The 2020 CrossFit Games season is upon us! Our once a year (except for this year) worldwide CrossFit competition is here and everybody gets a shot and signing up and throwing their names in the hat for a chance to get to the CrossFit Games! Prove your fitness!
What does all this mean?
The first CrossFit Open I participated in was in 2015 when I was working at CrossFit Fredericksburg. CF Fredericksburg was my first CrossFit home after I separated from the Navy and moved back home from my last duty station in Europe and at the time I was very young and immature in my CrossFit journey. Competition for me was EVERYTHING! All I wanted to do was be the best at everything CrossFit and the Open was the best time to get some play with a leaderboard and show some bragging rights. To be honest, the entire experience was fun, but slightly tainted when my fellow Coach said something to me before 15.1. Me and the boys were all taking a “rest day” on Friday so we could be ready to give our all for the Open workout Saturday and this coach, who is to this day still one of my FAVORITE people, looked at us and said “well excuse me, Rich Froning is in the house guys, he’s gotta rest so he can destroy the Open (#paraphrasing).” This joke for some reason was in the back of my head the whole 5 weeks and my enjoyment was slightly tainted because somebody basically said “dude why are you taking yourself so seriously? Have fun.”
Back then I was really focused on what the leaderboard meant, far more than enjoying the event from a community perspective, and that attitude stayed with me the majority of the time I was at CF Fredericksburg. It wasn’t a positive mindset. Thankfully I believe I’ve grown out of that.
Down the road I took part in more Open events, signing up every year, paying attention to the leaderboard with dreams of making the local “Sectionals” competition and working super hard and all that, still not really knowing my “why” for doing it in the first place. My why now? To set an example for the community at CrossFit Forward, to engage in competitive camaraderie with friends, and to see how I improved from last year. It gets my competitive itch out without investing too much time in myself at the gym. I pay that $20 dollars because I WANT to take the tests without any modifications.
Does that mean you should? Here is my take. 1% of the CrossFit population are elite and probably another 10% enjoy competing on a regular basis. If you are not competing and don’t have much desire to, it isn’t necessary to sign up for the open. Just show up with all of your friends and do the workouts and have a good time. There are so many ways to track your scores these days, Beyond the Whiteboard, SugarWOD. If it doesn’t do anything for you being ranked 18,000 in the world one year and being ranked 17,990 the next, then don’t pay the $20.
The CrossFit Open is a community event, where the whole CrossFit world is coming together to have fun, test our fitness, and participate in the worldwide community that we’ve created over the years. Embrace that and have fun with it.
If you enjoy competition or a challenge and are up for setting a raw benchmark score on a workout, sign up.
If you don’t care about scoring and want to be able to modify the workouts so you can have fun and do it with no pressure, come workout.
Figure out your “why” for doing CrossFit and do what lines up with that.
You do you.