87: Crossfit Games 2021

August 12, 2021

Claire recaps her trip to Madison, WI attending the 2021 Crossfit Games!

Alfredo Frontier Airlines (Fact check/correction, he’s a comedian not a flight attendant)

Meraki Run Club




email: thisisjoyandclaire@gmail.com

instagram: joyandclaire_

This is Joy & Claire Episode 87: Crossfit Games 2021

Episode Date: August 12, 2021

Transcription Completed: August 15, 2021

Audio Length: 42:18 minutes 

Joy: Hey guys, this is Joy.

Claire: And this is Claire.

Joy: And this is Joy and Claire.

Joy and Claire: Hi.

Claire: Welcome to the second week of August, which is crazy. Time goes marching on.

Joy: Time goes marching on.

Claire: I was at a coffee shop yesterday eating croissants, which I love.

Joy: And every time you say “croissants,” you know what I want to say.

Claire: [French accent] Croi-ssant. John Hay. If you guys don’t know that story, the quick story is that my dad won’t say [pronounced with hard “t”] croissant and will only say [French accent] croissant. One time we were at Burger King, and he tried to order a [French accent] croissan’wich, and the guy was like, “What?” It was a classic John Hay moment.

Joy: Would you please not try to be a Frenchman right now? 

Claire: Yeah, please dad. Now is not the time. We know. We know that you know how to pronounce it.

Joy: We know that you know French.

Claire: You have made your point. Please proceed with your [pronounced with a hard “t”] croissan’wich.

Joy: So you were having a croissant. Yes.

Claire: And this family was sitting at the coffee shop. I’m on the coffee shop patio, and this family was behind us. They were talking to their 5-year-old. The dad said, “Yeah, Christmas is only four months away.” And I was like, you shut your whore mouth.

Joy: Well you know what, I was so angry two weeks ago, so that would be not even August. I was in Costco, and they had kid Halloween costumes. Scott and I walked up, and I was like, “No, I’m not ready.” And they already have the mums out, which I’m like it’s too early. They’re going to get fried if you put a mum out right now. 

Claire: Yeah, no.

Joy: Don’t buy your mums right now. Costco, please stop mum-quishing. I see the mums, and I want the mums, but they’re going to die if I buy them. Because they’re so pretty inside, but I’m like, how do these survive? It’s just way too early. I know that sounds so cliche of me to be like, “It’s already August?” But I just feel like every year they start bringing out the Halloween costumes or the Christmas decorations so early. What is the rush? What is the rush?

Claire: Guess what time it is? School supply time.

Joy: I love this time of year. I love going through Target and seeing all the school supplies, and I live vicariously through all the families shopping.

Claire: So Miles starts kindergarten in a week and a half.

Joy: That’s so exciting.

Claire: Next Thursday. So when you guys hear this, we are a week away from his first day of kindergarten.

Joy: Oh, that’s so exciting.

Claire: I’m really trying not to oversell school supply shopping. Because I keep bringing it up. I know we’re going to go and he’s going to be like, “This is all I get? Some colored pencils and some folders?” And I’ll be like, “But they’re your first folders. You can pick which folders you want. These folders are going to set the tone for your entire year, Miles.”

Joy: Do you remember – you may not know the exact –

Claire: The gravity of the folder selection.

Joy: But do you remember trapper keepers? Was that your generation? Yeah. But that was so exciting. I remember mine had the cool – what was the name of that sticker lady? Everybody knows who I’m talking about.

Claire: Lisa Frank.

Joy: Lisa Frank. The bubble hearts. So cool, so cool.

Claire: When I was in elementary school, it was the peak of denim with little smiley face and daisy patches.

Joy: Cute.

Claire: Right? Are you following, everyone who grew up in the 90’s? And so I had a backpack that had this synchy top – not the zipper, synchy top. It was denim. It had little daisy patches all over it. I remember having these shiny plastic folders but that looked like denim. They look like they have little denim pockets on them. I was all denim all the time.

Joy: Oh I love it.

Claire: I had a denim bucket hat with matching overalls with little sunflowers on them.

Joy: Oh my gosh. You were kind of the Blossom. Did you watch Blossom?

Claire: Uh no, which is why I just tried to breeze through that reference.

Joy: Well she wore a huge denim hat with a sunflower on it or some kind of flower on it.

Claire: Miles is about to have his first school shopping experience. He doesn’t even know what’s about to hit him, nor does he probably even care nearly as much as I do.

Joy: Oh my gosh, but it’s so fun. It’s so fun. Was it fun for us? I’m trying to think if I had fun. I’m pretty sure I did. I loved supplies.

Claire: I loved supplies. And then I loved just going home that night and deciding where you were going to use your red folder. Was that going to be for math or for science? For me, green was for science. Blue was for social studies. I’m trying to think if I normally did yellow was for math. And then red I normally used for English, or purple if I could find it.

