If you are relatively new to CrossFit (a year or less) you may have noticed that some folks in your gym have recently begun accessorizing like they are planning to fast rope out of a helicopter or breach a meth lab after they finish their workouts. Or maybe they are just wearing big old clunky garments that make them look like they are planning a 1920’s scuba dive. What the heck is going on here? Murph! That’s what! Those are weight vests my friend, and I’m here to talk about them… in excruciating detail.
In the last installment we spoke about some things in your control that you can employ to help you unwind, recover, and destress. Focusing on factors within your ability to control is key. Accepting that some things are outside of your control, although a tough pill to swallow, is crucial. Knowing the difference between the two is one of the benefits of age and the experience that it brings. As we’ve said, “you’re not as old as you’re gonna be” and there are some natural consequences that come along with that fact. With age comes wisdom and a broader view of things which you can use to your advantage to prolong not only your time in the fitness game, but by extension, your quality of life as well.
Murph is just around the corner, just under 2 weeks away, and you’re terrified. Well, as the Chinese proverb says “the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the second best time is now.” Let’s talk some tips to spend the next two weeks getting yourself as ready as you can.
1 mile Run
300 Air Squats
1 mile Run
*with a 20 lb Vest or Body Armor
Post-Open 2018, it’s been one helluva year. I came, I CrossFitted, and… I am approximately THREE places fitter than I was at the end of the 2017 Open Season. They say that consistency is key and I certainly hit the nail on the head when it came to my final ranking for the 2018 Open. In 2017, I placed 175th in the North East and 62nd place in New York. This year, I placed 172nd in the North East and 62nd place in New York. Yup, laugh out loud. I’ll admit this was a bit discouraging and infuriating when I realized that the numbers were falling that way, but hey, the ranking doesn’t really show the full picture (more on that later).
Memorial Day is just a couple of weeks away (May 28th if you’ve forgotten), and whether you’re new to CrossFit or not, you’ve probably heard about Murph at some point.
In case you’re unfamiliar, “Murph” is a classic CrossFit workout known as a Hero WOD. Hero WOD’s are made by CrossFit to honor the men and women that have fallen in the line of duty. This one is specifically to honor Navy Lieutenant Michael Murphy, who was killed in action in Afghanistan on June 28th, 2005.
A world-record mile. A half court shot to win a million bucks. A hit single that rules the airwaves for a month or two. Society has become more and more obsessed with the rare and extraordinary, celebrating and venerating the “once-in-a-lifetime” moment over the slow and steady grind of dogged hard work and incremental progress. Seen through this lens, greatness becomes a montage of single-frame snapshots instead of long form cinema verite.
It’s common knowledge nowadays that being overstressed is not good for us. Ironically, a large number of adults consider themselves to be overstressed. If we know that too much stress isn’t good for us, but we continue to live under too much stress, then obviously some things could stand to change. When you’re young, you buffer stresses better and can bounce back from them faster. You’ve probably noticed that as you age, you can’t quite “hang with the young bucks” anymore, or at least not as much. Some of the reasons for this are outside of your control. You’re getting older and your tissues are naturally becoming less resilient. Your responsibilities are likely greater in number and importance now than when you you were in your 20’s. As such, you have more time constraints on your schedule… and just making to class three nights a week and once on the weekends seems like a huge success. It is, but you can do better. In fact you must do better if you want to maximize what you have left in the tank.
Here’s a phrase we’ve all heard before: “Trust the process.” It’s a phrase that goes against everything that I, a human living in the age of immediate gratification, want to hear. I get annoyed when my coach says it to me and can see the same reactions on my clients’ faces when I say it to them. It’s typically followed up with a response of, “I know, but…” by whoever it was said to. I don’t want to believe that the process pertains to me. I want to believe that somehow I will miraculously acquire strength and skills because of some magical program written by some guru of fitness (I’ll have a future post on this). Read More
This may be disheartening news, but CrossFit is hard, and you might not be awesome at all of it. Take a deep breath… release it. Ok! Now that the band-aid has been ripped off, what do we do to figure out what we are relatively strong/weak at and then design a plan to work on what needs fixing?
After being a coach at CrossFit South Brooklyn in NYC for 6 years I moved halfway across the country to open my own affiliate, CrossFit Lumos, in Austin, TX. This series will chronicle my experience opening the gym and what I am learning along the way. This article is the final piece of the adventure, before I’m a real live gym owner. Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Part 6. Part 7. Part 8. Part 9. Part 10. Part 11. Part 12.
Getting close to a year on, things at the gym have stabilized a bit. (At least as much as they ever will!) We have a solid core of members, the culture is strong, and I’ve hired three great coaches who are friendly, supportive, knowledgeable, anchors of the community. My day to day at the gym is fairly set- we’ve figured out hours and classes that work for people, settled on good procedures for onboarding- the gym hums along now without it feeling like any momentum must be externally created.
So I’m “demoting” myself! That’s my reward for getting us this far.