Tiers

 

Watch this, rewind it and watch it again. Listen at the end, understand what she is saying. Listen to the laughs when she talks about going to the Games. Understand what you’re looking to do and how ridiculous it might seem to established coaches and gym owners. Understand that most gyms, most athletes fuck this all up. Many gyms let competitors run all over the facility and act like they own the place. That’s why they fail, go out of business, and the competitors just move on to other gyms. Our system will be what is best for the gym first, then and only then, what is best for the competitive athlete. If you are not on board with that, please go find another gym. I will not have competitors do anything except motivate, inspire and add to my culture.

I am going to begin giving out some extra work on a given Tier system in May.  Different people need different things, so these will be suggestions. I still recommend Barbell/Gymnastics Club for those of you who NEED coaching in those areas. Doing that work on your own will not net the same results. Period.

Tier 1 Definition:

  • Need to work mainly on intensity. Classic Crossfit girls workouts scores are not where they need to be yet: Karen <5:30 / 6:00, Fran: <2:45/3:00, Jackie: <6:00/6:30, Amanda: <5:00/6:30, Diane: <4:00
  • Extra work will be short, fast, and intense. The goal is to work on intensity and ability to perform inside of discomfort.
  • 2-3x/week – nothing more, class intensity is still paramount.

Tier 2 Definition:

  • Weightlifting numbers are where they need to be, Gymnastics skills are there, engine is okay. You’re a well-rounded athlete, but can’t seem to put together top 100 Open scores.
  • Goal is to train at slightly higher weights & skills under fatigue and consistently.
  • Need to build engine through engine specific / VO2 / capacity workouts.
  • Lots of running.

Tier 3 Definition:

  • You’ve made/qualified for the Games or Regionals as an individual in the past.
  • You’re self-sufficient, have nutrition and rest dialed in, you know your body and need minimal coaching.
  • Work.

 

To shift from Tier 0 (class programming) to Tier 1 you will need the following:

  • Be an energy giver. Never talk bad about yourself or others.
  • Be actively working on nutrition and rest. Maximizing recovery.
  • Train 5x/week, no more, no less.
  • Log everything on BTWB.
  • Actively perform prehab/rehab.
  • Handle injury issues like an adult, and heed coaches advice.
  • Be coachable.

Tier 1 to Tier 2:

  • All of the above
  • Accomplish 4/5 girls standards on video.
  • Have 5/3 Muscle-Ups, Butterfly pull-ups (that aren’t floppy fishy ones), 100 DU unbroken, 15 T2B UB, 10/5 Strict HSPU Unbroken.
  • BW Snatch (+/- 5lbs), 1.3-1.4x BW C&J, CFTotal above 950/630 (separate, not necessarily in CFT)
  • Run 1mile under 6:30, Row 2k under 7:15 / 8:10
  • Understand what it means to be competitive in this sport: Humility, you’re an inspiring leader to others, you set an example around the facility, you embody the rules/ideals of the gym’s culture.

Tier 2 to Tier 3:

  • You sign-up for, and achieve success in individual competitions. Anyone would be happy to have you on a team for team competitions because of your attitude, work ethic and approach.
  • You can video lifts/gymnastics and understand what you’re doing wrong.
  • You own your own training.
  • You can read the BTWB training and fully understand it and carry it out on your own (it will be complex).

 

“Extra work”

After the 2014 season we set up one team and made Regionals as a gym. We had a “try-out” type system in place and chose 4 guys/girls to make the team. As a group we all had drastically different schedules, where none of us could get together at the same time. I used the old blog as a way for us to know what extra work to do to prepare us for Regional training that year. Because the blog was public, and people love to ask the question “hey what are you doing?” others started in on some of the extra work. This started us down the path of ‘more is more.’  More is more is a concept that is set up perfectly for the 2017 mind. ‘I want it all, and I want it now and I don’t like waiting on the process/perfecting the fundamentals so let me keep trying to hack the system and cram and get everything I want now.’  The problem became that people started doing extra work, or coming to skulls before they had completed very old school, original CrossFit benchmarks. Some people even did extra work before they could complete each class of the week RX, let alone with intensity. Seriously, think about that? It would be like saying “Oh, I was shanking a bunch of shots out on the range and can’t putt yet…but I want to go compete in the US Amateur at Whistling Straits.”  And still even worse, some people came to Skulls or did extra work when they were injured and had to scale class or skip it entirely!?

