I’ve gotten several questions that are some iteration of "Are you doing the Crossfit Games Open?” and my answer: nope. The next question is always, "Why?” and well, the answer to that isn’t nearly as simple.
Before I even go any further, I want to say that I have nothing against the Open – I think it’s an awesome thing. It’s gets people competing, it pushes people to places they didn’t think they could go, and it’s OPEN to everyone – not just high level athletes. Plus, it’s great exposure for Crossfit. So why if I think it’s a great thing do I choose NOT to participate in it? Several reasons:
1. I’m not interested: I love Crossfit but the Open just doesn’t hold a great deal of appeal to me at this time. Do I really want to do 100’s of burpees and top it off with some heavy snatches? Not really. I’d rather just do some heavy snatches, and do them well. I get the whole unknown-prepared-for-anything thing that Crossfit is known for and the tough workout thing. It’s not that I think it would be difficult or that I would fail (I actually think 13.1 would have been a good WOD for me since snatches are one of my better lifts) but just that I’m not trying to be a Regionals-level competitor (kudos to those that are!) or even a "high-level” Crossfitter. I’ve got other goals - which leads me to my second reason.
2. My current goals don’t match with the Open: I’m focused on getting really freaking strong. I made that decision a few months ago and it’s been a good one. I’ve added 40# to my back squat 5 rep max in 4 weeks – I’d say the current program I’m doing is working. With that said, I’ve got out almost all WODs (except 1 on Saturday) because doing them isn’t helping me raise my back squat or my Olympic lifts – they’re just breaking my body down and hindering my recovery. I’m not conditioning for fast and furious metcons and I don’t really want to be at this point – although I will say, I’m faster now that I was before simply because I’m much stronger. Case in point: we did a WOD a few weeks ago of 100 DB snatches (30#) for time – I completed it 4:31 whereas when I had done 100 DB snatches before (in October), it took me about 10 minutes. I honestly DO miss WODs – not the actual workouts themselves, but the "collective suck" that accompanies doing them with other people.
3. I know myself: I’m intensely competitive and this isn’t always a good thing. I can (and have) run myself into the ground, injury myself, and keep going until I’m literally forced to stop. I’m incredibly stubborn (the understatement of the year) and I know that, if I’m put in a competitive situation – I WILL do whatever it takes. Now, that’s not necessarily a bad thing but it also isn’t a good thing for me. Like I said, I’m not trying to be a high-level Crossfit competitor so injuring myself in the Open or beating my body to a pulp would serve no purpose for me. It just isn’t worth it for me. For some people, it is and that’s fine. I think being able to know where you stand on that is important, and if it is worth it – be smart and give it your all. If it’s not, recognize it, embrace it, and move on.
So that’s that. I’m honestly super excited for everyone who is doing the Open and I love reading and hearing about people’s experiences, scores, etc. Part of me misses the "collective suck” aspect of it and being able to contribute to the conversation but I’ll wait and say "maybe next year". Until then, you can probably find me squatting something heavy.