally and thankfully we did again. This was a very nerve wracking experience for everyone and it tested Wadeo and my friendship but after some fine navigation correction and terrific driving we found our way to our hotel to set up camp and get some much needed sleep.
The plan will be low key till the rest of the team gets in with a swim and run scheduled down for Sunday and then a visit to a local CrossFit gym on Monday followed by some track work in the arvo.
We will keep you posted...
Jul 18 2014
Well the time has just about arrived –Tropic Thunder are about to take off to the USA for the 2014 Reebok Crossfit Games. My god – is this actually happening? We have so many people to thank, and I will get to that but first I want to share a story. Grab a cuppa, get comfy and let me share my version of our road to the games.
It was the end of regionals 2013 – we had just finished our last event for the weekend and ended up in a very respectful 7th position. We were ushered back underneath Win Stadium into the marshalling area whilst they confirmed the final placing’s. I remember standing there and watching the qualifying teams’ elation at making it to California. I also remember looking at Gibbsy and we discussed what a shitty feeling at was at not making it. If we had got one more rep here, finished a few seconds faster here, we wondered what could’ve been. It was our worst finish so far as an affiliate at the regional level, it was hard not to be disappointed. But we couldn’t do anything apart from suck it up and move on. So we did.
Fast forward a few months and a whole lot of training later to the all-star affiliate comp in Townsville – the final workout. It had been a long humid weekend but it was just about over. We had a lot of fun and were sitting fairly comfortably at the top of the table. But we knew this workout was ours and wanted to make a statement – that might sound a little arrogant but we knew as a team we were capable of something special. That as a team we could come together and achieve something amazing. And that’s exactly what we did. And it was right in that at moment, that I knew we were going to go on and achieve great things in 2014. I was just too scared to say it. But like the Black Eyed Peas, I had a feeling.
The opens came and went with the usual mix of anxiety and pain. Our team was picked from our top finishers – and of note Alahna, who after some casual persuasion, decided to forgo her amazing 17th open placing and go team. Everything was falling into place. This was too good to be true! I still had that feeling.
And so here we were again - Regionals 2014. At the usual setting and up against the usual suspects. Day one was a nervous day for us, two super high pressure events with no second chances and a cheeky little team chipper with those damn muscle ups that had me tied up in knots. We hoped that if we could maybe jag a top 5 finish at the end of day one, we’d be in a good spot to make a charge for the top three in the next two days. What we didn’t expect was to be sitting comfortably in third after day one with a big gap between the next best team. But we didn’t focus on it too much, we just focussed on the next events, sticking to our plans we had practiced meticulously in training, and not thinking of the outcome. It was a surreal feeling to be in the position we were. And so passed day two, and we had jumped up to second spot. That surreal feeling had gotten stronger. The gap between the top three and the rest was almost incomprehensible. Don’t think about it, one more day, one more day. The last day then arrived; the first event was a strong one for us. Only one event remained. The other teams had started to congratulate us, Dan had told us to go out and enjoy the last event as we’d done it. Barring a disaster we were going to the games. BUT then without warning, our last event didn’t go according to plan. Gulp. Shit. DAMN IT.
So here we were again, back in that same, cold marshalling area in the depths of the Win stadium. Almost 12 months to the day since we stood there filthy that we’d let the opportunity slip. Surely we had done enough? I shouldn’t have been so worried. We worked our backsides off, we stuck to the plans and it worked. We did it – we qualified for the games! I wish I could replay that moment again and again. I was so proud to stand on that podium with our team in third position and look up at our amazing support crew.
Now for the thank you’s – it is so hard to name every single person individually. Because for every bit of hard work we have put into this, there are so many others that have too.
Firstly to our super coach Stricko. You have no idea how hard this guy works. He has no limits. Barring a few poorly timed niggles, he would’ve been standing on that podium with us. His programming has got us in the best shape of our lives. For every moment of doubt we had, he was there backing us the whole way. Strick you are an inspirational leader and we thank you so much.
To wonder woman Aimee – probably the most organised human being I know. And that makes us the most organised team on earth. You and Dan have yet again gone above and beyond with your efforts to get us to LA. You deserve all that online shopping you’ve done and more. Thank you!
To our sponsors – Odin Sports, Paleo Café Townsville, ASN Nurtition, MJ & Co, Franzmann Plumbing, Parkside Group, Colonial Sheet Metal, Lancini Homes and Smedley Plumbing and Drainage. You guys are phenomenal, and hopefully everyone gets behind your business and supports you, just you have gotten behind us. Thank you!
And how could I not mention our other sponsors – YOU GUYS! The Crossfit community has overwhelmed us with support – people have supported us from far and wide but particularly to our local North Queensland contingent, you guys have overwhelmed us with support. Thank you for every dollar that was donated, every sausage that was purchased, every chocolate (or three) that you sold (or ate), every raffle ticket sold, every rower bought at an auction (cheers VJ) and so many other things along the way, a million trillion thanks!
Running coach extraordinaire Simon O’Regan – your track work on Tuesday nights complimented our programming perfectly and the proof is in the pudding. Thank you for giving the opportunity to work with you and for your kind donation to the team. Who would’ve thought you made running so enjoyable! Bring on that 6 mile relay event!
To the staff at Crossfit Townsville and Fit Solutions who will be captaining the ship while we are away – firstly to the great Roberto aka Tofsky. We would’ve loved to have you come with us this year but alas CFTSV needs you. Thank you for your support in the lead up, and particularly for your kinds words Saturday night at trivia.
To the rest of the CFTSV team - Captain Oats, Lilytron, Jesse, Bayden, Deanarino. Thanks for picking up the slack and continuing to keep CFTSV alive while half the coaching staff takes off. We owe you guys BIG TIME. Very much appreciated. And also thanks for letting us bang and crash down the back to get the training done.
Hopefully you are still with me – I’m nearly done. To the extra members of the tropic thunder squad who have trained with us and assisted with our fundraising events and kept pushing us at training to keep us on our toes, you guys rock.
And one last big thank you to my team mates – Mell O’Hill - everytime I felt tired or didn’t feel like training, I thought of you and how you were slogging it out in frosty Sale at 4:30am every morning in your garage – mate you are a dead set champion and your commitment is second to none. We are going to miss you so much; it won’t be the same without you. Gibbsy – you a phenomenal athlete and I am so glad that you are finally getting this opportunity because you are too good not too. To the boys – you all smell funny – but I love you too. Training with you is always a blast and you can always make me smile and lift big heavy things too. Thanks team, you all rock!
So that’s it – we’re off. On behalf of Tropic Thunder, again THANK YOU and we will see you all when we get back.
Jul 23 2014
Jul 22 2014
Jul 21 2014
Jul 20 2014
Jul 18 2014
Jul 17 2014
Jul 16 2014
Jul 13 2014