Just like I said it’s important to understand what your process is, it is also very important to have a strong understanding of the CrossFit process. Because many of you are “new school” CrossFitters, you likely haven’t spent the time researching the classic Benchmarks. It is the argument of Greg Glassman that until you can complete these benchmarks, you are not well-rounded enough, intense enough, or do not move well enough to advance beyond them. My contention is that this should be a self-assessment tool for yourself to see the things you’re focusing too much on, and the things you’re not focusing enough on. Re-evaluate your individual process accordingly and don’t concern yourself with what others are doing for their extra work (or what other people’s process might be). Here they are:

  • Tabata DU Unbroken (35+ reps)
  • 2k Row <7:00 / 8:00, 1 mile run under 6:15 / 6:45
  • Front Squat 1.5x BW, Deadlift 2x Bodyweight, Strict Press 1x/.75x BW
  • C&J 1.5x BW, Snatch 1x BW
  • (Old school) 10/6 UB MU, (New school) 15/10 MU, 25/20 CTB, 45/40 Pull-ups
  • Karen <5:30 / 6:00, Fran: <2:45/3:00, Jackie: <6:00/6:30, Amanda: <5:00/6:30, Diane: <4:00
  • Murph: RX <50:00, DT: <6:00, Tommy V: <12:30/14:00, Nasty Girls: <6:30/8:00
  • Row 500m (Lightweight) <1:28/1:50 (Heavyweight): <1:23/1:45, Run 400m: <1:05/1:15
  • Another fun grouping of tests from Glassman

If your first reaction to some was “that’s so easy” and others as “pfft, yea right” – That’s a problem.

If I were to see an athlete who can complete each of those tests (or 90%+), I would then look next to:

Beep test, Macho Man, Prison Rules, 21-15-9: 315/225 DL/BJ, the Seven.

Until you’re able to complete that grouping of tests, the best thing for you is going to be:

  1. Attacking each class workout with maximum intensity. No plan, no pacing, no fear, no hunched over breaths, just maximum intensity. This is the only way to “get there” for most of these things. You will never get there on the row/run/girls workouts if you’re afraid of approaching ‘the line.’
  2. Sticking to maximizing classic movements, class gets you great at the basics. Take note of how many classes you are able to RX with intensity. Take note of where you sit in runs/rows, are you at the top of the pack for lifting, but that back of the pack for rowing/running?
  3. Creating your own extra work workouts (with a coach, or training partner) that will maximize improving in those areas. Let’s say I struggle at running and big sets of Muscle-ups: 5 Rounds: Run 800m (max effort), 10 second transition, 2 Max effort sets of Muscle-ups with a 15s break in between. Rest 2-3 minutes between. That provides direct value to you, but does not provide direct value to me. Better for me would be: 4 Rounds: 30 Overhead Squats @ 75lbs, Max effort HSPU, rest 2 minutes.

This is where owning your own training, communicating honestly and being in a good place of self-awareness will maximize your ability. Last year I took meetings individually with people, and gave them these types of things. They were not always maximized or followed through on, so that is step 2: Do the work. For those who I feel like are well-rounded in the areas listed above, smart enough to own their training from a place of good self-awareness, and mature enough to complete the extra work in a time/place/space that is not going to be at a detriment to the gym or their ego – I will grant some extra training. Until then, use M-F for #1 & #2, and use Saturday/Sunday for #3. Email me questions/concerns and write ups and I’ll be glad to give workouts to address your weak points in the targets above.

Days of process completed: 12/14

Some thought projects

quote-people-who-are-unable-to-motivate-themselves-must-be-content-with-mediocrity-no-matter-how-andrew-carnegie-32024

Think about it.

