Just when you think you're tough enough


Training for the 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games Open

Image from Reebok
Image from Reebok

3, 2, 1…Before you know it, the CrossFit Games season will be here, and it all starts with the 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games Open beginning on February 25.

Whether you’re trying to get your first double under or place higher than last year, the Open is an opportunity to improve your fitness and challenge yourself. Here are a few tips to get you started for a better 2016.

Listen to Your Coach

According to Conor Murphy, a coach at Reebok CrossFit ONE, your coach will give you an outside perspective on your fitness.

“Every athlete has a coach. It’s as simple as that. The best athletes are humble about what they’re good at,” says Murphy.

Many athletes have an idea of their strengths and weaknesses, but all athletes need someone to tell them what to work on. Based on your goal for the Open (getting that first muscle-up, placing in the top 100 in your region, re-qualifying for Regionals), a coach can help you develop a plan specifically for that goal.

Practice Past Open Workouts

As CrossFit athletes, we love doing Benchmark workouts to see our progress, and the Open workouts are no exception. Every year, CrossFit HQ challenges us with new workouts involving a variety of skills and time domains, and repeating Open workouts of the past (there’s no shortage of them) is a great way to showcase how we’ve grown over the year.

Murphy views running through these workouts as the best way to “find deficiencies and attack them before the 2016 Open begins.”

This is also a great time to review the movement standards in the Open. Make sure to find a judge, a coach, or another athlete to practice with you. It’s better to have someone call you out on not having a strict handstand push-up now, rather than during 16.1. Use these difficulties as motivators and areas of focus in practice.

Image from Reebok
Image from Reebok

Amp Up Your Intensity

Many athletes make the mistake of adding more volume to their training the month leading up to the Open. But according to Coach Murphy, what athletes should be practicing is intensity. We know the Open workouts are generally shorter so intensity is often the independent variable that leads to success.

Murphy also points out that it can be a great disservice to athletes if they aren’t following workouts at least three times a week — especially for those trying to qualify for Regionals and the Games. Murphy works out at Reebok CrossFit ONE with a number of Games athletes — Spencer Hendel, Austin Malleolo, James Hobart — and they all incorporate the main site WODs into their training schedules. After all, CrossFit HQ programs the Open.

Dial In Your Nutrition

Extra gym time means your muscles will need more fuel and recovery. Figuring out what protein or carbs work for you is an important piece to this fitness puzzle.

“Nutrition is the baseline of the CrossFit hierarchy,” says Murphy.

“Results from dialing in your nutrition are profound, especially when competing against someone who trains just as hard but hasn’t dialled in their nutrition.”

16.1 will be announced on February 25. With the right planning, training, and nutrition, you’ll be ready to give your best performance in one of the biggest worldwide displays of fitness. But maybe the biggest factor is our mindset.

“Don’t forget to have fun and remember we’re all just trying to get more fit.”

Source: Reebok