Takasaki talks rain, a packed-to-capacity athlete tent, Abbott's bounce back performance and Sam Dancer's speedos as the Blonyx women dominate at Wodapalooza

Takasaki talks rain, a packed-to-capacity athlete tent, Abbott's bounce back performance and Sam Dancer's speedos as the Blonyx women dominate at Wodapalooza

As a journalist, I know better than to write a story about the weather—BOOOORRRIIINNNG—but I’m taking exception, as every single question I asked Tyson Takasaki about Day 1 at Wodapalooza somehow came back to the weather. The rain.

 Not even an imminent monsoon can disrupt Tasia's pre-workout smile-based warm up.

“Like torrential downpour,” Takasaki reiterated. “Especially during the girls’ first event.”

The torrential downpour, though, didn’t slow down Blonyx athlete (and NE sales rep) Tasia Percevecz, who placed 4th overall in the event, beating many top-level CrossFit athletes, like Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, Dani Horan and Margo Alvarez along the way. Meanwhile, fellow Blonyx athlete Carleen Matthews was an impressive 13th.

Emily Abbott, who is being coached by Takasaki this weekend, had a tougher time with the event, which ended with one of her few nemesis movements—a handstand walk. Specifically, athletes had to complete a 100-ft. handstand walk after taxing their shoulders with 30 135-lb. overhead squats. While the most competent gymnasts blew through the 100 ft., Takasaki said Abbott was forced to complete the walk in 25 ft. increments—the minimum distance required. 

Abbott loving the rain!

Day 1 Interview With Takasaki:

Emily Beers (EB): Did the torrential rain make gripping the barbell hard?

 Tyson Takasaki (TT): Well they made a rule (as a safety precaution) that you couldn’t snatch the bar, so you had to clean and jerk it up. But seriously, there are puddles everywhere, up to your ankles in some places, and the grass is so muddy. People are jumping over puddles and trudging mud onto the workout floor. They scattered pieces of plywood everywhere top stop the puddles, but they’re not really helping. Sam Dancer did the workout in a speedo. No joke.

 

Puddles upon puddles. Nowhere to hide.

EB: What was the hardest part of the workout for Emily?

TT: She was right in there after the pistols and GHD sit-ups. Everyone was pretty equally paced there. They all got off the GHD within 30 seconds of each other. The overhead squats were slower than she wanted. I think she got through them in four sets. But it came down to the handstand walk. She had to come down every 25 feet.

EB: She isn’t used to seeing herself in 31st place. Is she disappointed?

TT: She’s in a good headspace. But she is frustrated. Her handstand walking has improved but it’s such a slow progression. It will take time. She’s disappointed but it’s just the first event.

EB: What is she doing to refocus?

TT: It has been a long day for just two short events. One of her coaches, Justin Thacker (the owner of The Lab Gym in St. Louis) is staying in a hotel right across the street, so she’s chilling there now to stay dry. Better than being in the athletes’ tent. The athlete tent is built for maybe 200 people, but there are like 1,300 people sandwiched in there. Everyone is so wet.

EB: What’s the game plan for the second event today?

The event is:

21 Calories Assault Bike (15 calories for women)
15 Power Snatches
9 Bar Facing Burpees
15 Thrusters
21 Calories Assault Bike (15 calories for women)

TT: It’s going to be a sprint. Probably a four minute workout. Emily’s good at barbell cycling and being on a bike is going to help her. The key will be to avoid going lactic on the bike. She can’t kill the bike, especially because she has to squat after and she still needs some pop in her legs. And she needs to be able to cycle the barbell fast. 

EB: How much are the conditions affecting performance right now?

TT: Nobody was expecting this. People didn’t even bring pants. We’re all walking around in shorts and our shoes are black from the mud. But you can’t make excuses for the conditions. Everyone is in the same boat. It’s all about mental toughness.

****

Abbott certainly didn't make any excuses. She did more than just regroup and rebound from her 31st place in the first event—the big chipper. She went on to dominate event 2 in a time of 3:37, winning the event. Meanwhile, Percevecz continued her impressive day finishing 3rd.

Heading into day three, Blonyx athletes are looking strong. Percevecz sits in 2nd overall behind Brooke Wells, while Abbott moved herself up to 8th overall and Matthews heads into Day 2 in 14th. For the boys, Chase Smith is sitting in 17th, and Richard Bohlken in 32nd. On the team front, Melissa Doss's team the Central Beasts are sitting in 5th where Blonyx athlete Regan Huckaby's Two Grown Ups and the Kid are sitting in 3rd in the elite women's team event respectively. 

What Carleen feels about the rain

Day 2 action from rainy Miami continues tomorrow morning!

 

 

 

 

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