The (Intramural) Open & Why We Care So Much

Anyone that’s stepped foot inside of a CrossFit gym can tell you one thing…it’s different than any other gym.

I can name 100 reasons why, but one of those reasons is The CrossFit Open.

Once a year, roughly 500,000 CrossFitters around the globe are bound together by completing the exact same workouts for a handful of weeks (3 weeks this year.) While The Open is ultimately the first step in a long process in naming the Fittest Man and Woman on the planet, it’s simply an incredible time for the 499, 998 others of us.

So…why do we care about The CrossFit Open?

1. It gives us something to train for.

I started working in the fitness business 20 years ago and have owned a gym for almost 9 of them. One of the key learnings I’ve gathered is that people stay motivated best when they train for something. Average Joe’s training for a race take hours out of their days and weeks to prepare for that one event. Soon to be brides and grooms find a new level of dedication just for their special day.

Sure, The Open is no wedding, but it is a set date and reason to train, stay motivated, and get your butt to the gym!

Don’t think 5 weeks is enough time to make a difference? Just wait til my article tomorrow 🙂

2. It’s a good metric to evaluate yourself each year.

Question – what is your fitness level vs. last year?

I’ve worked with 1,000s of amazing people over my time as a fitness professional and often times my Coaching starts from emotions. A member or client “feels out of shape”, “feels fat”, or “feels they aren’t progressing.”

Well, I come from an electrical engineering background and I’m way more concerned with what the data says.

It’s why we have the InBody to measure body composition instead of a misleading scale.

It’s why I benchmark both the broader gym members and especially my 1:1 clients with any kind of frequency.

It’s a big reason why The Open is important.

The last several weeks we have done old Open workouts. Some of them, I’ve beat my old (much younger) self. Some of them, I did worse but I was close. I don’t have to guess where I’m at. I know.

Regardless if this is your first year with us, 6th year with us, you think you are the fittest you’ve been, or can’t bear to see how far you’ve fallen, sign up. You want that data. You need that data. You’ll likely be pleasantly surprised by that data.

3. It is the pinnacle experience of our gym every year.

Think of all the reasons you pay $200ish dollars a month to go to a gym: interesting (dare I even say fun!) workouts you’ve never seen, measurable results you never though possible, a little competitiveness that reminds you of sports back in the day, and amazing people to suffer with and support you along the way, etc.

The Open takes all of these to the next level for 3 weeks. Suddenly you decide to go for that extra rep. You hear cheers a little louder. You may even (gasp) redo a nasty workout!

4. You are part of something that is larger than just our gym.

In both my professional and personal lives, I’ve been blessed to travel quite a bit. It’s not uncommon that I see someone sporting a CrossFit shirt.

Almost every time, I talk to them.

Almost every time, it ends up discussing some horrible open workout from the past. Name me one other fitness program that can say that.

I suppose in the grand scheme of things that doesn’t matter, but I love that I’m part of something that’s much bigger than my own gym. Honestly, some of the best experiences and people I’ve encountered in this world are because of CrossFit and The Open is a small part of that.

So…what’s this Intramural thing you mentioned in the title?

Let’s face it, if you aren’t in the top 0.05% of athletes in the world, your competitive journey stops after these 3 weeks.

As the saying goes…”If you can’t beat ’em, have fun competing against them.” Ok, I made that up. BUT, it should be clear by now that we work hard but love to have fun, so we make sure to do that during the open.

We do that via the Intramural Open!

More details are coming, but the basics are as follows:

  1. We split the gym into two teams.
  2. Each week you score points for your team by simply completing the workout…your performance is fairly irrelevant.
  3. If you bring a lot of team spirit…you score more points for your team!
  4. If you happen to place top 3 in the gym in your division (more to come on that), you can earn even more points.

In other words, by simply showing up, completing the workout, and having a lot of fun doing it, you can earn a ton of points. If you happen to have a crazy good score that workout you can earn a couple more, but participation and attitude are more important!

Oh and this year…I’m adding a week or two to the Open since it’s only 3 weeks. Let’s just say week 4 is going to be EPIC!!!!

But, Mike…I’m super new, have an injury, or simply am not a great CrossFit athlete by the numbers.


Doesn’t matter. We can scale EVERYTHING for you. I’ve literally trained people with no limbs…I can scale anything for you. Plus there are tons of divisions, scales, etc that are already set out by CrossFit HQ.

I’ll mention one more time. Simply completing some sort of version of the workout earns a ton of points for your team. You will NOT “hold your team back.”

Alright. You convinced me. How do I sign up?!

More to come. Just commit to yourself that you are doing it and harness that date, MARCH 11th, as a date on the calendar to train for!



scicoh intramural open: Noobies, keep reading so you can find out what the CrossFit Open is all about. Veterans, skip to the “What is the


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