I wasn’t looking forward to 20.4 after 20.3. I wasn’t feeling great about the fact that I didn’t do better on the repeat of 18.4. But then I watched the announcement, and I started to feel better. Not because I thought I could complete the thing, but because I had nothing to compare it to. 
Well, I panicked at first, because it was box jumps, and I’m pretty slow on those. But then I looked at the movement standards and found that step ups were allowed. Step ups, I can do! The workout time was capped at 20 minutes, and in that 20 minutes, there was a lot to do. 30 box jumps, 15 clean and jerks at 65 pounds, 30 box jumps, 15 clean and jerks at 85 pounds, 30 box jumps, 10 clean and jerks at 115 pounds, 30 one legged (pistol) squats, 10 clean and jerks at 145 pounds, 30 pistols, 5 clean and jerks at 175 pounds, 30 pistols, 5 clean and jerks at 205 pounds (women’s Rx weights and movements). 
I knew that the chances of me doing a single 145 pound clean and jerk were small, but I also was pretty sure I wasn’t going to be doing very many (if any) pistols, so I was aiming to complete the first half of the workout as fast as I could. I had a goal for this workout, and it was attainable. 
The Friday night class was a revelation. As one woman put it to the instructor, most of us were going to be able to do pistols, but we didn’t think that we could. And she was quite right. I actually had her especially to thank, because she demonstrated a method of doing pistols that I could do! 
See, I thought I couldn’t do pistols, because I couldn’t hold one leg out straight and do the squat on the other leg. But what I could do was bend my free leg and hold onto my foot in a kind of pretzel shape. And it wasn’t super difficult on my right leg, but my left leg was a bit weaker. 
I decided to go ahead and do the workout that night to gauge where I was with the heavier (for me) weights and the pistols. Usually, I don’t go first, but this time my partner didn’t want to go first because he wasn’t sure he was going to go at all. So I went first. The 30 step ups were about what I’d imagined. Tough but doable. Then came the 65 pound clean and jerks. I started with a set of 5 and then did singles because I was a lot more tired than I thought I’d be. 30 more step ups was almost a rest, and then came the 85 pounds. I took those a lot slower, but I got through them and went on to my next 30 step ups – last 30! 
It was at this point that I was unsure. I completed that last set of step ups in good time, a little over nine minutes in. 115 pounds was my one rep max for a clean and jerk – admittedly an old PR, but still I had to do 10 of them here. I failed on my first rep, because I was trying to do a technique that one of the coaches had told me to try, not letting the bar get lower than my shoulders. But for whatever reason, I can’t lift heavier with that technique yet. Probably lack of practice. So I went back to the technique that works for me, which does involve letting the bar drop a bit down below my shoulders so that I have a better angle at punching it up and over my head. 
And with that technique, I got through the ten reps with time to spare for trying pistols. 
Over the course of about 5 minutes, I got through 9 pistols. More than I’d ever done before in my life. I was stoked. This felt like a win, even though I was nowhere near completing the workout. 
My partner did end up trying the workout and he also got some pistols, so we were both happy with that. Actually, everyone who did the workout was pretty happy. 
I decided to go again on Sunday. I’ve got a friend who I usually partner up with for the Open workouts so we can take turns judging each other. But the coach decided that there would only be one heat so we couldn’t do that this time. I was left scrambling to figure out who I could get to judge me who wasn’t already judging someone else.
And then a couple came in who were going to go at 10 am, and I rushed over and asked if one of them would please, please, pretty please judge me. And that’s how I ended up with a very good judge for my workout. She asked me what my goals were. I wanted to beat my split time for completing the 3rd set of step ups, and to get at least one more pistol than last time. 
She did a really good job of coaching me to those goals. I beat my split time by nearly a minute, didn’t miss any of the reps at 115, and I ended up with a total of 11 pistols, when I had despaired at getting back to 9 with 6 completed and about 2 minutes left in the workout. She buoyed me through it and helped me beat my score. 
20.4 was such a high note that I almost wished it were the end of the Open. But there was one more workout to go… 
An 85 pound clean and jerk.
Pushing it on the step ups.

The 115 pounds comes from the floor…

…gets to the shoulders…

…and then overhead!

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