Open Preview: Looking back at WOD 14.1

Since the Open is upon us, here is an analytical  look back at the announcement of Open WOD 14.1, featuring Garret Fisher and Marcus Hendren.   Rather than focus only on the result, we broke down the workout, hoping to gain a better understanding of the factors which produced the result.  We measured the amount of time that each athlete spent on each modality in order to get a sense of where one may expect to gain an advantage in a WOD like this one.  While the transition time may seem high, keep in mind that each athlete had to execute at least 15 transitions.   Furthermore, each athlete spent the majority of the WOD on snatches.  Like nearly all WODs, optimizing performance requires a balancing act.  Did Fisher's slightly longer transition time enable him sustain a faster pace on the snatches?    


Round by round, their performance looked like this:

There was little difference in the work rate on Double Unders.   This is no surprise; double unders require a certain pace .  You can’t exactly do them slowly, and going super fast is waste of energy for a small benefit, so we expect to see consistent pacing on double unders unless athletes become very fatigued and are forced to break in the middle of a set, which did not happen here.  Notably, Fisher extended into Round 9.   On the snatches, both athletes sustained an identical pace for three rounds, but Hendren's power loss was far more pronounced.  This proved to be the difference in the results.  Power output per round is as follows:

 Numbers confirm what the pictures illustrate:  insignificant power loss on the Double Unders, but substantial differentials on the snatches.   Understanding your own susceptibility to power loss, and pacing your workout to minimize it, is a critical part of any WOD. 

Like this stuff?  Open previews are here and here.  

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