Thought project #2

Having a set of core values, things you can look to to center yourself, will always be invaluable. I’ve made plenty of comments on professional success being tangential to hobbyist success in CrossFit. I’m a true believer in that successful people are all successful due to strong habits, and knowing who they are. Every now and again you’ll see someone who was ultra talented, but not successful. Mike Tyson – A world class talent in an arena, made enough money for 10 lifetimes, but never established his values, who he was or what he was about until later in life. Success without values is a house of cards, destined to fall and fall painfully. Values first, struggle and adversity stacked on top of values, will create a rock solid foundation. For us – This looks like:

  • Integrity – Of movement, reps, effort.
  • Empathy – Listen to coaches, remove the ego, you’re never too good for the fundamentals.
  • Discipline – Nutrition, sleep, hydration, prioritizing time.
  • Passion – Loving what you get to do everyday and who/where you get to do it.
  • Thoughtfulness – Being aware of others, yourself, and the situation. Assessing and making intelligent decisions.

Ironically, people who embody these traits will rarely struggle financially, in relationships and in new endeavors. If you are capable of taking these 5 things into every area of your life, and ensuring that you stick to them regardless of circumstance, you will always find your ‘true north.’

What you need to understand though is that everyone of those values requires constant conscious effort to maintain. It requires adversity and challenges to stay strong. Without actively thinking and working on these things, it will not continue to provide value to you. I frequently tell young 20-year olds the importance of living alone for a few years. No relationships (or maybe a few failed ones), hard professional work and plenty of hobby changes. You will learn a lot about what you’re about and who you are. Do some reading, do some traveling and make some intelligent decisions with your experiences. If you’re past that time in your life…have you established those things? Do you know your values? Do you actually have discipline and integrity? Can you stop yourself from buying those shoes to make sound investment choices? Can you put your phone face down in another room when it’s time to be with family or your loved ones? Can you tell your family what you’re passionate about and ask them to help/support you…with conviction?

Some of the richest people in the world live in small condos and drive Honda Accords. Some of the poorest people live in mansions and drive Mercedes. Some of the most talented athletes never made it out of high school, some of the most talentless mediocre athletes play on Sunday’s and have Olympic medals. Some of the dumbest people have created amazing things, and some of the smartest work 9-5 for 40 years. Once you realize the only difference is your choices and your actions – you are free to do whatever you want.

 

 

 

Perspective & Priorities

Must listen

“On purpose, with purpose”

The building your cathedral story is one that I think perfectly pertains to CrossFit, work, relationships, finances, almost anything in life that offers a challenge. Anything where you have the desire to ever say “I don’t like this” or “this sucks” or “this is hard” can be almost instantly fixed by a better perspective. I’ve worked some seriously shitty jobs; being a smartass in infantry basic training paints a nice target on your back to the Drill Sergeants. Luckily, I was surrounded by guys who had a great perspective and we could always find a way to laugh the worse it got. You have to know the value of something hurting, sucking, or forcing your mind into the ‘quit zone’. I have to do push-ups for an hour straight while others get to go call their families? Good, I had the highest push-up score in our unit. I have to stay up and post guard all night? Good, that prepared me for Tomb training down the road. I have to clean the entire units weapons? Good, I could take apart and clean my weapon 3-4x as fast as the soldier next to me by the end of training (again paying dividends at the Tomb).

That value has always been my driving force.  My mentality for a long time was “If someone else can accomplish this, then I certainly can” — Now it has shifted to “If this sucks for me, it definitely sucks worse for others who are trying to catch up to me, so all I have to do is go that 1% harder where they aren’t willing to go.”  Sometimes the value and perspective in the moment is SO HARD to see. The pain, the negativity, and quitting/complaining is your natural reaction to anything that is unnatural. This is where coaches, training partners, and our community is huge. Everyone slips up in seeing this perspective in training sometimes, your job as a training partner / coach / community leader is to push that persons brain to the right spot as fast as possible. Second session on Saturday night at the track and you’re on your 20th 400m? It hurts everywhere, and your  brain wants to just slow to a 2:00 pace and coast it in? Think of the value here: Most people will be laying on a couch, or out drinking. Most people would say 10 x 400m was plenty. Most people can’t handle the pain of 1:20 splits over and over again. Most people wouldn’t do it, and almost no one understands it.

George Sterner removed a bunch of posts from Instagram/Facebook when I went to look for this post today. He is an 18 year old who finished 18th in the world in the Open. He posted last week a picture of him at the track on Saturday night at 9:18pm, after having completed 20 x 400m runs, rest 1:1. You are what you repeatedly do, you are the decisions you make when everyone else is out to dinner not hitting their macros on Saturday night (me in this case).