Joy: I just remember coming home from my first day of kindergarten – I don’t know how I remember this. I really don’t. But it’s one of those memories that plays in a loop. And we were playing outside before the streetlights came on, and then the streetlights came on and we all had to run inside. And my neighbor was like, “Okay, have a good night.” And I was like, “Okay. I have to go do my homework.” I felt so grown up and important. I was so excited to have homework. I was like, “I’ve got to go do my homework.” And I had a little desk that I sat at. Oh my gosh. All those first. And then eventually you get sick of it, and you’re like, “Homework? What?”

Claire: I remember I had my little desk. Miles has this little desk in his room, and it’s like a true school desk that opens up and you can put your stuff in. We got it from our neighbors across the street. She’s a teacher. So he’s already got his whole little school system set up. Anyway. So we’re very excited. Miles is going to be very indoctrinated into the world of supplies, and there’s nothing he can do to stop it.

Joy: Nothing you can do to stop it. Get him started early because just get him excited about paper products.

Claire: What’s not to love?

Joy: Really, I think that’s the predictor of success in school is just getting people excited about paper products.

Claire: Yeah, how excited are you about paper products?

Joy: Yes. You’re going to be a great student.

Claire: Oh my goodness.

Joy: So speaking of big times of the year, let’s talk about the CrossFit Games.

Claire: Yeah. So I went to the CrossFit Games last weekend. As you guys know, Brandon’s family lives in Madison. So for us, when they moved the CrossFit Games to Madison from Southern California, the first year that they had them – I guess it was 2017 – when they moved them to Madison, it was like, this doesn’t make any sense, but it’s great for us. We went out this year. Joy sadly did not come. 

Joy: I know. I was a party pooper. 

Claire: Yeah, she was a party pooper. 

Joy: I really had no good reason other than I just didn’t feel like going. That’s not a great reason but that’s just where I’m at.

Claire: And we had a really good reason to make it happen. We hadn’t been back to Wisconsin since January 2020. Brandon’s family hadn’t seen Evie since before she could even walk. His mom actually came out, but his dad and his stepmom hadn’t seen them. It was so fun for us to be there with his family. Our focus was just as much on being with Brandon’s family as it was going to the Games, so we only went on Saturday. But it was still so fun. I’ll start out by saying, just getting this out of the way, that the CrossFit community as a whole has had a pretty bad response, in my opinion, to COVID. A lot of them think that they can out-fitness COVID.

Joy: I’m just curious. I don’t know the answer to this. I truly am curious. Where did you get your information around this? What are you basing this off of? I’m just curious, I’m just curious.

Claire: Over the last year and a half, we have heard from listeners from all over the country. I have seen in red firsthand many, many accounts of gyms not feeling like they wanted to enforce mask rules. Sometimes blatantly saying, “We think this is stupid. We shouldn’t have to do this.” If you look at any given comment section on any of the CrossFit Games stuff, people were railing on the CrossFit Games for having people wear masks.

Joy: Oh yeah.

Claire: For doing COVID testing.

Joy: That’s actually a good point, now that I think about it. I blocked a lot of that anger. But I saw Dave Castro post last year – I think this caused some riff with a couple larger CrossFit people that shall remain nameless. But I was so angry that he posted at one point, like reposted a gym that was against masks, doing the whole “you can’t tell us what to do” and he reposted that. I made a comment around like, “So what are we doing for healthcare workers? Excuse me.” Something along those lines, and then a couple of major CrossFit people were –

Claire: Got mad at us.

Joy: Had some comments back towards me. But I can’t bite my tongue on this. You’re reposting to thousands of people. Anyway.

Claire: The CrossFit complex is very rooted in libertarianism, so therefore ideologically, if you look at the ideological evolution of a lot of CrossFit culture, it doesn’t necessarily surprise me that this is the opinion that a lot of people have. But obviously, it’s something that I deeply disagree with. I don’t think being fit is the same thing as being immune. Not to say by any means that being cardiovascularly healthy, having a well-balanced nutritional diet, all of those things. Of course, all of those things are correlated with a more favorable outcome if you do get COVID. And also, of course, if you guys have been listening to this podcast, you know that we are all for those things. But it’s not the same thing as being immune or having immunity. It’s not the same thing as not needing to take any precautions whatsoever against a really super contagious deadly virus.

