This is my first post about the CrossFit Games, and my experience in doing the CrossFit Open competition. As I write this I’m wondering why I haven’t been writing more about this… There has been so much that I’ve learned about myself and my fitness by competing in the CrossFit Games Open workouts. Let me step back and quickly explain what the CrossFit Games are, and how this all works.
How the CrossFit Games Open Works
The CrossFit Games is a competition to figure out who’s the fittest man and woman in the world. Sounds like a daunting task right?! Well they start off at the regional level with what CrossFit calls the “Open“. In the CrossFit Open there are five workouts (at lease this year there were five). Each workout is released on Wednesday at 5pm PST, and must be completed and submitted by the following Sunday at 5pm PST. You can complete the workouts by doing them at a certified CrossFit affiliate or by videotaping yourself doing the workout, uploading the video to YouTube, and submitting the YouTube link for CrossFit to judge you. After completing each workout you are giving a ranking in your region, and the world. After completing all five workouts the top 60 men, and top 60 women move on to the CrossFit Regionals where they go head to head to find the top three in each region. The top three in each region move onto the CrossFit Games in California.
My humbling CrossFit Open
I think of myself as a pretty darn good athlete, and over the years I feel like I’ve done some pretty cool things, but competing in the CrossFit Games Open has taught me how much I can still improve. I went into this competition thinking that it would be hard to be fully recovered from last years Ironman (Cozumel and Canada) and ultra marathon (Bear Mountain NY) events, and that probably true, but either way I have some SERIOUS improvements to make. CrossFit does not favor the specialist, and you have to be “good” at everything!
The CrossFit Open Workouts
7 minutes of burpees
I’ve always liked burpees, and this workout taught me how to be efficient with burpees rather than just fast. My score was 113, and what I noticed was the top athletes consistently dropped right into the next burpee without any delay or dipping of their knees. They just fell…
Proceed through the sequence below completing as many reps as possible in 10 minutes of:
75 pound Snatch, 30 reps
135 pound Snatch, 30 reps
165 pound Snatch, 30 reps
210 pound Snatch, as many reps as possible
This was my strongest of the Open workouts. I was able to get 67 reps, but it was purely due to strength and not much else. What I learned is that I need to hire a Olympic lifting coach to become more efficient and clean in these types of movements. You really have to move your body structure without any wasted effort.
Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 18 minutes of:15 Box jumps, 24″ box
115 pound Push press, 12 reps
I felt good about this workout with the exception of the toes to bar. Box jumps and push presses I have learned to be efficient at, although there is always room for improvement. On this workout I got 9 rounds, and was limited by the number of toes to bar that I could string together.
Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 12 minutes of:
150 Wall balls (20lbs to 10′ target)
This is a great workout, but to be honest I wasn’t happy about seeing it. Double unders and muscle ups are two things that I can do, but I haven’t practiced enough to be really competitive at. This workout was set up so that most people wouldn’t get through a full round, and I certainly didn’t. I got through 8 muscle ups, and learned that I need to get better at double unders by getting my own speed jump rope (and practicing with it), and develop a better kip more rather than relying on too much strength during the muscle ups.
Complete as many reps as possible in 7 minutes following the rep scheme below:
100 pound Thruster, 3 reps
3 Chest to bar Pull-ups
100 pound Thruster, 6 reps
6 Chest to bar Pull-ups
100 pound Thruster, 9 reps
9 Chest to bar Pull-ups
100 pound Thruster, 12 reps
12 Chest to bar Pull-ups
100 pound Thruster, 15 reps
15 Chest to bar Pull-ups
100 pound Thruster, 18 reps
18 Chest to bar Pull-ups
100 pound Thruster, 21 reps
21 Chest to bar Pull-ups…
This is a timed workout. If you complete the round of 21, go on to 24. If you complete 24, go on to 27, etc.
This workout is essentially Fran on steroids. I was hoping for a heavy workout, but the best CrossFitter doesn’t care what the workout is, they’re going to crush it either way. I took that mindset as I went into the workout. I completed the workout twice, getting scores of 111, and 114. During the workout I paced myself because I knew that the pull ups would catch up with me, and they did at the round of 15, where I had to do two reps at a time. After doing this workout, and getting crushed, and then watching some top athletes like Josh Bridges, and Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, it’s just amazing how good they are!
Stay tuned for a “what I learned from the CrossFit Open” type of post coming in the next few days.
Now get outside and have fun by working hard! 🙂