The 2020 CrossFit Games Open is coming up quickly, and all of us, coaches and owners, at Misfit Gym Portland/CrossFit MF Windham would like to see you sign up and join in on the fun. Just in case you have never participated before I would like to provide you with a brief overview of what the CrossFit Games Open is and then give you a handful of reason on why you should join in!
The CrossFit Games Open is the world’s largest online fitness competition, and the most significant part about it is that it is open to EVERYONE. The original impetus for the CrossFit Games Open was to provide the opportunity for CrossFitters around the world to prove themselves as one of the Fittest on Earth. The Open was the first part in a three-part competition used to crown the fittest man, woman, and team on Earth. Since it’s inception, each iteration of the Open has been a bit different than the previous year, but the goal remained the same, to separate the wheat from the chaff, to ensure that the fittest people on earth were tested appropriately to ensure they indeed were “The Fittest on Earth.” However, it would be immensely short-sighted to not recognize the value in this yearly event for every single member at the gym, even if you know for sure you won’t be vying for a spot at the Games. So why should you sign up? Here are five reasons that you should.
1. Get outside your comfort zone
As I’m sure most of you have experienced (some more often than others) that CrossFit is continually putting you outside your comfort zone. Our programming is always challenging you to: go faster, lift heavier, get upside down, move better, etc. and through training, you are continually having to push further and further to reach the limits of your capacity. Through trying to find the fittest on Earth, the workouts that you will be up against will be some of hardest you’ve ever done (and that’s just the way we want it). These workouts may challenge you to try movements you’ve never tried before, lift weights you’ve never lifted back or complete workouts faster than you ever have before. This pressure (internal pressure, I assure you, we are only looking to encourage you 😉 ) will push you towards new achievements that you may have felt weren’t even remotely close to being achieved, and doing new sh*t is cool!
2. See your progress and identify areas of weakness
The Open is a yearly competition that allows you to see exactly where you stand amongst every other CrossFitter who is competing. The Open isn’t merely for the super-fit vying for a CrossFit Games spot; it’s also chock-full of recreational CrossFitters. It’s for Moms, Dads, Kids, Police Officers, College Athletes, Fire-fighters and, believe it or not, Grandma & Grandpa. The Open is for anyone looking to test themselves against five challenging workouts so that they can see how their fitness has progressed from the previous year. After completing an Open workout you can compare your score against people the same age as you, the same profession as you, and/or you can simply compare your performance from year to year. Also, the Open can help you figure out what you need work on so that you can be better the following year. Couldn’t do a pull-up? There’s something to focus on. Couldn’t handstand walk? There’s something to focus on? Wasn’t able to get to the heaviest bar in the chipper? There’s something to work on. See where I’m going? This type of event can help bring more purpose to your training and can help give you guidance on where to focus your energy.
The mainstay of a CrossFit gym is the community. Inside this robust community, there are often a lot of friendly rivalries that occur. People will naturally gravitate towards other people that lift similar weights, have similar fitness levels, and often identical experience. One word that is commonly thrown around with a negative connotation is the word: competition. But competition usually brings out the best in us and dares us to hang on for one more rep or to add 5lbs to your bar. Not only is it fun to jokingly tease your friends when you “beat” them at something, but this also pushes you to be a better version of yourself, which is our ultimate goal for you each time you walk through our doors. We encourage you to grab a small group of friends when the workout is announced and talk strategy, goals, etc. as these intra-gym rivalries are going to help not only yourself but the others around you!
4. Strength in Numbers
Throughout the Open, you will help, support, cheer on, high-five, and celebrate numerous victories of your peers as they do the same for you. This tribe, our tribe of CrossFitters, will be sure to help you break down barriers that you’ve previously seen as unconquerable. Never underestimate your value within our tribe, each one of you has the power to create an atmosphere where we all grow together for the better.
5. It’s Fun!
“Fun” is more like it, but at the same time, we want to see you all embrace the Open for what it’s meant to be: a challenge. Instead of getting discouraged if you’re unable to do something, look at as an opportunity for growth, giving you something to focus your training on going forward. If you see someone struggling, go over and give them a high-five, tell them to dig deep and to keep going and I assure you that will be reciprocated when it’s you’re struggling. Finally, don’t take it too seriously. We, the coaches and owners, want you to embrace the challenge, support your tribe, and to have fun while doing it.
So are you in?!
Written by Matt Sherburne