Lipp Service: Carbondale’s Jon Lipp feels he has his best chance of advancing to the CrossFit Games finals
CARBONDALE — Jon Lipp’s motivation for doing a hyper-active sport was, ironically enough, so he could get some rest.
“It was the only thing that would help me sleep,” the 29-year-old co-owner of Sopris CrossFit said. “And it was such a big release for me because the workouts are very hard. But for me there was a psychological aspect at first. It was a little while after that when I started saying to myself, ‘Wow, this is fun.’”
Combining those two aspects led to Lipp sticking with the sport after he started doing it regularly in 2008, just as it helped lead to him becoming a CrossFit affiliate since 2010.
And suffice to say, there’s a chance Lipp might have lost some sleep last night as he prepared for the CrossFit Games South West Regional, which runs today through Saturday in Salt Lake City.
“You look at the people who do CrossFit competitively in [the Roaring Fork] Valley, and I’m pretty high up there,” Lipp said. “But then you go to Salt Lake, and I fall into the middle of the pack. It’s crazy how competitive it is.”
That’s because of the level of competition at the regional level, Lipp said, seems to rise every year. Lipp has still managed to reach a level he’s never reached before, however, by going into the competition in Utah ranked 13th in the 48-person field. The top three advance to the CrossFit World Games, which is held in Carson, Calif.
Lipp competes in the Open division, which includes a worldwide competitive field of athletes ages 19 to 39. The field increases in numbers each year, leaving a saturated competitive field that continually grows. And considering how Lipp is ranked higher than ever headed into the competition, he likes his chances to moving on to California for the first time in four regional trips.
Still, he’d rather put that aside.
“This year, I feel stronger than ever,” Lipp said. “I have my good friend [and Sopris CrossFit co-owner] Chris Butler doing my [workout] programming, which has helped a lot. But as far as my chances, I try not to think about it.
“When I think about it, I start trying to compare myself to those guys and start to talk myself down. I’d rather not do that.”
Unlike a traditional gym, which typically features alternating workout days for different parts of the body, CrossFit focuses on working all facets of the body and on the overall volume of repetitions. That volume is what athletes vying for a spot in the World Games focus on. The more, the better.
During regional competition that begins on February, athletes are given five workouts to complete over a six-week time frame. They’re judged by certified CrossFit athletes on the volume and quality of repetitions, which are used to determine advancement.
Workout results are posted in CrossFit’s website, http://games.crossfit.com/, giving athletes a chance to compare themselves to athletes in their region or around the world.
Lipp, however, would prefer not to get caught up in comparing himself to others and would rather focus on what he can accomplish.
And that, he said, is what will give him a chance to move on to the World Games for the first time.
“I feel more comfortable now,” Lipp said. “The first three times at the regional were definitely intimidating. Now that I’ve been there a few times, I’m more comfortable with the experience I’ve gained. I think that will help me.”
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