Headed to CrossFit® Regionals? What to do and Where to WOD in each city!
Here’s the official CrossFit® Regionals Schedule, but scroll down to find out how to add some FUN to your trip and where to get your WOD on!
May 19 - 21, 2017
East Regional | Albany, New York |Times Union Center
Let's start in Albany, the great Northeast. What started as a small Dutch settlement on the West bank of the Hudson River has blossomed into New York State's Capital City mixing sprawling landscapes with booming business districts.
If you are a fan of the Great Outdoors, Albany’s surrounding area has a lot to offer! If you don’t mind a little drive, cruise up to Lake George or Adirondacks (Mountains) Park, both about 1.5 hours outside of Albany (thanks Google!) There, enjoy rock climbing, camping, white-water rafting, mountain biking, or just chilling on the water’s edge with a fishing pole. Plus, the views are gorgeous!
If you prefer to stay in town and you like History and Architecture, start at Albany Heritage Area Visitors Center at Quackenbush Square (say it again, It's fun!) Or hit the Hudson for a sightseeing River Cruise.
And if you’re just here for the food, then OPA! The St. Sophia Greek Festival is happening over the same weekend in Albany. To work off all that Spanakopita, here's where to...
GET YOUR WOD ON in Albany!
I'm told a lot of folks will be staying at the Days Inn & Suites in Glenmont (you can book reservations here) and CrossFit Spur is within walking distance. Owner, John Hogan told me, “We love visitors during Regionals!” and says he adds more classes leading up to the event itself.
The drop in fee is $15 or $25 with a T-shirt, but you can’t be a newbie and you must RSVP here (look for the little RSVP icon on the left side of your screen.) If you’re competing at Regionals you can drop in to CrossFit Spur for FREE, just contact John to let him know you're coming over.
Everyone can WOD for FREE on Saturday morning, May 20 at CrossFit Beyond in Albany *IF you bring new socks to be donated to inner city kids who need them* for the WOD for Socks event! Drop in classes are $10 otherwise. Owner Joy Smolinski says the box is just over 1 mile from Times Union Center, where the competition will take place, and promises “food and fun all weekend.”
May 19 - 21, 2017
South Regional | San Antonio, Texas | Alamodome
If you’re headed to San Antonio for Regionals, you’re in luck! This Southern gem has a ton of culture, food snobbery (in a good way!) and city-life energy without a tumbleweed in sight! Leave your spurs at home (seriously, not a good idea to wear them during squats any way – ouch!) and head out into the Alamo City.
Speaking of The Alamo, as a former Texan, I’m not even going to try to deter you from this historic site - a key battleground during the Texas Revolution - because I know you want to go and it’s a great learning experience. However, once you realize just how tiny this landmark really is, here are a few more recommendations to help you explore the downtown area. (Thanks to Art at CrossFit Unchained for some of these ideas!)
You’ll probably want to book a hotel in downtown San Antonio, but doesn’t mean you have to be surrounded by crowds and buildings – you’re in what Texans call “Hill Country” after all. There are tons of hiking and biking trails in the area. Check out the Mission Trails.
Attention Shoppers: the famous San Antonio Riverwalk is the place to be! Anchored by the Downtown Mall at the Northeast End, this 15 mile stretch is lined with shops and restaurants on both sides of the water.
Did I mention Six Flags Fiesta Texas is there, too? As a self-proclaimed rollercoaster aficionado, I definitely think it’s worth a ride!
If BATMAN: The Ride (my favorite!) doesn't get your heart pumping enough, here's where to ...
GET YOUR WOD ON in San Antonio!
If you’ve got at least three months of CrossFit® experience, get your WOD on at CrossFit Unchained - Google says it’s about a 16 minute walk from the Alamodome. Drop in fees are $20 for the first day and $10 per subsequent day. Or buy a shirt for $25 and your first drop in class is only $10.
If you've got a car, drive out to Body Armor CrossFit, on the Northeast side of downtown where Games athletes and visitors are welcome to work out for a $20 drop in fee.
If you like your CrossFit® with a side of Meditation, Tobin Hill CrossFit has teamed up with lululemon for a Mindful Sweat Experience. The two hour sessions start at 9:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Plus, there's a FREE shuttle from the Alamodome (where the competition is taking place). Click here for more info.
Here are a few other places, my new buddy Art from CrossFit Unchained thinks you should know about:
Closest Grocery Store: HEB
Cool Coffee Shop: Estate Coffee Company
Quaint Organic Restaurant: Sweet Yams Organic
Good Burger Joint: Mark's Outing
Take in some Art: San Antonio Museum of Art
Cold beer (bring your growler!): Southerleigh Fine Food & Brewery
Super Spirits (make with homemade apricot brandy): Dorcol Distillery
Pool, Big Screens and Beer, of course: Franky Diablo’s
May 26 - 28, 2017
California Regional | Del Mar, California | Del Mar Arena
Ahhh.. the stress of hardcore competition meets the serenity of more than 2 miles of soft, sandy Beaches in San Diego County.
