CrossFit Central is the 13th fittest affiliate in the world!!!
That’s right! The CC team took 13th at the CrossFit Games! This is something that I have spent the last couple days processing and digesting, which is why I have not been posting lately. I felt I needed some time to fully process everything that happened in Cali, as well as grasp the true weight of what we did as a team. I will warn you know….some of what I’m about to share is blunt and potentially offensive. It is not my intent to upset anyone, but only to be completely genuine with y’all. These are some of my thoughts:
1.There are a lot of fucking pretenders out there.
It was impossible to throw a rock and not hit 5 people that were thinking to themselves, “I could do that!” I find this almost comical, mostly disrespectful, but also comical. Not a single person knows what type of dedication, focus, and commitment it took for those athletes to get to the top of the sport of fitness, CrossFit. I include myself in that previous statement, FYI. I know exactly what it takes to be a part of one of the top teams in the world. I’ve been on 2. That being said, I have no clue what it takes to be an individual.
I bring this up because there were countless times that people would walk up to one of us on the CC team and, although they meant well, would offer their “should have’s”, “could have’s” and general “expertise” in any area they thought they understood. I’ll say this again, I understand that they meant well, but doing what we did. Training the way we did for the durations that we did made me feel that these people had no fucking clue what it takes to do what we did.
One word comes to mind; COMMITMENT. The absolute commitment that each of us exhibited during our march to the Games is something that very few people practice, or are willing to even consider. For many of these “experts”, it’s difficult for them to NOT drink each and every weekend! You think Rich Froning, Matt Chan, Jeremy Thiel, Michael Winchester, Jessica Estrada, or Carey Kepler drink and party every week? Hell no!!! They had a mission that they were completely committed to. Nothing was going to get in the way of that mission. Nothing.
Consider this before you tell your coach that you want to be a Games Athlete….Please:What would you TRULY be willing to sacrafice to train for the Games? Trust me, it requires more than you can imagine. Your body and your mind are tested every day, as the Games season is long and grueling. It is not just hitting the gym for the quick WOD. Not anymore. It is a second job!
In conclusion of my first thought, think twice about how your naivete may come across to those who sacrifice everything for several months each year to reach a goal that is difficult for many of us to even comprehend. Don’t belittle it with your “expertise”. Try to understand it. Respect it.
2. Expectations vs. Outcome
I’m sure you can already tell where this is going, but I’m going to spell it out for you….and myself. There is a huge difference between what you expect and what actually occurs. We should all know that first hand, right? The Games were no different.
It was almost every day that the CC team would meet in the gym for one of our 3 hour training sessions….Yes, I said 3 hour, and that was the 2nd session of the day in some cases. Commitment, anyone?…..and talk about our chances of making it to a podium spot. We all knew that we, as a team, were extremely capable of making it happen. We knew that it would come down to the workouts. When they were released, our team could practically taste the gold! Now, let me be clear here….It was not cockiness. Simply, confidence. We knew it would be a battle, but we also knew that we’d be up for the fight!
Rather than try to re-play each workout, I will save us all a lot of time and say that we had some workouts that did not go our way. We were very well prepared for the first release of the workouts, but when learning of the little twists that Dave Castro threw in the mix, we were caught. That is the way of the sport, though. I wouldn’t have it any other way. WE were responsible for not performing to our abilities is some of the workouts. No other factor matters.
To wrap this up, this is a rather simple idea to understand. It is extremely frustrating to know what you are capable of, but when the dust settles, you did not reach your potential. I’m sure you can all understand that, right? This is how we felt. We are absolutely grateful for the opportunity to represent our families, friends, clients, and the CC community at the Games….we just know that we could have done a better job doing it. Next year!
3. The Defining Moment
My Games experience was packed with amazing experiences and memories that I will never forget, but the one moment that stands out in my mind the most are the moments immediately following the “Fat Bar Workout”. This may surprise you, as it was the workout that cost us a spot to play on the final day, but let me explain.
It’s true. That workout was the wrench that fucked everything up for us. We made mistakes during that WOD that cost us a top 6 finish. We have all come to grips with that, but through the struggle came a beautiful moment that I will never forget!
Karen Pierce and I were the final team to work our way through the 3 stages of the workout. Karen stood with 145lbs in the front rack for nearly 2mins and 45secs as I rowed my ass off to reach the 750m mark. If you know me at all, you know that I am not a fan of rowing because it is not something I’m great at. But, with Karen standing there holding that weight like a rock, I knew I had to put all of my bullshit aside and work for her! And I did.
We moved onto the second stage, which involved one person holding 135/95lbs overhead while the other performed burpees. As a team, we were required to complete 50 burpees to a plate before moving on. I was the one holding the weight first while Karen knocked out burpees. I started strong, feeling like Karen looked in the previous stage. We had some missed reps on the burpees, but I found myself using some techniques learned at my Tony Robbins’ experiences that gave me strength to hold. Pretty cool.
We made it to the final stage which required one person perform thrusters at 95/65lbs while the other held the top of a dip. This may not sound all that bad, but given all the work prior to it, it was pretty shitty. Long story short, we switched up a couple times, but we got it done. It was truly a battle.
Now, the workout itself was quite the experience, but it is not the defining moment of my 2012 Games. The moment that I will always remember is once we finished an impromptu group hug, we all stood up and I consciously looked around to soak it in! We were in the fucking CrossFit Games stadium! We had a minimum of 10,000 people surrounding us with sound, passion, and an energy that is still hard to fathom. I wanted my teammates to realize this as well, so I told them to “take a look around! Look where we are!” Everyone felt the power of that moment. And that is all that matters.
That moment made all the blood, sweat and tears worth it. It validated all the grueling work we put in preparing for this stage. It’s a moment that fuels us all to make it back to the big stage and showcase our individual abilities and our unbreakable connection with each other. Again, that is all that matters.