Jake, is the head coach of a CrossFit box in Arkansas. I’ve had the pleasure of taking his class, being coached by him and watching him develop into a wonderful trainer and athlete. He’s one of those annoying people who can envision himself performing a skill or moving heavy weight and actually do it. He has aspirations for making it to the Games this year, after starting CrossFit last year, and I will not be surprised when he actually makes it. His long-term goal is the Games (mine, too! HA), and I would bet he probably accomplishes that, too. Anyways, in discussing the Opens, he kept telling me to sign up and do it, just to prove to myself I can. I dragged my feet and made up excuses and he signed me up anyways. So, here I am – finished 14.2, still shaking from the scarring memory of 14.1, and about to get my trash handed to me in 14.3.
14.1 AMRAP 10 min
30 Double Unders
15 Power Snatches 55# for females
My first thought: “I finally have DU down. I can do this!”
I was prideful and the Lord humbled me.
I struggled through DU, flew through power snatches and almost made it into 4 rounds (this was my second attempt, too). It was so painful to see myself struggle that I laughed the entire time. I also stopped to tie my shoes and tell my husband how to parent at one point. Woof.
I almost quit CrossFit that night. It was demoralizing. I thought to myself, “Why do I do this to myself? There is no need to feel like this on a regular basis. What the hell!?” Then I looked at the people standing around me. CrossFit is about culture – it’s about the people around you.
The ONLY redeeming part of that WOD was being surrounded by some amazing friends who’ve become family to me these past two years. Having people rally around me and laugh along side me (mostly at me). I was definitely the “special” person performing CrossFit. And I became okay with that. Because these people genuinely care about you – they care about you performing your best. These coaches invest time in helping you reach your goals, become a better athlete and not kill yourself in the process. These members pour sweat, blood and tears along side you day after day, WOD after WOD. They power walk WODs with you when you’re 39 weeks pregnant. They bring you food after you just had a baby. They leave you drunk voicemails and come spend holidays/birthdays with you.
So, when people ask me why I’m doing the Opens, it’s because of the people. Friends and coaches who helped me get to this point. It’s because I survived a pregnancy nine months ago with an awesome group of people and this is my celebration of the strength I’ve developed since those nine months. It’s because I can carry my 37 lb toddler and 22 lb infant together at the same time and not bat an eye. I’m stronger – emotionally and physically – because of the community of CrossFit.
I will continue to perform the WODs to the best of my ability. Be proud of the gains I’ve made. Recognize areas that still need work. And cheer on the people around me who are doing the exact same thing. If you’re not doing the Opens this year because you were afraid of failure and looking stupid – join the club. All non-competitive CrossFit athletes feel this way. NEXT YEAR, someone like my brother will sign you up and you will experience the adult version of Friday Night Lights – sadly, without Tim Riggins. And you won’t regret doing it. Well, you’ll regret it for 10 minutes.