I just signed up for the 2015 Crossfit Open with a TBI

 In Adaptive Athlete, Body & Soul, Cognitive Adaptations, CrossFit, Fitness, Guest Post, Mind, Story

If you’ve been following my rehab, you’ll know that signing up for the Open is a really big deal. You’ll know that I haven’t really picked up a barbell in a long time. You’ll know that I’ve been spending several days a week bedridden with vertigo and nausea following my physical therapy. You’ll know that my idea of a good workout right now is tracking a laser with my eyes and walking down a hallway slowly while trying to track my eyes from side to side. You’ll know that I’m sleeping a lot because I’m on sensory overload since my physical therapist started treating my neck. You’ll know that I’m struggling to read, drive, and do much of anything for very long (except juggle my soccer ball, because you’ll also know I can’t stay away from that thing). You’ll know that basically I’m gritting my teeth a hell of a lot right now and reminding myself that one day this won’t be my reality.

So how the hell am I going to do the Open?

I’m going to adapt.

L1 scalingIf you haven’t yet, you need to start following I am Adaptive on twitter and instagram (@IAmAdaptive). These amazing folks are highlighting all the ways that athletes are adapting workouts to fit their bodies and abilities, instead of letting workouts determine their disabilities. In fact, they’re trying to get rid of that word in general. No more disabilities – just adaptations. So many of their athletes are doing the Open and they’re even throwing down at Reebok Crossfit Back Bay (hey guys, want to lend me a space on the floor to workout?) for Open workout 15.3 as a fundraiser for their movement. I Am Adaptive is doing the Open. Therefore, I am doing the Open.

I am crawling out of my skin with my desire to get back out there. I know I’m a long way from double unders and heavy clean & jerks, but I’ve got an L1, I’m a CPT, I have years of coaching behind me, and about 10 years of adapting that tells me I can figure out a way to adapt the Open workouts for my needs right now. I’ve even got one of the coolest new teams behind me at Team on 3, who have put their faith in me as an influential athlete. I’ve got the Knockout Project and Jay Fraga telling me that anything is possible, and as a board member it’s my job to show other kids battling back from concussions or adapting to life changes post concussion that they can adapt. Brain injury, no matter how mild or traumatic, is not the end.

Most importantly though, I’ve got a team of athletes at JP Crossfit who are also going to give the Open their all, and I owe them my best. The coaches and community of JP Crossfit have supported me from day 1 and have never made me feel less than or like I don’t belong. So I’m joining team JP Crossfit. I’m doing the Open, with a TBI.



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