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The Open Parker Project: 2015 | Lucas Parker

The Open Parker Project: 2015

The Open Parker Project: 2015

Photography: Oscar Bravo

I have nearly completed the process of redoing every CrossFit Open workout. These are my results and reflections from the 4 workouts of 2015. To learn more about the #OpenParkerProject, read this blog post.

I’ll start by detailing my results for each workout. I’ll list some things I did well, and some things I want to improve on next time. Afterwards, I’ll summarize my learning experience for this leg of the Open Parker Project.

Reminder: on some weeks, I checked my historical score, while on other weeks, I went in blind, not knowing what number I had to beat.

15.1
9 Minute AMRAP
15 toes to bar
10 deadlifts (115)
5 snatches

2015 score: 197
2017 score: 196

I did NOT check my old score

Things I did well:

I transitioned quickly to each exercise
I broke up the toes to bar early to maintain a pace

Things I want to improve on:

I want to build my endurance in toes to bar
I want to do unbroken snatches to save time

15.3
14 Minute AMRAP
7 muscle ups
50 wallballs
100 double unders

2015 score: 508
2017 score: 533

I DID check my old score

Things I did well:

I had a strong catch and press in the muscle up
I pushed hard through the last half and last minute of the workout

Things I want to improve on:

I want to rest less between mini-sets of 10 wallballs
I want to transition faster to the muscle ups each round

15.4
8 Minute AMRAP
handstand pushups
3,6,9,12,15,18…
cleans (185)
3,3,3,6,6,6…

2015 score: 128
2017 score: 125

I did NOT check my old score

Things I did well:

I did unbroken sets of 3 on the cleans
I tried to go before I felt ready on the hanstand pushups

Things I want to improve on:

I want to have a faster kip in the HSPU
I want to start kipping sooner in the WOD (I used strict reps for the early rounds)

15.5
For time:
27-21-15-9
Row calories
Thrusters (95)2015 score: 6:52
2017 score: 6:20

I DID check my old score

Things I did well:

I transitioned quickly between exercises
I focused on 1-2 movement cues for every single rep.

Things I want to improve on:

I want to row faster at an earlier point in the workout. Hold a faster pace overall.

 

The words of the day are “Volatility,” and “Consistency.”

This 5th and penultimate (penta-ultimate??) chapter of The #OpenParkerProject was volatile in its unfolding. I alternated close, stinging defeats with sound, comforting victories. As I near the end of the project, I notice my energy levels and motivation vacillating in comparison to the steadfast demeanour I held at the project’s inception. In other words, I’m tired, dude.

However, if I zoom out and look at the calendar of weeks and months, this seems like an appropriate time to be “digging deep” into some fatigue, about a month before the commencement of the CrossFit season.

I’m observing that I consistently fall short on workouts that include the following: upper body endurance. Whether it’s the grip and arms in pullups or toes to bar, or the triceps and shoulders in handstand pushups and burpees, these WODs have proven the most difficult to secure a victory. I take this as a sign that I am evolving as an athlete. I have been working on the other qualities that MOST hold me back.

Consider the following: 15.1, the toes to bar/ deadlift/ snatch WOD, was a one-rep defeat. Essentially a tie… At least, probably the closest scores I’ve had during the project. However, the qualitative experience and the observable performances were VERY different. In 2017, I held a very consistent pace: I broke up the toes to bar in the second round, and I did singles on all the snatches. Compare this to 2015, when I came out hot, going unbroken on the snatches long into the workout, and doing big full sets of toes to bar for probably the first 3 rounds.

So, in 2015, I relied on muscular endurance to grab points early in the WOD, and then limped through the final half. In 2017, I paced myself out in a more sustainable way, starting slightly slower, but maintaining a better rate of work at the end of the WOD, and obtaining essentially the same score. The only problem was, I paced it out too much. I was playing to remain comfortable, not playing to win. The lesson here is that I now have options: I could have (should have, would have…) done “unbroken” snatches on at least a few rounds. I could have cycled some reps faster, maybe transitioned more quickly. In 2015, I had only one option: play to survive.

If I play that card now, it will certainly hurt, but my tools and capacity are developed enough that I will be rewarded. This observation is consistent with my result on 15. 3, the muscle up/ wallball/ double under WOD. It required 14 minutes of skilled capacity, and I can safely say I gave it my all. I tried to go as fast as I could on every exercise, every round – and my body rose to the challenge (and paid the price afterwards!).

I had 1-2 key focus cues for each exercise, and I was able to keep my mind on these to get me through the pain of the workout. I pushed hard in the final minutes of the workout, urgent to get to the next exercise and win more points. I couldn’t walk properly for the rest of the day. This is the approach and effort that I want to maintain CONSISTENTLY during the 2017 CrossFit Open.