Bangkok Brawl – You’ll Always Be My First!

Since Thailand hosted their first Crossfit competition a year ago, it was my dream to participate whenever the next opportunity would arise. Well, I miss out on another one – the Chiang Mai Throwdown in August. But then they announced the Bangkok Brawl and there was no way I was gonna miss out on that one as well. The extra training that I had put in over the past few months (thank you, Invictus!) even allowed me to join the Rx beasts…barely.

The Fringe, the Bear & the Pack

So the Bear, the Fringe (who both are super experienced Crossfit competitors and – unlike me – kept their cool all through the weekend) and I hopped on a ferry (Lomprayah, Lomprayah, Lomprayah, Lomprayah…), endured a long bus ride and thus eventually arrived in BKK. And, oh boy, I learned a lot up there!

For one, I learned that it is quite difficult to clean heavy with wobbly legs and a racing heart: I needed three attempts to match my 1RM in the Clean Ladder. Did that boost my confidence? So no! – CONTROL YOUR NERVES, WOMAN!

© Christopher Wadsworth

I learned that judges are human, too. After my performance in the Clean Ladder wasn’t quite to my liking, I was ready to make myself as proud as I possibly could in WOD2 (running and rowing with small legs, bleugh). My judge, however, put a spoke in my wheels, miscounted the laps I had run and made me do one more than necessary. What to do, what to do when you know your judge is dead wrong? Well I ran the extra round (isn’t the judge always right?), got more furious with every meter, obviously messed up my row and… Long story short: it wasn’t pretty but the judge and I hugged it out a few hours later.

I learned that snatching right behind the strongest girl of the competition is not a good idea. What can I say: those 75# started to feel really, really heavy sooner than I had hoped, form went out the window (muscle snatches are not efficient!) and not even dear Allie who judged me got me back on track. (I blame it on Maslina!)

Needless to say I finished the day pretty unhappy. I don’t think I enjoyed much of it…

New day, new mindset, though (thanks for the pep talk, Gaz). I was ready to attack WOD4 which definitely was my favorite. Sprints and front squats and burpees and more sprints and deadlifts and more burpees. However, cleaning and front squatting 105# all of a sudden gets a lot more difficult after sprints… Either way, it was quick and FUN and I felt like myself again.

All of us would have been happy to call it a day but we still had a 16 minute chipper ahead of us…including way to many wallballs (I can’t express enough how much I hate wallballs). But you do what you gotta do, we all sit in the same boat. And we all survived!

But none of this really mattered in the end. What really mattered was the experience. The amazing people you meet. The new friends you make. Your training buddies that you share the whole adventure with. The incredible performances everyone gives. The joy, the laughter, the tears, the pain… So thank you everyone who made my first Crossfit competition a memorable one: the organisers and all the BKK boxes involved – East West, Ten500, Crossfit Bangkok, Ari Crossfit – the judges, the photographers, the spectators, Paleo Robbie who provided me with bunny food and all the incredible athletes. IT WAS A BLAST!

Biggest lesson learned? Enjoy it and have fun – IT’S NOT THE OLYMPICS! (Should have listened to Brad…)
Best advice I could to a Crossfitter? Attend a competition: as an athlete, judge, spectator, doesn’t matter what. Just do it! 🙂

My fellow beasts: Michele, Krystle, Maslina, Kara, Theresa, Dominique, Emilie, Tik, Jarr, Naomi & Claire


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