Twice Rolex Sailor of the Year and Olympic Gold medalist, Anna Tunnicliffe (USA) alternates between sailing aboard Alinghi in the Extreme Sailing Series, and chasing a serious ranking in the world of CrossFit.
At the top of the 25' rope climb - 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games
She skipped sailing aboard the Extreme 40 Alinghi in the Extreme Sailing Series in St Petersburg, Russia. But she will be back aboard as tactician for the next regatta in Wales
Born in England, Tunnicliffe moved to USA at the age of 12, and pursued a promising track career before giving that away in favour of sailing, where she won a Gold Medal in the Womens Singlehander in 2008 and won the Womens Match Racing event at the 2011 ISAF World Championships in Perth. She represented USA in that event at the 2012 Olympics but did not make the medal podium.
CrossFit is becoming increasingly popular amongst sailors as a way of physically preparing for the sport, as it is less monotonous than other physical training processes and better replicates the physical sailing activities on board a racing boat.
Yesterday wrapped up the 2014 CrossFit Games. I ended up 22nd overall, with which I'm a little disappointed but the overall experience of participating in the Games and competing with so many inspiring women was great!
- 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games
We had three events yesterday to conclude the Games. The first one was called Midline March...and by midline they meant your midline, aka your core! And today, I'm feeling it a little. The WOD was: 3 rounds of 25 GHD sit-ups (glutes/hamstrings development), 50ft handstand walk, which had to be done unbroken, and 50ft overhead lunge at 115lbs. I was thankful that this WOD was mainly off the feet, although the lunges were a little tough. I made it through all but the last set of lunges. I was on pace to finish, but fell on my last handstand walk about 25ft in, so had to return to the start line of that section and restart the walk. That ate up a bit of my time and left me with about 30 seconds to make the lunges, which wasn't quite enough.
From there, we were taken onto the tennis stadium floor for the announcement of the last WOD of the Games. The field was cut to the top 30 athletes at this point. We were told the final event was a 7-rep event: four rope climbs followed by 3 overhead squats at 165 pounds. But then, the big surprise, there was a second event, details of which would be told to us immediately following the first event. We would be held in seclusion without our phones or coaches or anything so we would have no way of knowing what the WOD was going to be until it was announced to us with us waiting to start. We were able to head back to the athlete area and grab whatever we thought we would need, and then headed back to the tennis stadium and were held in a locker room. Ten minutes before our heat, we were allowed to warm up in the weight room. We then hit the floor and started the first WOD.
Anna Tunnicliffe - 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games
The ropes were a lot thicker than normal climbing ropes so it made the forearms burn and blow up quite quickly. The 4 climbs went quite well for me and I was first off the rope in my heat but then, when I got to the overhead squats, I started to struggle. I got the weight up and went for my first rep. I apparently didn't squat low enough and got a no rep. As I went for my next squat, I lost balance of the bar and ended up dropping it. I managed to get the bar up again before the time cap and got in one rep but then ran out of time.
From there we were given one minute to get back to our mats as Dave Castro announced the next WOD...Double 'Grace' (60 clean and jerks at 95lbs). I had a decent WOD and after knocking out the first ten linked together, I switched to fast singles. My time was enough to win my heat, but wasn't fast enough to hold up against the later heats and I ended up 7th in the WOD. I was disappointed with that, although it felt good to finally put a decent WOD together again.
Overall I finished 22nd. It was nowhere near where I wanted to finish, and was really bummed last night, but today I am focused on next year already and will, after a few days off, get back to training.
I have to say some huge Thank You's to a few people. First and foremost, Brad. Although the overall result was a disappointment, I couldn't have done what we did this year without you. I appreciate you giving me your-all all year long and I'm sorry I couldn't give you what we had hoped for, but you truly are amazing as a coach and as a friend! I love you!
Anna Tunnicliffe - 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games
Secondly, my families. My immediate family, Mum and Dad, David and Bekah, for your encouragement throughout the year and event and also my CF Mt. Lebanon family for cheering for me from both California and Pittsburgh! You guys are the best family anyone could ask for!
And finally but definitely not least, my sponsors: Inov-8, Skins, NormaTec, SpiderTech, Theromega Sports, RxSmartGear and FitAid. I am very fortunate and truly blessed to have such great sponsors and support! Again, I couldn't do what I do without you all!!
Brad and I are up in Capitola for a couple days relaxing and visiting our friends before heading back to Pittsburgh tomorrow night.
The next event for me is back to the Extreme 40 sailing series with Alinghi in Cardiff towards the end of August.
4D's: Dream;Desire;Dedication;Determination SM
3P's: Passion...Progression...Perfection SM
Anna Tunnicliffe also crews as tactician aboard Alinghi - 2014 Extreme Sailing Series