So, think to yourself. What decisions will you make that will separate you from others, and start to inch you towards where you want to be? Is that a mental choice in difficult moments? Is that a conscious decision to be uncomfortable when you know others won’t? Are you building a cathedral, or are you just pounding rocks? If we consider that all things are equal outside of the gym: Eating, sleeping, recovery, etc. (which we know they aren’t, but between top level people they should be) – then this is one of the few separators left in the space of training. If you limit yourself only to the extra work everyone else is doing, that the coach is giving, you must know that you are defeating everyone mentally during those workouts/reps. Otherwise you must not limit yourself to that training alone, and start to own your own 20x400m on a Saturday night.

 

Days of process complete: 6/7 (Missed macros Saturday night) – Can’t OHS train for a week or so due to low-back issue. Provides me more opportunity to work on strict pulling strength and mobility.

Communication & Self-Awareness

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Until you’ve mastered all 10 of these, every day, don’t worry about others. 

Communication is the foundation of teamwork.

Side talk, gossip and worrying about what others are doing are all poison in a group atmosphere. If a coach’s job is to make sure that everyone is rowing in the same direction, then the athletes job is to row. If Johnny in rower #2 isn’t rowing in the same direction and is fucking the boat up, that is the coach’s job to fix, not Sally on rower #9 to talk about how annoying it is to Terry on rower #8. Sally and Terry need to just stay their own course and maximize their contribution to the boat. In the “No BCD” culture, side-talk is the first and most important removal. If you hear it, remove yourself from the situation and let the person know why you are.

Contributing to the boat can take many forms, but the best way is to maximize those 10 things listed above. We talked the other day about how nutrition & recovery are essentials to being a serious, contending athlete in this sport. #2, 3, 4, 5, 9 & 10 require that you ate well and recovered. This list can be a great self-assessment tool everyday for you. Is training enough of a priority for you that you always arrive 10-15 minutes early to prepare mentally? Can you produce consistent work ethic, passion and effort on days when you feel down in the dumps? What happens at your job when you have a major presentation and you feel ‘off’ or down…Is it acceptable to just call off? Is it acceptable to come in with a piss poor attitude and spread that to others? If it isn’t acceptable in a work environment, or a sports team environment, it isn’t acceptable in your/our training environment.

#4 on our list, body language, is one of the largest failings of newer athletes. If you are doing an individual workout every single movement you make, dictates your next action. Standing tall and taking composed breaths will always get you to the bar faster, and encourage better recovery than hunching over hands on knees. From this point forward, I expect full control and composure during workouts. After workouts is definitely tougher, but you should actively be working on standing, walking or biking as quickly as possible after every effort. One of the best ways I’ve seen this done is immediately after every workout going out for a 400m walk. It clears your head, allows you to breathe, and lowers your heart rate / lactic acid in a more manageable way.

Lastly, #8. Ben Bergeron on being coachable  (5:05 in) — Listen to the rest of his CCPP. Should sound pretty familiar and you should recognize some similarities in the culture he has already created and found success with, and where we need to work to get to.

Extra work has started to go out to some. If you haven’t received it, you haven’t began following the steps we’ve discussed in previous steps, need to meet or talk with me, or I don’t think you’re ready yet / I think you need some more time to just focus on enjoying CF again. If your first thought is to go around me / this system and get the extra work from someone/somewhere else (and/or you do that), you need to seriously think about how that makes you look as an athlete given the steps above and what’s been laid out here in the blog. 

Expectations

“Iron sharpens iron.”

Required reading #1 — Read these, I don’t care if you’ve read them before, or 2 or 3 times, they carry a different value each year.

Required reading #2

Outside expectations and worrying about what others will think is a waste of time. If you have those fears, it is time to attack them and remove them. Internal expectations from your coach and training partner should be your main concern, your driving force behind pushing yourself and the catalyst to positive change. Here are some expectations for 2017-2018 from your coach:

