2017 CrossFit Open Recap
Let’s be honest, you knew this was coming. The 2017 CrossFit Open hasn’t been closed for more than 24 hours and I’m ready to recap it all. Sorry I’m not sorry. Frankly, I had already closed the book on the Open after spraining my ankle. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the current state, but CrossFit has told me that it’s more about the journey and path. Like every year, the CrossFit Open does a number on me. There are a ton of highs and few lows. For five weeks, I was dialed in to my every day activities. I planned as best as I could, ate as best as I could, and kept my body as healthy as I could. So with all of that, let’s get down to recapping.
New movements, new challenges
Like every Open, new movements come up that require us to adapt. For this year, it was the dumbbells. I admit that I’m not a huge fan of the dumbbell, less so when it comes to snatching or lunging with them. But 17.1 and 17.2 were a great test of adaptability. Of all the workouts we did, nothing made me more sore than 17.1. My low back, quads, glutes, and hamstrings were all sore at the same time. I was never so happy to just make it under a time cap. I don’t think I need to see a dumbbell for awhile.
Enemies become friends
In each of the Opens I’ve done, chest to bar pull-ups get hard for me. I’m not as good with them as I am kipping pull-ups and I don’t have great grip strength. That seemed to change this year. Leading up to the Open, I had been doing a lot of work on my gymnastic movements. Most of it was so that I could get my muscle-ups back. But we all know that you don’t get to do muscle-ups if you can’t be good at chest to bar pull-ups. Looking back, 17.3 was the workout that made me the most nervous. The workout structure of needing to get out of the first iteration is the biggest mind game ever. When I got out of the 8 minute time cap, I was incredibly proud of myself. It was easily the proudest moment I had during this year’s Open.
Like many of the movements in CrossFit, I’m not the best at some of them. With bar muscle-ups coming back from last year, I was disappointed that I could only get 3 during 17.2. If I had the option to re-do one of the workouts again, it would definitely be that one. It took me awhile to recall how to do bar muscle-ups, and I kicked myself for not having tried harder earlier before the Open. And of course, 17.4 and the rower returned with a vengeance. The rower and I have made some peace in the last year, but I was kicked in the mouth (again) with this year’s workout. As I look forward to next year, addressing my weaknesses early will be another item to add to my to-do list.
Positive vibes, positive mind
I talked about this after 17.1 and I really stand by it. I spent almost each week trying to be positive about things. Even after spraining my ankle, I gave myself the option to entertain doing 17.5 if I was permitted to. For the last workout, I came in with limited expectations. Finishing would be a bonus, the fact that I could try the workout was good enough for me. I know I’ve worked hard all year, and I’ve put in the time to be a better athlete. I’ve gotten stronger and have embraced a lot of things that held me back in previous years.
Inspo from the rooks
Every year there are a handful of people that try their hand at the Open for the first time at my gym. Their eyes light up when they see all the cheering, and they really lay it all out there for us to see. This year was certainly no different and I couldn’t cheer loud enough to show my appreciation in watching their efforts. As veterans, we know what to expect and how to harness ourselves throughout this timeframe. For the rookies, this is like jumping into a cold shower with the lights off.
My heart will always be touched by those who do the workout as proscribed for the first time, finish the workout no matter how long it takes, or try something they had never done before. Hats off to you; you’re all my rookies of the year. Whether you PR’d your deadlift on 17.4, did your first bar muscle-up on 17.2, tried a 35#/50# dumbbell for the first time, or did your first CrossFit workout as proscribed, you rock. Yeah you!
Last, but not least…
I’d be the worst if I didn’t have my special shoutouts to the real MVPs of this year’s Open.
- Greg, who only missed one workout this year because he was out of the country, has been my MVP each year. He’s my pre-game hype man, photographer, food provider, and cheerleader for each workout. I couldn’t do this each year if I didn’t have him in my corner.
- All of my coaches who encouraged me to push harder or move faster, thank you. Sarah and Rob make the Open a memorable experience by providing us with an efficient and safe Open environment. And when I really need that extra push, please know that I hear you. It’s what I use to dig deep and find that next gear.
- My wonderful friends who gave me pre-workout hugs to calm my nerves, coaching tips on how to be successful, and gave me an arena to fight the good fight each time. I can only hope that I can be the same resource for you as you’ve been for me. Thank you for helping me look forward to the workouts over the last five weeks.
- And a small quick shoutout to Taylor Rabbetz at Chiromedical Group! If it weren’t for his magical hands, I wouldn’t have been able to submit that last and final score today for the 2017 CrossFit Open!