Annie came into the Games in the best shape of her life. Her finale camps on Iceland and in LA had gone well and she was confident leading up to the event. Unfortunately, due to health concerns, our favorite Icelandic CrossFitter was forced to withdraw from the competition on the finale day after suffering a heat stroke during event 3, Murph.
We caught up with Annie to check in and hear how she is doing.
– Annie, thank you for being with us. Can you tell us what happened during Murph?
Yes, as you have heard, I overheated during Murph suffering a heat injury. My body felt heavier than ever, I was dizzy and had blurred vision. I was severally dehydrated, but determined not to quit even though I could easily tell that something was wrong. It was more than the normal exhaustion, which I believe all athletes at the Games have been through. I don’t remember the last part of the run or being taking into medical care facility under the stub hub center. They toke great care of me at the medical area. I got 2,5L of IV, they checked my temperature and ran some blood tests. The electrolyte levels were good which means, that I was properly hydrated prior for the next event. They were able to get me on my feet and told me I would most likely not cause my body further damage by going out to the floor. It didn’t even cross my mind to withdraw at this point and I finished out Friday surprisingly well.
I hardly slept through out the night because of discomfort and heat. I woke up on Saturday, arms and legs very swollen and pain throughout my body. I got some manual therapy done and went out to the field hoping to feel like myself. My mind was ready to go but my body did not want to respond. On Sunday morning, I had gotten worse and had to make the tough decision to withdraw.
– Can you take us through some of your thoughts leading up to that decision?
Everyone that makes it to the Games is there to challenge themselves, we come to push ourselves to the limit. We have worked extremely hard to get here and to prepare mentally and physically. I know my body well and believe I have pushed myself further and further to extend that limit. I realized on Saturday that this wasn’t just normal fatigue and soreness. I didn’t feel like I knew my body at that point. It gave up so much earlier than my mind. I wasn’t myself out there. On Sunday, I woke up in an even worse shape and I knew this wasn’t right. At that point, when your body gives out, it is hard because your mind is telling you to push through reminding you of all the hard work you put it. But we have to listen. I knew that I was not physically capable at that point.
I had great support from the people, I care most about. My boyfriend, Frederik Ægidius, my coach, Jami Tikkanen and my family. That being said, it was a very hard decision to make.
– The support from your fans before and even after that decision has been tremendous. Where you at all worried about the reaction of the CrossFit Community?
I have been really humbled by the reactions. I still see myself as an ordinary girl, who is just really passionate about her sport. So when I opened my social media accounts and saw how many people had taken the time to write personal messages of support, it really affected me. The same goes for the crowd in Carson – this community is so supportive. When I look back on Games 2015, that is what will stand out to me. I have enjoyed every second of being here even though it did not end the way, I wanted it to.
– Thank you for your time Annie. Before we let you go, can you tell us what your program looks like going forward?
Yes. I am is still in Carson undergoing various test to fully identify the reason behind the heat stroke. As an athlete, it is extremely important to know your body and learn from these experiences by taking the time to understand the events. The doctor has told me to take some time off and we are evaluating as we go along. Fortunately, I will sustain no permanent injury from this. And then, as soon as I can, I am hitting the gym!
Photo credit: The CrossFit Games