“I’m so bad at…”
“I can only do X one at a time.”
“I sucked today.
PERSON NEXT TO YOU:
“If she thinks she’s so bad at that, then what does that make me?”
“I can’t even do one of those…”
“If he sucked today, I shouldn’t have even come.”
“Is it even worth it, if I’m ever that good and still think I’m bad at everything?”
Over the course of many assessments the past few months, there has been a particular theme that as arisen. It’s also one we notice on a daily basis and something I sometimes struggle with myself. The way we speak.
Unfortunately and fortunately, our words carry weight. In the realm of fitness, and CrossFit in particular, how we do on a workout, what weights we did and how we feel about our performance is a driving force of conversation on a regular basis, as it should be! It’s how we connect with people initially. It’s fun to talk about. It’s an opportunity to share accomplishments and frustrations.
Often times, and we’re all guilty of this, myself included, it’s a personal beat down of our performance rather than a celebration of what you just accomplished. Of course, not every day feels like a banner day. We know that some days your performance seems lacking. We know that some days are frustrating. This path of overall health and fitness that you’ve chosen is riddled with pitfalls and challenges. One of those is the battle within. Your mindset both before a workout and after is important. Practicing how you frame those things is part of becoming better both inside and outside the gym. That ability to frame your world and circumstances in such a way that you continue to see the good while recognizing the areas of improvements has implications in your profession, in your relationships and throughout life. As we work with you in this pursuit, we believe wholeheartedly that how you speak about yourselves both internally and externally is as powerful as improving your max squat numbers.
There is power in positivity. We know CrossFit can change your body, but as Greg Glassman said, it will change your mind. And that’s what we’re going after here because we know it’s power. Each day you have an opportunity to develop your mindset regardless of your physical performance. So how do you prepare yourself each day for this? There are so many categories of improvement that can be measured that have nothing to do with a time or number. We challenge you to look at the workout each day and choose something to work on that may or may not depend on your score. It could be shorter rest between sets. Or bigger sets. Better technique within volume. Pushing yourself into uncomfortable just a bit more. Working on a movement you fear. All of those things require a mindset that is not dependent on the outcome, but rather the process. If you can fall in love with the process, the conversation becomes positive by nature. We embrace the little thing that didn’t go quite right as an opportunity to improve rather then an excuse for our performance or lack thereof. When we don’t feel our best one day, we recognize it for what it is and not evidence of decline or weakness. And we certainly need to work to watch how we talk about our own performance around others. I hate to think that I’ve been the cause of someone else’s discouragement because of how I voiced mine. My personal apology if that has ever been the case! I’m working on it!
So how do we deal with the inevitable frustrations? How do we combat the voice in our head? I know you know this, but we have incredible coaches and each one of them would gladly work through the mental gymnastics that it takes after a particularly frustrating workout to find the good and pinpoint the issues that can be worked on. It’s what we’re here for. So when that one day really gets you upset, shoot us a text, give us a call or grab one of us after class to chat. We understand and we’re happy to help.
While we will always pursue fitness with you: increased work capacity over broad modal and time domains, our goal is health: fitness over a lifetime. Mindset is your tool to use as you pursue health. So let’s watch out for each other here. Don’t let your classmates or friends or coaches get away with the personal beat downs.. Don’t let yourself get away with it. Let’s get better together!