This weekend tens of thousands of CrossFitters gathered in boxes throughout the world, to perform Open 15.3.
This was perhaps the ugliest CrossFit Open WOD I have ever witnessed. And that was just on the internet forums! Facebook groups were filled with enraged and frustrated athletes who took exception to an advanced movement, such as a Muscle-Ups, showing up as the first movement in an Open workout.
Another group of people saw the handwriting on the wall, a month ago, when Dave Castro announced there would be a Scaled option for those who were not up to the high standards required to get to the Regionals.
After much lamentation, athletes were left with three main choices:
- Do the WOD Rx, because you had Muscle-Ups in your skill set
- Struggle to get your first Muscle-Up
- Do the WOD Scaled
This was a “no-brainer” for me, so I gratefully accepted having a Scaled Option to go to.
Though there was an escape from the agony of 14 minutes of flailing myself upon a pair of gymnastic rings, the scaled WOD was a vigorous workout. There was no embarrassment, or second-class status, associated with going that route.
Though it was my third WOD in the Open 2015 series, it was in fact my first real workout. My first two WODs were Rx, because I figured I had no problem with the first movements of Toes-to-Bar and Overhead Squats. So I got my quick Rx points, and was done early.
I was amused by the irony of the fact that two weeks in, I was ahead on the leaderboard, in spite of my inferior performances. This was solely because Rx rate higher than Scaled competitors in the magic scorekeeping formula. I knew it was a temporary situation. My days were numbered.
This past Saturday, was my day of reckoning. Though Mens Masters 60+ reversed the order, leading with Double-Unders, I failed to master DUs over the past year, so I was unable to do Rx. This would have permitted me to get 150 Rx points on the board, before running into my insurmountable Muscle-Up wall. But I was fine with going Scaled. I did not work on DU’s this year, so I did not earn the right to capture those points.
So I opted for Scaled, which was 14 minutes of 50 Wall Ball Shots, followed by 200 Single-Unders, Rinse and Repeat until the clock runs out. I don’t mind Wall Balls. Now, that is not to say I embrace them, or that they don’t grind me down. They do. But I can sustain them if I accept a modest pacing and do not permit myself to get fatigued prematurely.
Anyone who has read Defiant Wellness, or who has followed me on Facebook, knows I do not like long MetCons. I’m OK for 5-6 minutes, but after 10 I usually dread them. So you can imagine that looking at 14 minutes of Wall Balls and Single Unders was not going to thrill me. But I just accepted the challenge. I did not worry about it. I was not filled with dread.
Actually, I was excited about it. This is quite ironic. In fact, me doing the Open this year is ironic, because I seldom WOD anymore. Prior to the Open, I had only done a handful of WODs all year. I spend more time doing O Lifts than CrossFit, though it’s all done in a CrossFit box.
When all was said and done, I completed two rounds+, so I finished with 512. When I was done, I spent a few minutes on the C2 erg and rowed 2000m to cool down. Though my score was low, it was satisfying to me, since I seldom to CrossFit WODs anymore. My recovery was fine, and I had an opportunity to judge some fine performances of my friends.
That is what the Open is about, stepping up to a challenge, overcoming your fear, pushing through the pain, and being with great people. What’s not to love? Well, besides Muscle-Ups?