The CrossFit Games begin every year in February. Divided into three stages, “the Open” is first up. This stage consists of a 5 week, 5 workout competition and allows anyone over the age of 14 to take part. All you have to do is register with a CrossFit affiliate gym and submit a score each week based on your workout success in order to compete. That’s right, if you think you’re up for the challenge, or perhaps you like the idea of training alongside those athletes that do think they are capable of competing in the hope that their athletic excellence might rub off on you, then you’ll need to register with your nearest CrossFit affiliated gym!
If you manage to prove yourself in the Open, you’ll be invited to join the masters online qualifier. This stage puts the top 200 masters in each age division to the test, with several workouts packed into one weekend, all of which must be accredited by a CrossFit registered judge. If you reach this point, you’re doing pretty well and if you rank in the top 20 in your age division, then you’ve successfully advanced to the next stage, the regionals. This is when the top 5 men, 5 women and 5 teams from CrossFit’s 17 regions are selected to compete in the final stage, the Games.
The Fittest on Earth
The Games itself consists of a week long event in Carson, California. Like the regionals, the games are based on a point scoring process. Every event is worth 100 points, and athletes earn points based on their finish. This is the true test- you might have to do a 500 meter swim, or you might have to drag a plough. Either way, you will be pushed to your limits. Are you the highest scoring male, female or team in this stage? Then you’ve done it, and you’re officially classified as the “fittest” on earth!
The CrossFit Games has been running for 7 years, and in that time many dedicated athletes have earned the title of Fittest on Earth. Since the most recent instalment of the CrossFit Games for 2016 finished almost two months ago, let’s have a look and see who’s excelled this year. There’s no doubt that to claim the title Fittest on Earth, you have to be determined. There’s no better example of determination than Mat Fraser. Beginning his career with the CrossFit Games in 2014, Fraser took 2nd place. The following year, he managed to retain his position as the 2nd fittest man on earth.
But in 2016, Fraser stole the show scoring 1096 points, beating the 2nd place competitor Ben Smith by 197 points. And what separated Fraser from his opponents? It was his ability to nail demanding workouts like “murph”, consisting of a pull-up, push-up, squat, and a 2mile run…all whilst wearing a 20 pound vest. Can you picture what 20 pounds might equate to? Well, your average car tire wouldn’t be far off the mark!
And how do you achieve such outstanding results? Well, belonging to an efficient, well-equipped & well-managed gym certainly does make a difference. But if you’re wondering what was Fraser’s secret, then it mightn’t be what you think. Sure, intense, dedicated training for years on end undoubtedly won him the competition. But his self-acclaimed trick to success is training when he’s happy- “When I go into a workout happy, with a smile on my face, I’m willing to suffer a bit more.” So, if working out puts a smile on your face, or even if you’re happy being a spectator, then it’s a no brainier- the CrossFit Games are definitely for you!