Lindsey Smith's Training

August 27, 2009 1:39 PM

Posted in Competitors »
15 Comments » on this entry

Games09LindseySmithChipperBoxJump.jpgLindsey Smith (5th overall) had never even been inside a CrossFit affiliate before the Hell's Half Acre regional qualifiers this year. She writes about her training up to the Games:

As with many other CrossFit competitors, I have a background filled with athletics beginning at a very young age. Approaching college I was told I would have to choose one sport and put all of my energy into that one sport, and I did for a short while, but after being blessed with a soccer scholarship to DePaul University, I did my best to defy the odds and pursued basketball and track and field at the collegiate level as well. For most of my young adult life my days were consumed by practice, team lifting sessions, and individualized conditioning with my strength coach, Tim Lang. In short, multiple practices in a single day became my norm.

Carey Peterson made a quick video of Lindsey from the Games ... [wmv] [mov]

Post-college, I found myself in a bit of a rut. I had never trained for aesthetics and I felt like that was the path I was headed down and I hated it. I briefly considered triathlons and figure competitions, but upon finding out that my husband and I would be having our first child, my desire to "find my niche" was put on hold. I worked out throughout my pregnancy as best I could and was actually scolded by my husband, Webster, when he realized I was doing 100m sprints, just days before having our daughter.

During my pregnancy, Web took up CrossFit. His enthusiasm grew daily, to the point I almost found it annoying. 3 on 1 off, workouts named after people, days with hundreds of reps, days with very few reps... it was all new to me. I tried to "kinda" do CrossFit for several months after having our daughter, Alexis, but it just was not working. I would supplement the low rep days with my own enhanced versions of the workouts. I quickly got discouraged and saw little improvement.

Web challenged me to train for the qualifier and in January of 2009 I decided to commit to the main site only, for two weeks straight. I told him I would make my decision after the

two weeks. It was during those two weeks that I discovered what CrossFit really is and what it could do for me. My appreciation for my new sport grew instantaneously!

Leading up to the qualifier, I had never stepped foot in a CrossFit box. I knew little about the affiliates in our area, nor was I willing to pay someone to tell me to do something I felt I was very capable of accomplishing in my garage, at the park, or in a high school weight room, when absolutely necessary. Although I rarely posted, I kept up with those who did and would try to beat the times/reps/weights I found on the main site each and every day. Naturally, I was always trying to beat Web as well.

Every workout also began with what Web calls our CrossFit warm-up and despite my grumbling, he never let me cut it out. It consists of 3 sets of 10 overhead squats, 15 sit-ups, 15 back extensions, 10 pullups, 10 push-ups and 100 double-unders. I always hated this part of the workout, but it really became my foundation. Regardless of what the daily WOD called for, I had hit my basics. In large part, I credit this dreaded routine to my success.

Luckily, this worked well enough for me to claim a spot at the Qualifier. To say the Qualifier was an eye-opener for me would be an understatement. I really had no idea what I was about to become a part of and how it would change my life. Having met many amazing people, my perspective of CrossFit was once again altered in a positive manner. Upon returning to Houston I hooked up with several local affiliates, particularly, Atomic CrossFit, and our family made many weekend journeys to Austin to train with the elite of CrossFit Central. If I wanted to be the best, I needed to train with the best. I quickly learned that training in a box was about much more than "being told what to do."

I remained consistent with the main site WOD's leading up until about 4 weeks from the games, at which point I began focusing on some areas of weakness. On the weekends I would do multiple WODs. When the last chance qualifier workouts were announced I headed to Central to knock them out in a single day. I chased after Crystal McReynolds through a few 300 workouts and followed the path Carey Kepler burnt before me up a monstrous hill in Austin. I tried to expose myself to any and every CrossFit exercise I could possibly imagine. No, a sledge hammer was not anticipated. I tried to do the workouts as Rx whenever possible, rarely scaling the weights to a "women's standard." This often led to slower times, but was a great contributor to my confidence at both the qualifier and the Games.

I love to compete and CrossFit has provided me that platform. I was blessed with the opportunity to compete this year and I will do whatever it takes to not let that go. Web and I blog a lot about our diet, workouts, and life in general. You can check it out at

15 comments on this entry.

