150226 Thursday – Open letter to the gym and Y.E.G. day

Diablo Gym members doing workout 14.4 last year, with their judges looking on. Thank you judges!

The following is a letter to the gym from Head Coach Jeremy Jones about the upcoming Crossfit Games season:


Dear “Regular” Diablo Member,

We are sorry.  

We are sorry that for the next 5 weeks when a large number of people at the gym are going to be obsessing over this thing called the “CrossFit Open”.

For the uninitiated, ‘The Open’ is an annual event where people sign up to see how they rank against thousands of their peers.  To level the playing field as much as possible nobody knows what the workouts are ahead of time and  everyone’s reps are judged and counted using very specific standards.  

The workouts are announced on Thursday nights, and scores must be submitted online by Monday afternoon.  As a gym, we will be posting the workout as the gym’s WOD on Fridays.  We will also be doing dedicated ‘heats’ on Sundays (which is why the schedule has changed a bit). But those minor changes aren’t the main reason why we are apologizing.

For most who do the Open, it is a chance to set a baseline performance or to compare your progress from year to year.  It is also a great way dip your toe in the water from a competition standpoint.  Doing the Open at your ‘home’ gym surrounded by supportive friends and coaches is a fun and instructive way to expose yourself to this side of CrossFit. Some people run 5ks or do bike races, for many people at our gym, this will be their ‘challenge of the year’.  

For some people at the gym, this is one of the most hectic times of the year… and that is who We are apologizing for.  For those who take competiting very seriously, there is very little in life that duplicates the stress of the 5 week Open.  Nervously awaiting the announcement. Reading countless articles on how to attack the workout.  Doing the workout.  Checking the leaderboard 3-4 times a day (or hour!) to see how your score is moving around as other people enter theirs.  Repeating it when you are disappointed with your performance or if the team needs it. Etc.

Naturally this level of stress tends to make people a bit “crazy”.  Crazier than usual anyway.  You will notice people walking around with papers, some asking “Will you judge me?” or “Will you video me?”  You will see groups of people doing the same workout all over the gym.  Sometimes they will be in an inconvenient place, asking for equipment, setting up cameras, or making too much noise during a class.  People will be hovering around the computers so they can ‘log their scores’ and ‘check the leaderboard’.

While it is inconvenient to those of you who aren’t doing the Open, keep in mind that for many people who have decided to participate in it this year, it is an extremely taxing and stressful time.  Let’s celebrate their decision to ‘step into the arena’… “whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly…”.  Let’s support them by cheering them on, giving them space, letting them act out their quirky preparation routines, and understanding when they drop a few choice words if they fail to hit their mark after a second time through a particularly terrible workout.  These are your friends and classmates.  They are your tribe.  Let’s support them like you would your favorite sports team!

In return, we ask athletes doing the Open to promise to stay out of the way as much as possible and stick to the aforementioned schedule.  To understand that not everyone is doing the Open – and that is okay!  To understand that many people have no desire to do the Open again, or at all, and our gym is ultimately about leading better lives (not just about doing great in the Open).

So everyone (competitors and non competitors alike) need to get physically, mentally and emotionally ready for the Open.  It is going to be crazy in here for the next month or so, but for all of the weird stuff going on there is also a lot of great stuff too.  

The Open isn’t just a time for people to test and challenge themselves. It is a time to rally around our friends, training partners, and coaches.  A time to build a stronger community, and share in more than the sweat and effort we do every day. To share our collective ‘experience’.  To feel the highs, and lows, that come from doing something epic.

Get ready, because it is going to be a bumpy (and fun) ride!

-Jeremy Jones

Head Coach, Diablo CrossFit

Mobility:  Hips and Ankle Mobility. (15 Minutes, get ready for open workout tomorrow!)

Skill Practice Warm Up:  Double under, Kipping pull-up, or Overhead Squat practice.

Workout:  “Max Effort” testing and Year End Goals (Y.E.G.s)!

Talk to the coach about what order you should perform them in, and try and pair up with people working on the same goals.  If you have a ‘metcon goal’ that is a workout, wait until after you have done some of the one-off skill tests first.

For today, use a partner to count reps and keep time. DO NOT TRY AND DO TOO MANY ONE DAY. Try to complete 2-3. These are just ideas for ‘max effort’ stuff.  Feel free to work with a coach to do your own Y.E.G. stuff as well.

METCON JUNKIES: If you absolutely NEED to do a metcon to feel normal (and not feel like you ‘wasted’ one of your gym visits)… you may need to reevaluate your priorities… but don’t worry!  There are two fun little metcons at the end of this list that you can do so that you can still get in a good sweat.  Combine max effort 400m run, max push ups in a minute, max effort 500m row, max consecutive double unders, then “Baseline” or “Annie” and you’ll walk out of the gym feeling like you accomplished something. I promise. Real masochists can do ‘tabata squats’, but don’t say I didn’t warn you! -jj

For those of you competing in the open wod tomorrow, test a couple things out, but feel free to avoid the “more intense” workouts.

Click on the links below to take you directly to the ‘Beyond the Whiteboard’ site for these tests.

Max effort 400m run

Max effort 200m run

Max effort 100m run

Max effort 800m run

Max effort 1 mile run

Max effort 100m row

Max effort 250m row

Max effort 500m row

Max effort 1000m row

Max push-ups in a minute

Max consecutive push ups (no dropping off of toes)

Max sit ups in a minute (abmat, feet un-anchored)

Tabata Squats

Max consecutive kipping pull ups (not dropping off the bar, interrupted kipping is fine)

Max consecutive strict pull ups

Max weight from the floor to overhead (Clean and Jerk)

Max weight deadlift

Max weight overhead squat

Max consecutive double unders

Max height box jump

Max distance broad jump

Max weight bench press

Max weight turkish get up

“Annie” 50-40-30-20-10 Double unders and sit ups

“Baseline” 500m row, 40 squats, 30 sit ups, 20 push ups, 10 pull ups – for time

Coaching Tips: Many of these will affect your “Fitness Score” on BTWB.  If you log into your account, your fitness score is up by your profile photo.  If you click on it, you will find details on how your number is calculated and what areas you may need to update before the score is ‘confident’ (scores are only good for 6 months).  The score will “update” on Sunday afternoons so you won’t see a change to your score until then (unfortunately)!

Log your results online by clicking here.

Compare To:  2014 – 11 – 10

 Optional “Cash Out”: None.

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