“It is not the inn, but the road.” – Mister Maxism
Death, taxes, and the CrossFit Open. Inevitabilities. And every time one of these certainties presents itself there are several inescapable reactions to them. Death brings with it many different emotions depending on the circumstance and relationship. Taxes most often bring gloom and despair – the house must have its rake. And then there is the Open.
Right around this time every year since 2011, the CrossFit Open has descended upon us in one form or another. The first workout from the 2011 Open, affectionately called 11.1, was repeated this year for the first workout of 2014, or 14.1. We are in the 4th evolution of the Open, and CrossFit has become exceedingly efficient with it.
But with the Open comes the usual reactions. In the month or so leading up to it there is a lot of excitement and buzz.
“What will it hold in store this year?”
“What will the repeat workout be?”
“Who will come out on top?”
“Will I improve upon last year?
“Will I beat Rich Froning Jr.?”
And then the first workout releases and people begin attacking it. There is rare satisfaction with their performance. It is mostly a desire to do better than they did on their first attempt. So maybe they repeat the workout. Sometimes there is an improvement upon the original score, sometimes they end up worse off. Now the sentiments begin to change.
“I am underperforming.”
“I hate how light the Open always is.”
“I need to start doing more work right now so I can do a better job next week.”
“Why isn’t Grant doing the Open?”
And this is where people begin to be shortsighted. A lot of people hold themselves up to a standard that is unreasonable. They do not understand that to be in the top 1% requires you to quit your job and train full time – see Alex Anderson sitting 30th in the world. And then the coaches have to do damage control. We have to realign your purposes, goals, and expectations. And that is what I aim to do with this blog post.
Understand that you are using CrossFit as a tool to improve your fitness, wellness, and lifestyle. CrossFit Ktown is not just making you a better athlete, we are making you a better human. Do not get so caught up in the competitive sport that is CrossFit, that is unless you are making the necessary sacrifices in your daily life to warrant getting caught up with it. If you want to be competitive in the sport then you must understand a couple of things.
It matters very little what you do during February and March because that is not the work that will impact your Open performance. The work that affects your Open performance the most is what you are doing from August-January. So reset expectations if you were not on a program during those six months to elicit the best possible outcome for the Open competition.
The sport of CrossFit has enough money in it now, whether that is from the actual cash prizes from the Games or sponsorship opportunities, that athletes can make a living from just training. You do not make a living from just training. You have kids, you have a job, you might be in school, you have other priorities! You do not value CrossFit as a sport, you value it as a means to make your life more enjoyable. Remember that.
Now this does not mean I want you to care less about the Open. I want you to care differently. Keep that same passion and intensity, but view the Open through the veil of progress and the journey YOU have been on during your time at Ktown. Embrace and honor that journey. It is still so nascent, even if you have been with us for our entire five years. You have come so far, but you still have so far to go. Keep remembering BOTH of those truths.
“You will never be lovelier than you are now, and we will never be here again.” – Achilles in Troy