Joe Weigel missed the Games by one point in 2010, behind none other than the Fittest Man on Earth, Graham Holmberg. His 4th place finish wasn’t enough for him to qualify, but this year, at the 2011 Central East Regional, Joe showed he had what it takes and will be headed to Carson, Calif., to compete in the 2011 Reebok CrossFit Games.
He earned his 2nd place finish at the Regional with 30 points. After the Open, he was in 5th place in the region and 40th worldwide. He was four points ahead of Graham this time around. But that hasn’t changed his levelheaded approach to competition. “I don’t really think anything of it,” Joe said. “I don’t think the Open means anything other than the path for the 60 top athletes to get a shot at Regionals. Graham is still the champ. The only way for that to chance is at the Games. I enjoyed competing with him at the 2010 Regional, and I look forward to competing with him again.”
Joe had to compete with the likes of Dan Bailey, Nick Fory, and Nick Urankar, who all did well in the Open. “My goal before [the] Regional was just to make it to the Games … especially with how tough or region is,” he said. “Now that I’ve made it to the Games, my goal is to be as prepared as possible, do my best, and we’ll see where that lands me at the end.”
Now that he’s qualified, Joe said he will continue to follow his training program and not change anything in the lead up to the Games. “Keep working on things I’m bad at. Also, I will tune up more advance skills that they could throw at us this year. And do some ‘work’ workouts with stones, logs, etc.,” he said.
Luckily for Joe, his other job is conducive to his training schedule. “Being a firefighter is a great job for also being a CrossFit athlete. My off days mostly consist of training at my home gym,SPC CrossFit, and going on callbacks at the station. We also workout at work, so my training isn’t hurt at all by working 24 hours at a time.”
Joe’s home gym includes a 35-foot climbing rope in his backyard that hangs over a hill. “I use it in training and when I’m climbing it, I get really strange looks from people walking on the path by the river behind our house."
His focus between now and the Games will be to have “no weakness. That’s my motto and pretty much sums up my training mentality,” he said. “I work the components that I know aren’t my best ever day, while maintain my strengths and trying to continue to improve on them.”
As a certified trainer, Joe programs for himself instead of following an existing training method. “I follow my own program that I create week by week. I try to include as many movements as I can during each week while making sure I hammer my weaknesses in skill sets and workouts,” he explained. “I just try to prepare myself for as many things as possible and be as good at as many things as I possibly can.”