What Makes Someone a Good Crossfitter?
Is it a 175# snatch? A sub 6 minute mile? 20 unbroken pull ups? A mustache like that? ^^^
Nah. There’s much more to it than that. Actually, this article should be called “What makes someone a good athlete.” Even though this piece is written by a Crossfit coach geared towards Crossfitters, it can be applied to all sports and forms of exercise. I am going to Tarantino this article for you and get right to the end. The secret is to show up and show up consistently. But just wait- there are many other little things that will not only make you a better Crossfitter- or athlete, but will just straight up make you a happier and healthier person.
This article is not what you’re looking for if you want to know how to be the next Rich Froning. This article is not for you if you are looking up how to get a heavier back squat. This article is not for you if you want to get tips on getting butterfly pull ups.
This article is for you if you just want to be the best you can be. “But Meagan, I am not an athlete.” Yes you are.
Whether you want to admit it or not, we always have something in the gym, or better yet, in life that we want to get better at. Even though you may be showing up to Crossfit just to get sweaty and get a good workout-there are many things you can be doing to make sure you get the best out of your workout and to help you work towards any goals you may have.
1.Make exercise a priority.
May sound simple, but too many times we hear all the excuses. Most people could fit 2-3 hours a week of working out- you may just need to move some stuff around or cut out some things in your life that aren’t necessary. Maybe you go to bed a little earlier so that you can wake up earlier to go to the gym. Maybe you come workout on your lunch break and then eat your lunch at your desk. Maybe you don’t take a lunch at all so you can get off work earlier, come workout and then still have time to take care of your family.
** Side note to busy mamas: you can’t take care of your family if you aren’t taking care of yourself. 😉
2.Do what your coaches tell you.
In other words, you’re coachable. You don’t argue with the coach and you don’t tell them you can do it even though we know you can do it, we just don’t want you to do it. I have been a Crossfit coach for 9 years and this is probably one of the biggest things we encounter with new athletes, especially if they are coming over from another sport. You wouldn’t go from many years of running to learning to play football and jump right into the game without practicing and letting your body adapt for a while would you? It’s the same with Crossfit. You need to let your body adapt to new movements, volume of reps and slowly start gaining intensity as those two things are coming along. If you’re already an experienced Crossfitter, you still have things to learn. Don’t think you know it all. Keep learning and asking questions, because there might be a better way to do it! We want to help you, we know what we are doing-let us help and guide you! That is what we are there for by the way. 😉
3. Communicate with your coach when something doesn’t feel right or hurts.
Ugh. Why would you keep doing a movement when it hurts you? Oh that’s right, because you’re trying to be Rich Froning. Welp, sorry to break it to you, but Rich Froning doesn’t just work through the pain. He probably stops doing that movement or movements that hurt. I can’t even count the number of times I have looked over and Scooby Doo Jones is rubbing his shoulder after doing 5,000 butterfly pullups and then goes on to tell me it’s been hurting for the last 3 months but he thought he could push through it.
The cool thing about Crossfit and many other forms of exercise, is that there are plenty of other things you can be doing! A lot of times, people feel like they are being a burden by communicating with us about injuries or things that don’t feel good. You guys, this is why you are paying more money to come to a Crossfit gym-so we can help you! I can’t even count on 50 sheets of paper how many people i have had say to me, “ I can’t do Crossfit because I have a bad **insert body part here**.” We can help you! Obviously you should consult with your doctor/PT before you start a new workout regimen with a preexisting injury, but we have had hundreds of people come through with previous major surgeries or current injuries. And guess what? By following our guidance like step one and two of this article- a lot of them have gotten better!
4.Don’t cherry pick.
“Oh great, we are doing overhead squats today. I suck at those, I’m not going.” That’s exactly how you get good at something- just avoid it. Maybe by osmosis you will get better at it. Go back and read those last two sentences in the most sarcastic Coach Meagan voice you can imagine.
5.Show up on time, stay later.
One time I had a discussion with a family member because they were late to something. “I am just a late person, it’s something I have come to accept about myself.” <<<—— WTF??
I get it-sometimes you’re late. I consider myself a very on time person, but since having a kid, stuff happens. Kids are jerks and sometimes you get caught up cleaning their poop out of the bathtub when you’re supposed to be leaving the house 15 minutes ago. Not to mention, you’re doing yourself a disservice by being late and missing the warmup. Warmups are important and your body likes to warmup. Also- stay late if you can and stretch or work on things you need extra work on! I realize everyone can’t stay late, but don’t just bounce out after the workout. Stay a few extra minutes right after the workout and foam roll, stretch, etc. We usually leave a few minutes at the end of class for you to do just this.
Follow these guidelines the best you can and you’re on your way to being the best version of you! You guys, we stinkin’ love our athletes and we love helping you to become happier and healthier you. You can always text, email and pull us aside at the end of any class to ask questions! And for those of you who may be reading this and you haven’t tried Crossfit yet, we are so excited to meet you and help you become the best version of you! Come check out our awesome, fun, sarcastic, loving tribe!
*My kid is the best..only a jerk sometimes.
** I promise I am only this sarcastic when you don’t follow the guidelines above 😉