Walk into any room full of people and ask the question “Who here loves traveling?” I guarantee more people than not raise their hands. All my life, I thought I was one of those people, too. However, I have come to learn that is not so much the truth. Not that I don’t love exploring and adventures, because trust me, I’m ALL about that sort of stuff. It’s more the toll that traveling takes on my body that I’m not crazy about. Maybe I’m just a real pansy, but getting out of routine really warps my body…like, real hard. I’ve never really thought about it before, but there is a certain type of stress that’s put on your body went out of its natural environment. And for someone like me who is tight with specific patterns of workouts, food, and sleep -when it’s interrupted… That’s bad news. I mean, I defs have aspirations to travel far and wide, but I’m probably going to be constipated the whole time. Sorry if that’s TMI, but I’m just trying to be real.
So, last week I was traveling for work…you see where this is going. With different meetings and trainings, my schedule was not the routine I was used to…and my body could tell, especially in the gym. And luck would have it that this fell on a “testing week” AKA 1RMs everywhere. Never coming close to PRing, in fact struggling to meet my previous maxes made me one frustrated lady. It turned me into someone I didn’t really recognize. For the first time, I was letting this sport get the best of me. My training partners could tell I was on the struggle bus. Offering up pep talks mixed with tough-love, I pulled myself outta this funk. Words are powerful! Enough so that after this experience, I was inspired to reflect upon all the wise words that I have ever received/heard/read, etc. since pursuing competitive athletics.
Here are my top 5 best pieces of advice that keep me sane on the daily:
1. This is supposed to be fun. When it’s not fun anymore, stop.
Everybody says that they have fun doing whatever sport/activity they’re doing and in competitive setting. But the real with yourself, are you really having fun? If you’re breaking yourself down more physically and mentally then you are building yourself up laughing and smiling through the process, no you’re not having fun. Yeah it’s fun to hit milestones into win, but the journey to be just as fun-bad days included. When you lose the fun, what’s the point of doing it. Life is too short to live like that. This is something I check myself on every day. If my mind’s not right, then I take a step back and get a grip.
2. Don’t compare yourself to others.
There’s a part of me that is very competitive with other athletes, but reminding myself I’m competing against yesterday’s me is the only fair matchup. Everybody has different strengths and weaknesses. It’s just not fair to compare yourself completely opposite people. It takes away from the little victories that you have accomplished yourself. Recounting one’s own progress is by far the most gratifying experience I have in this sport. Becoming capable and achieving your own goals, is what it’s about, not being better than that girl or that guy. That will overshadow any feelings of success you deserve to feel.
3. Listen to your body-rest when you need rest.
Our body is our temple-that’s how the saying goes right? Well, we work so hard to keep this “temple” healthy, don’t take it too far and abuse it. Listening to your body, taking an extra rest day, seeing the doctor, etc. are necessary if you want to continue to participate in these activities in the long run. I will admit, I have not been so great at listening to this advice. But there comes a point, when the only way to improve is to heed these words. When I hear these words come out of a CrossFit Games qualifying athlete’s mouth, I know it must carry some merit. Rest isn’t always for the weak, sometimes it’s for the smart.
- “Bad days happen, find the positives in a shitty training day. Allowing frustration to get the best of you is a defeatist mindset. Don’t do it again.”
This was my life last week. This is a direct quote from a text of a friend and teammate. Sometimes it’s hard to find a silver lining, but there always is one. Having the ability to do so, is a sign of a realistic, mature Athlete. Disappointing performances happen, but not everything you did was horrible. Find that one thing that you did right-that one thing that feel good, and cling to it. Until tomorrow, until your next chance to crush it.
- Utilize the community
The sport of CrossFit prides itself on the people that participate. Cheering each other on and encouraging success in others is what the bottom line of this sport is about. Whether it’s your teammate or your “rival,” you all have the same goal: to out-do your own self. So draw from those around you the motivation, inspiration, and energy you need to get you to where you want to be. Especially on those days you aren’t feeling 100%-let the supportive words and helpful cues of others lift you up.
This week has already been 527x better for me mentally and physically. It’s humbling and necessary to sometimes have those off days-they keep you conscious of these “words of wisdom.” That being said, it’s good to be back in the swing of things J #letsrock
P.S. Little known fact: I enjoy lists…it puts the Type A in me at ease. I think Ill keep posting in this format…maybe Ill start a series of “Top 5ers”…TBD