CrossFit is all about the competition, right?! We set a clock every day, whether it’s counting up or counting down, we are trying to beat the clock. We compete against other athletes in the world, in our town, in our own gym, and most importantly, we compete against ourselves. There is always something or someone to beat. Most CrossFitters love it. We crave that competition. We check the whiteboard before and after each class. We talk to our friends about their performance. We see how we compare. It’s all in good fun. Usually there is not a lot of pressure, but this CrossFit stuff is all about measurable progress. We have to see how we measure up. But, does it always have to be like this? Is it always about progress and personal records? Absolutely not. Sometimes you have to come in to the gym, and get back to the basics of why you began this journey in the first place.
The other day our gym had a Non-Functional Friday. I hear this is not a new idea, but it was something different for us. It was an opportunity for us to get rid of all the “stress” of performing. This day wasn’t about CrossFit. We were going to do a workout, but we were going to have fun, while being safe, of course. We did typical “globo gym” movements like tricep kick backs, and barbell curls. We never set a clock and made sure we spent lots of time chatting, getting water, and checking the mirror for muscle tone. It was hilarious. We had a great time. Were we back at the clock on Saturday? You betcha. Metcon for time. The way we like it. However, for that one day it was so nice to break it up, act silly (ab selfies and all), and have fun with your gym friends.
It is so easy in this world of CrossFit to get caught up in the progress and progression that we forget what this journey is all about. What we know, or should know, is there is not a stopping point. There will never be a moment in this sport that we are “there.” We will always be working on something else. This sport is constantly evolving, so it is so important to break it up every once in a while. I cannot tell you how many conversations I have had with people lately about how they feel “stuck” or like they are getting worse at CrossFit. We can start to break down mentally. That is why we have to take steps back sometimes. We have to let go of the clock, let go of the PR, let go of the whiteboard and just have fun.
This journey of fitness is all about you anyway. It’s your personal progress and times. It’s your body composition and lifting records. It’s not about anyone else, so let it go. Sure, there are times to focus. There are times to hit it hard. But, there are plenty of times we need to step back and laugh. We definitely need to take rest days. We have to allow our body to recover, but we also just need to have fun, even if it’s not programmed that way. Grab a buddy, scale back the weight, and have fun with that WOD. In the words of Ferris Bueller, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”