What to expect during The Open...

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This is the week that The 2018 CrossFit Games season starts.

For anyone who’s missed what we’ve been posting about this then start your reading here, then use this post to answer any questions you might have, and finally this post will remove your potential excuses that prevent you from competing.

For 47 weeks of the year we subscribe to the notion that constant variance allows for increased fitness levels across a longer period of time, and so mix and match the focus of each day in the week within a larger framework.

For the next 5 weeks, there’ll be a bit more of a structure in terms of which day will focus on what to allow for people to fully demonstrate the capacity that they’ve spent all year developing during Friday Night Lights.

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So, what to expect:

Monday - regular CrossFit programming with a blend of intensity and volume with pairs and team workouts featuring as usual.

Tuesday - regular CrossFit programming with a focus on the intensity end of the I/V spectrum.

Wednesday - a chance to take the principles from our popular Balance, Strength and Structure classes and apply them to all the CrossFit classes on the day.  Expect chances to work on positional strength, focus on movement quality and develop new skills without seeing the lactic fairy and ending up flat on your back.

Thursday - we will be working on maximising your cardiac output by moving around but without a lot of eccentric loading to give you chance to keep working on our base fitness level but not feel beaten up going into Friday.

Friday - whatever Dave Castro throws at us!

Saturday - a similar format to Monday with pairs and team workouts that blend intensity and volume but don’t overly tax similar movements or muscles that Friday uses. 

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Who should compete in The Open

This is a great question, and one that we get asked many times in the gym in the build up to The Open every year.

Recently I was listening to a podcast that discussed the three types of fear that might hold you back from competing in The Open.

1 - The fear of embarrassment

The fear of finishing last.  The fear of everyone seeing exactly what you can and cannot do.  The fear of what people think of you for not being able to do something.

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This is normal and everyone doing something for the first time will feel this.  It's natural, it's human and everyone has been there at some point in their life.

Without getting past this fear, there can be no growth.  If you are not in a position where you have never been before then how can you move forwards with anything in your life?

CrossFit introduced a scaled division to allow people a smoother entry into The Open by lowering loads or levels of technicality.  At SCCF we run the IM Open where participation is rewarded more than achievement.

2 - The fear of how it will feel

The fear of how much it will hurt to try as hard as you can.  The fear of physical discomfort.  The fear of what you might actually be capable of.

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If you have been preparing for any length of time then you should have a reasonable idea of how fit you are.  Contrary to the idea of people rising to the challenge, when the pressure (probably psychological) comes on, people will default to the level of their preparation.  The Friday Night Lights atmosphere might help you squeeze a few more reps out or shave a few seconds off, but that could just be your body fearing embarrassment more.

The number of PBs that we see during Friday Night Lights events during The Open is amazing every year.  So maybe reframe the fear of physical discomfort into an opportunity to demonstrate to your peers how hard you've been working over the past months.  The workouts that Dave Castro presents us with every year are designed to find the fittest men and women on the planet - they are designed to be difficult, they are designed to beat people - so use these coming weeks as chances to find your weaknesses so that over the next year you can start to turn them into strengths.

3 - The fear of failing to meet expectations

The fear of not being as fit as you were.  The fear of not finishing first when everyone expected it.  The fear of being able to do something without pressure, but going to pieces when the music is up, your heart rate is high and there's a bit of a crowd.

The Open is a snapshot.  It is not the measure of who you are or what you are worth.  The Open is there to find out who should progress to Regionals, but also for gym communities to rally round each other and have some fun.  Unless you have performance expectations of people on your shoulders, then the only person you can disappoint is yourself.  The only thing that you can control is the effort that you put in, and if your effort is truly your best then you've won. 

Your placing on the scoreboard will be affected by how many people enter.  You can be satisfied by knowing that you did all you could.

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On that note, make sure that you're signed up to one of the IM Open teams within SCCF.  Head over to games.crossfit.com to register so that you can submit your scores online.  Come and chat to one of the coaches in the gym if you have any questions.

SCCF Intramural Open 2018 FAQs

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First port of call before reading further is this article SCCF Intramural Open

Secondly, a huge thanks goes out to Zuber, Gaby, Matt, Danni, Ash and Sophie who have done superb work so far in coordinating and signing their teams up.  If you are still looking for a team, then please grab one of them next time you see them to get signed up.  If you have signed up but haven't paid for your shirt yet then you have less than 24 hours to do so....

Onwards to the FAQs that have been popping up over the course of the past week or so:

    What is the point of this Intramural Open?