Joy: Can I interject something real quick? Because I feel like we over the year I guess with COVID – I just want to make this really brief because I don’t want to go down the rabbit hole with it. But I just want to remind everybody that Claire and I have a podcast where she and I are talking and you are listening. We can’t have a three-way-, four-way, five-way, six-way group conversation about what’s happening. This goes for any podcast you listen to. If you don’t agree with what we’re saying, we’re not pushing our agenda. We’re stating our opinions to each other. We welcome all perspectives, opinions, feedback. But I think that there’s times when – again, e specially in the past year, we’ve gotten so much feedback about how we’re pushy and we just preach. We don’t listen to others because we’re just “pushing a vaccine.” We’re basically having a conversation with Claire and I. Between the two of us, we have very similar options, so it just kind of works out that way. If you were to come on this podcast, we would have a very different conversation. I’m not against that at all. I think I just needed to state that for my own sanity. Because where did we go wrong with just listening to a conversation and go, “Wow, I don’t agree with that. But this is Joy and Claire’s podcast and they’re having a conversation about their beliefs,” where you as a listeners do the same exact thing with your buddy. Our aim is always to have good intentions and to put out information that we feel is helpful for people. We don’t want you to agree with everything that we say. But at the end of the day, we want to be supportive and helpful to people and to use your own voice, no matter what it is that you want to say. So I just had to put that caveat out there. Because when we have these discussions, I can just hear the feedback out there – the moans and the groans if you will – of people kind of being like, “Oh, here they go pushing stuff again.” No, we’re not. We have opinions. We are discussing them together. We want you to think for yourself and think critically. I try to do that as well. I will bring up shortly after you finish your thought about something that I bumped up against with The Daily podcast last week that I wanted to talk about too in relation to this.

Claire: And I don’t know if you guys saw this thing that I posted on Instagram stories recently about the death of expertise. Yes, everyone has an opinion and everyone can say what they want to say. Yeah, this podcast is called This is Joy and Claire. I will forever laugh at the feedback of someone. We got a bad review of someone, “If you want to just be talked up by Joy and Claire” – that’s literally what a podcast is. I just always laugh at that review we got. 

Joy: If you want to listen to two whatever, yeah…

Claire: “If you just want to listen to two people talking at you” – if that’s not what you want, maybe podcasts aren’t for you.

Joy: Maybe podcasts aren’t for you. That’s okay, you know. That’s alright. 

Claire: That’s just something that I will always think about and laugh at. But also this post that I reposted on Instagram stories recently that basically was saying, “One of the most dangerous ideas that has come about in the last few years is that all points of view are equally valid and that the average citizen – you – are just as equipped to judge which have merit as anyone else. ‘Hear all sides. Judge for yourself.’ No, I do not condone the death of expertise, and neither should you. I am an expert in very, very few things. In those areas, my expertise is hard-earned through study, work, experience, and aptitude. None of it comes from Google University. But unless you are an expert in exactly the same areas, your opinion is not just as valid as mine. It’s not. And my opinion is not just as valid as experts’ in other fields. That is why they are the experts. So if our leading epidemiologists largely agree that A is correct, and a couple of discredited doctors make a video that says B is correct, our response should not be to ‘listen to both and decide which makes sense to me.’ Confirmation bias exists, and only fools think that they are free of it. To paraphrase Asimov: ‘Your ignorance’” – it goes on to talk about ignorance, speaking of ignorance in speaking people’s names correctly – “’Your ignorance is not the same as their experience.’ Genuinely smart people look for answers from people who are smarter than themselves. Only ignorant people believe their guess is as good as anyone else’s.” I am not here to tell you that I am an expert in epidemiology or vaccines.

Joy: No.

Claire: I am not.

Joy: I’m not either. I’m not either. I think there’s just beauty in critical thinking that I think is a really lost art. I really do. Everything that we talk about, I listen to myself. I go, am I being a hypocrite? Where do I need to learn this lesson? I am not at the top of the mountain looking down at people. I am just sitting here going, I want to be a reflective human being where I am looking at my own behaviors and how it impacts other people. That is a value of mine. That is important to me. This one last point and then we can go back to the Games because that’s what we need to talk about. My one last point is The Daily had a podcast – The Daily is a New York Times podcast, which is a little bit left leaning, but they do have some really good reporting and I think that they do a good job of trying to get stories from “all sides.” Say what you will about mainstream media, but The New York Times’ The Daily podcast put out an episode. If you want to look it up, it was Friday, August 6. The title is, “Stories from the Unvaccinated.” I was like, okay, I’m going to actually hear. Because I make up in my head some assumptions and stereotypes of people who will not get vaccinated. I really want to make sure that I’m not painting people in the wrong light. They interviewed about four people. Granted, it’s only four people. It’s not a lot of people. But every single person – every single person, I started out was like, okay, okay, I can get on board… oh no, I can’t get on board with this. I tried. I really tried. But here’s what’s important to me. It is important to me to think of others. And not one person on this podcast talked about others. It was me, me, me, me, me, me, me. Me, me, me, me, me, me. And I’m just like, where is your voice around doing something for other people and the collective society? And that was really bothersome to me. But granted, this is one of my values. I’m looking at this as a world problem. How are my actions contributing or taking away from a world problem? That is just something that really bothers me about a lot of the stories and the opinions I hear from some people that will not get vaccinated is that it’s very much of like a, “Well, I’m just making this decision for me.” And me, me, me, me, me. Everything I heard, I didn’t hear one thing about how they are trying to help other people or worried for other people’s health. That to me is a problem. I think we need to rethink that.

