March 29, 2013
Justin Bieber ('s Sound Guy) Takes on the Open
By Brittney Saline

Days off don't come easy when you're the head sound guy for Justin Bieber's world tour ... Though he lives on a bus, he never misses a workout, carrying a barbell and plates with him on the road.


It’s been nine months since Arnie Hernandez has seen the inside of his home box, CrossFit VTG. Days off don’t come easy when you’re the head sound guy for Justin Bieber’s world tour.

Each week, the 41-year-old roadie completes the Open Workout in a different box.
“Some will have nice equipment, some are more stripped down, but the vibe in each is the same,” he says. “A common thread is the hospitality that they’ve all shown to me as a foreigner.”
Although he lives on a bus, he never misses a workout, carrying a barbell and plates with him on the road. On days off, he drops in at a local affiliate. On show night, he works out while the band warms up.
“When the opening acts are setting up, I’ll pull out my barbell,” he says. “While they’re doing the sound check, I’m at the front of house, squatting.”
But travel workouts done solo won’t do for the 2013 CrossFit Games Open. Not about to miss out, Hernandez contacts affiliates in the venue cities ahead of time and asks to join the fun.
“I've been extremely fortunate to have found (an affiliate) near the hotel every week,” he says. “What I hadn't expected is the contribution made to my score by the coaches and community.”
Hernandez says he’s taken away “nuggets of information” at every box he’s competed in so far.
When he did 13.1 at Thames CrossFit in London, a new cue from an unfamiliar coach — arms high and outside — led to a score of 105 and five bodyweight snatches at 135 lb., a weight that was, until that moment, his one-rep max.
He completed his 208 reps on 13.2 at CrossFit Barcelona, and then traversed over to CrossFit Turicum in Zurich, Switzerland, to take his shot at 13.3. There, he contended with the elevation after weeks of being at sea level, and an unexpected twist on the wall ball shots.
“I had no idea that I would be using a 10 kg ball, which is 22 lb.,” he says. “But that’s part of the unknown and unknowable, isn’t it?”
Though Hernandez was less than thrilled with his 13.3 score of 152 reps, he says the experience meant more than the scorecard.
“I cannot discount how awesome it was to see such impressive athleticism as I witnessed at CrossFit Turicum,” he says. “I know they helped bring out the best in my attempt.”
Besides seeing where his fitness ranks among the rest of the world, Hernandez says joining unfamiliar faces for the Open workouts challenges him to be better in more ways than just physical.
“I’m kind of shy, so this forces me out of my comfort zone to go out and put myself in a situation that’s new,” he says.
Hernandez will stop in CrossFit Vienna for 13.4 and perform the final Open workout at CrossFit AM Main in Frankfurt, Germany.
Though he may not know the athletes competing next to him or which bar has the best spin, Hernandez says he values his touring Open experience “if for no other reason than to expand one’s exposure to the national or global CrossFit community.”
And, he advises CrossFitters to be on the lookout for wayfaring competitors such as himself. 
“Welcome them,” he says. “Show them around. Cheer them on. It really does make all the difference.”