16.5: Worst Experience Ever… and Best Experience Ever

By CrossFit DC member Dave E.
DaveE, thrst_IMG7612

(Photo: Charles W.)

I don’t think I’ve ever been nervous before a workout before.
I’ve never cared that much about the outcome before. I mean c’mon, it’s just CrossFit.
But leading up to 16.5, I was incredibly stressed about the workout and how well, or how poorly, I would perform. That’s all thanks to the first time this legalized torture made its way into the Open.
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Two years ago, after watching heat after heat try to climb the giant mountain of suck that was 14.5, I made a bet with myself that if I finished under the time cap that the coaches had set for the workout, I would be rewarded with a delicious post-workout beer.
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I didn’t actually think I’d do it, but a boy can dream.
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Honestly, that workout was a blur, but I do remember the yelling. My judge, our coaches and friends, all encouraging me, telling me I could finish if I just kept moving. I was pretty sure I was going to die.
Somehow, with two seconds to go, I finished.
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People cheered, I fell down and was handed a beer. It was the best tasting beverage I’ve ever had.
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Dave E, after_IMG7633

(Photo: Charles W.)

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After 16.5 was announced, I heard from multiple people who were there two years prior to tell me how much fun it was to watch and that I had to do it again — that is, make it in under the time cap. Probably preferably in equally dramatic fashion.
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As I stepped up to the bar I felt so much pressure. Wouldn’t it be a huge let-down if I couldn’t do it again?
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Well, I came up short. I felt awful, like I had let people down. I even apologized to a few folks. But they wouldn’t hear it.
DaveE, bp_IMG7605

(Photo: Charles W.)

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I have to thank this entire awesome community for making me feel proud regardless of the outcome. People congratulated me on showing up, for trying, for giving it my best. It was no victory beer, but there’s nothing like having that kind of support all around you.
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The CrossFit community tends to get a lot of guff, and sometimes for good reason (I’m looking at you, people who can’t work out with a shirt on), but you know what?  You guys are pretty damn amazing.
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Except Dave Castro. F— that guy.
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group, final_IMG1162

(Photo: Charles W.)

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