CrossFit Open 19.4 - Tips, Tricks, & Strategies

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2019 Reebok CrossFit Open 19.4 Strategies 
Written By American GAINZ Nutrition

2019 CrossFit Open Workout 19.4 – “Fran Lung”

Directly from the CrossFit Games website:

For total time:
3 rounds of:
10 snatches
12 bar-facing burpees

Then, rest 3 minutes before continuing with 3 rounds of:
10 bar muscle-ups
12 bar-facing burpees

Time cap: 12 minutes, including 3-minute rest period

General Strategy -

This workout is a 2-part sprint. The first part is low skill but designed to allow athletes to push with little risk of the community sacrificing to the point of injury. It will hurt, and it will create discomfort early. Just remember, the faster you go, the faster you will finish, and there is a rest period.

Pit fall:  If you go out to hard, you will hit a wall come part 2.  For most competitive athletes that would sit in that range of top 500 in their region (pre-new structure), we recommend finishing no faster than 1:10 per round.  This would yield a 3:30 for part 1, to optimize your capacity for part 2, this would be the fastest you should go here.  Any faster, you have to ask yourself, why?  

The second half of the workout is another sprint assuming the mastery of the high skill bmu (bar muscle up). This 2nd half will however expose those who haven’t mastered optimizing strategy given their capacity to perform bmu’s completely exhausted. Part 2 should be approached like 30 bmu for time. The burpees will only make it harder. Although Patrick made it look easy, the 12-minute time cap will be hit for the mass majority of us.

Following Patrick Vellner – Absolute stud in the sport, with 3 CrossFit Games appearances as an Individual, each time earning a podium spot.

1st set of Snatches < 20 seconds
1st set of burpees < 23 seconds
Time: 43 seconds

2nd set of Snatches < 20 seconds
2nd set of burpees < 23 seconds
Running Clock: 1:26

3rd set of snatches < 20 seconds
3rd set of burpees <23 seconds
Running Clock: 2:10

Rest until: 5:10

1st set of Bar muscle ups < 28 seconds
1st set of burpees < 27 seconds
Running Clock: ~6:05

2nd set of Bar Muscle ups < 30 seconds
2nd set of burpees < 38 seconds
Running Clock: ~7:14

3rd set of Bar Muscle ups < 50 seconds *Chalk then Broke 7-3
3rd set of burpees < 28 seconds
Time: 8:34 unofficial time for Pat.


Know the Standards (Burpees) -

The Burpee standard matters, the rules this year promote faster burpees, especially when gassed. Although the previous standard (both feet moving together through the rep) forced taxing the core, to be efficient, the athlete would have to have a full range of mobility (hamstring flexibility) and be full of that bouncy energy, otherwise the rep would be very slow. The revised standard has brought back the “step-up” method which helps to keep moving when tired. The revised standard also allows the athlete to land in a pitter-patter style (one foot at a time) which creates room to begin rotating in the air.


Avoid getting “No Rep’d” -

Make sure both feet leave the ground together during the take off.
Make sure your head is behind the barbell when at the bottom
Make sure you’re facing the bar 😊
Lastly, Make sure your chest & thighs hit the ground at the bottom of the rep. The “chest” can be a point of contention between you and your judge, so be sure to demo your burpee prior to 3-2-1 Go!


The Difference - 

The difference between a fast and a slow burpee will make or break this entire workout for you. A fast Burpee is 2 seconds. A slow Burpee is 6 seconds. If breaking Vellner’s performance down excluding his rest. He only worked for 5 minutes and 34 seconds, which means of that work, 49% was performing burpees. So focus on Burpees, develop that rhythm and actively fight.

If you are not uncomfortable while doing burpees, especially in Part 1, YOU ARE GOING TO SLOW.

Part 1:
Total Time 2:10
46% was spent on Snatches
54% was spent on Burpees

Part 2:
Total Time 3:24
53% was spent on Bar Muscle Ups
47% was spent on Burpees

Total Work Out: 5:34
49% was spent on Burpees
17% was spent on Snatches
34% was spent on BMU

Predicting your failure mechanism -

Okay, first things first, this workout can be approached two different ways. To settle in on a strategy, you’ll first need to be realistic with yourself and identify what part of the workout contains your biggest weakness. Obviously, Part 2.

Approach 1: You will fail on BMU – limited on only being able to do a few at a time while fresh, or none at all
Approach 2: You will fail on BMU – Balancing exhaustion with your current BMU capacity to optimize workout score

*Fun fact – It’s really difficult to fail a burpee.

Approach 1:

There is no time like the 2019 CrossFit Open to gain this skill. It’s always fun to see 1st time muscle ups! Ask a coach to be your judge so you can spend this time wisely, learning.

For those who will be able to get a few singles but not quite 10, every rep counts!

Approach 2:

*Assumes 90% effort on burpees

Max BMU Guide: If you have…
5 or less unbroken = you are doing doubles at most. With quick sets and rest
5-10 unbroken = Consider doing 4-3-2-1, beginning that 2nd set of bmu.
10-20 unbroken = you are doing sets of 5, or possibly 6-4 for the 1st set, and breaking 3 times for subsequent sets.
30 for time < 4 min = Consider breaking once every set, and focusing on attacking burpees
30 for time < 3 min = Push it, see how long you can last. Luckily, the workout ends on burpees.

Ask yourself "How can I get hurt in this Workout" - 

Lower back: This is a tricky workout from an injury prevention point of view; athletes will be tempted to muscle snatch (not make any body contact with barbell and hinge at the back) for speed. There is nothing wrong with muscle snatching, however pairing this movement with the inflection movement of burpees while in a state of exhaustion could very easily lead to lower back injury. Be careful and prepare to power snatch if your back starts to fatigue.

Triceps: Prepare to feel the burn… understand your limits.

Falling: Bar muscle ups create an incredible dynamic load for the grip to endure over time. Use hand protection but also do your best to ensure the rig is dry and if possible, wrap you thumb around the bar to prevent the worst-case scenario.

Ripping: Don’t Rip, the shower will never be the same. Use hand protection!

Have fun with this one. It’s going to be rough and for some of us frustrating, but stick with YOUR plan, and run your race. Slow Burpees for some means finishing the workout under the time cap, don’t be that athlete repeating this workout because you went out too hard 😊 Enjoy!

~American Gainz Nutrition



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