Claire: All that to say, nobody at the CrossFit Games except for me was wearing a mask.

Joy: I hear steps of Joy stepping off her soapbox right now.

Claire: Okay. And what we got with this, at the CrossFit Games, very, very, very few people were wearing masks. Brandon and I and his two sisters and brother-in-law, we all went together. We were wearing masks when we were in crowded spaces. When we were in the NOBULL tent, formerly the Reebok tent. When we were in the mass exodus of people out from the stands. We didn’t have colosseum tickets because I just knew that people weren’t going to be masked in the colosseum.

Joy: Which is the indoor arena.

Claire: The indoor arena. People were not masking up.

Joy: So you didn’t go to events there. You just went to all outdoor events.

Claire: It was all outdoor. But even so, there are some indoor areas, so we would just throw our masks on real quick if we were in a literally shoulder-to-shoulder crowd of people I have a lot of good reason to believe are probably below the national average of vaccination statistics. And with what we are seeing right now with cases continuing to go back up and back up and back up, that was one thing for me that I was like, you know what, one day here for me was enough. I didn’t feel like it was the most COVID-safe thing I’ve done. So getting that out of the way, I think that the CrossFit Games in general could have and should have done more to be a little bit more… that’s hard to say because the county restrictions aren’t there, etcetera, etcetera. I just wasn’t seeing really any community support towards, “Hey guys, put your mask on before you go in the colosseum.” 

Joy: The other thing that I wanted to say is things have changed pretty quickly as far as the delta variant and the safety around what’s going on with cases. The number of cases is greatly spiking in the last two months I would say, right?

Claire: In the past month.

Joy: In the past month, yeah. It’s been pretty quick since you planned this trip, and all of the sudden you’re like, “Oh my gosh, should I even go? I’m concerned about this.” That’s fair. I think that that’s important to point out.

Claire: Right. We also had to fly, obviously, with the kids. Evie who is two had to wear a mask. She did great, and it was also just frustrating with me to be on a plane with a bunch of adults that were pulling down their mask every time the flight attendant turned around. It’s like, I’m sitting here with a two year old who half the time won’t keep her pants on, and I have to worry about her –

Joy: And she’s doing great.

Claire: Yeah. And I’m worrying about her pulling her mask down as all of the completely capable adults around me are feeling violated by having to put a mask on. I don’t want this whole episode to turn into –

Joy: I know. We don’t want to go there. We don’t want to go there. But to be fair, Claire, it is infuriating. These are the moments where we are in this group project with the world, and these are the moments where we kind of bump up against other people where we’re like, “It’ doesn’t have to be this hard. It really doesn’t.” I just want to say really quickly. I want to give a huge high five shout out to flight attendants right now because you are doing the Lord’s work.

Claire: I literally cannot imagine how irritating this must be.

Joy: I cannot. I would probably have physically harmed someone by now. And yes, we have seen the video of the flight attendant talking about the guy that they had to wrap and tape to the chair. If you have not seen it –

Claire: Alfredo from Frontier.

Joy: What’s his name?

Claire: Alfredo.

Joy: Yeah. Alfredo from Frontier. If you have not seen this video, please pause us immediately, Google it, look it up.

Claire: We’ll put it in the show notes.

Joy: Oh my God. He needs his own show. I’m going to start a campaign for him to get his own show.

Claire: Alright, we went to the CrossFit Games.

Joy: We are really having a hard time staying on track with the CrossFit Games.

Claire: We have so much to catch up on. Lots going on in the world. We have feelings about things. I feel like everyone I talk to right now, there’s one of two topics. Either the world is on fire and I can’t breathe air.

Joy: Yes.

Claire: So that’s another topic we can cover. Or can you believe we’re back at where we’re at with COVID cases.

Joy: Shutting down with masks and blah, blah, blah. Yep. We’re having a tough time, yeah.

Claire: So despite feeling uncomfortable from a respiratory virus, communicable disease standpoint, it was really fun to be at the CrossFit Games. It was fun to see the handful of people that I saw. So if I got to talk to you, I’m so grateful. I got to chat with a gal named Leigh who we talked for quite a while. I saw Kelly – hi, Kelly. I saw Kelly mere moments o f-

Joy: Kelly! Kelly is my favorite humans.

Claire: She had this great rainbow fanny pack on.

