July 13, 2012
Masters of the CrossFit Universe
By CrossFit

Fittest over 45 begin competition at the Reebok CrossFit Games.

The Masters competition kicked off Friday at the CrossFit Games, showcasing the fittest CrossFitters over 45 in four different divisions.

In the first event, it was all about the transitions. 
After only 2 minutes to register a one-rep-max shoulder-to-overhead lift, the Masters competitors had 1 minute to load their own bars for the triplet that immediately followed. Consisting of 4 rounds for time of 2 rope climbs, a shuttle run, 5 front squats and another shuttle run, the triplet proved a daunting challenging for most of the masters competitors. The workout was capped at 8 minutes.
The women were up first, taking to the floor under unseasonably rainy skies. The wet ground made the sprints tricky, but most competitors were too wrapped up in the competition to notice. 
“I didn’t know it was raining,” said Debbie Mizikowski, an athlete in the 55-59 Division. 
Becky Walker, one half of a 60-plus “super couple,” got her first rope climb just yesterday. Today, she climbed the rope twice. Greg Walker, her husband and a competitor in the men’s 60-plus division, gave Becky a big hug after she finished. 
“Good job. You did so well,” Greg told her. 
Expectations were high for Mary Beth Litsheim, a competitor in the 50-54 age Division. Litsheim performed so well at the Open she was invited to compete against the youngsters at the South West Regional. 
Litsheim loaded up the bar with 165 lb. for her first shoulders-to-overhead attempt, jerked it overhead, but got a no-rep from her judge for not showing control of the bar. After two attempts, Litsheim struggled to strip the bar and barely managed to get 115 lb. overhead before her time ended. 
“I have a sprained wrist,” Litsheim said after the event. “I sprained it last Saturday. The rope felt great, the shuttle was hard, and the front squats were OK.” 
Disappointment on her face, Litsheim smiled and said, “I have my work cut out for me.”
Of all the competitors in all classes, only one woman, Lisa Mikkelsen of CrossFit New England, finished the triplet under the time cap, with a time of 7:50. Mikkelsen has Games experience: for the past two years, she has competed at the Games on the CrossFit New England Team and was essential in helping the team win the 2011 Affiliate Cup. 
The rain cleared and the humidity set in as the 60-plus Masters men took over. They kicked things off by throwing impressive weight overhead, with three men tying for first place with 215 lb. No men in this age group finished under the time cap, but Scott Olson and Christopher Kulp tied for first. 
Tony Kubitschek, a competitor the 50-54 Division, was not looking forward to the shoulders-to-overheard challenge. 
“I have three fused vertebrae in my neck, six screws and two plates,” Kubitschek said. He also has what he calls “old man shoulders.” 
Despite being a bionic man, Kubitschek put 225 lb. overhead and finished the triplet in 7:32.
The men in the 45-49 Division proved you can be a beast at any age by requesting more weight on the floor for their shoulders-to-overheads. Freddy Camacho jerked 290 lb. with ease, giving him a first-place spot for the first part of the event.
Scott De Tore, winner of the 45-49 Division at the 2011 Games, showed no sign of slowing down this year. He worked through the rope climbs, shuttle runs and front squats steadily, and he finished first overall with a time of 6:43. Immediately after he finished, De Tore jogged off the competition floor and hopped on a rower. 
“I’m trying to cool down,” he said. 
De Tore said he worked more on strength this year and focused on shorter met-cons. As De Tore cooled down, he watched his competitors walk by. 
“These guys are all monsters,” he said.
 When asked about his plan for the rest of the weekend, De Tore said, “I’m just going to eat good, sleep good and hope everyone gets more tired than I do.”

For complete Masters results after 2 events, visit the Leaderboard.