  • Log every workout, every recovery day, and don’t log every rest day. Do it on BTWB, do it publicly so others can see. Type detailed notes. This will give you very accurate data to look back on at the end of each week/month/year.
  • Have control over your food. Work with Ellie, download MyFitnessPal and start drilling on your macronutrient levels, every week should improve in quality until someone can look at your logs and say you were “perfect” for a week. Cheat meals will naturally occur in the space of socializing, don’t plan for them and don’t do them along unnecessarily by yourself. This allows you to go out and enjoy yourself with friends when you DO go out and have fun. If you’re attempting to be a competitor and your nutrition isn’t dialed in, I don’t take you seriously at all. (Remember yesterday: You can’t do this alone, accept where you need help and get it)
  • Know your process.  It should be written where you see it everyday. It should be 2-3 things that will lead you where you want to go. If I ask you “what’s your process” I should have a confident sentence fired back at me.
  • Fundamental obsession. For those of you who have the opportunity of an early off-season, now is the time to move perfectly.  You should be upset if you lose focus and perform a rep or set ‘sloppy.’  Now is the time to take 1, 5, 15, 75, 10,000 steps back and attack your movement. Your warm-ups should be obsessive over movement improvement, your lifts should be lighter, more crisp and fast, and your gymnastics should be tight, smooth and thoughtful.
  • Be actively working on mental improvement. This could (should) be reading, podcasts, meditation, yoga, playing sports, advancing yourself professionally, impressing your boss by being ahead and taking initiative, engaging with friends, taking long walks or bike rides, being in nature. This is not: being on social media, watching Games athletes PRs, over-indulging in TV or movies, not caring about work, lacking priorities. 
  • Obtain self-awareness and ownership. Honest friends are hard to come by, so are seeing your own blind spots. Training partners, coaches and valued gym friends need to be able to be honest with you. If they can’t be (or if you don’t have anyone in your life who can) that is extremely telling of how you react to criticism. Your first goal is to find someone who can do this for you, your second goal is to sit down and write down what you think your biggest mental weaknesses are, and then ask them (without telling them yours) what your blindspots are and where they think you need to improve.

Homework:

  • Start working on defining your process: What steps will you take every hour, day, week to get to where you want to be. Get it to where you can tell me in under 20 seconds.
  • Start communicating with potential training partners, start having difficult conversations with each other. Sit down at your house, with no cell phones in reach, no TV on, no distractions, just notebooks and a conversation. Let it naturally flow, don’t force it into a conversation about CrossFit.
  • Get on BTWB, back fill for this week. Download MFP or another nutrition logging app, add your training partner as a friend, keep each other accountable. Email or communicate with Ellie if you haven’t and need to. I’m working on a “competition co-op” idea where we’d basically have a “bad eaters anonymous” competition group that could pay into a group session with Ellie 1x/week to save her time and you money.

Tomorrow we’ll go deeper into expectations as a community member. Like I said, this year will be different. I will 100% support you and love you (probably more) as a 4-5x/week recreational CrossFitter hitting our group classes and heading home. You have to realize these are very different things. However, this year will not just be “Sure, come to Skulls and Sunday training” if you aren’t actively participating in these opportunities for improvement outside the gym. Class will be plenty difficult, class 5x/week with intention and good nutrition will still make you “elite enough” to do very well in local competitions. But we have come to a point in this sport where that alone is barely enough to squeek into Regionals, and our actions must meet our goals.

Days of process complete: 4/4 — Made 35 minutes into Hercules last night, super tough ROMWOD. 1.5hrs of recovery work / mobility and met all 5 of my professional goals yesterday. Macros dialed in now, 98-101% in all 3.

Culture

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Delta Force soldiers before the raid of an ISIS camp that cost the life of MSG Josh Wheeler

“When I go home people’ll ask me, “Hey Hoot, why do you do it man? What, you some kinda war junkie?” You know what I’ll say? I won’t say a goddamn word. Why? They won’t understand. They won’t understand why we do it. They won’t understand that it’s about the men next to you, and that’s it. That’s all it is” – Hoot

One of the things I’m most grateful for is the perspective the military gave me. I was a spoiled kid who was given everything, never faced any adversity, gave up on sports when they got hard, gave up on school when it lost value and had no focus. I hated the person I was before the military when I look back. Luckily, we control our destiny and one choice can make the difference for anyone. For me, that day was walking into the recruiters office after a long night of drinking, and doing things I wasn’t overly proud of. I was pissed off, mad at how I made my family look, mad at who I’d become and to let those around me down. I knew I needed a drastic change, and choosing the Special Forces, Airborne Infantry route was the most drastic change the recruiters had to offer at the time. I took it.

