If you’ve been doing Crossfit for a while, you know about the dark place.
It’s the place that we all have to go sometimes.
You see the workout and you develop your strategy.
And then everything goes to hell.
You lose all control of everything.
Your abandon all strategy and it’s a freakin’ free for all.
You start to panic.
Everything is going to shit and everything’s closing in around you.
That’s when you have to go to the dark place.
It’s different for everybody.
My dark place is quiet.
I can only hear myself and the non-sound of time running out.
I can’t really see anything but my weights.
Usually when I get to the dark place, I’m beating myself up.
“why didn’t you stay on pace?”
“why did you think this strategy would work?”
“what are you doing?”
But after a few seconds, my voice calms down.
“just keep moving.”
“just keep moving.”
“don’t look at the clock.”
My dark place is painful. Everything hurts there.
It hurts to breathe.
Hurts to move.
Hurts to bend.
Hurts to run.
Hurts to think.
“keep moving. keep fighting.”
I’m out of the dark place.
Back to regularly scheduled programming.
Until my next visit.
With the CrossFit open beginning tomorrow (holy crap, is it here already? I am so not ready for this), I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about this whole CrossFit…thing.
I write about it.
I talk about it.
I watch videos about it.
I drool over Neal Maddox while he does it.
But why is it so important to me? What makes it such a big freakin’ deal?
Well, probably because I’ve immersed myself in it. For me, CrossFit is more than a gym and it’s more than a WOD. I do not show up, work out, and leave.
Crossfit is legitimately an experience and I really feel like, if you’re going to get the best results, you have to buy into it.
You have a duty as a crossfitter. As a member of a box, you are blessed with a huge responsibility.
You have to participate.
Come in. Warm up. Roll out. Row some (even if you’re like me and hate it). Get mentally ready for this (undoubtably) awful WOD. 3…2…1…GO! Push yourself. Work hard. PAIN. Sweat. Work harder. See finish. Reach finish. Lay on the floor. Try to get up, fail. Lay on the floor for a while longer. Try to get up again. Walk around. Think about how much that sucked. Be proud of yourself.
You have to encourage.
It’s not just you in the box. You’re not the only one dreading the next 2-25 minutes of misery. You’re not the only one who hurts, who thinks about giving up, and who is having a mind/body battle. So you have to encourage other people. You have to sit there and yell at them to finish. You have to remind them that there are only X amount of minutes left or X number of rounds left until this torture ends. You have to push people to reach their potential when they don’t have the strength to push on.
You have to be a student.
We have coaches for a reason. They are there to encourage and motivate, but they’re also there to teach. Teach us how to be better. More efficient. Faster. Stronger. But you have to listen. Sometimes they tell you great things. Other times, they tell you things you don’t like to hear. But they’re your coach and they know their shiz. You are responsible for putting their coaching into action. Watch other people. Think about what they’re doing compared to what you’re doing and how you can improve yourself. Become a student of the sport.
You have to be a teacher.
Just because you’re not a coach doesn’t mean you’re not a teacher. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched other, more experienced crossfitters to figure out how to do things myself, where things are, and what to do with them. I watch how they behave and modify my behavior accordingly. Etiquette is important no matter the time or place, but box etiquette is something that has to be learned from each other.
All in all, you have to be a part of the community.
Community is what sets CrossFit apart from other stuff. We know each other on purpose. We’re not “people who do crossfit”, we’re crossfitters and we’re part of this crazy community that supports each other, identify with each others’ struggles and celebrate each others’ victories. And that’s crazy awesome. We’re empowered by each other through the things that we can do.
Keep this in mind over the next 5 weeks. We’re competitive. Everyone wants to be crowned “the fittest on earth” but we’re a family first.
Hope everyone performs like a badass tomorrow (or whenever you decide to do your WOD) and beasts it. Be your best. Work hard. Push so hard you pass out ‘n’ shiz. Then tell me all about it so I can brag on you.
|The only sport where the last to finish gets the loudest cheers.
HAPPY CROSSFIT OPEN EVE!