Congratulations on getting your buttocks to the gym, last week, yesterday or tomorrow. At the very least the hardest part is done, you have started by Taking the First Step, now let's talk about the the second step. . .
I was actually a little frustrated at first when I started writing tonight, I erased, re-wrote, erased again, and finally settled on this topic just because it was so damn important to me. I do want to highlight the fact that my CrossFit box will be hosting a competition for those that don't normally compete. The individuals who shy away from competitions due to anxiety, a fear of performance, or a lack of confidence in their own performance. A competition that won't see the likes of Dave Lipson with a 600 lb deadlift or Jason Kaplan with a sub 2 minute Fran. The "firebreathers" (not my favorite term) will not be participating in said event - I believe it's called the "Festivus for the Rest of Us" and it is for novice to intermediate crossfitters. However, I want to point out that a Coach told me tonight in the most frank of statements, "If you've been crossfitting for at least a month, there is nothing you won't be able to perform in the event." Nuff said right? I can only imagine the jitters that run through your mind when you read this, for those of you that this pertains to. I have said before, and I will always repeat, competition brings out the champion in yourself. It takes you to a different level of fitness than you already know. If you have ever performed a WOD on your own and then done the same in a box, you know exactly what I am talking about and can corroborate this next statement. If you compete/play with anyone that is better than you, you unknowingly become better yourself. I say give it a try, you have nothing to lose, everything to gain, and you will find my statement to be 100% true.
I don't want to get to off track, but last night was a phenomenal coaching opportunity on all levels. Although I was disheartened by the lack of participation (actually the class sizes were half of Monday) I was able to impart a solid knowledge base on the Split Jerk and I felt that every one's attention was focused on performing the movement solidly. Combine that with a WOD that had running (one of my favorite things to do) and kettlebell swings, and it was just site to see. Nothing like red faces, noses running, and heavy panting combined with loud music to provide an opportunity to impart some knowledge. It just felt like a night of learning.
But again I digress, cause the frustrating part still rears its ugly head in my brain and I need to write it down. I can't stress enough how important it is to have goals in the gym. Now some have come right out and said what their goals were. Not only did they speak their goals, but they work on them every day. Every day. Every day. That isn't a simple task. Think about it, if your goal is to do unbroken double-unders, can you imagine picking up that rope everyday? First day, you get one double-under in 50 attempts. Three weeks later, you still can't time your jump with the revolution of that damn rope. You have welts that are starting to show up in the most uncommon of places (damn you wire ropes) and you've tried three different ropes that are all different weights and it's just not clicking. You research tirelessly, you listen to advice, you talk to coaches and nothing works, but still you toil endlessly. . .
If your goal is a 500 lb deadlift, the expectation isn't that you lift every day, as the body does need rest. But there are multiple drills that can be performed, stretching, mobility and flexibility that can be done. Things that won't stress the body, things that will help you recover. And if you haven't reached out to someone, who is holding you accountable? You? I am sure that you allow yourself to skip a day, trust me, intestinal fortitude (AKA balls, cojones) only go so far. Motivation and a positive attitude only last for some time. You need an outlet, a place to go for that. A place where someone can give you something else to work on so that you can then accomplish said goal. Back to the deadlift for a moment. . . how about weighted lunges, sumo-deadlift high pulls, GHD sit-ups, back extensions or even knees to elbows? Why? To build a strong midline, to develop faster hips, etc.
I want to thank you for taking the first step, that took a lot of drive and determination. Now let's take the second step together, working as a group like I stated in yesterdays post. Trying to get to the Summit of Mt Everest is daunting when you are alone, but in a group of it's a manageable task, especially when there are those who have already taken that journey. Learn from the experiences of others and you will master all that you wish. Be patient, learn, practice, and above all, act.
“Don't lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality.”
- Ralph Marston