Joy: I saw it, and I loved it, and I want it. Kelly, where’d you get it?

Claire: So good. And some of Kelly’s friends. That’s always the highlight, and that’s really why I love going because I’m like, I get to see my friends.

Joy: Yes, yes. Okay, NOBULL. What is the difference now that NOBULL is sponsoring? What are the things that you noticed, and also was it just as crowded as it has been in previous years? Like, were there a bunch of people still camping out in that open field? What did you feel as far as attendance?

Claire: It was still pretty crowded. I wouldn’t say that is was quite as crowded as years past. The vendor village was significantly less crowded. The entire two endmost rows on either side were just closed off. There wasn’t even anybody there.

Joy: Vendors?

Claire: Yeah, they just didn’t have any vendors. 

Joy: Were the bathrooms crowded?

Claire: No, I never had to stand in line to go to the bathroom.

Joy: Oh. So just so you guys know, if you go to the CrossFit Games in Madison, the bathrooms in vendor village – well actually, bathrooms anywhere in that venue are really not ideal. There’s not a lot of them. Actually, there’s port-o-potties right? Yeah, there’s port-o-potties. But if you’re in vendor village, you don’t want to go across the way to go to the port-o-potty. Anyway, in vendor village the bathrooms are so few and far between to find so I always had to plan out my day. Like, when do I have to pee? How long do I have to wait at the bathrooms in vendor village? That’s a tell-tale sign because you didn’t have to wait. That tells me a lot.

Claire: The food trucks were still backed up. But yeah, it wasn’t quite as crowded. With NOBULL there, it didn’t really feel like it changed anything.

Joy: I really, really liked the Reebok tents. 

Claire: The NOBULL tent was just as good.

Joy: Good to know. Because I love shopping.

Claire: I will say that NOBULL – and maybe they’ll do this differently when they have it next year when they have a whole year to prepare, but they didn’t have nearly the selection.

Joy: I was going to say.

Claire: They’re a completely different company.

Joy: Yeah, totally different company. Yeah. Reebok is a huge dragonaut. 

Claire: So it was super fun. And then afterwards, once everything shifted into the colosseum, we stayed outside in the big field where they play it live on the Jumbotron. This has been our pro tip since like 2014.

Joy: Yes, pro tip. Pro tip, go.

Claire: You don’t need to get colosseum tickets.

Joy: No.

Claire: Because you can sit outside.

Joy: In the fresh air.

Claire: In the fresh air.

Joy: With the best seat in the house.

Claire: And drink your beer.

Joy: Drink your beer.

Claire: Best seat in the house. And there’s still people in the stands with you, so you’re still cheering and getting excited. But you’re not in this hot sweaty indoors.

Joy: And let’s be honest, the seats are not comfortable in the colosseum. 

Claire: The colosseum cannot hold a candle to the tennis stadium.

Joy: Never. Do not ever compare it to the tennis stadium. You guys, the tennis stadium in Carson is what we’re talking about is the best, hands down. Except the seats are real small too.

Claire: Yeah, they were real small. Anyways. And Madison was beautiful as always. We went to Wonderstate Coffee, which is really cute. We of course went to Graze and sat at the bar and talked to this cute little couple.

Joy: Thank you for sending me a picture of the menu. That was made me feel special. So great.

Claire: And we took the kids to the capitol. We ate a bunch of fried cheese curds. And then we had a great time with Brandon’s family. It was just great to see everybody, and Madison is so cute. I’m really glad we went. Every year, I’m glad we go. I always try to talk myself out of it, and I’m glad that we go.

Joy: Good, great. CrossFit Games 2021.

Claire: Recapped.

Joy: Recapped. Oh, two last questions. Is Brooke Wells okay? What happened to her? And just talk about Annie Thorisdottir.

Claire: Oh my gosh, Annie! Okay, so Brooke dislocated her elbow in the max snatch event. It looked horrible. Her arm was dangling at an unnatural angle.

Joy: No, no, no

Claire: No, no. But then, and I didn’t notice this until after the fact, but when I looked back I realized that she had had her elbow wrapped for a lot of the weekend already. So maybe she had something already going on.

Joy: Oh, she had an injury maybe.

Claire: Yeah. So she dislocated her elbow unfortunately and had to withdraw. I haven’t really followed up about if she has to get surgery or anything like that.

Joy: Oh, that’s so sad. 

Claire: Yeah.

Joy: That’s one of those things where, you know, speaking of elite athletes and the Olympics and any time that that’s your job… and then you get hurt, and you’re just out. It breaks my heart. I think that’s one thing that just breaks my heart more than anything is athletes who that is their job and then they get injured. Sending her all the good vibes.

Claire: And she was doing pretty well. Anyways, it was definitely pretty dramatic when it happened.

