How To Prepare For The 2018 CrossFit Open

By Coach Manny Alayon

It is that time of year again! The 2018 CrossFit open registration is on January 11th and the mass hysteria begins. The best piece of advice I can give is to spend the majority of your preparation on what we know will be tested and to not worry about the “what if” scenarios. We cannot be ignorant to the fact that the CrossFit Open has been the same type of test every single year since its 2012 introduction. It is meant to test the bottom of the CrossFit pyramid: Metabolic Conditioning. Sure, we may see a workout with slightly heavier loads, but we have only seen a 1RM test in 1 workout out of 31 total open workouts. Which ended up being a shitstorm with the leaderboard, so I would be surprised if we saw that again. But I guess the fact that every year we anticipate a massive change and there isn’t is the mindfuck about it.

Here’s some of my best advice on how to prep for the CrossFit open, based on some things we already know.

  1. Prep for movements that have been used a lot. The thruster, burpee (various styles), deadlift, chest to bar pullup, toes to bar, muscle-up (bar and ring), double-unders, wallball shots, box jumps and toes to bar have literally been a part of nearly every CrossFit Open. Movements that have not been in just about every CrossFit Open but have a high probability of showing up are the row, handstand pushups, lunges and OHS.

  2. Be proficient in every variation of the snatch and clean & jerk. A variation of both of these movements will be tested.

  3. Practice dumbbell variations of anything you can do with a barbell. It is no secret and we have already been warned!

  4. Retest workouts that have not been retested in the open already. I doubt they will repeat something that has been tested twice.

  5. Build a solid aerobic base! This is most important! Knowing all the movements is great, but not having the lungs and muscular endurance to support it makes it all useless.

  6. Look through the WOD on and you will get a very good idea of what movements they will be leaning towards. Believe it or not, there aren’t that many surprises if you follow and regularly practice constantly varied CrossFit in your training.

Overall, don’t sacrifice time on building you engine, for the “what ifs.” Unless you are a Regional-bound or Games competitor, spend your time “performing the common uncommonly well,” aka virtuosity. Get away from the  “what if it’s heavy this year? What if there are pistols? I need to practice everything!” mentality. You will have a more successful CrossFit Open by prioritizing the things that have been tried and true.