It doesn’t matter whether you have been training for 5 days or 5 years it’s the little things that give us the ability to improve. Its common when an athlete starts CrossFit or any type of training that the improve drastically for a good while. What happens when that crazy incline of fitness slows down? Go back to the basics and little things that’s what! I’m going to unpack some common things that can be limiting your progress.
ATTITUDE: This is huge! Attitude can be everything and the difference between succeeding and failing. Do you come in thinking you’re going to give it everything or just rut through the workout and do the minimum? If the board says 70-80% which one are you going for? Do you look at your weaknesses as a way to become strong by attacking them or do you avoid them? Don’t be the athlete that comes in complaining "oh this is going to be too hard or that’s too heavy”! Mental attitude makes or breaks you! I have seen many athletes get beat by a weight that is easy because they came into it with a negative attitude. Walk up to that bar; KNOW you’re going to get it and LIFT!
DIET: Eat to perform! If you put regular unleaded gas in a race car it wouldn’t run very well. We are no different. The first and biggest thing I see training is people not eating enough. Do you skip meals? Do you eat tiny little portions or just drink a meal or two? For us to grow we must fuel our bodies to do so. Take the time to learn how much you should be eating. How much water are you drinking? Another common theme in athletes is hydration. You can’t work very hard dehydrated so drink up! Just try and make one change a week and see how things can change. If you change 1 thing a week that’s 52 changes a year!!
CONSISTANCY: This is the "GREAT SECRET" of fitness. Consistency over time is key. With that being said what we put in is what we get out. Are you training 5 days a week or 2? There is a huge difference in results between the two. You can’t expect 5 days a week results in 2 days. It is also just as unreasonable to expect 10 years of training results in 6 months. I have been asked the same question a thousand times. How long did it take to get that big or fit? No one likes the truth when I answer but it takes time and consistency period. So if you feel stuck in progress and only come in 3 days a week try 4 or 5 days. Its simple Time under tension equals strength. So spend more time at the box and be consistent. Stick with it and be PATIENT, if you put in the work results will come.
COACHABILITY: Are you being coachable? Do you really pay attention to your movements or do you just "muscle through it? We all get in a hurry to try all the cool stuff before we have the basics mastered. Slow down to speed up. If we don’t move efficiently then we end up muscling through movements in bad positions. This increases your chance of injury and develops poor motor patterns. Take the time to get it right. Take the time to grow in progression with the movements. If you aren’t strong enough to do strict HSPU then you shouldn’t be flopping around kipping them. Same with everything, be coachable, follow the progressions, and be patient so you move correctly.
SLEEP: this is an overlooked part of training. It is simple, to recover we must sleep. We should all strive for 8+ hours a night if possible. Feeling beat down and not recovered? Do you sleep 4-5 hours a night? Try and squeeze in a few extra hours and watch how much better you will feel.
MOBILITY: This one is huge! We all know how hard a snatch is period. Now if you can’t even squat correctly because you too tight then a snatch becomes next to impossible. Take the extra time to get mobile and stay mobile. If you an athlete that just comes in 2 minutes before the class and half efforts the mobility then you are behind! Mobility is an everyday activity. You should be caring for your tissues, and improving range of motion daily. Come in early or stay late and work on it! I found that the single biggest thing limiting most athletes is the ability to get in the right positions due to mobility issues. This also takes time and dedication. You didn’t get stiff in 2 weeks and it’s going to take time to get that lost range of motion back. You should be seeing a chiropractor or soft tissue person regularly. If you get too tight you increase the chance of injury and greatly limit your abilities as an athlete. Come in, put in the work, and get bendy!
EFFORT: Effort is where it’s at. You can’t get results without effort period. The more effort put in the more results come back. Do you show up early and put in warm up and mobility work, or do you squeeze in for class only? Do you do the extra credit given? Do you cut reps for a better score or do you do a bit extra for the real return? Do you give 100% every day or do you scale below your real strength daily? There are many ways to put in extra effort and full effort in workouts. Just give your best and you will reach your potential. Half effort yields half results. DO WORK!
These are some common areas that we can all usually improve on when we just aren’t getting what we want or expect. Remember stay positive and consistent. Be coachable, do extra credit, sleep well and eat to perform. Stick to the basics and the hard work will pay off. This journey is yours so make the best out of it! Be sure and follow these principles in the gym then that same effort will carry over into the rest of your life. Don’t be a slacker! Go all in!