I Lost Before I Started

I Lost Before I Started

Swimming Pool

It was an exciting two-week build up at CrossFit Ex Animo after they announced an outdoor WOD at Zoo Lake swimming pool on 18 October. The thought of changing things up a little was quite exciting. The problem came in a day before (Friday) when I started realising that I will actually have to swim…

If you know me at all, you’ll know that the pool and I aren’t close friends and I generally try to avoid too many lengths if possible. As I milled over the thought of having to do more than two lengths in a pool my brain already started saying to me that this is going to suck. When the day finally arrived, and the two workouts were announced, the number of lengths were quite a few more than what I had limited my ability to – just two! The first workout was three rounds of 30 KB swings, two lengths a 33m pool, 15 pool muscle-ups and 15 air squats. The other workout is pretty much a blur as by that time my brain had zero oxygen and all I know is that it was a chipper with many lengths of different strokes, burpees, push-ups and a few exercises which I don’t think I want to remember. It sucked!

I think the biggest problem wasn’t the workout though or the lengths. I think that before I even took off my shirt to jump into the pool I had already given myself the chance to give up. That meant that when it got tough, and boy did it get tough, that I was already saying to myself “It’s alright, this is tough, you can give up”. So when my chest was burning and I felt like none of my muscles had oxygen scaling the workout and doing less lengths was easy. I think “easy” is the operative word their, workouts aren’t meant to be easy.

Thinking back to the workout it wasn’t the toughness of the workout that got me, it was me telling me that the workout was tough and that I’d really struggle to do it. In fact, I had already given up before I jumped into the water.

This is true for all CrossFit workouts especially when there is a movement that you don’t particularly enjoy. Rich Froning reckons in his book First that winning the Games is most likely 70% mental and 30% physical. That changes everything for me.

I might not be able to do something very well but I must be mentally prepared knowing that I’ll still do it, no matter what and that it will suck but it will be worth it. It reminds me of a quote that I can’t remember who to attribute to but it goes along the line of “He never said it would be easy but He said it would be worth it.”

I’m going to CrossFit tomorrow with a totally different attitude.


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