Photo: Paradiso CrossFit
After the 2016 CrossFit Games, many athletes are posting rosy reflections brimming with positivity.
My experience is different. I want to be as honest and respectful as possible with my recap, in order to broaden the conversation and tell my story.
That story is actually pretty short: after Event One, I was fucked up. The trail run destroyed my calves and ankle, and had me peeing gatorade-red for the rest of the day.
My thoughts going into The Games were the following:
- Every year I get a slow start.
- The first events typically place me low on the leaderboard, and this makes it difficult to compete against the top athletes during the weekend.
- I need to get on top early.
- I need to go as hard as possible out of the gate, and get myself in the mix.
Well, I went as hard as I could for 7 kilometers of crawling and falling up and down hills. I am EXTREMELY proud of this effort. I’m also proud of the 575lb deadlift that left me in the top 5 overall after 2 events. After this, however, I failed to produce any more top performances.
Now, before you say, “well Lucas, you need to recover! You need to push through, and overcome adversity!” That’s what I did. For the rest of the weekend, I WAS recovering, I WAS pushing through, and it still wasn’t enough to achieve my goals.
I think this is where my frustration comes from. It feels like there were two competitions happening: The Dave Castro Games, and The CrossFit Games.
The Dave Castro Games had a very military feel. It was all about adversity and survival. Can you get through it? Pass or fail. Live or die. In this competition, I’d say I passed. I survived, I got through it. Same as last place, same as first place.
Only problem is, this was also The CrossFit Games. There is a complex and detailed ranking system based on split seconds and inches. That’s what I’m frustrated about: I feel like I wasn’t part of that competition. I feel like I was on the outside looking in.
So, my overall attitude during and after the 2016 Games was quite negative. Were there positive aspects to my experience? OF COURSE.
- I spent time with my family.
- I bonded with other athletes.
- I felt energy from the crowd.
- I visited Aromas on the 10th anniversary of The Games
- I got a tan. I picked up some fancy Reebok kit. I got more instagram followers and sold a few sweet t-shirts.
But those were not my goals. Yes, I want to have fun – but winning is always more fun. I want to win events. I want to be in the top heat. I want to storm the podium and show my loved ones the results of their sacrifices.
So how do I move forward?
First, I’ll take some time off. No focus, no training. Then I’ll reset my body and mind for the year ahead. Despite my frustrations this year, I have some solid performance points to lean on:
- I am one of the strongest and fastest men in this sport.
- I’ve been a key player on Team Canada for 2 years.
- My skills are excellent and continue to improve.
- I have friends and family who love and support me.
- I can do anything I want in life, and for now it is this.