It's just five WOD's.
Seriously how hard could it be.
I think Ricky put it best, '..if it was just the WOD on the board and you didn't call it the Open, you'd turn up , do it and go home, but instead you obsess for a few days. lose your shit, do it, hate it and then wonder if you should do it again...'
The Open is pitched as an all encompassing worldwide on-line fitness competition. And whilst it is all that the most important point is this - for 95% of us the real competition is simply against ourselves. A few people mentioned they thought the Open was only for the elite, or competitors or more advanced CrossFitters.
In my first Open 4 years ago, I posted spectacular scores like '0' - there were some WODs I simply couldn't do. The real success is looking back now and realising that today you can crush what a few years ago you couldn't dream of doing. The Open gives you a great platform to record your capacity and skill at a moment in time and then re-test it a year later, and a year later and a year later. And be proud of your progress.
So let's go some highlights - the great, the weird and the downright funny.
I like to call them my Top 5 - Open 2014
5. The day Danny Bro-Flex came to town.
This is awesome, sometimes (make that always) your mental headspace determines the outcome - good or bad. The ability to turn the serious down a notch and the piss-take up a notch, makes all the difference - not just for one person but for everyone. So props to Al 'Famous' Turner for bringing the fun. (no bro-reps were given in the making of this picture)
4. The Les & Neil Show
Kicking ass and taking names - it's the only way I can describe it. As our chronologically more advanced athletes these guys brought the hurt and were inspirational. Whether it was Les executing serious game face or Neil being able to simultaneously do toes to bar whilst hanging shit on some-one, either way it was awesome to be around. You guys should both be proud of the example you set for others, I know we are bloody proud of you both.
3. I Shall not be Defeated - Stacie, Kerri & Casey.
We expect great things from our Regional Athletes - that's their job. But if you want to see guts and determination - and a real grasp of what the Open is all about then these three ladies are my example.
Kerri - Deadlift and box jumps. Owned it. Period. Went from 'I might get one round' to round three here I come. We knew Kerri was strong enough to hit the deadlifts but 20" box jumps can be a nightmare for anyone - Kerri knuckled down and did the work. Top notch performance.
Stacie - can't do the Open WOD Rx? Then do something about it - and she did. Stacie hit up 14.5 in her own fashion and nailed it. It was great to see that our sneaky little photo of her mid 14.5 racked up over 80 likes in a matter of minutes. And she stills smiles afterwards. Gold.
Casey - I'm not doing it. Seriously just reading it hurt my feelings. I don't want to do it. Ok whatever I'll do it. 14.5...Casey's favourite WOD ever....not. But the story was that she did it, knowing how much it would hurt and how long it would take. She still did it. Every rep, to standard. Burgie you are freakin' awesome.
2. The Cookinator
Well it's official - we now have TWO Regional athletes. Cookie made it into the top 200 WORLDWIDE for the masters and now gets (as his 'prize') to do the four extra masters workouts mid April. Don't worry we will run these as a major spectacle with crowd, DJ, parade, float, fireworks display and flyover - because we know Cookie hates a crowd.
Rarely have I seen someone receive so much 'encouragement' during a WOD - I'm sure deep down he found all the yelling and 'encouragement' helpful. I'm certain that the really supportive comments from his son Brad (like 'If you didn't stuff around so much you would have gone faster' or 'stop being so soft') we instrumental in his performances.
The win for me was his repeat of 14.5 to shave nearly 40s off his time and guarantee his place in the top 200 - again that's top 200 in the world. Even if Claire had to bust out the kind of language that would make a bikie blush - he got it done.
1. The Frasernator.
If you need an example of how hard work pays off well here it is.
For the third year in a row Claire is heading to Regionals. This year she finished 15th in the Region and 157th IN THE WORLD. That's top 200 on the whole freakin' planet.
To put that in perspective - every year the talent pool gets broader and deeper in CrossFit. That means to even hold your position from last year requires an incredible level of improvement across a whole range of skills. If you take the 3 athletes that finished ahead of Claire last year and the 3 that finished just behind her, only 3 of them made it back to top 60 this year.
On top of that we do have to take into consideration that Claire is training in a regional town - she doesn't have the benefit of a number of other Regionals level athletes close by to train with and help push her along. To demonstrate that level of discipline, often training alone, is an epic testament of her will power (or is it stubbornness...) Either way, I realise why Cookie has her as chief motivator when he is hitting the Open WODs (and maybe because she doesn't give him a choice)
Whilst the rest of us get to breath a sigh of relief, for Claire the work continues as she builds for Regionals - the real goal.
So if you get a chance and see some of our 'Top Five' moments people maybe give them a pat on the back or a high five or a wedgie...maybe not a wedgie...you know what I mean, let them know they we are proud of them.
For the rest of us 'normal' folk - it's time for some reflection. (I know that sounds like hippie stuff but go with it). Hopefully the Open gave you an insight into the stuff you suck at - it might be a movement, it might be your mental approach, it might be as simple as your mobility. So face it and do something about it - if you're not sure what to do ask one of the coaches - that's what we are here for.
On the flip side don't forget to celebrate the wins! Got some double unders? Hit some toes to bar? Just finished something you thought you would never get done? Bro - high five.
Now it's back to business, a few days of de-load as we reclaim and re-fuel than back into it.
The Open 2015 is only 327 days away...