Sign up for the Open.
Even if you don’t think you’re ready. No one is ever ready. There are no compelling reasons to not.
There are no bad reasons to sign up. Talking trash to your friends and doing battle with each other from across the country, or even the world, like fellow writer Lisbeth Darsh does. I like that reason.
It’s like the movie Rudy but better, because you get to play before the game is a blowout, when it still counts. Throwing down in the same arena, in the same events, with the same rules as Rich Froning, Sam Briggs and Chris Spealler. That’s something that doesn’t happen in the NFL, the NBA, NASCAR or any other major sports. Finding new skills, breaking down old barriers, and giving yourself an annual yardstick to measure your progress.
CrossFit athletes are participants, not just spectators. That’s how the CrossFit Games came to be in the first place. People wanted to work out with other people, and test themselves against their brethren from worlds away, who were sweating their asses off in their garages just the same, doing the same workouts.
There is more to CrossFit than physicality. It’s the ethos, the attitude, and the will to engage and better ourselves and others. The CrossFit Games—especially the Open—are a celebration of those things: the things that make us who we are—all of us.
You can help your gym’s team. Even if your score isn’t competitive, you’re helping create that frenzied, exciting gym environment when everyone comes together to do the Open workouts. That little extra push might be what a killer athlete needs to make that last qualifying spot. Maybe one of your burpees will be the tally that gets your gym’s team to the regional. You never know.
At the end of the day, you’ll have come together with hundreds of thousands of athletes from around the globe, and participated in one of the largest sporting experiments ever conceived of. You’ll have done good; good for your box and good for yourself.
The Open is not about winning; it’s about playing. About going hard to the paint and getting better. Like in traditional sports, the thrill is not in making it to the pros—too few do so. The thrill is in the “What if?” It’s in the playing itself.
You can’t “win” anyway. You can go faster than the guy or girl next to you, be fastest in your gym or maybe even the world. You can do better than you did the last time. But, you can always do better. So there is no winner, in the traditional sense of the word because there is always another rep to do, always a chance to do better. This is for everyone.
The way you win the Open is by doing.