This is your 2019 hype-man speaking.
With the new year around the corner, there’s no better time for me to drop some old man knowledge and get everyone fired up for another year of training at CrossFit Stealth.
My goals? First, to give you goosebumps at least once by the time you are done reading this. But more importantly, to change the way you think about your training sessions for years to come.
This year marked my 10th year in the game. I was introduced to CrossFit as a rookie police officer by my sergeant in 2008. The intensity of the program literally gave me flashbacks to some of my physical training in the Marines. I knew immediately there was something special to this program. So much has changed since then, both in my personal life and the CrossFit community I love so much.
During ten years of gettin’ after it, I’ve developed field-tested hacks to stay focused and inspired. I think you’ll find they do the same for you.
COMMIT TO THE LONG GAME
It’s easy to get trapped in the short term. Maybe you had a rough week and only got to the gym two times instead of your normal four or five. Maybe an injury is holding you back or keeping you from attacking workouts the way you want. Here is the secret: Every time you walk through our doors, you are getting better.
Time is on your side. Missing a few workouts one week is not the end of the world. And that one “bad” performance doesn’t define who you are as an athlete. Think years not weeks. Be consistent, and I guarantee when you look back at the 2018 version of yourself you will be amazed at how much you have evolved.
DEFINE YOUR "WHY"
Why is training important to you? My "why" has changed as I have evolved as a person and athlete. At first, it was all about challenging myself. Could I do it? Before kids, it was all about looking and feeling good. Now, my why has more layers to it. Of course I still want to look and feel fit, but I have people that depend on me. I train the way I do to make sure I’m in the best condition to come home to them every night. Be honest with yourself. Write it down. And every couple of months reevaluate your "why," and give your training a defined purpose.
SET A DAILY TRAINING FOCUS
Look at the workout before you get to the gym. Break it down in your mind. Find one thing you want to commit to. It can be anything from keeping to a certain rep scheme, making less trips to the chalk bucket, or simply not dogging the runs. Having a daily training focus creates a workout within the workout, and is a sure fire way of keep yourself invested in every session.
BE A GOOD TEAMMATE
We feed off of each other. Something as simple as a fist bump between rounds to the person next to you can go a long way. Cheer someone on during the strength work. Push each other, and good things happen. The energy you invest into the people you are training with enhances everyone’s experience.
FLIP THE SWITCH
The Question of the Day is in the books. We’re all warmed up and having fun. Now it’s time to kick off the workout. Flip the switch! Everyone is capable of finding that next gear, but you can’t get there passively. You’re not going to PR Jackie thinking about what you need from the grocery store while you’re rowing.
My high school swimming coach used to call it “the black box.” We can coach your movement. We can encourage and support you. But mindset is on you. Come correct, and commit to what you are doing 100 percent. Each class is an hour. Make the most of it. The world will be waiting for you when class is over.
MAKE PLANS, NOT EXCUSES
My life outside the gym has changed a lot in a decade -- marriage, homeownership, kids, sickness, vacations, work assignments and injuries. As my plate became fuller, I chose to make plans instead of excuses.
I always think: How am I going to make it happen today? It might mean 100 burpees for time in the basement because the kids have after school activities. It might mean getting to bed early and taking the 5:45 a.m. class because you have a deadline to meet at work. Sometimes it’s a planned rest day when the day is just too hectic. That’s okay! Why? Because you planned it that way. And you’ve also planned to crush it when you return the following day.
GO “FULL SEND”
Are you giving each training piece your all, every time? Or are you just getting by? Going “full send” is both a mental and physical agreement you make with yourself. It’s challenging yourself to get uncomfortable. It’s making those lungs burn just a little bit more. It’s that extra rep you don’t want to do before putting the bar down. It’s being fearless as you pull yourself under a heavy snatch, and believing your going to make it, no matter how heavy it feels on the first pull.
Getting outside your comfort zone and staying there is how you broaden the scope of your fitness and mental toughness. All of you are capable of extraordinary things. Don’t let fear keep you from accomplishing them. Embrace the pain and know that is the feeling of you becoming stronger. Be proud that you are a part of a community that accepts these challenges.
There you have it. These tips may not seem groundbreaking, but they’ve helped me through the years. Hopefully you can find one or two that work for you.
I’m pumped for 2019 at CrossFit Stealth, and I hope you guys are, too! We’re going to have a blast this year, ladies and gentlemen.
Get here. Work hard. Have fun. Repeat.