CrossFit Open 13.4 workout was:
7 minutes of as many reps as possible of:
3 clean and jerks @135
3 toes to bar
6 clean and jerks
6 toes to bar
9 clean and jerks
9 toes to bar
12 clean and jerks
12 toes to bar
And so on until the time runs out
My initial thoughts when I first saw this workout were the toes to bar could be a problem for me. The clean and jerks weren’t too heavy at that weight (being that my 1RM clean and jerk was 265#).
I gained some confidence when I saw Graham Holmberg, the 2010 CrossFit Game champion break up his toes to bars during the workout.
CrossFit Open 13.4 Strategy
My game plan was to attack the 3, 6, and 9 rep clean and jerks by not dropping the bar, but holding on and cycling through the reps. This is faster, but can be more taxing on the body. Once I started my set of 12 reps, I would drop the bar each rep to preserve energy and pace.
For the toes to bar, I planned to go unbroken through 3, 6, and 9 reps, then do 6-6 for 12, and 5-5-5 for 15. If I got into the round of 18 reps, I would be happy.
When the clock started everything went as planned. At least at first…
3 clean and jerks, done.
3 toes to bar, done.
6 clean and jerks, done.
6 toes to bar, done.
9 clean and jerks, drop! I hit the 5th rep on this set, and dropped the bar. I was improvising from my game plan. I felt like cycling the barbell on this set was too taxing. So I dropped the bar, stepped back, then got back to work finishing the set.
9 toes to bar, done.
12 clean and jerks, dropped every rep, but it was quick. No rest, just drop, and pick up the barbell. Drop, and pick it back up.
12 toes to bar, 6-6.
15 clean and jerks, done. Again I dropped every rep, but felt strong, and stayed quick.
15 toes to bar, 5-5-3-2. I ran out of gas on the last 5 toes to bar, but I dropped from the bar, took a breath, and jumped right back up. Done.
18 clean and jerks. The time was running down. I had about 1 minutes left. I cleaned and jerked the bar, one after another. No resting (except while the barbell fell to the ground). I was getting tired, but kept telling myself “one more rep. I can do one more rep.” My body didn’t let me down. I worked as hard as I could, and got 12 reps before the clock ran out of time.
I laid on the floor. I knew I did better than expected, but I was too tired to figure out what my score was. I asked the judge if I got over 100. She said she thought so. After a few seconds of calculating the reps, my judge told me I got 102 reps. I was happy!
This was the first of the CrossFit Open workouts that I actually achieved what I thought I was capable of. It seemed the conditioning was still paying off. I didn’t know if it would be good enough to help my team qualify for Regionals, but it felt great to perform well.
The final CrossFit Open workout was 1 week away, and the anticipation was already building. We hasn’t seen pull-ups or the dreaded thruster in any of the Open workouts. Would they bring them again this year, or mix things up…