By Ali Johnson
The CrossFit Open is upon us, and it’s an exciting time for both CrossFit veterans and newbies alike! The Open is considered the first stage of the CrossFit Games season, and it’s your chance to see how you compare to CrossFit athletes around the world; every CrossFit affiliate has the chance to participate in the Open, and it’s a ton of fun (plus a great way to challenge yourself) regardless of whether you have aspirations of going to the CrossFit Games.
What is the CrossFit Open?
The Open consists of 5 workouts across 5 weeks; each workout is announced on Thursday evening, and athletes have until Monday evening to complete the workout and enter their scores. Every CrossFit affiliate will complete the exact same workout, albeit there are different versions (RX, scaled, masters, teens, etc.)
The workouts are named for the year in which they’re performed, however this year is the first time there will be 2 CrossFit opens in the same year. Last Spring we completed the 2019 CrossFit Open, but the 2020 Open began yesterday, October 10, 2019. Because this is considered the start of the 2020 Open, workouts will be called 20.1, 20.2, 20.3, etc.
The live announcement of the workout will stream from the CrossFit website, and each week the announcement will come from a different participating affiliate. Immediately following the announcement, 2 athletes from the chosen affiliate will complete the workout and demonstrate the standards.
What is the purpose of the CrossFit Open?
The CrossFit Open is considered one of the largest fitness competitions in the world, and it’s mainly used as the first qualifying stage for the CrossFit Games. If you want to participate in the Games, you have to qualify in your region by participating in the Open. The Open (and the Games) are designed to test your fitness levels to the extreme…this isn’t the time to train, it’s the culmination of your training. You should give each workout everything you’ve got and leave it all out on the floor (probably in a puddle of sweat).
Don’t plan to qualify for the Games? You should still participate! In fact, only a very small percentage of people who sign up for the Open actually go to the Games. Participating in the Open is a great way to give meaning to your training; set goals for yourself at the beginning, you’ll be amazed at what you can do! It’s been said that magic happens during the Open…athletes who have struggled all year to get that first chest to bar pull-up, or PR their 1RM snatch often surprise themselves at what they can accomplish when the pressure’s on!
How can you get the most out of your experience?
The Open is a great way to track your fitness progress. The Open isn’t necessarily about beating other people- it’s about doing your best and seeing improvement from year to year. 2 years ago in the 2017 Open I could barely lift the 20lb dumbbell off the ground, and I got time-capped in a scaled workout doing dumbbell snatches. Last year, not only was I able to make it through all the scaled workouts using the 20lb dumbbell, I even attempted a few movements using the 35# DB. If I hadn’t participated in the Open year after year, I might not ever have challenged myself to pick up the heavier weight. And you bet I was damn proud of my progress after remembering how much I struggled just a short while before!
The point is, set goals for yourself and track your progress. Enter your results even if they aren’t perfect. Take some risks and attempt the RX workout (if you can do it safely) even if you think you might get time-capped. Go for that first muscle-up even if you’ve never successfully done one before. Give it your all, and have fun doing it…you’ll be amazed at what you’re capable of.
If you’re working out at CF3P, it’s not too late to join a team! Teams “Turn Down for WOD” and “Old Town Row’d” will be competing throughout the 5 weeks of the Open for bragging rights to see which team has the fittest, most enthusiastic members! Have fun dressing up according to each week’s theme, enjoy some delicious food provided by local businesses, get your sweat on, and cheer on your friends! Our Friday Night Lights events are always a blast, and it’s surely something you won’t want to miss.
Sign up for the Open here!