I know the look. It comes out only in the Open. It’s a special version of a look that all us coaches get throughout the weeks but I get these special ones at Open time. It’s the same regardless of your ability level, experience, or self confidence. It’s a combination of the high schooler asking parents for permission to your first “definitely going to be drinking but just calling it a sleep over at your friend’s house that is 1 hour away” look, and the “I know the answer but I want you to make the call for me one way or the other” look.
“Should I RX this?”. That is the question that always follows the look.
The part of the Open I have grown to love is the spike in this question from all of you. It’s like the Open brings out the animal in everyone. The chains that hold people back for 47 weeks of the year are ripped off and everyone says “fuck it, when in Rome.”.
I still don’t know what it means.
Stacey, Sarah, and the rest of the staff and I talk all the time how funny it is that many of you call us inspirations (me much less frequently) when you all inspire us on a daily basis. Ill name some of my favorite Open moments from 2016 that give me that just before crying thick throat feeling.
1. Multiple ladies (Stacy D and Leslie W that I remember…sorry if I am leaving people out) FINISHING “16.2”.
2. Candice G. failing a bar multiple times on the same WOD only to WOman up and dominate a clean not 1x but multiple times.
3. The Bar MU throw down that happened for it seems like everyone on “16.3” but I will always remember the Tarken, Ryan Gill, Jorge heat.
4. EVERYONE at Canal Park during “16.1” completing their first every Open WOD. I have to give a shout out to Ylan for judging me. I think for her it was like the first time you saw your Dad drunk for real. Didn’t know if it was cool, scary, fun, or wanted to just go to bed. Her face as I moaned, groaned, cried, laid down, passed out, failed, failed again was priceless. Just like her questionable cheering/worrying/wishing she wasn’t doing what she was doing as I was borderline in tears by minute 10. She was awesome, in all seriousness, and I thank you Ylan :).
The same goes for “Jimmy” James Spina as he watched his fearless leader crumble before his very eyes like watching Dad get emasculated by his boss on “Bring Your Son to Work Day” as I failed to make it through Round 1 of “16.2”. He took the embarrassment by association like a champ. Thank you buddy.
5. My boys Griff and Reg from CP. Few know we have been best of friends since high school so much so that they were in my wedding and Griff and I will be in Reg’s. Seeing them go through the entire Open was special in that cliche but I’ll admit it kind of way.
6. Michele Spina, who I do some work for on the side, conquering what seemed like very demon or shortfall in one 5 week time period. CTB pull-ups was the main one, but was was so awesome was she did it all with a major arm issue, of which she publicly complained about never and rarely even to me.
7. All of you. Yeah I had to go there but it was deserved. Both locations, big or small group, you all brought it hardcore. I will have to say though, the CP crew deserves even higher praise, and this is nothing negative to Woburn. It’s like CP A+, Woburn A. But the CP community showed togetherness in a way I never thought possible for so early in existence. Perhaps it’s the lack of individual goals and the egos that come with it, or it’s just a different kind of people, but every WOD saw the entire group there start to finish on their feet, pulling for each other no matter had they done the workout already, how they did, were they dead, whatever. Through the last rep, every single one of you down at the ol’ Canal Park pulled for each other in a demonstration of what community IS.
Woburnites, don’t you worry, you were all amazing in your own right as well. 50+ strong every single weekend, most of whom helped before and after their turn. I hope that some people can take a few cues from these awesomely selfless Landos in that it isn’t about YOU all the time during the Open. I think this is lost because it certainly is about you for some time. It’s the one time I think YOU first is acceptable because this is the one chance you have each year to prove your fitness. I just think there was a few times where disappointed doesn’t even describe how Stacey and I felt when watching people basically check out once their turn was done, sometimes even moving on to go about their own personal training while their fellow Landos were getting their chance to throw down. These same people waited all day and helped everyone before them by judging and cheering, and too often were left to a small crowd that was puling for them while many others sat alone, in clusters, or working on other parts of their training completely not a part of what was still going on. This doesn’t cloud my perspective of what coaching you all during the Open was like, it just reminded me how difficult it is to balance all the personalities and egos as a coach and owner. Woburn is 150 strong and growing and you all are what make this place amazing and your hard work and dedication to making this place better and helping us understand what better is can’t be forgotten.
As always, I always keep learning. Sort of gracing above, it is interesting to see the Community go through the Open because there are so many individuals personality wise semi forced into this situation of togetherness. I have to be reminded, usually by Stacey or my lovely wife, that not everyone gives a shit about community or a random person working out with them and they just want a good workout. Fair enough.
8. All the Comp Group, with some special call outs : This was a different year. Last year it was Regionals or bust for our team and we had a shot that we accomplished. This year it was known that two key cogs to our squat, Stacey and Sarah, were going individual if they qualified which meant the team score would be greatly diminished. This meant people stepping up to almost fill shoes that proved to be unfillable in a short period of time. Still, so many of them worked their asses off all year, sacrificed drinks, social time, bad food, Saturaday and Friday nights, just because they wanted to get better and be part of whatever we had going on. Timmy and Rob proved again to be my stalwarts, disappearing in a haze of hops and mozzarella cheese (maybe just Rob) only to emerge ready to roll however I told them to. Joanna lives the underdog story and was just short this year. What even she doesnt get is she proved everyone that she is for real by finishing top 80 of 12,000 or like 001%. THAT is impressive no matter how you cut it. Like always we saw amazing performances week in and week out from everyone. April accomplished that dreaded first muscle up and got to do them (Bar style) in a WOD. There are so many special cases I could call out but my memory is bad and it could go forever.
More special shout outs to our 3 Regional qualifiers in Mike Gray (Master’s 40-44), and Stacey and Sarah. The three of them are beyond inspiration. Now comes the fun part where we get to plan and get ready for the real deal, Mike in 2 weeks and the ladies at the end of May. Both ladies haven’t gotten the official word yet but we are pretty sure it’s happening. Not too bad when you get to coach your best friend, your wife, and a friend/mentor in the biggest moments of their sporting life.
9. My Mom: Has to happen every year, but come on. 61 years old. Never athletic in her life. 5 knee surgeries. 5 kids. 45+ minute drive to the gym. Yet she is here daily, crushing WODs, even doing the Opens at home by herself and sending me videos. Mom you are just the best. Plain and simple.
1. Plank Wars
2. “Annie” regular or weighted w MB
– full reps
WARMUP : 25-20-15-10-5
Weighted MB Situp
Strength : Squat Clean
2-2-2 : find a max x2
1-1-1 : find a max x1
WOD : “Elizabeth” : 21-15-9
Power Clean 135/95
The Program : No extra