“I’ll be ready to fire come July 13th,” says 24-year-old Frederik Aegidius.
It all started four years ago when the Dane dipped his toes into CrossFit with his football team, the Copenhagen Towers. To prepare for the season, they attended a 10-week workout plan at this home bax, CrossFit Butcher’s Lab.
“The WODs were programmed to fit both the size and general strength of a football player,” he says.
Aegidius’s thirst wasn’t quenched after the 10 weeks, and he kept showing up. He loved going to a gym where he could compete with friends and push himself further. “I haven’t found this elsewhere,” he says.
It was another two years before Aegidius fully committed to CrossFit. He first competed in early 2010 at a local competition, and came in second behind Blair Morrison. That prompted him to train for the Europe Regional, where he took fifth place.
“I was hooked because I knew I could make it to the top in Europe and ultimately compete in the Games,” he says.
It would take an additional year before Aegidius took first place in Europe. During the 2011 Regional, he struggled with the first workout due to a wrist fracture, and with the muscle-ups in Amanda.
This year, Aegidius took time off from football to focus solely on CrossFit training. “This past year has been the most focused and structured training period of my life,” he says.
From October through February, Aegidius also trained daily with Annie Thorisdottir and occasionally with other top CrossFit athletes. Having a training partner kept his motivation up. “We both hate losing and so we go faster when we go head to head,” he says.
His coach, Jami Tikkanen, and Aegidius focused on volume with a ton of skill work. “I spent many hours working on plank holds and other core exercises to strengthen my midline to support my lower back.”
His technique and condition benefited from his razor-like focus and allowed him to take first place at Regionals. “I was confident that if I played my game right, I could get a ticket to Carson,” he says.
Aegidius’s training was not aimed to peak at the start of the Open, as he knew his battle to win was at the Regional. During the Open, Aegidius says he enjoyed the workouts. With a tweaked back, he tried to rest as much as possible. “I was proud of my score in 12.3, as I took second place in Europe,” he says.
At the Regional, Aegidius delivered a consistent performance. “My first WOD didn’t go as well as I hoped,” he recalls. “I was 40 seconds off my [personal best], losing more points than I expected.”
As the weekend progressed, he moved up the ladder without any wins. “I learned that I didn’t need to outperform myself to qualify,” he says.
His favorite moment was during the Snatch Ladder on Day 3. “I was alone on the floor, making a PB by 8 pounds in front of 2,000 cheering fans,” he says.
He says he was glad to be on his home turf at Regionals, and knows it made a difference. “It was nice to sleep in my own bed, prepare my own food and have all the people I know cheering me on,” he says. “I couldn’t have asked for a better environment in which to prove myself.”
Aegidius’s lead improved after the Event 5 as Lacee Kovacs got a no-rep and took 26th place. Before the last workout, Aegidius was confident it was only a matter of taking first or second place in Europe. “I was glad I was able to keep Mikko Aronpaa behind me.”
Aegidius believes his strength is his versatility, and he says he loves working with barbells. “Medium to heavy loads, combined with toes-to-bars are my favorite,” he says.
However, he increases his mental focus when dealing with high rep muscle-ups and handstand push-ups, as they knocked him off my game in the past. Additionally, he makes an effort to control his mentality in workouts that aren’t going well or when others are moving faster than him. “I know my limits and avoid burn out.”
Aegidius’s goals for the Games are clear. “I’m going to prove to myself that I can compete with these guys,” he says.
To prepare, Aegidius is doing two or three workouts a day to condition his body for the stress and physical beatings of the Games. “I bike and do hill sprints for active recovery,” he says.
Having trained with veterans like Spencer Hendel, Austin Malleolo and Rich Froning in the past, he says he can’t wait to take them on in a real competition. However, Aegidius is grounded in the challenge ahead of him and says humbly, “I just want to secure a good finish.”