1. Webster Smith wrote...

August 27, 2009 5:00 PM

I am so proud of her! She works so hard to maintain that level of fitness around work and her master's in engineering. I can not wait to see what 2010 has in store.

2. Kim Malz~FitMom wrote...

August 27, 2009 5:46 PM

SPLENDID story Lindsey! You most certainly had a remarkable performance at the 2009 Games.

All the best for continued success with Web, Alexis, and CrossFit.

3. Christy Phillips wrote...

August 27, 2009 7:41 PM

Lindsey, it was a pleasure meeting you at the games. I feel like somehow we always ended up standing next to each other in the down time between workouts. You impressed me with how calm cool and collected you came across but anyone could tell there was all this fire and intensity burning underneath the surface. I am amazed that you only started training CrossFit in Jan and I am scared to death to see what a year and a half of training will do! ;)

4. Linker wrote...

August 28, 2009 4:54 AM

Not sure how many more times I can see "complete Games coverage coming soon" at the end, I'm dying to get that video!

5. Kris Kepler wrote...

August 28, 2009 6:31 AM

not even my wife Web, and I'm proud of her! this is no hype, a legitimate top 3 finisher next year.

6. Winchester wrote...

August 28, 2009 9:50 AM

7. carey wrote...

August 29, 2009 5:07 AM

Lyndsey you are a beautiful beast of an athlete. I enjoyed training with you and look forward to training again this year for 2010 games. A little of me wishes I could hold on to at least one secret to not let you in on in case I have to pull it out at the games next year, but the truth is, I am going to make sure I tell you everything and push you to be the best, everybody better watch out for this rock star next year, I got a good feeling ... Keep it up girl, your Awesome!

8. Jeremy Thiel wrote...

August 29, 2009 4:01 PM

Lyndsey and Web,

Two words for you World Class! Lyndsey you did amazing this year and I pick you as a top three this coming year.

As for Webster your day is coming!

Jeremy T

9. Tanya Wagner wrote...

August 29, 2009 5:13 PM


You are a great person and an awesome athlete! I'm so happy I got to meet you. You are genuine through and through and I really enjoyed every time we talked. I'm so glad you listened to your husband and drank the cool aid! Josh and I would still really love to come visit you and Web, we would have a blast together! Great job this are going to be even scarier next year :) Keep training hard, you've got it!

Tanya :)

10. G wrote...

August 29, 2009 7:50 PM


Your amazing energy is so infectious and you continue to amaze us, earth people.

We're one of your biggest fans! You're gonna rock at the CFG2010!


11. Lindsey Smith wrote...

September 1, 2009 12:14 PM

Thank you guys so much for the support!

Christy, It was great getting to know you. Shoot me an email if you have uploaded that pic we took together after the last event on Sunday. I would love to get a copy. You are right, I was relatively calm. I spent way too many years of my life psyching myself out before competitions, too bad it took me 26 years to figure out that's not what works best for me!

Tanya, Girl we would love for you and Josh to come visit! Please let me know when you want to make a trip to Texas. We look forward to following your lead and being one of the few married couples to compete next summer!

Carey and J.T.,
Thanks for being awesome. At times, you believed in me more than I believed in myself. I cannot tell you what that did for my confidence. You are both life-long friends and I can't wait to see what the year holds!

12. irishrhino wrote...

September 1, 2009 2:50 PM

Lindsay, what load would you use for the overhead squats in your warmup routine?



13. Lindsey Smith wrote...

September 2, 2009 5:33 AM

Most frequently I would simply use a 45 lb bar. Although if the Rx'ed WOD was a pull-up only or similar type workout for the day, I may bump it up to 75 or 95 lbs. Over time, the consistency of this movement really improved my core stability with OH lifts. Hope that helps!

14. Crossfitchick wrote...

October 2, 2009 8:07 AM

Great Job at the games!!!! I am intrigued.... How long after you had your baby did you start training fot the games?? I am 34 weeks pregnant and cant wait to start training at high intensity!

October 7, 2009 1:18 PM

Thanks girl! I started training within 3 weeks of having our daughter, although I was careful to allow my abdominal separation to close (as much as possible) before hitting the core related exercise hard again. I also laid low on the jumping for a litte while. I had Alexis on December 11 and by March 1 I was back to my normal training regimen. Congratulations on the baby and best of luck in your training!