“Don’t worry about failures; worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try.”
This week we see the start of the CrossFit Open. Five workouts over five weeks in which we have the opportunity to push ourselves to the limits and rank ourselves against every CrossFit athlete in the world from our best friend to Rich Froning to the girl in the morning class you secretly try to beat. Each week we sit a test and we see how we fare.
For some it will bring new PBs, newfound motivation, courage and strength you never knew you had; for others it will highlight the things you don’t have, the gaps in your performance, and how far away you are from all those athletes you yearn to be like.
But bear with me here — it gets better….
I have entered the Open every year for the last four years. This will be my 5th.
In 2012 I loved it. In 2013 it was okay. In 2014 and 2015 I hated it. By Week 3 I questioned why I even entered. I questioned why I even did CrossFit. Why? What was different about the last two years?
In 2012 I had no expectations and went into it naive with limited skills. Most of the workouts were far beyond my capabilities, but I didn’t mind because I got my very first TTB and I PB’d my Clean. Yeah I “failed” the test because there were some weeks I could not submit a score, but I did achieve something.
By 2013 I had most of the moves. I didn’t have the elusive Muscle Up, so that’s where I failed the test. I suppose I was better than the previous year, though. I had better TTB and Pull Ups and could Clean and Jerk more.
2014 arrives and still no muscle up. I could do everything else but not that. I failed the test.
Roll on 2015. Still no muscle up. I failed the test. It’s easy to feel like you failed. It’s easy to feel like you’ve not made progress. Like you’re not good enough and your hard work is not paying off. That’s how I felt.
In 2016 I will fail the test because ….. You guessed it…. I don’t have a muscle up.
So, why have I entered? Why will I ALWAYS encourage people to enter?
Why? Because the CrossFit Open is not about passing the test. It’s not about the score you get or where you are ranked in your gym or around the world. It is not about what you can or can’t do. Not for us anyway. The average CrossFit athlete. It’s about the experience. It’s about being able to feel what it’s like to be a pro competitor. It’s about the magic moments and the what ifs. It’s about the camaraderie and the team spirit.