Whitehorse athlete starts CrossFit Open in eighth

It may be a fairly new sport, but it's still a long road to the regionals. Ten Whitehorse athletes are pushing themselves to the limit in the five-week CrossFit Open, which kicked off last week.

It may be a fairly new sport, but it’s still a long road to the regionals.

Ten Whitehorse athletes are pushing themselves to the limit in the five-week CrossFit Open, which kicked off last week.

Each week the members of CrossFit Whitehorse will complete assigned workouts to gain points towards qualifying for the regional championships.

CrossFit headquarters releases workouts on Wednesday and athletes have until Sunday to submit their results, through a registered organization such as CrossFit Whitehorse.

“We can do it as many times as we want and then submit our best score,” said Erin Schultz, co-owner of Peak Fitness, the home of CrossFit Whitehorse.

With one week complete, Whitehorse’s Erin Light is highest on the leaderboard, sitting at eighth in Western Canada for open women.

“I feel like I’m in a much better physical condition this year, but I also think the level of competition has stepped up,” said Light. “So I have no idea where I’ll end up.”

Last week’s assignment was a 17-minute max-rep workout, i.e. completing as many reps as possible in a span of 17 minutes.

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Each repetition was a series of “burpees” followed by a series of snatches, like competitive weightlifters do, with increased weight each set.

The order went: 40 burpees, 30 snatches; 30 burpees, 30 snatches; 20 burpees, 30 snatches; 10 burpees and as many snatches until time runs out.

In case you’re wondering, a burpee is going from a prone position to jumping up to touch a marker six inches above the athlete’s reach when standing.

“It’s awful; it’s so hard,” said Light of burpees. “It’s one of those movements when, if it’s in the workout, you know you’ll get absolutely exhausted.”

CrossFit Whitehorse’s Heather Jordan is currently in 42nd for open women in the Canada west region, Bethany Peters is in 237th, Lauren McClintock is in 416th and Lee Randell is in 463rd.

Whitehorse’s top men on the leaderboard following the first week are Brett Cross in 543rd and Cliff Schultz in 854th.

The top-48 from each region will qualify for the regional championships in May and the top two from regionals go to the CrossFit Games – the world championships – held annually since 2007.

“That’s pretty challenging. There’s 2,000 males and 1,400 females registered (in the Canada West region),” said Light.

Light, who has been competing in CrossFit for two and a half years, placed 11th at regionals last year in Vancouver. She also won bronze at the Battle on the Border last month in Lloydminster, Alta.

“Nine out of 10 of us are competing just to have fun; Erin (Light) is competing to get into regionals,” said Erin Schultz.

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com