My CrossFit Games Open 2014

The CrossFit open is an yearly event, most easily explained as the start of the CrossFit games, anyone can enter.  This year worldwide over 150,000 people entered.  the open consists of 5 workouts, released on a Thursday and you have until Monday to complete them and log your score.

I did my first open last year, then I had only been doing CrossFit for 4 weeks and had only been in a gym at all 2 months before that.  I couldn’t do the majority of it, but I tried and it was amazing what I achieved. It also allowed me to go back and re do the workouts later in the year and see the progress I had made.

This year I wasn’t sure I wanted to do it, I end up a ball of anxiety before big workouts, nothing anyone can say or do decreases this. I thought I don’t need to put myself through that (again.)

But of course I signed up, and well this year was a very different experience.

Yes the anxiety was there bigger and badder than before, but the flip side was the achievements were also there bigger than before.

14.1 – 134 reps


Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 10 minutes of:
30 double-unders
25kg. power snatches, 15 reps

I think I got my first double under when I did the beginners course, and in a year I had improved that to a maximum of about 6 in a row, but mainly whipping myself with the rope more than jumping over it.  I find it all very frustrating, and get skipping rage.  But as was the common theme for me when seeing the workouts, it wasn’t wall balls, anything other than wall balls is ok.

I started the workout and hadn’t done any double unders before as I know I am best when just starting off, the more I concentrate the worse they get.  And I strung together about 6 then 2 then 7, the snatches I was doing as cleans then push presses.  I think it was on the second round I got 9 DU strung together and was so pleased and beaming as I was skipping.

But the first workout taught me the biggest lesson. With 10 seconds to go I gave up and put the bar down. My coach shouting at me for that famous 1 more rep. The rest of that day I was so pissed off with myself at not getting that last rep I made myself remember that feeling, how when it is done you can’t go back, so suck it up when you are doing it and get that last sodding rep.

14.2 – 9 reps

photo1From 0:00-3:00

   2 rounds of:

   10 overhead squats

   10 chest-to-bar pull-ups

From 3:00-6:00

   2 rounds of:

   12 overhead squats

   12 chest-to-bar pull-ups

From 6:00-9:00

   2 rounds of:

   14 overhead squats

   14 chest-to-bar pull-ups

Etc., following same pattern until you fail to complete both rounds

30kg. overhead squats
Chest-to-bar pull-ups

For this one I had to take Ben with me as I didn’t have childcare any other time to go.  He came and so did some mini-figures, who made good use of the rig.

My previous PR on OHS (over head squats) was 19kg, that was in January, I hadn’t tried anything heavier. So I warmed up and then tried with 20kg and got it. The OHS is all about stability, and keeping your arms locked out and your core tight to support you.

I faffed around pondering do I try 25 then 30 and was just sod it, stick 30 on and see if it is going to happen.

So I tried 30kg and got 1 rep, then tried again and fell on my arse.

So yep in theory I could do the start of the workout, chest to bar wasn’t going to happen, not there in strength yet.

So I had 3 minutes to attempt the 10 OHS.

Ben was sitting with 2 of the CrossFit girls and well you might think he would be watching in amazement, not so much. As I was doing te workout I could mainly hear “blah blah Star Wars blah blah Lego….” not an eyelid battered at Mummy over head squatting 30kg.

I managed to get 9 reps within the 3 minutes, of course it wasn’t over that easily, yes only those reps counted for the open but the workout carried on scaled.

14.3 – 66

Complete as many reps as possible in 8 minutes of:

43kg. deadlifts, 10 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
61kg deadlifts, 15 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
70kg. deadlifts, 20 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
84kg. deadlifts, 25 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
93kg. deadlifts, 30 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch
102kg. deadlifts, 35 reps
15 box jumps, 20-inch

For this you could step up or do box jump, it was widely discussed online that step ups were faster.  But seeing as in the open last year I couldn’t do box jumps, I was going to jump on that bloody box this year.

Deadlifts always seem like the nicest least scary lifts, until you are doing many of them.

But I was really pleased with my score, and kept going to the last second, also discovering that making primal noises totally helps

images (3)

14.4 – 60

60-calorie row
50 toes-to-bars
40 wall-ball shots, 6kg. to 9-foot target
30 cleans, 43kg.
20 muscle-ups

By this point, waking on a Friday morning to see what the workout was, after a shitty nights sleep dreaming about what it was, was becoming normal.

And the waiting for the wall balls knowing they were going to appear and then seeing that they were here.

So I went into this one knowing that it would be just the row I would score on, toes to bar aren’t happening yet.  But as usual I did the rest of the workout scaled after I did the official scored bit.  Rowing is dull but it helped that 2 boys were doing burpees near me and it is the classic, rowing is way better than burpees.

14.5 – 26:48

21-18-15-12-9-6-3 reps for time of:
29kg  thrusters
over bar Burpees


This was special, in a really sick horrible special way.

And for some stupid reason I had got myself in a total state before even seeing the workout. Meaning 3 hours sleep and feeling like crap, laying in bed that morning thinking of all the vague reasons I shouldn’t go and do it.  But found myself driving there.

I got there and started to explain that I would maybe do it at 20 or 25kg, that I had accepted I wouldn’t get a score (there was no score unless you finished it) that I would maybe do just a bit. And the bargaining went on. And as any great coach would do, I was ignored.

And so I started, breaking the thrusters in 3’s, 4’s or 5’s.

It was horrible, and the realisation after the 18 was that there was no escape until I had finished.  I actually started to have a wobbly bottom lip, I can’t remember at what point but on one burpee I put my face on the floor and thought take me now..make it stop. It didn’t work. Damn.

And it went on, and on, and at points when I stopped my internal wailing and snivelling and found some anger I was managing 5 thrusters in a row before the voice in my head that tells me to drop the bar, you can’t do this won and then I would stand staring at the bar, shouting to myself out loud to pick up the fucking bar.  A constant battle inside between the old me and the CrossFit me.

When it got to single figures the realisation hit me that by some miracle I could actually finish this.  The last 3 burpees were done sucking back tears again, thinking I would burst into tears when I finished, but no. Total relief. It was over.


And after it was done, the realisation days later was quite how clever it was.  No ‘easy’ 60 cal row to get a score, no time cap at 10 minutes so you do some work and then it is over. This required a totally different mentality, one that I didn’t think I had.

But thankfully, other people knew I did.  Doing the workout whilst one of your friends is there squeaking their support, and you are knowing that if you actually don;t die they will be so freaking proud is rather friggin awesome.  And then there is my coach, he knew I couldn’t die (probably wouldn’t put bets on the not crying though) and he also knew that as he has on so many occasions, saying you can do it doesn’t mean anything as I have so little belief in myself. Making me do it, and therefore proving to myself I can do it chips away at that part of me that has no belief.

This open was my last before next year I am officially in the masters category.  In a year at CrossFit I have physically achieved so much, I am starting to get the determination and fight, learning to do the work so I am not disappointed or with regrets after.

For me it was totally irrelevant where I can on the scoreboard, actually feeling guilty for the people under me as I am sure they worked just as hard as me.  For me it was a total win, I did every workout, got PR’s on lots, challenged myself physically and mentally.

Sure…it is just CrossFit.


1 Comment

  1. 6 April , 2014 / 6:02 am

    So impressed. You did so freaking well.
    I might enter next year but it depends on whether I decide to run another marathon in April again 😐

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