My Road To RX

In 2019 I competed in my first CrossFit competition outside of my local box events. I was part of team “Space JAM” along with two of my friends in the intermediate division. After a long day of blood, sweat, and tears, we came in 3rd place among about 40 teams. Obviously doing so well could only mean one thing, I had to do the Justin Timberlake thing and go solo.

When Battlegrounds 2020 was announced I decided I needed to go outside of my comfort zone and find a way to make me push for higher goals. I signed up in the RX individual division before the workouts were posted so I was a little nervous about what it could be. I had most bases covered besides handstand walking or, possibly, a heavy lift that was over my PR.

I found out they were doing a test day when you could come try some of the potential workouts and give your feedback. I knew I had to go to get as much of a head start as possible to prepare for the competition. My worst fears were realized when handstand walks and a heavy dumbell were part of 2 separate events. I had a go at both of those events (the 3rd event was going to be max Lifts so they weren’t testing that one) and it was about as bad as I expected it to go. I gave my feedback and headed back with the knowledge of what I had to start working on ASAP.

The Moment Of Truth

A few weeks later they had finalized the events and posted all 3 workouts. Once the workouts were revealed, I definitely had some hurdles to overcome. Here are the 3 workouts:

source: @battlegroundevents

Each event posed a challenge for me.

Aftershock: The 100lbs DBall over Shoulders are heavy but I think manageable in 4ish months. The handstand walks are going to be a challenge as you can see by a snippet of my attempts to do them at that test day did not go. It was my first time even trying them. Here you can see some of my progress from that test day to a week ago.

Whine Country: Despite being “able” to do all 3 movements, I actually worry about this one the most. I can handle the lunges and muscle-ups without too much worry BUT I have had a really really rough time with the 55lbs devil presses. On the 2 occasions that I have tested that workout, the 15 devil presses took me around 5 minutes to complete. If I cannot drastically cut down that time, I will definitely be last place in this event.

Max Lifts: This is the one I worry about the least, mainly because I can do both lifts.  I just have to focus on getting overall stronger so I can hit new PRs by that day.  I control the weight so that part is in my hands. However, I can’t control the strength of my opponents.

My Plan Of Attack

My goal for this competition is to not come in last place. I know that may seems like a low bar but from my standpoint, strength is the biggest part of this competition and it’s one of my main weaknesses. I presume that most of my current PRs are lower than the other RX competitors. I have about 4 months in total to prepare.

I have made 4 commitments to myself to prepare for this competition.

  1. Begin bulking so I can lift more weight.
  2. Begin a lifting program so that my technique and strength goes up along with the weight.
  3. Practice handstand walks every week as often as possible but avoid excessive strain on my wrists (I’m still recovering from a minor wrist injury during the open).
  4. I felt that I needed to do something extra to avoid injury and help with recovery so I began doing ROMWOD every single night before bed. I really have felt a difference in how quickly I am ready to workout since I have started.


Current stat (Goal):

Weight: 171lbs (175lbs-180lbs)
Age: 34 (28)
Snatch PR: 175lbs (200lbs)
Cluster PR: 185lbs (215lbs)

I hope to report back in 2 months with some good news on the results of the competition.

Alex Bykov is a Web Developer by trade who has always looked for ways to combine his passions for CrossFit with his professional skills. Alex started CrossFit about 3 years ago to keep up with his kids and loved it so much he never looked back. In his nerdier days, A-Train also designed board games and card games for various companies. Check out his work at AlexByDesigns.