2014 CrossFit Games Recap

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My 3rd consecutive CrossFit Games have come to a close. In some ways it wasn’t what I had expected and in others it was much more. Rather than try to sum it all up I would like to make a list of the things I loved and am grateful for about this year’s Games.

1. The programming was so diverse and fun to watch this year. I’ve been to enough competitions to know it’s hard to pull off both. They really brought it all together and tested us in so many ways without a bias towards one facet of fitness. Plus it was probably the most fun to do (minus the obstacle course in 2012).

One awesome workout was the beach one. Fans could watch from the pier which was really cool because you could hear them cheering while you were swimming. Here’s me running awkwardly toward the finish as Brooks passed me like a freight train. Almost made me laugh at myself in the moment.


2. My travel buddies were awesome. Jeff Evans and Lauren Brooks definitely made the trip comical. I think with all the ADD we had, we made one U-turn for every other turn we made, but we managed to get around in good company.


3. Support from the crowd was so great this year throughout the events. Every time I ran through the crowd on the triples people were cheering me by name which made me smile. I’m also not sure I would’ve kept trying to get a weight for my OHS without them. Even though it wasn’t what I wanted going in, I truly felt accomplished by their support.


4. 2 words… Reebok swag! It gets better every year and I don’t say that just because they’re my sponsors either. They listen to athlete’s inputs every year and the gear keeps improving. The only difficulty is figuring out how to get it all home. Thank goodness for FedEx!


5. Watching two of my friends whom I watched at both of their first CrossFit competitions years ago shine on the big stage. Lauren Brooks and Noah Ohlsen have come so far it’s truly amazing. Especially getting to see Lauren win multiple events and Noah wear the white leader jersey for a few workouts. Just wow!



6. Mrs. Martin’s mango sticky rice! CJ Martin’s (as well as the Invictus gym’s) mom takes very good care of us all week and makes sure we’re well fed for every meal. While all of the food was good I won’t lie, one of my favorite parts of competing in CA is her mango sticky rice!

7. Really relishing the Games experience. In years past I have been so concerned with points and the leader board it kept me more serious and focused all weekend. This year I had the misfortune as well as the blessing of not having to worry about that. I knew it was pretty certain if there were any squatting events I would take close to if not last on them. That knowledge was also strangely freeing. I got to look up from my concerns over what I was doing and take in the crowd and all that was going on around me more. I noticed more this year how hard all of the volunteers work all week and what a great community we have. I smiled during and after each event, at everyone I saw and just had fun with it. I have a new appreciation for what the Games experience actually means and I realized that I want to be a part of it for years to come, Lord willing.



8. Getting to do the muscle-up biathlon. It intrigued me since I heard it announced. I love strategy wods and a lot of the reason I kept competing was so I could get to do it. My initial strategy was more conservative but after I wasn’t worried about my placings I decided to just go for it. I really surprised myself and almost got it done with one break per round. A fail on the final rep that cost me a top 3 finish will definitely be remembered during training this year!

Me going up the stairs of the soccer stadium and coming back down. I had visions of wiping out this year!



9. Getting to be a spectator for the final events of the CrossFit Games. I got to do it in 2011 and again this year and it’s so much fun. Rich showing his dominance, Annie closing out strong, Bridgers snatch balancing his last OHS “what”, and seeing everyone pour their hearts out into Grace. What a show and it made me hungry for next year!

While at first I was sad not to make the top 30, I was also glad I didn’t. It was so fun to watch from up high and there would’ve been no way I could’ve done those overhead squats. I’m glad I didn’t take someone else’s opportunity that could.

In the stands with my friends who came to support!

Also with family that made the trip out.

Even my college gymnastics coach came! Three of us Thunderbirds from Southern Utah University were competing (the other 2 on teams). They’re teasing him now that he’s a good CrossFit coach too!


10. Finally a few fun meme’s from the weekend for giggles…

Look Ma, we’re on a plane!

My friend sending me a photo of me making an ass of myself on the live feed. Thanks Jonas!

Jeff’s sense of humor after treading water and refusing to let the paddle boards take him in so he wouldn’t get disqualified for the weekend during the beach event.

Lauren pretending to be a fairy jumping barbells.

My “well crap that didn’t work face” while falling out of an ugly OHS.

Our reactions to the announcement of the muscle-up biathlon. Lauren: “he said we’re doing how many reps?”, Me: “all of them, everywhere I think!”

Yes Eva attended the whole event and made new friends too!



Lastly I feel the need as a health professional to add this bit of information. I saw a Dr. before the Games and was diagnosed with a vastus lateralis (lateral quad) strain at the tendonous insertion. He assured me that he had never even heard of one of those tearing or rupturing so while I might irritate it further, I wouldn’t do any permanent damage by competing to my pain tolerance. I don’t advise anyone with pain to grit it out without first seeking medical advice to know what they’re dealing with and wouldn’t advise it anyway during training as compensation could lead to other further injury. Man that just sounded like the end of a bad drug commercial didn’t it? Sorry… but seriously, listen to your bodies and take care of them. That’s what I intend to go home and do now!

11 Responses to “2014 CrossFit Games Recap”

  • Mike

    You may have had your most inspirational performance yet and I’m so glad to hear that you had fun too! One of the best parts for me about judging team is getting to cheer you on from the sidelines 🙂

  • smcolvar

    Love this post. You’re such a great role model for all athletes. Cheered you on the whole time!

  • BJ

    Inspirational performance. Thanks.

  • Sam Smith

    Talayna, you are awesome! I was cheering so hard for you all week, especially during the triple 3! All the best going forward and I hope to see you at the games next year!

    P.S.- after seeing them close up, you don’t have chicken legs, compared to akinwale maybe but your legs and back side have some serious size. Haha. Keep knocking those squats out

  • Francesco

    L’atleta con il sorriso più bello dell’universo

  • mac

    33rd with a strained quad…are you kidding me?!?!?! That is a sick finish (in a good way). Funny story I was watching when you came out of the water limping and literally yelled NOOOOO super loud and startled someone in my office 🙂

    I hope you never quit as you’ve been one of my favorites to watch the last few years and the fittest woman on earth with a strained quad for sure!!

    Keep up the amazing work and heal up fast


  • Norm Applegate

    I was cheering for you the whole way. The OHS was something else to watch; strong people are hard to kill. You are awesome!

  • jody

    it was great to watch you and clearly you WERE really enjoying it, as seen thru your smiles, etc…… Congrats!

  • amy

    Your amazing my dear!!! I followed your posts while you were training and at no time did the thought ever cross my mind that you weren’t giving this your all! I love your perspective of being able to witness things that you hadn’t in previous years at the games… sometimes that’s what we need in the moment. Train hard, stay strong!

  • Alanna

    Your performance at the games was deeply inspirational. Please know that I (along with many others I am sure) admired your heart and determination. Although it probably wasn’t everything you hoped it would be, I have no doubt that you will be back stronger than ever. Thank you for being a wonderful role model for people like me who hope to just be better than they were the day before. Keep kicking ass!


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