Sunday, January 19, 2014

5 Reasons Every CrossFit Athlete Should Compete in a Competition

Yesterday, I competed in my second CrossFit competition at my gym, [ocn] CrossFit.  Our competitions are designed to be scaled to a level where anyone that wants to can compete and even just from the 2013 Summer Games to yesterday's 2014 Winter Games, I've seen such a growth in both the event and the abilities of everyone at my gym.

First, I want to thank our coaches and judges for putting on such a fantastic event.  Second, if you're a CrossFit athlete and haven't given much thought to trying a competition, I wanted to share a little about my experience and a few reasons you should consider giving it a try.

I'm an inherently competitive person.  I like to have a benchmark to chase, another athlete working in my peripheral vision or a personal best I'm trying to surpass.  In a day to day scenario, I'm usually chasing myself each workout - striving for that feeling once the timer stops, that I could not have completed one more rep, no matter how badly I wanted to.  Competition, no matter who it's with, pushes me to drive harder, move faster and push harder.

After yesterday, I'm so proud of everyone who competed, the three other members of my team, and the progress I've been able to make in the past 6 months since our Summer Games.  Whether you're new to CrossFit or a seasoned athlete, consider finding a local competition suited to your abilities - you'll probably surprise yourself and at the very least, you'll have fun!

Five Reasons Every CrossFit Athlete Should Compete in a Competition

1.  It's a great way to meet new people
Yesterday, we had four gyms outside of our own represented and I love getting the opportunity to meet new people who share the same passion as you.  New friends are cool.  New CrossFit friends are even cooler.

2. You'll really learn what you're capable of when you're put under pressure
In our summer games, we had a clean ladder event.  If two athletes tied in a round, the tie-breaker was a minute of AMRAP burpees.  Prior to the event, my PR clean was 95 lbs.  When the ladder reached 105 lbs, I fell over and failed on my first attempt.  I remember hearing my teammate shouting, "do you want to do a minute of burpees right now?" and I stood back up and managed to get the weight up.  I actually set 4 PR's that day overall and it really sparked a light in me to want to work at getting stronger.

3. It's far less intimidating than it seems
Both of the competitions I've done have been scaled because that's the level I'm at currently and I still feel like I'm going up against athletes who are far beyond me.  Yes, I'm nervous going into an event but so is everyone else competing.  You're all in the same boat and because of that, you cheer each other on and encourage your competitors.

4. You totally get badass points
To anyone outside the CrossFit community, you're already a badass (and possibly a little tapped in the head as far as they're concerned).  When you can tell them you did 30 unbroken deadlifts after completing 40 burpees and 40 box jumps, your badass clout goes up a notch.

5. The overwhelming sense of accomplishment and pride in what you just completed
No one cares if you finish first or last at the end of the day.  Yes, victories are celebrated, but finishing every event is a victory in itself.  You'll learn what your strengths are, where you areas of opportunity lie and how much fight you have inside you - which I guarantee is more than you think.

Photo Courtesy of Sahil Parikh Photography 

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