Joy: What do you mean?

Claire: I just mean it was such a –

Joy: Shock.

Claire: This moment of, you know, she’s rolling around in pain on the platform. It wasn’t like, “We just got word that so-and-so withdrew behind the scenes.” She got injured in front of everybody.

Joy: Oh God, that’s so, ugh… breaks my heart.

Claire: The real headline really from the whole weekend was Annie Thorisdottir who I just have – I mean, who doesn’t love Annie?

Joy: Who doesn’t love Annie?

Claire: Nobody doesn’t love Annie. There is no man or woman born that does not love Annie Thorisdottir.

Joy: Claim to fame, we saw her in the locker room.

Claire: Oh my gosh, we did.

Joy: So we went to CrossFit Reykjavik when we went to Iceland. And we were like, oh my gosh, are we going to see Annie? And all of the sudden we saw Annie in the locker room.

Claire: And no one said anything to her.

Joy: No one said a word. Let me just tell you, her skin is so porcelain, it is the most pure porcelain skin I have ever seen in my life.

Claire: Super weird commentary.

Joy: Just so you know, it is the most porcelain pure skin I have ever seen in my life. Anyway. But that’s our claim to fame is we actually saw Annie in the flesh.

Claire: So if you have no idea who we are talking about, Annie Thorisdottir competed in the original CrossFit Games. She’s been in the CrossFit Games for a long, long time. In the CrossFit world. She won the CrossFit Games back in what 2013, 2014, something like that. Or 2014, 2015 maybe. And since then, she podiumed one other time and then she was injured. She had a back injury. She also one time got a heat stroke during that really hot Murph year, 2016

Joy: Oh my God, remember that? We were there, right? Yeah, we went to that one. We went to that one. That one hurts to watch. She’s already very pale skinned. I just remember her looking white as a ghost because she was so dehydrated and just looked like she was going to pass out. Not a good program. Not a good program. Didn’t Kara Webb also pass out at the finish line?

Claire: Kara had COVID.

Joy: No, no, no, I’m talking about that year.

Claire: Yeah, she did. But she was able to kind of –

Joy: Yeah. Wait, Kara had COVID this year?

Claire: Yeah, she had to withdraw.

Joy: [gasps] I didn’t know that. See, I don’t follow any of those guys, just so you know.

Claire: She got COVID but had tested positive and then tested negative and they still let her compete. And she was like, “It feels like I have 10% lung capacity. I can’t do this” and so she withdrew. Which again guys, you can’t out fitness it.

Joy: You can’t out fitness it. It’s devastating. You worked your whole career, your whole year. Breaks my heart. Okay, continue. Annie.

Claire: So Annie had a baby last year. Her baby’s name is Freya. She’s so cute. And they kind of built it up as, is this going to be Annie’s comeback year. And every single time that they interviewed her, she was like, “I didn’t even think I was going to be here. I’m surprising myself by even having some to the Games.” In this snatch event, she was actually doing pretty well leading up from the weekend. Does this snatch event, ties for the heaviest snatch, and then loses to Tia in the tie breaker, which is fine. Gets second in the event. And gets a 205 lb. snatch. And if you guys haven’t seen this replay, go in the CrossFit Instagram and find it because her face when she catches the bar and realizes that she can lift, she’s looking around like, “Are you seeing this?”

Joy: It gives me chills. It gives me chills. It gives me chills.

Claire: It was unbelievable. She just looked so shocked at herself.

Joy: Those are the moments of the CrossFit Games that I love. Those are the moments of the CrossFit Games that I love, yes!

Claire: And they always happen during the heavy lifts. That’s why my favorite things at the CrossFit Games are the heavy lift ladders. So she gets this really heavy lift, comes in second in this event, and all of the sudden she’s like ten points out for third going into the final day. She goes into the final event, beats the person who she has to beat. Now, she’s tied for third. So going into the final final event, it was between Annie and… Kristin Holte. I don’t know why I couldn’t get there.

Joy: Which is very competitive. She’s great too. 

Claire: Which I was like, I’m sorry Kristin, no one is cheering for you right now. She’s wonderful. But man, I was so excited to see Annie, and I so wanted her to win. And the final even was this weird… was it the handstand pushup event? No, the second to last event was this free standing handstand pushup event. I’m watching Annie do it just screaming at the TV. We weren’t at the Games at this point. We were watching it in Brandon’s living room on the live stream. And the final event was a row, chest row pull-ups, and all these barbell lunges, like barbell walking lunges. On your back, on your front rack, and then overhead. And Annie just did so solid. When she crossed the finish line, she just immediately was in disbelief and was crying. The whole time, she just kept saying, “I didn’t even think I was going to be here, and now I just made it to the podium.” It was so fun to watch. I was so excited for her. I almost started crying when she was talking to Nicky. Hi, Nicky, if you’re listening.

