The Open Jitters??

It’s upon us… The Open, leaderboarding (it’s a whole new verb we have created for crying out loud), comparing scores, contemplating doing the workout again… and again… and again.  People the have never worried about a CrossFit workout before suddenly get the jitters before the Open WOD when their box  gets together to do it.


What’s the big deal?  You care.  You have worked hard to make gains and may have set some goals for yourself.  Now it’s time to see what happens.  Getting the butterflies before workout is a common occurrence for me.  It’s not any different for an Open WOD, but we all want to over think our strategy, worry about sleeping more, what to eat before hand, etc.  The list goes on and on and it’s one of the worst things I think we can to.  It can start to take the fun and the love out of why you are doing it.  Here are some of the different scenarios that you may fall into


1.  You’re doing the Open because you got sucked into it by someone:  You have NO pressure on yourself to perform any specific way.  Chill out and enjoy the competition and seeing where you stack up in the gym, region, or even world.  The last thing you need to worry about is where you fall in comparison to others or redoing the WOD.  Enjoy the competition and have fun with your crew when you workout in a different environment.

2.  You set a goal for the Open this year for placing in a specific spot in your Region:  If you are realistically not going to make it to Regionals use this as a starting point to see where you stack up in your region.  Maybe think a bit more about strategy in your workouts and come up with a little game plan, but don’t be afraid to bag it if it’s not working.  As far as a redo, I say nope.  Our pride can get in the way and try you may find yourself overtraining or over thinking some of the workouts and taking the fun out of it again.  See where you fall this year, and make assessments for next year.

3.  Your goal is to make it to Regionals and it could be tight:  The OPEN then in essence is your “games”.  Schedule your rest days before you do the OPEN workout and take some time to practice some of the more technical movements.  Talk strategy, but again, don’t be afraid to bag it if you need to.  You are now in a great position that most competitors don’t have a chance to be in.  You can redo the workout… it’s a positive thing.  If you were way off on pacing or just had a bad day, no big deal.  Rest up a day or two and hit it up again.  Keep in mind that the numbers for the leaderboard will change often dramatically on Sunday so you may want to be sitting higher than you think you should.  Have fun with this though, it’s your big competition.

4.  You are a Games hopeful:  Keep your eyes on the prize and your training in check.  Why are you worried about the Open?  Is your pride getting in the way? Do you think you can beat that guy by one or two more reps and you want to prove it?  In my opinion that’s getting in the way of your training.  One and done, unless there is a catastrophe.  Keep your training focused on what you need to which is Top 3 in the Region.  Your training should be geared toward this and the Open may or may not be the best way to get you there.


Here is my outlook this year, and it’s a battle to keep it but it is where I need to me.  I train Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  I am sometimes hitting up double days on Wednesday and Thursday I do the Open WOD AND another WOD in the afternoon.  Why?  Keep my eyes on Regionals.  If I wanted to have the best possible score on each Open WOD it wouldn’t look like this.  Here is my previous week.


High Bar Back Squat 3×2

Bar Complex on the min:

Power Clean

Squat Clean

Front Squat

Push Jerk

Start at 155 and climb up 10 lbs till failure, then do it all over again


1. “Amanda” with 185

2. 6 Rounds

3 Bench Press (225)

Row 300 meters

1 min rest btwn rounds


1.Open WOD

2. OTM for 15 min

Min 1 Bench x 5

Min 2. DL x 5

Min 3 Deficit HSPU x 5

-and so on


This is obviously not a way to have the best possible score on the Open WOD.  So why do I do it?  Because my focus is on Regionals and this is the way I need to train for it to best prepare myself and take pressure off of the Open.  Easier said than done but the goal isn’t the Open, the goal is Regionals.

Whatever your goal is identify it, keep your head screwed on, and have some fun in the process.  The more you relax the better you perform anyway.  When it’s game day, whenever that may be, make sure you have prepared the way you need to and relaxing will be that much easier.




  1. DB says:

    Just wondering if you are saying that you take Friday-Monday as complete rest? As I’m getting a bit older I’m finding my recovery slowing but sometimes feel guilty about taking, “too much rest” would love to hear if you are finding the three hard days at full intensity are enough for you to continue making gains?


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