Five sets of:
Push Press x 3-5 reps
Rest 90 seconds
Weighted Pull-Ups x 3-5 reps @ 21X0
Rest 90 seconds
In teams of four, each team member completes:
400 Meter Run
35/55 lbs Dumbbells Ground to Overhead x 20 reps
24″/20″ Box Jumps x 30 reps
32kg/24kg Kettlebell Swings x 40 reps
400 Meter Run (as a team)
The workout is performed “Conga Line” style so that the next member can only start their task after the preceding member has completed it. The one exception is that the final 400 Meters is run as a team.
The day started on a positive note. We were positive, and Mareck was in good spirits…
We registered with Mareck, signed the waivers and went into the athletes area to collect some goodies and get a feel for the place. Whilst waiting for the briefing we chatted, said hello to a lot of known faces and checked out the competition.
What I didn’t expect was the attitude of the head judges towards the ‘regular judges’ for want of a better word. They would happily shout ‘no rep’ after a rep had been given leaving the regular judge visibly shaken as having been publicly humiliated as an incompetent judge. The quality of the judging spiraled thereafter…and the beatings continued until morale was improved.
Mareck’s heat came up. We went over a few last minute details together, like moving his plates to the edge of the rubber mat to make them easier to pick up. The heat started without problems, Mareck hit his first rounds of running at the pace we had determined. But on the last round his judge was occupied filling out the scoresheet and failed to let Mareck know it was his last round, he queried her as he passed and she confirmed so Mareck turned back and came in to do the clean and jerks. On the third round of Clean and Jerks, the head judge removed a given rep as he felt Mareck didn’t show control at the top of the movement. Mareck repeated the rep and finished the WOD in what should have been 8th place, but the judge forgot to stop her watch.
We didn’t notice anything until the scoreboard went up, showing Mareck to be in 11th place. We asked the organizers to check that the times were entered correctly as we know where Mareck’s placing should have been, the organizers agreed that the placing was incorrect and would correct it. They immediately took the scoreboard down. (Here’s another point, the scoreboard goes up and there are only points on it, no times? A great way to cover up errors.)
We went back to our corner to prepare for WOD 2, comfortable that the error would be corrected. However, just before WOD 2 was due to start the head judge gave us the bad news. He doesn’t care that there was an error or that there was video evidence to support it. Mareck signed his scorecard, live with it. Apparently, it is Mareck’s responsibility to time himself as well as the judge. We also learned that if Mareck didn’t sign his score card he would be disqualified.
You can imagine what this did to Mareck’s motivation.
WOD 2 went down, and the head judges were on him like a rash. I watched Mareck complete 3 extra ring dips unseen and uncounted by his judge because she was distracted by the head judge. Mareck finished WOD 2 in 6:38 for a 6th place finish, with over 15 extra reps completed.
At this point, Mareck was out of contention for a podium finish (with a correct WOD 1 result he would have been). He was disgusted and had no motivation or desire to compete any more. I felt he should but couldn’t come up with any arguments to support my desire.
We withdrew from the competition and left.
As luck would have it the competition was stopped shortly after due to a storm in any event. It was not restarted later when the weather improved again.
With some extra time on our hands we took advantage and visited a few of the sights in Berlin; Checkpoint Charlie, the Brandenburg gate, and of course the Berlin Wall which we tried to climb. To round out the day we finished the evening at ‘Sauvage’, a Paleo food only restaurant.
In summary, in CrossFit competition, I don’t believe the head judges should train judges during an ongoing WOD, they can guide them and tell them what they should be looking at if they are missing something. The work should have been done before. The judges’ authority and competence in the eyes of the athlete should not be called into question in front of the athlete. The head judges should be allowed to engage the judges to guide them and correct them.The head judges should not directly engage the athletes, the result is the athletes no longer know who to listen to, they no longer know what is expected and the judge no longer has the confidence to make a good call. Lessons learned.