CF Open

2017 CrossFit Open Prep Party!

Our Gym Goals:

1 - Fun! The Open will be fun.

2 - Inclusive. Everyone can and should participate!

3 - Community, Character & Fitness Building. You will learn more about yourself as a person and athlete for having participated in the Open.  And, your community will benefit from you signing up!

Your 2017 CrossFit Open To Do List:

  • Sign our Open Board

  • Register at

    • Select your home gym as your Affiliate and Team

      • Ballard CrossFit → Ballard CrossFit

  • Mark your calendars for Thursday, February 23rd.  That is the start of the 2017 CrossFit Open. Then, mark your calendars for the 5 following Saturday’s: 2/25, 3/4, 3/11, 3/18, & 3/25. Festivities start at 3pm. 

  • Get your Ballard CrossFit friends & classmates to come join you!

  • Get your people: family, friends, co-workers, etc. to come watch and cheer you on!

  • Train HARD.

I. What is the Open?

The Open is a 5-week online test of fitness.  It is the first step on the road to finding the fittest on Earth, eventually culminating the CrossFit Games.  

Here are some details:

  • 1 WOD is announced per week for 5 weeks

  • You have from Thursday @ 5pm until Monday @ 5pm to complete the WOD and submit your score.

  • The WODs are a diverse test:

    • Between 4 & 20 mins

    • Typically in AMR format, but they’ve introduced For Time & Max Load

    • Single modalities, couplets, triplets & chippers (much like you seen in class)

  • Your WOD must be judged & verified, then you will submit your score online

  • You can attempt the WOD multiple times and submit your best score

  • Rx’d & Scaled Divisions

    • 16.1: 50’ OH Walking Lunges 95#/65#, 8 Bar-Facing Burpees… C2B

    • Scaled: 25’ Front-Racked 45#/35#, Burpees, Jumping Pull-Ups

  • Further scales… YES! Do it.


II. How we’ll be running the Open this year…

For those that have done the Open in years prior, we have some fun changes coming your way.

Here are some details:

  • Judging

    • 5 Coaches will be “head judges”, roaming, making sure everything looks just right, making sure equipment is organized, etc.

    • Then, we’ll ask members to be judges as well

    • We’ll post their contact info up in the gym, and athletes participating in the Open can ask any judge to score their workout as long as a head judge is present.

    • Athletes participating in the Open can run each WOD multiple times, but remember the your coach/judge is volunteering their time & energy for you!

  • Saturday Afternoon Lights!

    • Every Saturday @ 3pm, we’ll have a PARTY.

    • Awesome Workouts

    • BBQ

    • Drinks

    • TONS of energy

    • Photographer

    • Other ideas?


III. Why should I do the Open?


Own it...

What makes Ballard CrossFit such a special place?  What makes us a vibrant community?  What sets us apart? You do.

Not your Coaches, or your facility or equipment or programming… or anything else.  As an athlete at Ballard CrossFit, you make our gym the incredible, rock-star, kick-ass home-away-from-home, family that it is!

We’re all a part of this program and this community for a reason.  What is that for you? What drives you to come in, pour it all out, push your body to the limit, give some fistbumps and then keep coming back for more? What is your reason?

I’ll tell you what it is for me.  For me, our gym is like a 2nd home.  When I step foot in the door, there is a sense of belonging.  There is a sense of participating in something bigger and greater than myself.  I love the sport of CrossFit, I love the camaraderie within our community, I love to push myself both mentally and physically... and, I love to be a part of that experience for everyone else!  I love being able to Coach people in what I love to do.  I’m hugely blessed by the athletes here at Ballard CrossFit.

For most of us, if we’re honest, this gym has significantly changed our lives. Some of our closest friendships have developed right here inside the box. We’ve spent morning after morning, afternoon after afternoon giving our time and energy to make an investment in our health.  And, we love it!  We look forward to it.  We plan our lives around it!

If we stop to think about our gym - the impact it’s had on our health and lives, the people we’ve met, the experiences we’ve had - we can’t help but feel gratitude for our gym family.  And, we each own a piece of that gratitude we feel.  Each of you has contributed to that feeling of “home” - that feeling of belonging, that feeling of success in fitness - for someone else!  When we love our gym - when we’re thankful for what it is in our lives - we want to be a part of someone else loving our gym. Then, we pass it on.  We’re not consumers that come in and take and leave, we’re owners, who are just as interested in the success of others as our own successes!  Because, our successes come from the successes of others!

So own it.  Be a part of what we’re doing. Invest in yourself by investing in others!


