Chris Kalec, a former Olympian, competed at the 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games on the L'Usine CrossFit team.
Kalec, a former Olympic-level diver, was impressed.
“I had a great time competing on the L’Usine CrossFit Games team last year,” he says. “The Games were an amazing experience and really impressed me. The organization was on par with that of the Olympic games I attended.”
The Games experience made Kalec realize he wanted to compete as an individual in 2013.
“I changed a lot about the way I train,” he explains. “Mainly being a bit less serious and methodological. I changed from the low-carb, paleo meals, to healthy carb-loaded meals.”
Now, Kalec doesn’t program anything in advance.
“I attack the heck out of specific weaknesses: squatting and pressing. I spent mid-December to mid-January squatting four times a week. I would couple each squat session with variations of presses.”
This February, he attacked a new weak spot — running.
“I booked some sessions with an Olympic sprinter I knew from the hay days,” he says.
Working for Again Faster Canada gave Kalec the opportunity to visit other Canadian boxes and competitions. Recently, he attended an event at CrossFit North Vancouver — a long way to travel for the Quebec athlete.
“I heard that the CFNV challenge was a two-day Oly lifting and CrossFit-style competition. I absolutely love Olympic lifting,” he says. “It is so similar to diving that I was able to assimilate the technique rather quickly and can move some decent weight for my size.”
At his first lifting meet, he was pleasantly surprised to see his competitive focus was still intact.
"I hit all my lifts and surprised myself by matching my PRs on both lifts. I won my weight class and came in second as overall lifter, right behind Lucas Parker.”
Kalec realizes, by competing individually, he’s may be sacrificing a trip to the Games.
“Games ... probably not, unless Regionals is all handstand walks, toes-to-bars and snatches,” he jokes.
2013 is about finding his place in Canada East.
“I did rather poorly at the 2011 Regional, and I want to improve on that,” he explains. “I’ll aim for top 10 at Regionals.”
By focusing on himself, Kalec is giving another athlete the chance to compete with the L’Usine team.
“L’Usine CrossFit is known for developing strong, competitive talent, and this year we have more than a few guys that are bigger and stronger than myself, and deserve their chance at qualifying for the Games. I will be offering them all the technical support I can to help them get there.”