Work out 20.4 was a slow mental and technique-focused week rather than the frothing dog run from the past few weeks.
Masters 55+ Women Rx was box jump ups and clean & jerks. Unlike the seemingly arbitrary height requirement for handstand push ups last week (are they ever going to provide justification for that?), this week the man in charge eased the technique for Rx athletes, allowing either jumps or step ups.
My best chance to excel over other women my age are HSPU and box jumps, because many older women just can’t do them. The way the Open has been structured, I haven’t had those advantages. Doesn’t matter. I’m not competing against the herd. I’m trying to do better through:
- gaining strength and skills
- maintaining my mental poise
- managing my chronic conditions
- improving my recovery process
And I have improved since the Open last spring. If nothing else, I’ve managed to stay healthy! I got sick in the spring, starting with a cold that became an ear infection that became bronchitis. And still, I did the work outs through it all, because it was my only chance ever to do the main category online. I turned 55 before this second Open.
Additionally, this Open I have been able to do 3/4 work outs Rx! That is the best part. Not knowing what this week brings, I don’t know if I’ll finish with another Rx, but I had only one Rx in the spring.
Our team competition at our box has been even better than last Open.
All members are divided into three teams. We work out on Friday night, rather than Saturday mornings as we did in the spring. (I live in a college town, and home football games make Saturdays bad for participation and even traveling.)
Thursdays we do mobility work — good prep. Fridays the Open work out, then Saturday morning more mobility or redoing the Open work out of the week.
The Friday night work out is followed by a potluck, and over the weekend, results for the spirit, food, and category wins is tabulated. All participants get an Exodus CrossFit Coralville Open t-shirt. Winning team has “champion” on their shirt.
Of course you know I do this all for the t-shirt!
Opinions on the Open
I was reading the Morning Chalk Up this week, and a terrific opinion piece expressed all the same feelings I have about this season — why I do it and why I have my family participate, too. I’ve included some takeaways below:
- For many of our members, it has been a moment since they had a competitive season, if ever. In all likelihood, they were in their teens the last time they had to compete in back to back weeks. The Open is a short 5 week competitive season. It isn’t a single event, 5km, meet, pick-up game, etc. It’s a full season. That means, you’ve got to show up on a given day and time and deliver. Oh, and you have to do it again, next week. So in the course of a week, you’ve got to compete, recover, still get some training in during the week, and be fresh enough to do it again.
- You know what gets better during the Open? Everything. People eat better. They take care of their tissues. They sleep. They actually warm-up and cool down. They have to. You can’t really put out like that as a mortal person and not do it. It highlights many behaviors that actually significantly impact the quality of our psycho-emotional motor selves, but fail to appreciate in the day to day training in which most of us engage.
- The irony is that nothing is really different about doing an Open workout. You can scale it, sub it if you can’t do it. You don’t even have to record it. But it feels different. This is the point. It’s in your head.
- Is the programming good for everyone? Nope. Can it be scaled? Yep. Do I love that many double unders? Nope. Do I have to do that many? Nope. Do you have to do the Open workouts at our gym on Fridays? Yep. Do you have to record your times or shout them out? Nope. Does it feel slightly different to work out with over a quarter of a million people? Yep. And this was always the point. — DR. KELLY STARRETT