I wanted to share my reflections on the Open.I would say I got talked into the open, however, I don’t really think I could have been talked into something I wasn’t already considering. A better description is that I was personally invited to the open and accepted. Looking back I think this is what I needed and wanted, a personal invitation to join . . . by someone who knew what they were talking about.My husband signed up and tried to talk me into signing up, but while he knew my abilities he was no more informed of what the open would entail than me. Emily, one of the competitive ladies from Alpine suggested I join as well, here’s someone who knew what sort of things would be required but I didn’t think really understood my abilities (or in my mind limitations). However, the tipping point was Robby suggesting I join, he knew both my abilities, and he knew the open. He thought I could be successful and I believed him.When I first started hearing about it, I was willing to give this open thing a shot but I was afraid. I was afraid of being disappointed and of being disappointing. I hadn’t really tested myself in a long time. Of course, I would come and do the WODs, but I didn’t really have to push myself. I could hide behind lighter weights claiming lifting inexperience, or inability. But you have to RX the open workouts, and I had yet to RX any workout involving weights (or even come within 20 lbs most of the time). But here I was signed up for the open.Week after week I came and did my best. Some weeks were better than others. Some weeks I finished feeling very proud of myself (11 reps of my 1 rep max clean and jerk – impressed). Other weeks I finished feeling a bit disappointed (only 73 of 150 wall balls – sad). But week after week I came and I finished.Participating in the open reminded me why I love Crossfit. It reminded me of my track and gymnastics days. Although you may be performing alone, the support of the other team members is so important. I think anyone who has never done an individual “team” sport would have trouble understanding, but there is something very special about the support of people who are not only cheering for you but understand what it is like to be in your position.Reviewing scores after the open was completed I was surprised to see that I improved, compared to the other open competitors, each week. I do not think the WODs got easier for me, although, to an extent, they utilized things that I was better at (except wall ball week – that must be a fluke). However, I think the bigger piece is confidence. The open helped me grow so much mentally. It increased my comfort level with the bar, it forced me to deal with heavier weights than I normally would have chosen for myself. By completing workouts with these weights I learned to stop selling myself short. I learned what pushing myself really feels like.I joked earlier this weekend, the first weekend without an open WOD, that I kind of miss having an excessively heavy (for me), difficult WOD to complete. And it’s true. I enjoyed my weekly Saturday challenge, the camaraderie, sharing the difficulties and the successes with the other open competitors and the spectators. Will is sign up again? Absolutely . . . and I’m going to talk others into it too :)Do I chose open rx weights for daily WODs now? Of course not, but I do feel that I am more prepared to chose an appropriate weight – one that pushes me and makes me better.
In the end I wouldn’t claim that I was good at any of the open workouts, but I would say that I was successful. I discovered that sometimes when I think my body isn’t strong enough it is my mind and I rediscovered the joy of competition and having my “team” behind me.
Proudest moment – 11 reps of 95# clean and jerk (and no missed jerks)
Most frustrating moment – missing every 2nd or 3rd wall ball throw
Favorite part about the open – the awesome pictures taken each week! …Many compliments of Shaughnessy Photography