After collegiate baseball player Ken Battiston graduated from Eastern Michigan University, he realized he needed something to fill the void. By August of 2011, he had found CrossFit.
Training at CrossFit Heights in Tipp City, Ohio, Battiston quickly made gains. Just five months into his training, he took 90th place in the Central East in the 2012 CrossFit Games Open. This year, he thinks he can make it into the top 48.
With a 260-pound snatch, 335-pound clean and jerk, and 2:04 King Kong, Battiston is strong. Yet, unlike many athletes who post fast King Kong times, he can do more than lift heavy. He can finish 30 muscle-ups in 4:50, Diane in 3:05 and Murph in 1 hour, 5 minutes.
He says the 2012 Open made him aware of the glaring holes in his training.
"It was an eye opener," he says. "It exposed a lot of my weaknesses. I always enjoyed moving weight but the seven minutes of burpees absolutely kicked me in the tail, and the Karen WOD was absolutely crushing."
To prepare for 2013, Battiston has been training when fatigued, doing benchmarks every week, and adding in "warped" benchmark workouts that combine Helen, say, with heavy squats in between rounds.