The CrossFit Open is approaching in 7 weeks! You will see some of the previous years workouts being posted over the next few weeks to get you prepped. It is a great time of year to test your fitness against yourself, others in the gym and others in the world in the same age category as you. Keep your eyes open for info on the intramural team competition we host her at the zone. Take a look at today's coaching tips for success in the workout. Coaching Tips: Overall Pacing: Pacing to your specific abilities will be VERY important on this workout. Most of the 'regular' CrossFitters will be looking to just get past the 3 minute mark. Those athletes need to find a pull up bar that allows them fast singles or fast small sets. For everyone looking to get into the 14s and higher, the 10s and 12s should be stretched to use up a bit more time to keep the intensity low, and to save the grip. Save the big sets until you need them on later rounds! If you are unsure about how you'll do on a round (if you'll finish or not), push the pace a bit in the beginning and then start slowing down on the last round of pull-ups by doing small sets (or even singles). Avoid having 'too much' rest (more than 20-30 seconds) as best as possible. Overhead Squats: For just about every type of athlete, getting through the overhead squats in a fast manner will be important. The more time you spend holding the bar overhead, the more of an energy price you are going to have to pay. Do the sets unbroken or in big chunks if possible. Lowering the bar to your neck may be a way to break up the sets without having to drop the bar all the way to the floor (but probably only best when you know that squat snatching that weight isn't your thing). The faster you get through these, the more time you'll have to do chest to bar pull ups. Spend extra time mobilizing the overhead position, your wrists, as well as the hips. Keeping that torso upright will help prevent the forward torso lean that can make it hard for the shoulders to keep the bar overhead. If you can go a bit narrow on your grip, you may find the shoulders don't fatigue nearly as much compared to when you go wide. Chest to Bar Pull-Ups: If you can only do one chest to bar pull up at a time you still have a chance at getting past the first round or two! If you take 30s for each set of OHS, you'll have 1 minute to do 10 pull ups. That is one every 6 seconds! Make sure your calluses are taken care of (shaved for most) and your hands are in good condition! Don't try anything new that you haven't tested before. If you are unsure about tape, gloves, grips, etc., set it up so that you can start with them, then take them off easily if you don't like them. For people getting past the first 2-3 rounds, small sets with lots of dropping will be the best way to approach the beginning. By avoiding the negative, you will be saving you grip and the skin on your palms for the later rounds where you'll need it most. Butterfly pull-ups can be faster, but they also tend to fatigue the grip much more. Switching between the two variations can be a good strategy if you are the type of person that can do that (some people's timing gets way off). Changing the grip (mixed grip, a little wide, a little narrow, etc) can change where the bar is contacting the hands, and can stave off a tear. This is usually easier to do early on because doing pull-ups different than your default will be easier when you aren't tired. Mental: Think of the first round or two as your 'warm up'. Slow and steady with super efficient form. You want to be fresh for the later rounds when the real work begins! I would only recommend doing this workout twice if you were really close to getting to the next round AND your hands were still in pristine condition. This one is a real hand shredder, and if you get past the 14s or 16s more than once, you may damage your hands before next week's workout!