How to Have a Blast at CrossFit Competitions – Step 2/3: Prepare


The good news is, you’ve already done 90% of the training that will affect your performance. The bad news? You’ve already done 90% of the training that will affect your performance. It’s helpful to practice movements, learn new skills, and get uncomfortable with your weaknesses and disliked moves, but it’s stressful to start approaching your training that way with only a couple weeks before an event.

If you train like this regularly, then you’re already in a great position to layer on some specific skill work for your next event because you’ve been exposing yourself to lots of movements and not allowing you biases to steer the training ship. 

Think “I hate wallball shots, so I am going to make it to the gym when wallball shots show up, no matter what, until I am good at them.”  

If that’s, not you, don’t worry about it. The best course of action is to start training this way now, and by the time the next event comes up, you won’t have to rush to improve at something that you’re lacking in, because you’ll already be training the “lack” out of your system on the daily. 

Jeff’s Rx:

Pick two to four things you know you could do better on before the event. After you sign up for the vent, add a 12-minute emom 1-2x per week with those things you want to do better on.

Example: I deplore wallball shots and can barely do pistols on my left leg.


Even minutes: 0:40 max unbroken wallball shots

Odd Minutes: 0:40 max pistols (or pistol progression on a box since I have a bent stick for a leg)

If you aren’t great at rope climbs and see one for your event. Consider spending the even minutes practicing foot-clamps while sitting in a chair, and do one full rope climb during the odd minutes.

The key is to practice a high-enough amount reps to see progress, but a low enough intensity to focus on improving what you’re working on.


Train like you normally for the week leading up to the competition. 

Two days out, do an emom, working on the skills that you want to improve on for the event, mobilize trouble areas.

One day out, tackle an active rest day. Shoot some b-ball outside of the school. Look out for guys who are up to no good. Go bike in the sun or swim for an hour. I’m a big fan of GBM like Animal Flow. The key is to give your nervous system a break and keep your tissues and joints moving and ready.

After workouts, take the time to head over the warm-up area and bike or row lightly for a few minutes. You can also foam roll, and do some light stretching and bodyweight movements if the equipment is short. A good rule of thumb is to make each workout twenty minutes long. So, if you did a thirteen-minute amrap for the workout, hop on a bike for seven minutes and just pedal easy.


This sounds like a no-brainer, yet here I am on my soapbox talking about it. I wish I started paying more attention to sleep years ago.  

No less than eight hrs of solid sleep this week. I’d prefer you got a solid eight hours every night, but that’s a dream.

Some basics.

  • Pick a time 30 minutes before your planned bedtime to turn off screens. All of them. Get a book you heathen.
  • Lights dimmed or off during this time.
  • Use blackout curtains if your sleep time is during daylight hours.
  • No pets in the bed. Trust me. Even pets that don’t move much will be in the way of your unconscious movement. I have a 50lb dog, Evie. Her mass increases to two black holes when she touches my covers. I will never starfish again.
  • Turn the thermostat down to 68. 
  • Have a ceiling fan on or a white noise app playing on low to block out disruptive outside noises. 
  • Yes, turn the thermostat down to 68.
  • If you’re from the south, turn on your $14.99 box fan from Walmart.
  • If you have problems turning your brain off or initiating a sleep cycle. Grab some sub-lingual melatonin and Gaba. Take them 1 hr before bed and follow the prompts above. See you in the morning!


This is the last and possibly “easiest to drop the b-ball” variable you can control at the event. It’s yuge. If you are doing an event with 3 + workouts, you could be doing triple the activity that you are used to, and on someone else’s timeline. 

You are going to need more food.

You are going to need food that digests well.

You will need to play with your food (sorry mom) leading up to the event to find what works well for you.

You will need a way to transport and keep the food at the event. (get a cooler, a yeti cooler if you’re rich). 

Here is the outline I follow.

The First Event:

  • Three hours before the event- a large (mostly whole-food-based) breakfast. *This may be the only chance to get a big meal until the event is over. Get calories in now, but keep the quality high. No greasy stuff, dairy, or high levels of fake foods. *I am just fine with adding a few slices of Dave’s Killer bread or bagels with fruit preserves or natural peanut butter for the extra calories.
  • 30-minutes before event one: I eat one banana. Bananas take 30 minutes to absorb. You want the carbohydrates hitting you right as you are warming up to go on the floor. 

The Rest of the Day:

  • Check out the heat schedule and pick the times that you will eat your meals during the day. 
  • Try to keep them at least 1 hour away from upcoming workouts if you can. *It’s not the end of the world if you don’t. Adequately fueled and a little belly-heavy is still 10x better than under-fueled.
  • Keep your meals easy to digest protein and carbohydrates. 
  • Don’t worry about your fat intake too much. Fat slows digestion. Unless you are at an event with 2-3 hour breaks between workouts, or on a special consideration diet, you don’t to prioritize fats today. Most protein and carb sources come with enough fat to sustain you.

*Jeffs Rx:

Use an app like Myfitnesspal to track the whole day of food in advance.

Some of my favorite event day foods:





Sweet Potato

Famous Amos Cookies that a kid left unattended for too long.


Chicken breast with blackened seasoning

Sliced turkey

Whey protein powder (I get this at 5-Start Nutrition Little Rock)

Combo Items

Protein blueberry muffins from

Eggwhite, turkey sausage, sweet potato casserole

Post Wod Powder from Driven Nutrition 


The simple version of this: Drink when you are thirsty.

The more complex version of this: Dring 8oz, fifteen to twenty minutes before each event and drink 8oz immediately after the event. Drink another 8oz as you cool down. Drink to thirst for the rest of the day.

We’ve covered mindset and preparation. The next post will explain how to compete and have a great time on the arena floor. Let me know if you got something out of this, share it!


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