By: Mike Collette
Since opening our doors September 1st 2012, we have seen tremendous growth not just in the quantity of our members but also true growth in our community as a whole. As you now know, CrossFit brings people together for a greater purpose than just an hour of exercise. This hour a day that you spend at CFP or any box for that matter helps to create bonds with people like no other. The CrossFit Games Open is the culmination of what we have been creating here at CFP. It is used as a measure of your fitness to see how you rank among-st the worlds most elite CrossFitters and your everyday weekend warrior, but it definitely is more than just a quantifiable measurement.
What you can’t measure here at CFP is a persons mental and physical commitment to excellence. You can’t measure a persons true grit, determination and motivation to achieve a task. You can’t measure the relationships people are building everyday. You can measure your work capacity during 150 wall ball shots. You can measure how high your HR was during 13.5’s vicious “Fran” like WOD. You can measure how much weight you can snatch and how it might not be relevant after a ton of burpees. There is a difference between these two concepts, but what is similar is that they both exist during the Open.
This was my 1st Open experience as well and I have never seen more people come together to cheer each other on to succeed. Remember, this is a competition? You are competing against each other right?? Yes, that is true to an extent. Where CrossFit differs is that everyone is enduring the same struggle. They know how it feels after a tough WOD. Remember those Saturdays watching Nam go HAM on 13.5, giving it all he had? Nothing beats that determination. Nothing beats the true grit it takes to step to a bar where the weight seems impossible to lift and it doesn’t go up, but tired and gassed, you press on until the clock stops. There is no quitting from anyone from CFP. That is truly impressive. Becky Lambe, going after her first Pull up in 13.5 after 15 thrusters and didn’t stop for the rest of the time. There were several who tried and tried to throw 14lbs at a 9ft target and were “no repped” but pressed on in persistence of fact that quitting isn’t an option in a 12 min AMRAP. Failure isn’t a word we use because you don’t fail. You only continue to thrive and get better. Now we realize there are new goals to tackle and only room to improve your strength and work capacity. The Open tests your fitness for sure, but the drive and motivation for success is innate in each and every person.
I can honestly say I haven’t been more proud of what I have seen from our members yet then from this experience and I am so blessed to have been a part of it with them.
During this experience we have seen a first muscle up, PR’s on the clean and Jerk, first chest to bar pull ups and first kipping pull ups! The Open brings out the inner strength and power to achieve greatness that once seemed near impossible but  is now tangible.  It has shown everyone that the hard work they put in everyday here at CFP has payed off and it shows that there is plenty to keep getting better at. Fitness is a journey and there is so much more success to come!
Now lets set some goals to do even better next year and more importantly keep growing this community to beyond measurable quantities, thank you all who have participated in the WODs, you all kick ass!
Here are a couple member perspectives on the Open and what they have learned:
Heather Burke

1.  It’s OK to not be the best.  This is something I struggle with always having played sports and competed professionally.  It kills me not be to in the top but I learned that it’s OK to not be the best as long as you know you tried.  Funny, it’s something I have tried to instill in my kids but never really knew what it felt like.  It’s not fun to see your name at the bottom – actually it sucks but it does make you want to try harder.
2.  Even though it’s easier not to push yourself during a WOD, in the end it doesn’t feel as good as if you did.  During WBS (13.3 I think) I would have just grabbed a 10# and probably done a lot more than I did with a 14#.  If I had pushed myself sooner and picked up the 14# I would have done better in the open.  I will never do anything less than a 14 and when that gets normal I will push to the next level.  I do question Mike’s measurement though 🙂
3.  Don’t give up.  This is probably what everyone says.  I felt like I couldn’t do 13.5 because I had never cleaned more than 85# and that was once and I am not even sure you can call it a clean.  When I saw the WOD announced I immediately felt defeated.  There was no way that 95# was getting to my chest never mind overhead.  I tried it and couldn’t do it but…I cleaned 95# – a far cry from 4 months ago when my PR was 55#.  That was not a defeat in my eyes.  Lisa and I vow to do that WOD again on 8/31 and get 95# overhead.
4.  Never underestimate the power of your buddies.  I wouldn’t be here without the support the 8:00am ladies give.  They make you want to do better every day and are there to encourage you when you do and support you when you don’t.
5.  Goals.  Having gone through it now, I will set specific goals.  I will NOT let an element of a WOD go by that I can’t do next year.  Pull ups, chest to bar, I will be able to do everything if not completely or perfect – I will do them (well maybe  not a muscle up:))

Liz Nasser

1.  I am getting stronger!  A 65 pound thruster used to be unattainable (and I’ve only been CrossFtting for 6 months)- now I can do 15 nearly unbroken- and could have done another set if not for those pull ups.
2. I will never complain about a regular burpee again.  That 6 inch jump is a killer!
3.  Its as much about form as it is strength- and I have a lot of improving to do in that area.
4.  I’ve played competitive sports throughout my life, but the support and encouragement of fellow crossfitters  is unmatched.  There is nothing in my success for them, but they are cheering as if I just scored the game winning goal.  Its awesome.
5.  150 wall ball shots is an awful lot of wall ball shots!
6.  I am looking forward to next year-  I am confident I will have at least one pull up in me by then.