Few sentiments have struck me quite so profoundly as one that I read today, and the reason it embedded itself in my mind was the timing. I am in the process of adding a new dimension to my training in order to keep things fresh and interesting, and in doing so I am having to reset my ego and my skill set…and that’s not a bad thing at all! You see I have recently embarked on the Crossfit journey, a new chapter to my training story and one I feel I will enjoy immensely...whether i'll be any good or not is yet to be seen (fact is I enjoy it).
Many of you will have heard of the Crossfit Games, a world wide competition that sorts the best athletes on the planet via the Crossfit Open, a series of workouts that are timed and recorded with the aim to sieve out the best from the rest, eventually plonking them together to compete in what is known as the Crossfit Games! Rich Froning is the undisputed fittest man on earth, winning the Crossfit Games 3 years on the bounce making him an inspiration to the Crossfit masses and beyond. I for one find myself looking at his many videos on Youtube thinking to myself ‘that’s where I want to be’. However recently I have sat back and reflected on my attitude towards this whole Crossfit business and realised it’s time I stopped expecting too much from myself! Not for one minute did I actually think I would be up there with these people, I’m not that ignorant, but even the seasoned Crossfitters at my local box were demonstrating the complexity of Crossfit and the sheer margin of improvement I have to make up. At first I was annoyed at myself for my poor scores on benchmarks (standard workouts that everybody has to complete), but then I put my ego to one side and reminded myself that I am new to this sport, and just because I could lift before does not mean that competence in conformational weightlifting will automatically translate to Crossfit.
What right do I have to be annoyed?
The pursuit of success requires dedication, and inevitably with dedication comes disappointment from time to time, I mean applying yourself to something doesn't mean it'll happen right away, despite many of us thinking that because we’re dedicated then that’s our God given right to be successful. Some of the most dedicated people in the world are not necessarily the best in the world, it’s a cocktail of several ingredients that produce the best of the best. Succeeding and becoming a great requires a solid skill base, strength, correct muscle fibre distribution, strong bone structure and healthy connective tissue, a balanced diet and training regime, an indomitable mindset, and the heart of a lion! So with all this in mind, it is clear that it is healthy for me to be driven and indeed to aspire to compete with the big boys, it’s in my nature and many others like me, BUT, it’s prudent to remain grounded and not expect too much from myself too soon!
Don’t compare yourself to others
By all means make a note of peoples times and maximal lifts, and by all means aspire towards them, but don’t make the mistake I did of expecting to compete with them right away (if at all). As the featured image of this post implies, you are not competing on a strictly even playing surface with these people, you are at completely different stages of training and it is prudent for us all to remember that! People plateau, we may catch them up in this time, or heck, maybe we aren’t destined to reach them at all…the only person you have to compete with is yourself, so do this with all of your mite and strive to be the biggest, baddest, strongest and fittest version of yourself!