Let’s be honest: we needed to rebound after last year’s Open. We took things a little too seriously, there was a little too much pressure, and there were so many details to each week that we all spent and burned out by the end of the 5 weeks. It left a sour taste in a lot of our mouths; it wasn’t something we were looking forward to for the following year.
This year we were intentional about making the Open Challenge as engaging and enjoyable as we possibly could. But you, our amazing athletes, nurtured that seed of an idea into something far more than we could have hoped for. We’ve had some of the most fun events, meaningful projects, and best turn outs that we’ve ever seen during the Open.
That first Friday Night Lights… just wow. Besides having a great, approachable workout, what an impressive showing of athletes, family, and friends. But most importantly, a HUGE round of applause to Eric and Theresa for putting together the Minute to Win It games. That was absolutely amazing (and hilarious). I have to say, of every social we’ve put on, that FNL gets my vote for best event we’ve ever done.
But this challenge also hosted two of the best projects we’ve ever had as well: the 600 meals that the Ladies delivered to Urban Ministry and the clean up the Bros helped the Fort Mill Care Center with. This year we wanted to place the emphasis on an act of serving others rather than the passive donations we have made in the past. We saw this as an opportunity to strengthen our own community by bonding over helping those in need in our greater community; a chance to put our fitness to use in a way that really mattered. We are so incredibly proud of everyone who was able to help those in need in our greater community.
And then there were the team social events. I can say with a high degree of certainty that the Bro Sesh was the most epic to date, in terms of participation, venue, and number of beers consumed. The ladies, however, definitely win the award for most creative and badass social event we’ve ever had: axe throwing (I’m still jealous of this, and firmly believe that we should invest in a lane for the box).
As outstanding as both of the social events were, the real purpose was simple: spend some time with our community away from the box. It seems silly to say, but it’s a reminder that they aren’t just names on the whiteboard. As much was we all enjoy CrossFit, it makes that hour of your day even more enjoyable when you know the people you’re working out with. We love each of you for who you are as a person, not just as an athlete. Our community is just as strong outside as it is inside the box.
We know there were concerns about the fairness of the teams, so it was really cool to see how balanced everything was headed into the final WOD and the final event. We wanted to prove a point that it was all about the community and participation, not how well you did in the workout. The lead changed week to week, but no team ever lead by more than 2 points.
Naturally, it all came down to the final event of the final week: Team Trivia. I would like to point out that although there was resistance to trivia as it “favored the guys,” the ladies kicked some ass and had the lead heading into the final question. In the end, the Bros prevailed and ascending to our rightful place as Rulers of the Box.
The one little string that tied this all together was the simple idea that we’re all in this together. Sure, we showed up on Fridays with our team shirts on, but when the clock was on, it didn’t matter which team you belonged to- we were all a part of the ABV family, and we were cheered and pushed each other as hard as we could. Yes, we showed up to the events to “score points for our team,” but really we had fun with everything we did. We did this for each other, and that’s what it was all about.
What an amazing community. Thank you all for such great 5 week challenge. Without a doubt, this year’s CrossFit ABV Open Challenge was the most successful and the most fun we’ve ever had. We’re proud to be a part of this fit family!
1) We welcome feedback on this Challenge. We always want to be better, and if there is anything we can improve or anything you want to keep, please let us know.
2) Please be sure to thank Theresa for all of the hard work she put in to coordinating our events this year. She was the mastermind behind set ups and schedules for the WOD each week, coordinating food and drinks, and keeping everything organized and running smoothly. If you had fun at any of the events, it’s probably because T made it happen.