The Open as gratitude…

For each of us, there are a bunch of influences that have brought us to where we are in our fitness journey - coaches, fellow athletes, etc.  Giving your very best in competition is a way of recognizing their influence & sacrifice in your life.  In giving your all, you honor their contributions and show appreciation for your community!


The Open as the next step in your journey in fitness…

Growth takes trial.  Growth takes struggle with difficulties and challenges.  The Open will challenge you.  And, in that challenge, you’ll grow and learn more about yourself as a CrossFitter.  You’ll learn about your strengths - you’ll surprise yourself in some areas.  And, you’ll learn about your weaknesses - where you need to re-vamp your efforts and come back stronger than ever.


The Open as a source of growth in community…

Nothing needs to be a solo effort in CrossFit.  Not only will you experience growth participating in the Open, you’ll be a part of that growth for others!  You’ll get the experience of facing off against brutal workouts, and you’ll be source of encouragement and growth for others as they do the same!

You never know what kind of influence you might be having.  You never know who might benefit from seeing you give your all. Or what comment you gave that might’ve been the encouragement that somebody needed to hear. Or who might push a little harder because they know that you’re in their corner!

You Coaches wouldn’t ask you to do this if we didn’t truly believe that this would be a good thing for you and for your community.

Some inspirational quotes...

“Find your weaknesses, make friends with them, then beat them to death!”

“Walk away having left it all out there:  No matter what, I really believe that no one will judge you based on your performance.  We all may want to see someone or another do well.  But the reality is that we are all so incredibly motivated by ANYONE that pours their heart out and lays it all on the line.  Regardless of the outcome walk away knowing it was all you had.”

“Remember, CrossFit is not the Games.  The community of people that throw down every day is CrossFit.  As Rx’d or not, a regional or games contender or not.  Soccer mom to elite athlete, we make up the community.  The overwhelming majority of the community may never walk on the Games stadium floor but will have far more impact on their local community and possibly even farther by their daily efforts in the gym. THAT is CrossFit.”

-Chris Spealler


The CrossFit Open - Inspirational Thoughts from an Athlete!

It’s Open Season, Ballard CrossFit!  For our gym family, this is a great time of year.  We wanted to share with you all a little something that Andrea DosSantos wrote.  Andrea is our current January Member Of The Month, a long-time Ballard CrossFit all-star and a leader of the #6amnation!  The first portion is something that Andrea wrote as she considers participating in the CrossFit Open.  The the next portion is the response of one of her dear friends, fellow #6amnation athlete, and our 2015 Ballard Award Winner, Alisha Aaufi.

We’ll be posting some of your Coach’s thoughts on the CrossFit Open a little later this week.  And, we hope to see ALL of you at our Open Happy Hour this Friday night at 7:30pm at the Gerald!


From Andrea...  

The CrossFit Open as defined by CrossFit Headquarters...

"The CrossFit Games Open is the world's premier test of fitness. Since 2011, the five-week five-workout online competition has accurately ranked the fitness of thousands of competitors.

Held in CrossFit affiliates and garage gyms, the Open is designed to be accessible to all athletes while rigorous enough to challenge the world’s fittest. Fourteen-year-old high school freshmen compete in the Open, as well as their 77-year-old grandparents and everyone in between."

Each week they announce the WOD (Workout of the Day) and then the athletes have 4 days to complete the WOD while being judged by a certified judge.  In 2014, the last WOD 14.5 (5th WOD of the 2014 Open) was the following: 

WOMEN - (includes Masters Women up to 54 years old)

21-18-15-12-9-6-3 reps for time of:

65-lb. thrusters


For time!  Never before in an open workout.  “Argh! Why do I do this to myself”, I was thinking during the torture.  Just thinking about it now I get butterflies in my stomach.  In the middle of doing the WOD, I did not want to finish.  I said so to Erin, my friend and coach, who knows me very well.  She said, “You will be very pissed with yourself if you don’t finish.”

Why the butterflies? I was worried about the 50 people staring at me and cheering as I jumped up and over the bar, got down and then up off the ground, and finally lifted a 65# bar.  All while being bigger than I want to be, sweating, and generally feeling very miserable.  At the end, this picture was captured.

Looking at this photo, and others taken that night, transports me back to the energy and emotion of that night. There is also a video of my last five reps and captures the moment I completed the WOD within the 30 min time cap.  I was overcome with joy and very proud of myself.  I did it!  Erin was right, she is one smart lady and an amazing coach.  I would still be angry with myself if I had quit.

Three years later, I still have the random person who comes up to me and says that picture inspires them.  Really?  Me and my sweaty big old non-CrossFit body inspires you?

The CrossFit Open session is coming again.  I have participated for two years and loved every minute of it. But at the same time, I have dreaded every minute of it.  However, this year I feel different for some reason.

