Competing in CrossFit has a stigma. Those who should - don't, and those that compete often - are wrongly categorized as hardos...neither of which should be the case.
Everyone should do CrossFit competitions. There is an abundance of them out there, for every age group, for every category, all over the world. And you should sign-up for one.
Here's why: Competing in a CrossFit competition is great way for you to gauge where you're at physically and mentally. Even if you feel like you're not ready, do it anyway. Competition brings out the best in us - and allows us to discover things about ourselves we never knew we could do.
Whether it's a PR (personal record) you're chasing, or just a good time with other athletes, competing in CrossFit is so much more than what you think it is. It doesn't matter if you finish first or last, you're there to compete against yourself and find out what you're capable of.
Besides, what have you been training for anyway? Brush aside those nerves, get a team together, or find a competition to compete in locally. You never know who you're going to make friends with or meet at a competition. At the very least, you'll have the experience, confidence and resounding will to improve in a given area. Plus, you'll get a chance to see some amazing feats of strength and skill as you cheer on your fellow competitors.
Competing at Commonwealth CrossFit
Now, with all that said, I've got a personal anecdote from a competition this past weekend at Commonwealth CrossFit - my old box back in Somerville, MA. What an AMAZING place to start doing CrossFit. The coaches, the community, it's all very tight-knit and ultra-supportive. Seriously, these guys are amazing.
So, this past weekend, they hosted an in-house throwdown (members of the box only) as well as alumni from the box.
I'll save you the full details, but I was super nervous. With only about 40 people competing total, I entered in the RX division, knowing some of the amazing athletes there and wanted to just go in and have a good time. I literally went in with no expectations other than to see some amazing people and I ended up placing 3rd in the RX division.
Awesome stuff, right?
I'll get to the WOD's in a moment, but with Commonwealth hosting their second annual, 'In-house Throwdown," they literally set the stage up with it being a 'no pressure' day, and simply wanted athletes to give it their all. The coaches even did the first WOD before any of the heats, which made for a good strategy session for us athletes.
All in all, everyone competing wasn't going against each other, they were competing against themselves, congratulating others on their athletic performance and genuinely being happy for one another on their excellent scores.
THAT - to me, is what CrossFit is and should always be about. Everyone has their own individual strengths and weaknesses, and it doesn't matter where you end up, just that you gave it your all and had fun doing it.
P.S. Of course I was rocking my @VoyEdge RX shirt during all three WOD's.
This WOD sucked, not going to lie. The Coaches of Commonwealth CrossFit did this one as an intro to the comp and it looked downright nasty - and it was. I flew through the 100 double unders (unbroken) and the 60 KB swings, but ended up in the doghouse on the 40 lateral bar-over burpees. One of my worst movements ever.
I was in first through the DU's and KB swings, but came out of the WOD, finishing fourth. If I hadn't slogged the burpees, I could have had a better time.
That being said, I thought I could do touch and go's in sets of 5 for the power cleans, but this WOD smoked any endurance I had left. Ended up doing singles.
My time? 8:35 for this WOD
RX’D & SCALED (15:00min CAP)
100 Double Unders
60 American Kettlebell Swings (53/35 lbs)
40 Lateral Bar-Over Burpees
20 Power Cleans (155/105 lbs)
Anytime you go into a WOD with an intense name like, "Viking Breakfast" you can probably assume it's going to suck.
Rowing for a timed score is brutal. But knowing you have 1-2 minutes MAX of rest before going into a snatch complex is even more difficult.
Both were individual scores and were BRUTAL. I worked my way up to 175 lbs on the complex and failed twice, leaving my score at 155 lbs...#smh..
2000m Row Time: 7:02
Snatch Complex Weight: 155 lbs
RX & SCALED: From 00:00 - 9:00min: FOR TIME - Row 2000m (Record Time Score)
Then, from 9:00 - 14:00: FOR WEIGHT - Complete the following complex: 1x Snatch (Power of Squat_ 1x Hang Snatch (Power or Squat) 1x Overhead Squat (Record weight of heaviest completed complex)
Wolf? Beowolfe? I have no idea how to pronounce the name of this WOD, but I can tell you the short and sweetness of it absolutely sucked.
Six minutes for total reps was going to be brutal, especially after the first two WOD's, so I knew I was going to have to do the wall balls unbroken, fight through the HSPU's and burn whatever was left in the tank.
Ended up completely sucking on the HSPU's and the TTB's...but whatever. Gave it my all, right?
Total score for this: 105
RX & SCALED (6:00mins)
00:00min - 02:00min: AMRAP WALL BALL SHOTS (20#s/14#s)
02:00min - 4:00min: AMRAP HSPUs** 04:00min - 6:00min:
AMRAP TOES TO BAR (Record Total Reps)
All in all, I was stoked when they announced my name for the podium. It was my first time ever placing in a CrossFit comp and it was so much more meaningful because it was with people whom I know and love. It didn't matter about the placement, just the place. All I was aiming for was a good time and chance to catchup with some people I really care about.
That's the power of a community like CrossFit. It's really a medium and a form for you to bring out your personal best and an outlet for you to start living a much healthier lifestyle. It's up to you how deep you want to get involved in the 'cult' but for 90% of all athletes in this tight-knit community, they are simply seeking a routine that involves constantly-varied, functional fitness type movements with likeminded people.
The takeaway is simple...work hard, stay humble and take baby steps towards every one of your goals. You can and will eventually get there and trust the process.
Hope to see you on a future VoyEdge RX trip. See our 'Trips Page' by clicking the content block down below. Or shoot me an email and I'd be happy to discuss every one of our trips with you.
~ Cam King
P.S. We're working on our U.S. National Parks Trip and will have that page up soon. Are you interested? Sign up for our email blast down below and we'll get an email blast going up asap.