Seagrove Park (pictured above) not only adds a little scenery to your morning run, but is a great spot to picnic, do some seaside yoga, or do absolutely nothing at all. If you're bringing your pup (or you just miss your four-legged friend!), head over to North Beach where Fido can run free (but only until June 16th when leashes are required).
Check out the water conditions or digitally enjoy the sunset on the Beach Cam. If you think you can handle the waves, or you'd like to learn how, enroll in Surf School or rent a board (surf / windsurfing / kitesurfing board) if you're confident enough to hit the water on your own.
If you prefer to hit the ground running, Del Mar is full of breath-taking scenic trails. You can download a map of local trails here, but Blake Bender of Stratum Fitness says, "the best local hike is, undoubtedly, the Torrey-Pines State Natural Reserve, which is fairly short but has beautiful views overlooking the ocean." Check it out for yourself here.
On Saturday, May 27, stock up on fresh smoothie ingredients at the Del Mar Farmers Market at Upper Shores Park. From fish to fruit, to nuts, eggs and organics, spend an hour or so just taking in the sights and smells! There's also freshly prepared authentic quesadillas, Thai, even pizza! Once you're properly fueled, here's where to...
GET YOUR WOD ON in Del Mar!
While there are not a ton of boxes in Del Mar, but there are CrossFit® programs at Stratum Fitness, less than a 20 minute drive north of the competition site (according to Google) - not too far to toss around some kettlebells. Owner, Blake Bender says everyone is welcome to drop in for a WOD over Regionals weekend for $20 a class.
May 26 - 28, 2017
Central Regional | Nashville, Tennessee | Music City Center
Athletes and Spectators headed to the Music City Center, you are truly in the Heart of it all. From History, to Live Music, to BBQ Nashville's got it, and it's all nestled along the scenic Cumberland River.
The CrossFit® Regionals Page suggestions staying the Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Brentwood or The Hyatt Place near the airport (you can book a reservation here). Both are about a 15 minute drive from downtown Nashville. Not bad, but if you can, I highly suggest staying downtown – there’s so much within walking distance, including the Music City Center (where the competition takes place.)
And speaking of Music...
From Honky Tonk Highway to Music City’s own Broadway, every few steps you’ll pass another bar pumping out great live music and the best part? Most of it is FREE! This is a great chance to check out some up and coming Country (but not just Country) artists and songwriters so you can saw “I saw them play before they were famous!” (It happened to me with Dierks Bentley and Taylor Swift!) There's even an app you can download; get more info here.
But there's more than music in Music City. Wet your whistle at Jack Daniel's Distillery - hey! It counts as culture and I promise you'll learn something!
For the history buff, stroll through The Hermitage, home of America’s Seventh President Andrew Jackson.
And if you like your vacay a little more quiet, Rebecca from CrossFit Music City says the greenway in front of the Parthenon, a full scale replica of the original Greek Temple, at the 132-acre Centennial Park (pictured above) is a good place to chill or play Frisbee, soccer or toss the pigskin around.
For a fun workout, try renting a Kayak or Stand Up Paddleboard and cruise the Cumberland River. Our friend Rebecca (mentioned above) recommends Big Willie's Nashville. Or, let the 300 foot General Jackson Paddlewheel Riverboat do all the work.
Can we please talk about food? YUM! When it comes to BBQ joints, don’t expect nothing fancy at the real good ones, Partner. In fact, whatever accommodations you’re picturing, just go ahead and lower your expectations now, but know the food (the FOOD!) is worth every calorie you burn during your WOD.
If you can take the heat of the Games, why not challenge yourself to a “Hot Chicken” sandwich – at least, it’ll clear your sinuses! And if you think you can hang with the South’s spiciest, we dare you to try the “Shut the Cluck Up” from Hattie B’s Hot Chicken. Ooh Lawd! If this Nashville specialty doesn’t beat you up enough, here’s where to…
GET YOUR WOD ON in Nashville!
CrossFit Music City is running extra classes over Regionals weekend with a special rate of $45 for the week. Owner, Rebecca Brown says the box is only a 400m job from the competition site!
On the End CrossFit welcomes Drop-ins for $15 a day or 50-bucks for the week.
ProVita CrossFit, on the North side of downtown, is closed Saturday – Monday over Regionals weekend to observe Memorial Day, according to co-owner Kate Tong Holland.