Joy: Hi, Nicky.

Claire: So gracious, so wonderful. We interviewed her in Girls Gone WOD years and years and years ago. Now she’s on the Make WODs Great Again podcast. But she was saying, “I finally am starting to feel like I am back in control of my body and my mind.” When she said that, I was like –

Joy: Oh, all the moms.

Claire: I know that feeling. All the moms, we know that feeling.

Joy: That gives me chills.

Claire: We were talking to Laura Ligos a couple weeks ago, and she was like, “I understand now what people mean when they say ‘get my body back.’” But it’s not just about –

Joy: It’s not like bouncing back into size whatever. 

Claire: You truly feel like you want to be in control of your body again and you want to feel like it’s familiar. So when she said that, I just had such a moment of empathy for her. That will forever be one of my favorite CrossFit Games moments of all time.

Joy: That’s so cool. That’s so cool. Love to Annie.

Claire: Love to Annie. Well in this episode, I was going to interview Joy. I had this master plan. I was like, “We’re going to interview each other.” We’re going to do a whole thing. But I feel like now I want to give that its own –

Joy: Breathing room?

Claire: I want to give that its own time.

Joy: For me? Yeah. We can do that next time.

Claire: I want you to be able to talk about yourself.

Joy: Oh my gosh, do we really need to ask me more questions? But yeah. Well, we can do some listener emails because I have a couple really good ones that I would like to address. I’m going to keep both anonymous. One says, “First, thanks for being you. I’ve been listening since the beginning of GGW, and I feel like I know you two. You bring light to my week every Thursday. I wanted to write in with a question after listening to last week’s episode on the importance of leaving toxic situations. I just started my first job post graduate school, and there are definitely toxic aspects to it, but I still feel like it is the best starting job for me right now. I had a few other job offers and took this one because of the extended vacation time and other benefits that I felt would make for a better life-career balance, which is hard to attain in academia. I fully expect to grow out of this job, but I am really hoping that I can stay 3-4 years to get the experience that I need to move into a leadership role at a different university. Do either of you have advice for ways to make something like this more bearable. I truly think it is the best option for me for a first job post grad school, however I see people who are ahead of me in their career and have jobs with much more flexibility and a more positive environment and wonder if I am selling myself short. Am I kidding myself when I say I need to stay for 3-4 years, or is this a normal part of adulting and just a stepping stone? If that, how can I glamorize this stepping stone and see it as a launch pad to what I want to do in the future?”

Claire: I think this is a great question because it does definitely take something into account that is often the elephant in the room when you talk about not staying in toxic work places or getting out of situations that aren’t ideal. That elephant is, yeah, but sometimes you can’t have your cake and eat it too. Especially if you want to be in a really specific field, sometimes you really have to take what you can get. And especially if you’re new to the field or you’re new to the career, and also depending on your vocation sometime – sorry if you guys can hear Evie in the background. She’s out there playing. Sometimes you have to have those kind of grunt jobs. There are certain industries where those earlier jobs, no matter how much you wish that wasn’t the case, there really aren’t that many opportunities other than to go through in a way almost like hazing.

Joy: Yeah, like putting in your time type of thing.

Claire: Yeah, like putting in your time.

Joy: That’s very much seen in behavioral health too. You work in residential. You put in your time. But I skipped that part because I was like, I’m not doing it.

Claire: Even in healthcare. For Brandon, when you’re a new nurse, you work in med surg. That’s a very tiring job. Not that many people last there for very long. It’s seen as a launch pad. And I think that my advice here would be you’re not locked into anything, unless you sign a contract which it doesn’t sound like you have. But it also does sound like you’ve taken a lot of things into consideration here where this is the best option for you and that’s the best that you can do. I think that that is the overarching answer that we all have to be okay with is that the best thing for you in this moment might not always be the absolute ultimate choice that you can make for your mental health if that’s the only thing that you’re taking into account. Because there are other things you have to take into account like the pay, like the work-life balance, like the trajectory that this is going to get you towards. The work environment is not always the only factor that matters. Until it gets to that point where you can’t stand anything else and no amount of vacation time and no amount of future career opportunities are worth the toxicity, then I think that it sounds like you’re where you need to be. When I went through that job that I left and it was super toxic, part of the reason that I had been in that job and stayed as long as I did was because it was worth it to me to get the experience in that industry. How many people do you know that stay in toxic jobs because of the money? I’m not saying that that’s the right reason, but I am saying that it’s not all or nothing when it comes to the culture or the workplace values, and those other things are completely reasonable to have weight in that decision.

