Registration is open! It’s time to register for the open! It’s one of the most exciting times of the year for CrossFitters, as the season leading up to the games kicks into high gear. The highest level athletes are fine-tuning for their runs to regionals and beyond, and everyone else is anxious to see where they stack up. Yet with this great opportunity coming up, I’ve heard a number of responses to the effect of “It sounds cool, but it’s not for me,” or “I’ll just cheer for everyone else.” Reasons for this type of thinking often include:
- I’m not good enough to compete with the best
- I can’t compete at the Rx level
- I can’t perform all the movements yet
Most of this is nothing but negative self-talk. When you feed yourself this kind of info, all you’re doing is feeding a self-image that says “I can’t do it.” Maybe you’ve spent your life giving into this type of defeatist logic, but you know what? It’s garbage. Think of how childish it sounds to say “I won’t do it if I can’t be the best at it!” So let me take a chance to speak some positivity into your brain. Here are the top six reasons you should register for the open:
1) Find where you stack up against CrossFitters from around the world
One of the reasons that the CrossFit Open is completely unique as a sporting event is that there’s no other arena in professional sports where average schmucks like you and me compete on an even playing field alongside the best in the sport. Imagine how absurd it would be if no one played basketball because they weren’t as good as Lebron.
Every week, the best, worst, and the average will all do the same WODs and get the chance to find out exactly where they rank among the hundreds of thousands of CrossFitters across the globe. Even if you don’t end up in the top 50%, it’s still a one-of-a-kind opportunity to get info on where you’re at! Are you really going to let fear of not being the best keep you from trying at all?
2) Establish a benchmark for yourself
Let’s say you don’t finish where you want. You know what that means? Fuel for the fire. It means you will have a tangible, measurable standard to beat next time around. Pin it to your desk, write it on the goal board, and know that next year, you’ll have a standard to crush.
After a year of training, I’m excited about the opportunity to surpass what I did last year. I know that my physical capacity has changed greatly since the 2013 open, and I can’t wait to be able to compare the two and see where I’ve come. It’s a great feeling to experience the satisfaction of demolishing your old goals.
3) Learn how to tackle a challenge
Yes, the weights and movements might be right at the edge of what you’re capable of. Yes, they may be daunting. Yes, it may be hard. When has that ever stopped you as a CrossFitter? It sure shouldn’t. Think of our tried and true motto: “Embrace the suck!”
I remember a WOD in the 2013 open that involved snatches at 135#. At the time, my max snatch was (maybe) 150. I figured I would be able to get through a couple at best, and when I failed my first couple reps, I felt defeated. But I decided to embrace the suck and just do what I could. I ended up snatching it 13 times! When I re-did the workout later that week, I got 17!
One of the greatest benefits (in my opinion) of the kind of fitness that CrossFit forges is mental toughness; that moment when you’re dead tired, everything in you is saying you can’t, and you look an overwhelming challenge in the eye and somehow find the strength to keep grinding. So who cares how hard it will be? Embrace the suck and GO ALL IN.
4) Participate in a common experience with your CrossFit community
CrossFit provides such awesome community because that’s what happens when people go through difficulty and challenge together. It’s a pretty cool feeling when you’re part of a group that struggles and triumphs at a common task, together. Being part of a box where everyone is orienting themselves toward the same goal is a great experience that helps build the bonds of friendship and camaraderie with your fellow athletes and coaches.
5) Experience participating in a competition environment
Looking at the clock and hearing the loud tones as it beeps “3…2…1…” you will feel butterflies like you wouldn’t believe. As I stood and waited for each of the five open WODs last year, I found myself with butterflies in my stomach, nervous as ever as I prepared myself for my first real chance at being part of a CrossFit competition. Most CrossFit athletes I know could relate similar experiences. It’s a nerve-racking, anxious, exciting, compelling 5 weeks, and you will LOVE every minute of it.
6) You have nothing to lose
Seriously, you’ve got nothing to lose (except the $20 you’ll drop on registration). Stop being scared and jump in head first. The challenge is what we live for.
Click here to sign up!