Start prepping for the Open now

Every CrossFitter’s favourite event of the year is rapidly creeping up on us, the CrossFit Open.  The Open, which kicks off in February, unites CrossFitters around the world. Each participant — no matter their skill level — is asked to do five workouts over five weeks and see where they stack up within the larger community. You don’t have to be a superstar athlete or seasoned CrossFit vet to get the most out of the Open. There are multiple divisions and modifications available to ensure every skill level can be a part of this special competition. I encourage everyone to come out and participate.

February may seem far away but it isn’t. Now is the time to prepare for the Open so you can do your very best during the competition, and maybe even tackle some RX WoDs or advanced skills.

Here are some tips to get you in Open shape:

Pay attention to conditioning

The Open isn’t really a heavy lifting event. More often than not, the focus is on performing light, fast movements over a longer stretch of time. That means it’s really important to have conditioned yourself to working harder and faster for longer. So, what can you do to get yourself ready for those kinds of challenges? Make sure you bring 100 percent intensity to your WoDs in class. Try and up your class attendance or fitness activities, too. By upping your activity from three to five workouts a week, you’ll accelerate your conditioning.

Work your skills

Our gold membership includes a one-on-one skill session every month — please take advantage of this benefit. You’ll get the extra attention needed to help you crack some of the tougher skills, such as an Olympic lift or gymnastics move. If you start now you will be able to get three sessions in before the Open starts.  If you want to focus on skill development more, be sure to attend our specialty lifting classes or gymnastics classes which focus on building foundational skills.

Stay honest

It happens every year. An athlete at the gym who always puts up top scores during classes, fails to see that success during the Open. The reason for this is often hard to swallow or admit, but it’s pretty simple. You’re not being honest in class and by honest I mean you’re giving yourself a rep when you shouldn’t and you’re letting your form slide so you can move faster. Too many of us get caught up in the competition and fail to pay attention to form.  In the Open you can’t get away with this because there’s a judge watching and keeping you honest the whole time. Over the next two-and-a-half months hold yourself to a high standard. When your wall ball doesn’t meet the target, no rep yourself. This kind of honesty and rigorous work ethic will vastly improve your Open performance.

Apply these tips and you’ll be ready to crush the Open this February.

Broder McNeill is a coach and co-owner at Alchemy CrossFit

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