I have been doing CrossFit for three years.  Three years!  It’s the only physical activity, sport, or exercise I have consistently done in my life.  But after all that time, I am still not where I want to be. I am not able to do dubs; where you jump once and the jump rope goes around twice, box jobs, pull-ups, wall climbs; the list goes on and on.  I have definitely not improved this year.  I think I am slower than ever and not as strong as I was last year, or as strong as I wish I was.  So why do I keep doing CrossFit? I still love it!  What surprises me the most is how many times “my box”, Ballard CrossFit, uses that picture.  I cringe each time I see it and am reminded of that night.  But it now inspires me!  Dig deep, as my coaches say.

I keep doing it because I am a better person for doing the CrossFit Open.  It pushes me more than anything I have ever done.  I am proud of myself each time I finish a WOD and it rekindles my love for CrossFit all over again.  It makes me love “my box” more and more.  It makes me realize that I am a part of a strong community that will know and fully understand what I am going thru and how to support me.  I am always the last one to finish a WOD, so they all know how to cheer me on!

It also pushes me to be better.  Not only better at CrossFit, but to be a better person in general.  To be close and intimate with that uncomfortable feeling just before they say 3-2-1 go. Doing the work during the WOD and then everyone watching you as you are last! I know that CrossFit makes me feel more for people that I encounter in life that are struggling with something. It makes me a better community member at my box and a better mom.  I know that taking what I have learned in CrossFit and applying it to parenting has helped my kids be more empathetic and it has helped them understand and push through some uncomfortable situations.  I love them knowing that mommy is very strong and it is ok to push your body and your mind to be better in your sport…in your life! I am proud that I am a strong role model for my son and daughter.

I started writing this to help me through all my thoughts, emotions and fears in regards to the Open.  I now I want to do it; but feel so conflicted at the same time.  This is my sport. Time to step up and take the challenge.  Be a better athlete, person and box member. Maybe I will get a dub?  Maybe my first pull up?  I encourage any CrossFit athlete to sign up for the Open.  Regardless of where you are physically.   It will change you forever and I promise you will not regret it.

From Alisha...

This is my friend Andrea. She wrote a piece on the photo above and it inspired me to write something in response.

The photo shows Andrea right after finishing the last workout of the CrossFit Open in 2014. The workout consisted of two god-awful movements – a fat pile of thrusters and over-the-bar burpees (if you don’t know, google…and then thank god you’ve made it this far in life without knowing what the hell those are) to be completed as fast as possible, within a 30 minute time cap. That was the task at hand, and Andrea completed every damn rep. If you ask Andrea about this picture, she’ll tell you how it was one of the toughest workouts she’s ever done. But then she’ll tell you how it was also one of her best moments. She’ll tell you how she was so happy Erin was there as her judge – that she needed her – to tell her she should to finish when she wanted to quit. Not for a better or faster time, not to be a better athlete, not to get a better workout, but to do it for herself. And she did!

This photo has been seen by probably every member at our gym. I’ve been with Andrea when members she doesn’t even know have come up to her and told her how inspired they are by it. It cracked me up how confused she was when they walked away, like “That was weird… Inspired? By me? Ok…” Well, yeah. Inspired. Inspired is perfect. That’s exactly what I feel when I look at this photo. When I look at this photo, I see our gym. I see the reason I go every day. And at the same time, the reason why I get a little knot in my stomach right before I go every day. I see our community. I see pride. I see support. I see an athlete who fights, and a coach who fights alongside their athlete. I see resilience and exhaustion. I see pure joy.

Right now, Andrea doesn’t know if she’s going to do the Open this year. And I didn’t write this to convince her that she should. Honestly, if she really doesn’t want to, I hope she doesn’t – I hate doing shit I don’t want to do. Here’s what Andrea wrote at the end of her letter to herself:

“I started writing this to help me through all my thoughts, emotions and fears in regards to the open.  I know I want to do it; but so conflicted at the same time.  This is my sport. Time to step up and take the challenge.  Be a better athlete, person and box member.”

Competing in the Open isn’t what makes Andrea a good athlete, person, or box member. It’s that she’s going to be there anyway to take part – in one way or another – because of the passion she has for this gym and her friendships with everyone there. Obviously I want her to compete (like everyone) – she’s my homie! And she would KICK ASS. I throw down with her almost every morning, so of course I want that for the Open too. And I have no doubt in my mind that people will be inspired by her if she competes. But at the end of the day, this is about finding sanity, joy, and health in the midst of life. It’s hard to find that, but we have it here. And Andrea is a big part of that for a lot of people, myself included (since day 1!).