In this article you’ll find about the most important 7 principles that will ensure that you’ll have a productive and happy Crossfit workout.
But first, why would you be interested in such a thing?
Crossfit isn’t just an ordinary gym. Crossfit is a way of life. It’s a community, a lifestyle and even an attitude. Few people understand that you have a “relationship” with Crossfit – with the workouts, the people you collaborate with and with the whole community.
Like anything else in life, it has its ups and downs – and because we’re just human, we tend to be less enthusiastic or tend to quit when the going gets tough. This is exactly how this article will help you.
You’ll learn what you need to do to nourish a stronger, tighter relationship with Crossfit while enjoying it at its fullest. Here we go…
1) Get Involved
Like I previously said, Crossfit is a community. That means there are various individual in it with plenty of experience, with different paradigms, jobs, personalities and skills than you have.
You might be surprised to find out that what Crossfit offers is way beyond working out. There are numerous stories on how working out with other people can form very strong bonds for years to come. Not to mention, the accountability and push you get from your partners is absolutely invaluable – you can become SuperYou 2.0 if you have the right people next to you.
Last but not least, it’s all about the fun too. Nobody wants to celebrate alone – that’s why your workout partners are always next to you, when you hit a PR or a roadblock. Experiencing the highs and lows next to someone who can give you a hand to lift you up adds a whole new dimension to the entire experience.
Unfortunately, in our society, you rarely get the “connection” and the sense of family we all strive for. In Crossfit, we all practice what is called “all for one and one for all” so that you can get the best results you can while enjoying the ride.
2) Celebrate The Small Wins
As Crossfit-ers we tend to focus too much on the future. We want to get stronger, leaner and faster now – or as soon as possible.
Sadly, this is how we lose the feeling of accomplishment that comes with breaking a PR or doing everything a couple of seconds faster. Progress is made incrementally, not in huge jumps – and that’s true of health and fitness also.
Make sure you appreciate your every effort, no matter how much it seems to pay off now. Focus more on the actions you’re taking and less on the results – otherwise you’re bound to become frustrated very fast. And when results do come, celebrate every little win like you just won the Olympics.
3) Forget Failures
I actually don’t believe in the term of “failure”. Failure is nothing more than an experiment that didn’t go as expected. The smartest of us don’t let a failure slide – we learn from it as much as possible to make sure that we’re going to win the next time.
Without “failures”, there would be no feedback. Without feedback, how could we know what we’re doing is right or wrong? The problem is that we take these failures much too personally and make a big fuss out of them – when they’re actually there to instruct us and help us achieve success faster.
Whenever things don’t go your way, stop and breathe. Try to imagine how this is actually a blessing in disguise. You’ll be surprised how right this is.
4) Stop Comparing
Because we’re so competitive, we have a habit of watching what our neighbors are doing in search of inspiration… or desperation. When we seem superior, we gasp relieved – but when we seem inferior we start feeling anxious about not being “good enough”.
Obviously, all of these are just mental habits that are blocking your progress and are robbing you of any pleasure or fun you might otherwise experience. Consciously decide to do without them and focus only on your own progress. If you do need inspiration, do look up to others who are ahead of you – but remember that everyone has their own pace and rhythm. Forcing yourself beyond your means could mean getting an injury or over-stressing yourself, which in the end will do only more harm.
5) Learn The Sport
Besides being a community and a lifestyle, Crossfit is actually a sport in itself. Like any other sport, it has a certain technique, proper forms and a set of rules and guidelines. These aren’t made just to make everything complicated but to keep you safe, healthy and making progress.
Do take the time to learn the proper form and the specific techniques as well as you can. It’s not just the number of reps or the speed with which you perform everything – the real progress is in the flawless form and the perfect technique with which you perform the exercises. Like any other sport, invest the time in learning the specific skill set you need to excel in it.
6) Enjoy The Journey
When do you have left when you stop obsessing about PRs, times, reps, sets and everything else? You remain with the feeling you have while performing those workouts. Yet, too few people take that into consideration and how important that is for your performance.
I had days in the gym when I was feeling tired and I had other days when I just decided to enjoy everything, in spite of all the “performance pressure” I put on myself. Guess what? You got it – I had much better results when I just decided to go with it and just “play” instead of taking myself (and working out) so seriously.
At the end of the day, isn’t working out a form of playing? Enjoy the journey as much as you can – you’re not here to torture yourself but to improve your health and fitness and to enjoy yourself.
7) Know Your Why
Too many people come to Crossfit hoping that they’ll get motivated by other people to get fit and work out more. Unfortunately for them, that’s not a real motivation and it will probably not get them too far.
Whatever you want to do in life, you need to be very clear on your reason why you’re doing it – otherwise, it’s just a matter of time until you’ll start feeling terrible and you’ll feel like quitting.
Knowing your why may be the most important psychological component of working out because it can carry you through the plateaus, the highs and lows, the pain and the suffering. If you don’t have that, you’ll have a very hard time and you won’t know what hit you and why everything is so hard.
Having More Fun Yet?
You may think “enjoying the moment” is for wimps. You may believe that feeling good is secondary to having good results. You may not care for other people, you’re just here to get your workout done and get out.
Sometimes, a narrowed vision helps us cut through the clutter and focus on what matters. Other times, it can block our vision so much that we can lose things that are much more important than we might think.
Crossfit-ing isn’t just about working out. It’s not just about becoming better at deadlifts, sprints and pull ups. It’s also about becoming a better human being – supporting others on the same fitness journey, appreciating the little moments and facing adversity with a smile on your face. It’s about being part of something bigger than yourself and improving your health, fitness and quality of life.
Remember all of this next time you think you don’t have time for anything else than working out.