June 2 - 4, 2017
West Regional | Portland, Oregon | Portland Expo Center
Outdoorsy types, Rejoice! Even within the city limits, Portland is about as green as you can get. There's 200 parks (including the largest urban forest in the nation) and you're never too far from a park or trail.
Looking for some Zen? Look no further than the 5.5 acre Portland Japanese Garden (pictured above). Experts say it's the most authentic Japanese garden outside of Japan. Wanna climb an extinct volcano? No problem. Mt. Tabor Park promises jaw-dropping views of the city from its 630-foot summit with Mount Hood in the distance.
From Wine Tasting in Willamette Valley to Windsurfing in the Gorge, Portland's rustic seaside landscape set the scene for a fantastic extended weekend (after you kick butt at the Portland Expo Center, of course!)
Plus, June is the start of festival season! Light up the night at the Rose Festival Starlight Parade on the 3rd at 8:30pm, and whether you're a pheasant or a King, don your breeches or kirtle and gallivant around Faire in the Grove for heavy armored combat, music and merchants celebrating the Middle Ages and the Renaissance!
Tired of the daily grind? You don't need to travel to Seattle for the region's best coffee, create your own self-guided Coffee Tour through the Victorian-style Northwest side of Portland.
If a cold brew is more your thing, you're in luck! The Cheers to Belgian Beers event is back for its 11th year on June 2 and 3. You can sample more than 70 craft beers, brewed right in Oregon (although I suggest cutting yourself off way before you hit the 70 mark. Just saying.)
And if you're still undecided about what to do in Portland, please just SPIN the You-Can-O-Mizer featuring an ever-changing, hiking, or beer-drinking, or shopping, adventurous hipster Sasquatch-type creature. Do it just for kicks, you know you want to!
Unfortunately, I have yet to see the Yeti snatch or show off his booty shorts, but if you're down for either of those, here's where to...
GET YOUR WOD ON in Portland!
Who likes FREE? Well, you're in luck because Adam Neiffer at CrossFit Fort Vancouver says drop in classes are FREE over Regionals weekend. It's about 10 minutes away from the competition at the Portland Expo Center and just across the border (aka the Columbia River) into Washington state. View their schedule here.
June 2 - 4, 2017
Atlantic Regional | Atlanta, Georgia | Georgia World Congress Center
Hot-lanta! And I'm not just talking temperature! With Southern Charm and World-Class Sophistication there is no shortage of fun things to do in Atlanta during Regionals weekend. The only problem is that you'll have to extend your trip and stay a little longer to experience all the ATL has to offer.
Ok, how many times have you been to an aquarium and wanted to just dive in? Well, at Georgia Aquarium you can! I'm not talking about getting up close with Finding Nemo characters, but rather Whale Sharks and Manta Rays in the Ocean Voyager Exhibit. So cool, kinda scary, but you're a tough CrossFitter, right? Right?
Maybe you don't want to submerge yourself next to a saltwater beast, but if you would like to cool off and relax a bit, head to Centennial Olympic Park where you can play in the Fountain of Rings (Olympic Rings, that is, circa 1996) or enjoy the free lunchtime live music series at Noon. Come on, run through the water like a kid again!
For delicious Paleo eats, my new buddies at CrossFit Downtown Atlanta say Urban Pl8, less than a mile from their box, is a great restaurant with casual, sit-down dining or "Paleo 2 Go" options. It's located at Krog Street Market, a west coast-style market where you can find produce, prepared food and unique retailers in a warehouse setting from the 1920's.
For a nice run or bike ride, the Atlanta Beltline is now 33 miles of reclaimed railroad tracks throughout the city and surrounded by the Southeast's largest temporary public art project. There's an app you can download, or view a trail map here.
You probably didn't pack up your bike and haul it to Atlanta, but you can rent one here. Now that you're warmed up, here's where to...
GET YOUR WOD ON in Atlanta!
CrossFit Downtown Atlanta has an expanded class schedule over Regionals weekend to accommodate visitors, and they're roughly a 15 minute drive from Georgia World Congress Center (where the competition is happening). Drop-in rates are $20 or $25 with a shirt. There's a 20 person cap per class and a 6 person cap during open gym time slots. Get more info and pre-register here.
Fitness Battalion CrossFit is about 15 minutes North of the competition (according to Google) and charges $20 for out-of-towners but does not require pre-registration. "Just come on by," they told me.
CrossFit Terminus is popular spot for drop-in since it's typically, less than 30 minutes away from the competition site via car. However, because of their proximity, there are no special rates for drop-ins over Regionals weekend. That doesn't mean you can't join in, just call ahead to make sure there's room for you in class. Register as a visitor and get more info here.
Do you know any of the Regionals host cities well? Are you a local CrossFitter with recommendations? Leave a comment below and happy WOD-ing everyone!
- Courtney Perna