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It's CrossFit Open Season at Innervate: 11 Do's and Don'ts

The Opens are upon us. To some, this is a familiar feeling. To others, this will be the first of many.

What are the Opens? Well, once every year, the CrossFit Community gathers together to find the fittest amongst them, or rather, the fittest on earth. This is done through tests of abilities ranging from skill, strength, endurance and more, across elements of land, sky (if you consider muscle ups flying around) and sea. The first tranche of this would be none other than the Opens itself where everyone and anyone can join in to prove themselves. However, if you're reading this here and your name doesn't begin with Matt or Tia, there's a good chance that sorry, you won't be bringing home the bacon as the fittest on earth.

So why would an average Joe like you and me join the Opens? It's not to prove anything to anyone else out there, it's not even to try to be the fittest in Singapore (or even the box), it's about proving something to yourself. To put yourself out there and recognise that this is my work capacity, this is what I'm capable of and that's just that. Then each and every time, you come back and you find yourself tested again. It's also about the community, it's about cheering the first pull up, heavy snatch or handstand ever. To recognise that yes, fitness is not just about you, being in the box is not just about you but about collective success. It's about being Stronger Together (remember that?).

To those who are seasoned, don't let the objective of pursuing the top position cloud the spirit of the games, which is the pursuit of personal growth year on year. So leave your ego at the door, get down, get humble and realise that this is really about progress, not perfection. To the freshmen, don't be too caught up with the nerves of it being the 'first', this will be your 'worst' Opens for sure, but it'll definitely be your most eye opening one!

Over the years, I've beaten myself up, been angry with myself, got injured in the Opens, redid workouts 4 or 5 times and made all the mistakes you can possibly think of. Beyond all of that, if anything at all, I've learnt more about myself, more about competing and enjoying the process instead of dreading it. So prior to the kickstart of the season, here are a couple of Do's and Don'ts I'd like to share.

Don'ts for Taking Part in the CrossFit Open

1. Don't be obsessive over your placing - don't go leader boarding every other hour to see where you stand amongst the rest of the country, region, or even world.

2. Don't attempt any workout more than twice - Why do I say twice? Cause yes, sometimes you do learn how to better improve your score after the first attempt, you know the parts where it stings and you know how to better pace yourself. But anything more than twice is really a waste of time because it's just about feeding your ego. (But do take ample days to recover in-between).

3. Don't beat yourself over not doing 'well enough' - if it's your first it's okay, if it's your tenth, it's also okay!

4. Don't be too afraid to give it a shot! if you're a Silver, an adaptive athlete or even in your first month, GIVE IT A GO!

5. Don't wait for the 11th hour to prepare and to hope for the best only when you start - i.e. if you don't have a HSPU, don't suddenly think that the Opens has magic to help you get it, you will get hurt! BUT...

Do's for Taking Part in the CrossFit Open

6. Do start practising early! Prepare for it NOW by working on your weaknesses, such that you might have a chance to get that 'first' in the Opens itself. If you don't know what your weaknesses are, do this simple test. Whatever movement you don't want to see come out for the workout, is the exact movement that will come out for the workout, so get down to doing those movements! How do you get better at them? Use the tools given to you! The Technique Tuesdays series on our social media is a GREAT START!

7. Do work on your general conditioning / engine! A lot of people overcomplicate training for the Opens. However, the name of the game for the Opens is really about your general work capacity, whether you can do something again and again over time. Increase the intensity of each of your workouts, try to go longer each time. Increase that reservoir of your engine!

8. Do watch your nutrition! A lot of people think that training excessively is enough. NO IT ISN'T! You've got to watch what you put into your system. If you're putting in trash, you're gonna have a trashy performance. So do take some time to dial that in! If you've got questions, start with some tips from Coach Ash on nutrition found on our socials page!

9. Do the workout at your comfortable space and timing of your workout - if you're an evening person, stick to it!

10. Do the workout together with the crew or someone really cheering you on! Trust me, this really works wonders, especially towards the end.

11. Do ENJOY IT, have fun, and learn more about yourself! I've done so many Opens yet I'm still learning more from it!

More information on HOW we're gonna run the Opens will be released as the date draws nearer.

This is my 10th CrossFit Games Opens - I've done it every single year. Yes, every damn year. Whether or not I registered for it is another question but oh wow whee. Will I continue to do it year after year? Probably so. It's definitely been a journey, an exciting one at that. I recall most if not all of the Open workouts, a special part is that I always go harder and give my real 100% in them. Am I the fittest at each juncture? Not so much. Borrowing a phrase from Muhammad Ali, "Champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last-minute stamina, they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill."

It's time to show me your Will.

Go Get It,

Coach Lionel


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