You Should Profit From Competition: Here’s How

Three women grip barbells at the bottom of the deadlift position before starting a fitness competition.

Everything you do in your gym should have a purpose. Everything!

Your time, energy and attention are your most valuable resources, and they are finite. Spend them wisely.

I’m reminding you of this as competition season approaches. You invest valuable time and energy in events and competitions, and the return on that investment should be better retention, more revenue or more clients.

But that isn’t always the case.

Competition Season Stresses

In the past, I’ve had a blast running the CrossFit Open at my gym. We were the first gym to use the “intramural” concept to crank up the fun, and it worked perfectly. Four teams competed for more than a month in 2011, and the gym was buzzing.

At the end of it all, my clients were happy—but my staff was worn out, and I was crushed. I think I worked 42 days in a row for the first years of the Open. No time off, no weekends for six weeks, all while coaching, cheering, encouraging, consoling and celebrating.

This story isn’t uncommon. I know many gym owners who go all out to put on the Intramural Open, the CrossFit Games Open or other in-house and public competitions. But many of those gym owners don’t get a return on their time. They just get worn out.

In fact, I know some who give everything during competition season and actually damage their businesses. They’re so focused on competition that their lead flow dries up, their retention machine breaks down and their operations suffer.

For example, back in 2014, one gym owner we work with now lost 30 clients in the month after the Open and was too exhausted to figure out how to replace them. It took him a year—and the help of a mentor—to recover financially.

So here’s your reminder as Open season approaches: The Open is fun, but it’s not everything. Your business is not built on the back of competition (I hope). Done well, a competition can be the cherry on top of your service sundae.

But if the Open doesn’t make you money, doesn’t improve adherence or retention in a measurable way and just wears you out, you can skip it. It’s not your duty to do the Open at your gym.

If you do decide to do the Open, I have a detailed tactical plan to help you. In my “2024 Intramural Open Guide,” you’ll learn:

  • How to use the Open to generate revenue before, during and after the event. (This was unheard of in the early days, but it’s standard practice now.)
  • How to celebrate clients and improve retention.
  • How to avoid burning out your staff members (or yourself).
  • How to increase participation and create an incredible atmosphere.
  • How to run the event. I’ve got a complete timeline, including instructions on creating teams, selecting captains, scoring and so on.

Get the “2024 Intramural Open Guide”

We give this guide away for free every year. I do it to help you, the gym owner, build revenue and retention in your gym. I don’t do it to provide an alternative to doing the CrossFit Open—in fact, each event complements the other.

And if you go into competition with a plan, you’ll be rewarded for your extra effort: Key business metrics will improve.

To move your numbers upward with plan that’s been tested in thousands of gyms around the world, head to or just send me a DM on Facebook and request the 2024 Intramural Open guide by name so I know what to send you.


One more thing!

Did you know gym owners can earn $100,000 a year with no more than 150 clients? We wrote a guide showing you exactly how.