The 2014 CrossFit Games were held on July 22–27, 2014 at the StubHub Center in Carson, California and were the eighth annual edition of the Games. The CrossFit Games are an annual competition to determine the "Fittest on Earth" and feature workouts designed using the CrossFit program. Rich Froning Jr. was the men's winner, winning his fourth consecutive competition. Camille Leblanc-Bazinet of Canada won the women's event, and CrossFit Invictus won the Affiliate Cup. The 2014 CrossFit Games Open was held over the course of five weeks in February and March and had 209,585 participants, an event record. The top 48 men, 48 women, and 36 teams across the five Open workouts from each of the 17 regions participated in a three-day Regionals competition, with the top three (one or two in smaller regions) men, women, and teams advanced to the CrossFit Games.
The men and women compete against only their own gender but compete in the same events (with various elements scaled down for the women, such as barbell weight). As the events change from year to year, the athletes must prepare for a variety of individual events. To follow with CrossFit's theme of being "prepared for anything", a number of new movements are often introduced each year. Events are not announced until after the Regionals are over, with many events being announced days, hours, or only minutes in advance. In fact, this year's final event, Double Grace, was announced to the athletes only 30 seconds before the event started.
ESPN aired the final heat of the evening event on both Friday and Saturday. ESPN2 aired the final heat of the final event on Sunday evening. All of the events were available live on ESPN3 for U.S. viewers and on the CrossFit Games website for international viewers.
For the third straight year, the CrossFit Games began on the Wednesday before the traditional weekend events; however, the athletes were aware of this much further in advance than in the past. The Games have started with a swim every year since 2011, with this year's event consisting of 1,000 meters of swimming, much longer than in past years. The event consisted of three separate sections of open-water swimming coupled with kettlebell thrusters and burpees in the sand.
Jordan Troyan, an experienced swimmer, won the first event for the men just as he had the previous year. Anna Tunnicliffe won the event for the women.
The athletes had three attempts to establish a 1-rep maximum overhead squat. The athletes had their choice of weight and were allowed to advance upwards in increments as small as one pound. Should they miss an attempt, they were not permitted to lower their weight, but they were permitted to increase their weight if they desired.
Kara Webb won the women's event with a 250 lb squat, putting her in first place. Rich Froning and Mathew Fraser each squatted 377 lb, tying for first. Froning took the lead in the competition after this event. Jordan Troyan, who won the previous event, was the only athlete to fail all three attempts.
Per the CrossFit tradition of three days on, one day off, there were no events on Thursday. Wanda Brenton withdrew after this event.
Similar to 2013's Burden Run event, all male and female athletes participated in one large heat. The athletes completed a triplet consisting of a 3,000 meter row, 300 double-unders, and a 3 mile run around the StubHub Center. Rob Forte and Kristen Holte were the men's and women's winners, respectively. Rich Froning finished in 37th place, his worst-ever finish in a CrossFit Games event.
Two 50-point events were held back-to-back, requiring the athlete to push a 90 lb sled across the soccer stadium. Lauren Brooks and Talayna Fortunato won the first and second event for the women, respectively, while Neal Maddox won both events for the men.
Similar to many CrossFit benchmark workouts, this event was held in a 21-15-9 rep scheme with two sections. However, within each section, there were three movements. The first section consisted of deadlifts, cleans, and snatches of a 155 lb (115 lb for the women) barbell. The second section consisted of pull-ups, chest-to-bar pull-ups, and bar muscle-ups. Rich Froning took first place for the men's.
The Muscle-Up Biathlon was the first event announced, but the details were unknown to the competitors until a few days before the event. Similar to a biathlon, athletes completed 3 rounds of two alternating movements: a 400 meter run and muscle-ups, with the first round requiring 18 muscle-ups and the second and third rounds requiring 15 and 12, respectively. To further the biathlon theme, each time an athlete dropped from their set of rings, they had to complete a 200 meter "penalty lap".
In this event, the athletes completed three down-and-back 100-meter runs in a shuttle-run format. Each time an athlete came back down the floor, they were required to carry an increasingly heavy object.
As in past years, a "ladder" event was held at this year's Games. In past years, athletes had a set amount of time to lift one weight before ascending to the next weight in set time periods, usually 30 or 60 seconds. This year, however, the event was for time. In the quarterfinals, athletes had to squat clean 5 ascending weights, with the top 24 athletes advancing to the semifinals. In the semifinals, the weights were increased in typical ladder fashion, with the top 8 athletes advancing to the finals (and the process repeating). The athletes were scored based on their time in their final round; for instance, 9th place was the fastest time in the semifinals that did not advance to the finals. Times were not cumulative.
Competitors completed four rounds of handstand push-ups and sled pulls. Each round, the reps and deficit for the handstand push-ups increased and the sled pulls got heavier.
Athletes completed three rounds of 25 GHD sit-ups, a 50 foot handstand walk, and a 50 foot overhead walking lunge. Former champions Annie Thorisdottir and Rich Froning were event winners.
Inspired by the final event of the Regionals, athletes completed 4 rope climbs at 20' each on a thicker rope, followed by 3 overhead squats at 245 lb for the men, 165 lb for the women. Jenn Jones won the event for the women, while Rich Froning won for the men. The win was Froning's fifth consecutive Sunday event win, dating back to 2013.
Competitors learned about this event just seconds before it began, with competitors in later heats being secluded in order to maintain the surprise. Grace, a classic CrossFit workout and the final workout of the 2008 CrossFit Games, was doubled for this event. Athletes completed 60 clean and jerks at 135 lb for the men and 95 lb for the women.
2011 and 2012 champion Annie Thorisdottir won the event for the women, clinching second place overall as Camille Leblanc-Bazinet finished fifth, which secured her first ever CrossFit Games championship.
For the second straight year, Rich Froning swept all three Sunday events with a win in Double Grace. The win secured his fourth consecutive CrossFit Games championship.