Cerebral Sunday – Should I redo an open WOD?

 In WODs

It’s hard to believe the 1st open WOD of 2014 is already behind us!  The environment was electric and PRs were plenty.  I couldn’t be more proud of the way you all moved and pushed yourselves to the limit physically and mentally!  It takes a substantial amount of courage just to sign up and a whole new level to push yourself to your limits!

So now that it is behind us, nearly ALL of us are left with the same feeling….I feel like I can do even better.  So the question is – should we redo the WOD?

In short, the answer is no with two exceptions:

  1. Regional implications – Take a look at your score and if you are currently sitting in the top 200, then you should absolutely give it another go.  Even 1 more rep could turn your 150th place into a 100th place, which could mean the difference at the end.
  2. A huge disaster happened in your first attempt – This category includes things like no successful double unders, judging fiascos, equipment or wardrobe failures, sickness, etc.  “My double unders weren’t clicking as much as they usually do” isn’t included here 🙂

If neither situation above applies to you, then close the chapter, take away learnings, and move on with your training and preparation for 14.2.  It’s hard to do, but the best thing for you as an athlete.

I know it isn’t what you want to hear and trust me, I’m as competitive as the next guy, so I know every fiber of your being wants to make sure you do as well as possible.  But the issue is what it will cost you physically and mentally.  In an absolute best case scenario you perform better, gain some places, and feel a little bit better about your abilities.  While it helps the ego a bit, you have now missed the WOD programmed for Monday that is designed to develop you as an athlete and prepare you for the next WOD.  Are a few extra reps and places and stroke to the ego worth it?  

Perhaps even more expensive is the mental toll it will take on you.  If you commit to the ideal that you will only redo WODs if regional implications or disasters are in order, then you do the WOD once, reflect on it, and then LET IT GO! Sure you will think about it, but the weight is lifted.  These WODs can very easily weigh in the back of our minds and haunt us – if we are open to the idea of redoing them or decide to give it another try, it just lingers.  Trust me – I’m going through it right now! It’s no longer in the past, it is just a hovering mind storm for 3 or 4 days.  Keep it light and keep it fun!

The competitive atmosphere of the open is amazing but can be a trap if we lose the context of why we are each doing it.  Our individual motivations for doing the Open may vary in specific nature, but it really comes down to understanding where we are as an athlete and being part of a unique community.  Sure, specific rankings help us with our assessment, but I encourage you to take a more general assessment based on your physical and mental performance during and after the WOD.  If someone redoes the WOD and gets and extra round because their double unders were clicking that day vs. before, their place will change but what they should take away from this WOD doesn’t: they are inconsistent at double unders and need to work on them!  If someone redoes the WOD and does better because they pushed themselves a little harder, they still have the opportunity as an athlete to be stronger mentally.  Net, you can take away the same learnings with half the work and a 1/3 of the stress.  So for 14.2, go in the attitude that you have one shot.  Lay it on the line.  Take away learnings as an athlete.  Enjoy the hell out of it.  And cheer your ass off!  It’s just another WOD that you happen to be doing as part of an amazing community!


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