By Todd Stanley

No one wants to do burpees

I didn’t want to do it. I was determined not to let anyone talk me into competing in the CrossFit Open. I can remember the year before, there were all sorts of announcements of what was to come and people who were participating were always talking about it. I didn’t sound like fun to me. My main goal of coming to CrossFit is to stay in shape. I’m not trying to bulk up or push myself to the limits of my ability. I just want to get a good workout in and sweat a little.

When this year rolled around I began to get pressure from all sides.

“Are you doing the Open, Todd?”


“Why not?”

“Cause I don’t want to.”

For three weeks leading up to the start of the Open, I got this question from coaches and colleagues. I stayed steadfast in my stubbornness not to compete. Having two kids and lots of work activities that take place on Saturdays, it was not going to be convenient for me to come in when the community typically competes. Plus, I didn’t want to. I have been very consistent in my workout habits, coming into classes three times a week. I was happy with my routine.

Then came Corey. Corey cares more about CrossFit than I do about my kids. He is always trying to figure out ways to challenge himself, and he tries to spread this to others. He said for the seventeenth time,

“You going to do the Open, Todd?”

“I can’t. I have something this Saturday.”

“Then I’ll come in Monday and be your judge.”

“I’m not sure I want to do it though.”

“Why don’t you just try it? If you don’t like it you don’t have to do any of the others.”

His persistence was hard to ignore.

“Fine,” I said. “I’ll come in Monday and try the workout.”

Corey came in bright and early Monday morning and not only judged me, but coached and encouraged me throughout. I did fairly well in the workout but I was the only one doing it that day.

“I guess I’ll register,” I decided.

Then the second week I was not going to be able to make it on Saturday again. The coaches always make it easy to find some time to do the workout so I was going to do it Friday morning. While everyone else was going to be doing the regular WOD, I would do the Open workout by myself. That was when Spencer said,

“I’ll do it with you, Todd.”

So Spencer and I did 19.2 side by side, pushing each other to go a little further not through our words, but through our actions.

What I was starting to figure out is that the “Community” aspect of Violet Community CrossFit is not just a name for show. There is truly a community amongst the coaches and athletes. It was evident as I was given so much support.

In an effort to experience this community even more, in talking with Eric he told me what a great atmosphere the Saturday workouts were, so I made an effort to do 19.4 and 19.5 on a Saturday. It definitely encouraged me to do better and there is something to be said for people cheering you on as you try and push yourself.

For the past five years, most of my working out what done by myself down in my basement. It was a solitary activity which I enjoyed because I could play my music and not be bothered by anyone. In my year and a half of being at Violet Community, I have come to see the benefits of working out with others. Competing in the Open just showed me how valuable.  

Crushing 19.5