This is a chance to be part of a team, support your fellow SCCF members and see how you stack up against CrossFitters across the world.  The atmosphere in the gym will be hugely supportive and everyone will be cheering for everyone else to do their best.

    Do I have to sign up on games.crossfit.com to be part of the IM Open?

No.  You do not have to sign up online, but one of the points available to score each week is by submitting a score for validation.  Also, by signing up online you have an account whereby you can track your improvement year on year.

    When will be my last chance to order a shirt?

The shirt order will be closing on Monday 12th February, so you have until the gym closes on Monday 12th February to grab yours HERE

    When will the workout be programmed in?

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As the workout is released in the middle of the night on Thursday we won’t have exact logistical details until Friday morning.  Friday morning and lunchtime classes will have the workout as their programming (logistics dependent) and then the Friday evening classes have been replaced with a big Friday Night Lights slot that will have constant heats running.  Heats will be available to sign up for on Friday in the gym.  The heats will run consecutively instead of being at preset times.  If you are going head to head with someone from another team then you’ll both have to be in the same heat.

    What are these head to head challenges all about?

It’s your chance to throw down with your FRenemy in front of a crowd as a way to earn extra points for your team.  If you want to set up a head to head with someone then please submit your request to Mike by Wednesday evening.  Please note that there is no requirement for the person who has been challenged to accept the challenge, and drafted athletes are only allowed to call each other out.

    What if I’m not on a team yet?

Please make yourself known to Mike or Sam and they’ll direct team captains towards you with contracts in hand.

    What if I can’t make it to SCCF on a Friday to complete the workout?

You can still earn your point for submitting a score for validation by completing the workout, either at SCCF before Monday 2030, or at another CrossFit affiliate.  The only points you’ll miss out on are the ones you can earn for judging and supporting the rest of your team (you could always judge a few extra heats the week after to make up the difference!).

    What's this about RX and scaled?

Taken from the CrossFit Games Instagram account:

“The prescribed Open workouts released for each competitive division (i.e., individual men and women and all age-group divisions) may be accompanied by a scaled version. Athletes unable to perform a workout as prescribed may choose the scaled workout provided.
Athletes may finish the Open with any combination of scaled and prescribed workouts contributing to their score on the Leaderboard.
In every division, an athlete who chooses to perform a scaled workout will be ranked on the Leaderboard relative to all other athletes performing the scaled version of the workout but below all athletes who performed that workout “as prescribed.”
New: Any athlete who fails to submit a score will receive a score of “0” and will be ranked below all athletes who entered a score, whether prescribed or scaled, for that workout.
Athletes are eligible to advance to the next stage of competition (Regionals, Online Qualifier or Games) even if they choose to perform the scaled version of one or more Open workouts.
An athlete’s score from a scaled workout cannot contribute toward the team’s score. However, an athlete who performs scaled workouts is still eligible to participate on their affiliate’s team as long as they meet all the team requirements.”

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In short, there will two versions of the workout available to do each week.  Any score on the RX one beats any score on the scaled one in terms of the worldwide leaderboard, but any member can choose either version to complete depending on their goals.

    Can you remind me of all the ways I can score points for my team?

Yes.

    1    (+1) Each team member that completes an Open WOD with a judge and has their score validated will earn a point for their team’s total.

    2    (+1) The top three male and female Rx scores for each week will earn an additional point for their team total.

    3    (+5)  The team that is deemed to have shown the most spirit during each Friday Night Lights (1630, 1730 and 1830 classes) will earn 5 bonus points.

    4    (+1) Any team member completing an Open WOD during Friday Night Lights will earn an extra point for their team.

    5    (+2/+1) Athletes who challenge an athlete from another team to compete in a head-to-head throw down during Friday Night Lights will earn their team an extra 2 points for a win, whilst 1 extra point will be earned for a loss.

    6    (+1) Hitting a PB during any of the Open workouts will earn an extra point for their team.

    7     (+1) Judging a member of a different team during an Open workout. 

    Can I keep repeating the workout to earn loads of points for my team?

No.  Repeats are only really important for those on the edge of Regional qualification or who had a complete nightmare first time round.  Going through the mental build up and the physical output needed for one or two more reps is not worth it, just enjoy the experience!  If you are on the borderline of RX and Scaled and are not sure which one to do, then we recommend doing the RX version as the place on the leaderboard is automatically higher, but when you hit the inevitable roadblock of a skill or load that you can't move past, chill out, have a rest and do the scaled version in a later heat if you want to get sweaty!

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