To Compete, or Not to Compete

The allure of a CrossFit competition is always there. We’ve all seen the CrossFit Games on TV or have been to a local event and seen all of the muscle bound-six pack-sporting guys, and the short shorts and sports bras rocking ladies. Our initial reaction is “I could never compete with those guys!”. That couldn’t be farther from the truth.

Competitions, especially on a local level, are meant to be fun and a test of your current fitness level. Your final ranking on the leader board is less important than your effort and you being able to take a leap to get outside of your comfort zone. This doesn’t mean that every person should jump in to a competition head first. Lets face it, some of us just want to break a sweat and call it a day. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

However, if you have just been itching to give it a go, here are some important things to consider:

  • Doing a WOD in a competition setting is no different than doing a WOD at the box. You’re going to warm up. You’re going to breakdown the WOD. You’re going to develop a strategy. You’re going to see that movement that you absolutely did not want to see, and you’re going to think the same thought you always think when that movement comes up. “Nooooo, why the hell did they have to put (insert hated movement here) in this WOD”!!
  • Moving with good form and thinking about your personal safety is STILL THE MAIN GOAL. We train everyday with safety and efficacy of movement in mind. Why should this change in a competition? Sure, the crowd is screaming, your significant other is in the first row, or the girl next to you just warmed up with your max. So what? Do YOUR best. Move deliberately, and consistently. SLOW IS SMOOTH AND SMOOTH IS FAST.
  • You may be more physically ready than mentally ready. 2 days and 6 workouts is exhausting, emotionally. Its easy to come in to the box and hype yourself up to do 1 WOD all out. But how can you harness that energy 3 times over the course of a couple hours? Its nearly impossible to ride the emotional surge over and over again. Finding a way to remain calm and recover between workouts is key. Get away, find a quiet place, and relax until its time to warm up again.
  • Competitions are not training, and training is not a competition. You will inevitably push yourself harder than usual in a competition. Its important to differentiate between these 2.
  • Stop comparing yourself to others. 90% of people considering competition have the same concern: “If I compete in the Rx division I will get crushed, I think I should do scaled”. Don’t worry about the level of competition. Worry about the division standards. Can you complete all of the prerequisite weights and movements? Yes? Well, that’s your division. The fact that 7 elite athletes ended up in Rx should not hold you back. Over the last few years the level of competitions and the strength of the athletes in them has increased dramatically. There is no such thing as an easy competition. Chose the appropriate division for YOU and don’t worry about who is in it.
  • You will be nervous as Sh*t! You hear professional football players say all the time “I was nervous until I got out on the field and got hit in the mouth, then I was able to calm down and play”. This is exactly what its like doing a competition. You are going to have the jitters until you get out there and complete your first WOD. After that, its smooth sailing, hopefully.
  • You’re going to have fun. The sense of accomplishment from competing is awesome.

So while you’re browsing your local competitions, find the right division for you, sign up, and don’t look back!

Our “Benchmark Battle” is coming up on September 19th. This is the perfect opportunity to get your feet with in a competition-ish setting. Sign up for a workout and see how you like it!

-Coach Kevin