Athletes square off at Fittest Games this Friday, Saturday

The 2016 Fittest Games begin Friday at the Travis County Expo Center. Photo by Caleb Kerr.

The 2016 Fittest Games begin Friday at the Travis County Expo Center. Photo by Caleb Kerr.

Rope climbers, sandbag slingers and weight hoisters, your spotlight awaits.

An estimated 700 athletes from around the country will gather at the Travis County Expo Center this Friday and Saturday for the Fittest Games, hosted by Jeremy Thiel, founder of CrossFit Central.

About 700 athletes are expected to participate. Photo by Caleb Kerr.

About 700 athletes are expected to participate. Photo by Caleb Kerr.

They’ll be competing in events with (scary) names like Kong 2.0, Unicorn and Hell Sprint. In all, athletes will tackle six workouts designed to test 10 elements of fitness – strength, accuracy, speed, endurance, agility, power, stamina, flexibility, balance and coordination.

The event started nine years ago as a small-scale challenge that took place once a month in Austin, Buda, Burnet and Houston. It’s grown way beyond that. Athletes compete in six divisions – Men’s and Women’s Professional, Amateur, Masters, Intermediate and Scaled Divisions, or Team.

Events test 10 aspects of fitness. Photo by Caleb Kerr.

Events test 10 aspects of fitness. Photo by Caleb Kerr.

Last year’s first place finishers, Richard Bohlken and Alexis Johnson, will defend their titles. CrossFit Games’ veterans Brooke Wells, Candice Wagner, Jenn Jones, Jordan Cook and Nick Uranker will compete, too.

A donation-based charity workout benefiting The Flatwater Foundation will take place Saturday. The workout is open to the public, and all funds raised will go to the foundation, which works to provide mental support to families dealing with cancer.

Contestants compete in six different categories. Photo by Caleb Kerr

Contestants compete in six different categories. Photo by Caleb Kerr

Single day passes are $21.49; two-day passes are $31.74 through Jan. 28 here. The Travis County Expo Center is located at 7311 Decker Lane.

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