How To Survive The Open

Hitting my first Chest to Bar Pull-ups in 2014’s OPEN!

It’s that time of the year again. The OPEN is here. Magic happens at the OPEN. How do you approach it though, especially if, like most of us, you aren’t paid or sponsored to do CrossFit. How do you wrap your head around the pain that Dave Castro comes up with? Do I go all out? How will I ever get that Chest to Bar, I’ve never hit one. Toes to bar, won’t happen. Will it? I haven’t had time to do all my accessory work, because I had that business meeting and had to travel. Or I spent time studying for that exam so I couldn’t get through my strength cycle. How about I just want to enjoy some time with my boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife/goldfish. Ugh, what am I going to do?


First, you just have to relax…


Balancing ‘Life’ and CrossFit can be challenging at the best of times, but getting ready for the OPEN isn’t anything to get absolutely bent out of shape about. Remember all those weeks since the last OPEN? Every single one of them is a step you’ve taken in preparation for this year. Every blister, torn hand, missed Snatch are all building blocks even though we never really think of them like that. Besides, it’s too late now to try and cram 11 months of WODs and strength into 5 weeks in the hopes of hitting a Muscle Up when the aforementioned Mr. Castro throws them at us (and he will). You have to trust that the fundamentals you have learned can help you hit the elusive Muscle Up… And if not, you work at it again for the next OPEN.


The balance is hard. There are lots of things that pull us every which way and truth be told I certainly don’t have all the answers (yet). I still try and squeeze everything in, even though I know it’s not humanly possible. Maybe it’s some deep seeded fear of missing out on something, I don’t know. I don’t hit my macros every day (read that as not eating properly for you non-macro people), I don’t get enough sleep, I don’t get enough WODs in (mostly due to injury) and I certainly don’t get to spend enough time with @savannahjessie.  See, I’m still looking for that balance and when OPEN season rolls around it gets that extra little bit tougher. What to do then? All you can do is your best.


Your best from a performance standpoint and from a Life one. Plus, The Magic Really Does Happen At The OPEN!


Take 16.3 last year and the dread Muscle Up (seems to come back to this one a bunch), I still threw myself (literally) at the bar last year with the hopes of hitting the Muscle Up (I didn’t get it). Did I still work on the progressions this year? Yes. Did I still work on building strength? Yup! Did I still try and reduce my weight so it gets easier? You betcha. It is an absolutely amazing thing to watch someone hit their first of anything and doing the WODs under the Friday night lights is intoxicating (in a non alcoholic way). People cheering and screaming themselves hoarse. Just turn of the part of your brain that’s telling you that you can’t and go for it! Try! Magic happens. That is the secret that CrossFit has tapped into. The secret that the human body is capable of an immense amount of work and that the human mind is capable of preventing it. Their workouts force you to shut off that little voice that says “I can’t” and with a strong community cheering you on, you try and you do. If you don’t, it just means that today wasn’t the day… Tomorrow might be.


Good luck!




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