When Sweden’s Númi Snær Katrínarson qualified for the 2011 Europe Regional, he had only been CrossFitting for 12 months, and was really unsure about what to expect from the competition and the other competitors. He finished in 6th place, in what was a very tight race, dominated by athletes from Scandinavia and Iceland.
"You have to be ready for anything. It is not enough to be only strong."
“I really enjoyed the Regionals last year,” he says. “It was a great experience for me. Overall I was quite pleased with my performance, however, it was clear that my strength was my big weakness. For example, I came in the top 10 for every event with the exception of the thruster ladder, where I ended up way back in 22nd. I have really focused on improving that part of my game over the last year. When you consider that I have only been doing CrossFit for two years now, it stands to reason that I was not as ready then as I am now.”
Using Regionals as a massive learning curve, Katrinarson sat down with his coach afterward and talked through everything they had learned at length.
“It became clear that we had to focus on increasing my overall strength and to improve my Olympic lifting technique,” he says.
A big test of just how well his training had been going was the CrossFit SM competition held in Stockholm this past October. This was Katrinarson’s first CrossFit competition since Regionals and one where he laid down the gauntlet by claiming victory with strong performances in all of the events.
With the strength focus, he has seen some great improvements. Most notably, his deadlift has increased from 160 kg to 180 kg, which he is particularly pleased about as he confesses that the deadlift has always been a problem for him. His snatch has increased by 15 kg, with his PR up to 90 kg. He has also seen great improvements in his jerks and squats.
“Basically all my lifts have increased. My training for the Open is going well,” he says. “I am definitely stronger and I believe I am faster, so I can’t wait to see the WODs.”
Katrinarson says he would like to see more unusual events during the season.
“There are a lot of new people coming in to CrossFit who are really strong and fast, but people sometimes forget what CrossFit is all about,” Katrinarson says. “You have to be ready to do anything. Why not swimming, biking, running more, and all those things? It is not enough to be only strong because I personally think CrossFit is so much more than that!”
As far as nutrition is concerned, Katrinarson describes his diet as "paleo friendly" and he supplements with protein and Omega 3.
“Although I do try to eat clean and healthy most of the time, I am not taking this to seriously all of the time. You have to live a little too.”
Katrinarson trains four to five times a week and at Crossfit Nordic in Stockholm, and he credits the team there as being hugely influential to his success.