Lots of weird events in my early schools led me to D.C., where the funerals at Arlington for young soldiers had a major impact on me. I needed to be a part of an ‘elite’ unit, one where the other soldiers went the extra mile for each other. One where there was a lot of adversity, no time to even think about drinking, or cell phones, or girls. That was what prompted my move to the Tomb, which was the best decision I ever made. Looking back you never think about the 100+hr work weeks, the nights low crawling in full dress uniform for miles through the cemetery, dodging falling in already dug graves and fighting sleep deprivation for 48+hrs. Instead you get to focus on how beautifully peaceful the first walk on a perfect spring day is. Crowds of 5,000 people all completely silent, paying their respects to American soldiers from the greatest generations. Most of all I think about laughing with my friends who stuck it out with me along the way, totally delusional from shining shoes for 8hours straight after being up for 3 days. It was an experience that forged a new mentality and understanding for me, one that I know has helped me mentally.

How does this pertain to CrossFit? All of my best years, and most fit points came in conjunction with my best training partners. Jay, Hunky, Chris/John. There will always be long days where you’re dragging ass, but it’s your friends next to you pulling you up that will make the difference. Staying for Gymnastics Club because Jen is, going to the track on Saturday night because John is, texting each other ROMWOD pictures for proof and to keep each other accountable. Having lost Jay/Hunky, and taking things down a notch this past year with Chris/John…You lose something BIG when you don’t have this. For civilians a good training partner might be the closest thing they ever get to a “Battle Buddy” — and doing things “For the guy next to you” will elevate both of your games.

There is a reason that half of the most elite athletes spent weeks training in Cookesville this year, the other half go to Boston (Reebok/CFNE), and Invictus. Why? You can’t do this solo, if you think you can you’re just being arrogant. Some of you need coaches, some of you need training partners (we all do, but some already have them), ALL of you need more accountability. Instead of taking steps in your life to seclude, think about who you can INclude. Who are you going to take with you along your journey? Who makes you want to be a better person? Who has texted you something every day to help improve your mental and physical being? Part of this upcoming season will be having these pairings, they will be outwardly known relationships, they will be verbalized, and just like in the military – When one of you fucks up, you both fuck up. (Funny tangent, I was too skinny going into the military, so they put me with the fattest kid in our basic training class, he got :30s to eat each meal, and whatever he didn’t finish I wasn’t allowed to leave until I finished all of mine and all of his. He lost 62lbs in 6 months, I gained 50.)

Our culture is the process. The next step is to have people you’re accountable to for your process.

Days of completed process: 3/3 (within 5g of each macro yesterday), double ROMWOD, deficit strict hspu, OHS warm-up.

 

 

The Process

Package advice: "Can only help reduce weight by not actually eating it."

Our culture is the process.

In CrossFit it is very simple to get caught up in the big picture, distractions and result oriented thinking. Wanting abs, to lose 20lbs, Snatch 250/165, run a sub-6 mile, etc. are all great goals…but goals without a process are wishes. I have no time or patience left for wishes.  In 10 years of CrossFit and 7 years of coaching, I’ve seen the lack of follow-through and personal ownership of the process 100:1 to dedication, discipline and overwhelming success. What we preach is simple: Train with a purpose, sleep well, eat clean foods in acceptable moderation, move more than you sit. Yet everyday our coaches sit and have conversations with adults who cannot complete one of those 4 tasks, let alone 4/4, everyday, for years on end: which is the requirement of a competitor.

Why can’t people follow through on the process? It could be the society we’ve grown up in…we’re slammed all day with commercials for quick and cheap fixes. No one wants to pay for quality anymore, no one is used to listening (or even having) to someone actually willing to help them. It could be that we’re in constant desire for entertainment, movies on demand, netflix, no commercials, INSTAgram, Facebook — and of course Twitter and Snapchat. Quick hits, quick fixes, all the time.  If you can learn to see the bullshit, remove the bullshit and slow down, you will find a plethora of time, energy and effort.

