Written by Jon Jorgensen
It’s that time of year again – the CrossFit Games Open is just around the corner. That means you’re going to be seeing past Open workouts being thrown into our programming here and there.
If you’re anything like me, the idea of redoing an Open workout may make you a little nervous – you’ve felt that pain. The possibility of doing worse than the first time is always there and no one likes being reminded that they’ve gotten worse at something. I want to briefly explain, however, the reasons why we like to retest old Open workouts so that you guys can be more open minded about attacking them and not skip the programming.
- It preps us for future repeats. If you’ve competed in the Open before, you’re aware that at least once a year a past event is thrown in. There are so many reasons why this is a good idea, but mainly it shows how much more fit the world has become. At the gym, however, it enables us to practice for an event we may have to do again through the course of the Open that gives us an advantage by being prepared if and when that same event comes back out.
- It shows our weaknesses and strengths. Giving you these workouts in advance gives you some insight on the things you may want to spend more time on before the Open starts (you still have time to get a little stronger, or get closer to learning or perfecting that elusive muscle-up). Or it may show you that your perceived weaknesses in CrossFit may actually be a strength and vice versa. Comparing yourself only to those around you each day doesn’t always give the full picture of where your fitness stands. If you’re in a gym with good lifters or really good gymnasts, you may think your skills aren’t up to par when in fact they might be great compared to the rest of the world or your region.
- Most importantly, it shows us where our fitness is. This one is critical in so many ways. In regards to fitness, without redoing workouts we have no idea whether we are improving ourselves physically as human beings or not and this goes beyond most peoples idea of fitness. (Warning, rant coming…) Let’s face it – the vast majority of us will never compete at Regionals, let alone the Games. Most people don’t perform an Open event expecting that they will qualify to the next round of competition, but we do it because we have fitness goals. We do it because we’ve established that having those fitness goals tends to produce the best ‘us’. It’s not a secret to trainers that most people that start CrossFit do so to become healthier and change their bodies for the better. But those that last in this program (and ultimately meet their weight goals) are the ones that stop looking at the scale and start keeping track of their fitness instead. I’ve seen so many people quit because they didn’t lose enough weight fast enough. Most in that camp don’t even give it enough time to learn the movements, let alone workout intensely. These people tend to show up and check out, as if checking a daily chore off their of list to-dos. On the other hand, those that eat, sleep, and train, with the idea of improving fitness tend to have a much easier time keeping off body fat and staying healthy. Chasing fitness, not weight loss, produces the best results. And by redoing these workouts, we learn where we stand not only against the world, but also against ourselves.