Joy: I agree with that. I would just add that it depends on what is toxic. So if it’s something that’s crappy coworkers that you feel like are just really annoying and there’s a lot of drama, then I would do my best to stay away and interact with them as little as possible. So define what, for you, what is toxic about it. Because that really has a lot to do with it. If you are in a situation that is really killing your soul so bad that you can’t give your best self, I would evaluate whether or not it’s worth it to stay. Because you really want to be honest with yourself of, is this something that’s giving me inspiration, that I’m getting the experience that I want, or am I just grinding through and dreading work every single day? I don’t think that’s a way to live, and I would try to find other options. It’s not to say, quit today. But I would look for other options because I’m not one thousand percent convinced that this would be your only option and that you should stay 3-4 years. But like Claire said, weighing the pros and cons of if this is something that you can say, alright, yeah, I can grind through this and get the experience. Because that to me is more important than these toxic issues in the workplace. But it really kind of depends on what is the toxic thing that’s happening.

Claire: I also think if you have those people who you do see are in the position that you want in the future or who are in a position with a similar amount of experience as you that look like they’re in a better spot, reach out to them and say, “Hey, can I buy you a cup of coffee and just talk to you about your career trajectory and get some perspective on why you’ve made the choices that you have or how you’ve gotten to the place that you’re at.” I feel like not enough people do that. Right now, there’s always so much discussion around, pay people for their time and don’t just think you can pick their brains. But I think the flip side of that is there is a level of mentorship that people really love to do. If you are reaching out to someone new to a field and saying, “Hey, let me take you out to lunch. I just want to hear about your career and how you got to where you are.” I really recommend that. I have done that to a lot of people that I work with, and I find that so, so, so valuable.

Joy: Yeah. Good advice. Keep us posted. Keep us posted. Alright, the next email comes from Tori. “Hi Joy and Claire.” She doesn’t need to be anonymous. She’s okay with this. “No need to answer. I just wanted to chime in because the podcast this week really spoke to me.” The topic of this one is follow your passion. So that was when we were talking about the follow your passion podcast. “You were talking about following your passion and the money will follow and the way you feel about that statement. I feel like I am living that right now, not to brag. I just started a kids’ empowerment running program in my community. I’m about to quit my full-time job to do this as my sole income, if things all go well. I would have never imagined I could combine my love of running with my passion for helping and be able to make a living. But just to give some perspective, I’ve been working in behavioral health for years and working 20+ hours of overtime every week.” Woof. “I have a master’s degree and was always discouraged that even though I loved what I did, I was never going to make good money working for non-profits in this field. I gave birth to my surprise son three months ago, and leaving him for a job that is so draining was getting to me.” Like, leaving him to go to work. “So here I am following my passion and praying that the money keeps coming in. If you know any parents in Chester County, Pennsylvania, tell them to check out Meraki Run Club. Also, congrats on the BetterHelp job, Joy. I worked with a therapist through BetterHelp to assist me with postpartum and had a great experience. Thanks for listening to my ramblings. Tori.” Thank you, Tori. So check that out if you guys are in Chester County. Meraki Run Club.

Claire: We’ll link to it.

Joy: Give her a little plug. That’s what we’ve got.

Claire: That’s what we’ve got.

Joy: We’re done. Your job is to leave a review. By the way, leave a 5-star rating and review, but also I’m very excited to announce that I got us a discount code for listeners for Hairstory. So you guys know how much I love Hair Wash. I always post about it. If you don’t know, now you know. It is a –

Claire: New Wash.

Joy: Hairstory is the company, and the product is called New Wash.

Claire: I know, but you said Hair Wash.

Joy: Oh Hair Wash, New Wash. Thank you. The Hairstory New Wash product is one of my favorite products. You can get a discount code if you go to hairstory.com and enter JOY10, that will get a discount off your first order. So you can support the podcast that way. You can also support the podcast by going to Eat to Evolve and entering code JOYCLAIRE15. That will get you 20% off of your order. And one of our favorite, Double Under Wonder, doubleunderwonder.com. The discount code is JOY. We’ve got three products for you to try. We’ve got food. We’ve got New Wash. And we’ve got a jump rope. This is our podcast. The variety, what could you want?

Claire: And guys, I’m not saying I would eat Eat to Evolve barbecue chicken salad every day, but I could.

Joy: I absolutely do.

Claire: I’m going to put in an order for literally nothing but just like ten of those.

Joy: Yeah, and the sweet potato family style salad is just delicious. And they’ve got great burgers.

Claire: I had the sweet chili chicken for lunch today.

Joy: I really like the banana paleo bites. Oh my gosh.

Claire: I like the mulberry ones. 

Joy: Yeah. 

Claire: They’re salsa’s good too.

Joy: Oh yeah, you got their salsa too.

Claire: So good. Alright guys, thank you for joining us. We will talk to you next week.

Joy: Bye guys.

Claire: Bye.

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