My process (pertaining to training) for this year:

  • Start and end every day with a RomWod. 40-60 minutes on each rest day (Thursday/Sunday), paired with CrossOver Symmetry and thoracic mobility.
  • Train with a clear purpose, and see the benefits of training when I feel like shit. I’m older now, my body has taken abuse from years of moving poorly and not addressing mobility with a full heart. That means some days I’ll be beat up.  Training that way has value. I know I can perform well when I’m on my A-Game…but I want to be great when I’m on my c, d and F-Game. This takes training, patience and an optimistic look at every set, situation and day.
  • Verbalize what I’m grateful for to my teammates, and what I need from them. Create relationships of honest communication to better myself and the group.
  • Measure food each day, if I expect it of you, I need to live it also. Cutting out dairy is very hard for me, but I’m doing it also.
  • Log every workout, every day, if I expect it of you, I need to live it.
  • Practice HSPU (Kip 1st, deficit 2nd, strict 3rd) every day, and work OHS everyday (PVC->Max).

Days of full process completed: 2/2, so far I’m tracking today for 3/3. I will keep a running tally each day at the bottom of the page of my percentage/days completed vs. attempted. No excuses, this will help keep me accountable and I look forward to the challenge.

My Goal is the process. That is my long term goal, and my short term goal. My hourly, daily,  and yearly goals. If I complete these things each day, I will reach greater things: like a heavier OHS, better HSPU, faster workout times and bigger lifts. There is no foreseeable need or use (in my eyes) to sit down and set out numbers. If I do these things, and maximize each day, but instead I make a goal to OHS 315, and at the end of the year I only get to 305…why would I ever be disappointed? My process maximized each day to the best my time and patience would allow. That’s all I could do.

To be frustrated by not achieving some arbitrary number makes me the same person as the guy who comes in 50lbs overweight, wants to lose 30lbs in a month, and “Oh, I ate kinda well, I worked out some days, but then I wasn’t losing weight fast enough so I quit and went back to eating shitty and sitting around all day.”  You wanted the quick easy fix, you wanted it on the cheap, and you put your focus on the end goal…not the process. That is wishful thinking and in our culture for 2018, it has no place. 

 

Days of full process completed: 2/2

Intro to 2017-2018 Season

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“Never underestimate how hard it will be, or how long it will take” – Justin Su’a

Something I have wanted to do for quite awhile now is have a legit website of my own and a place to grow myself and our community. I dabbled with this in 2014-2016, reaching a pinnacle that overwhelmed me and I made a common mistake. I made things too complex, I lost sight of the simple things and I tried to please everyone with everything.

A big part of my focus for the next season is to bring back the blog, the community of competition and provide ‘free’ extra work. A few thoughts on this:

  • Our biggest strength is our community and each other. Many people in our group (myself included) took steps to separate and seclude. This is unacceptable and makes us weaker.
  • To be a part of this group you will need to be a mentally strong individual. One who is actively taking steps to work on being mentally stronger every single day. A part of that is going to be frequently getting honest feedback. If you cannot improve, are stubborn or uncoachable, you will not be invited to train with us.
  • If you are not taking recovery, training or nutrition seriously – You will not be invited to train with us.
  • If you talk negatively about teammates or coaches without having a face-to-face conversation with them, you will not be invited to train with us.
  • If you aren’t actively pursuing a happy life outside of the walls of FCF, you will not be invited to train with us.
  • The culture that we are creating will be one of support, hard work, team work and growth. I don’t want to hear anyone tell the group “Good Job”, that is fake support and shows me that you don’t care about individuals success, you just want to appear to be supportive. Instead, challenge your teammates. Tell them “Go faster”, “Be Smart, breath”, “Fix your body language”, “Deeper squats, move better”, etc. Those are useable, actionable comments that will help our group improve, while at the same time – showing that person you care. In the end, tell them honestly “I’m proud of the effort you gave today” or “I think you could’ve gone harder” or “You didn’t come prepared to train today, what’s going on?”

Climbing a mountain takes one difficult step after another. Through those steps you are forged into a harder/better person. Define what your ‘peak’ is, and start working on your process. Your process will define how successful each step you take is. You cannot skip steps, you cannot skip the process and magically end up at the peak of your mountain. Moreover, beyond your peak are many other peaks. If you think that making regionals, making the Games, finishing top 250, top 100, etc. are going to bring you happiness – I am here to tell you: They will certainly not. 

Your goal is the process and the people that you make better along the way with you, the relationships you build and the community you strengthen. That is where true happiness lies.