“Inaction breeds fear and doubt. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” – Dale Carnegie

Adrian Conway just brought his 4th team to the Games. Castro (in his real/regular state, not his character trolling state) praised the quality of Adrian’s leadership and communication. He also did something amazing, and innovative to show off exactly what Castro was saying in the final event:

They had their spot to the Games and likely Regional victory locked up. The team had a plan for the final workout, and just before going onto the floor Adrian looked at them, and told them they were going to completely scrap that plan, and he’d tell them what to do on the floor in the heat of the moment. The amount that I took away from this one single moment equals or rivals anything I’ve seen in the sport. Here’s what this showed me:

  • Effective, games level teams, have roles and everyone must expressly accept that role. Adrian is the leader, the communicator, and everyone else must follow and be an intent listener and provide information or feedback to help Adrian be more effective. Know your role. 
  • The team must have 100% trust in that Adrian will not lead them astray, and that they’re prepared for whatever he throws at them. Adrian must also know and trust that his team has completed the work from May2016-May2017 to accomplish the task he is about to thrust onto them. Any hang up in that trust, any training session where someone missed it, or dogged it, or was unprepared hurts that trust and makes the leader and the followers weaker and slower.
  • Control. Unless you are the leader, the only control you have is your own movement. In an effective team, you shouldn’t have to think at all – The leadership and communication should remove that stress from your system and you should be free to just go out and perform to your ability. Sometimes giving up control can be the most empowering thing you do. 

This weekend marks a major learning experience for many in the FCF training clan. I am excited to see you perform, to hear what you learn and take away, and to evaluate who should take the next steps. When you’re on the floor, know your role, trust your communication and release the idea or notion of control.

To those who are NOT competing this weekend:  Watch the video above, and watch Regionals. Watch these guys/girls MOVE and realize how you can improve. In years past I’ve gotten a lot of clamoring for “skulls” or “competitive sessions on Sundays” from people who simply are not ready to begin scaling up movements. I’ve had a lot of people talk about how they need to get their snatch up, or they need to snatch more….When their OHS with a PVC still needs work. Those same people when we go to start a Snatch workout they slap 135+ on the bar and start tugging away (I’m guilty of this also, and openly admit it has held my snatch back for years). The best in the sport spend 15-25 minutes properly warming up Snatch before moving forward with the lift. Many people cannot properly perform a Muscle Snatch (or even know what it is), yet will fail at 101% 6 times every single snatch session. That’s what we call improper usage of time/energy. Spend your time value at lighter weights with perfect reps and it will pay off far more. Step 1: Move better until your 90% looks like 40%.

Next: Watch their hunger and intensity. Properly timed sense of urgency is the name of the game. This goes back to Adrian’s video above. If you can’t do Karen unbroken, you should be obsessed with Wallballs every day. Start at 20 reps EMOM for 8 rounds. Do this until you can do it unbroken easily. Then move it up to 22 Reps EMOM8. Once that’s unbroken complete 24EMOM7. Then 26EMOM7, then 28EMOM6. Etc. Until you can get to 30EMOM5 and get your sub-5 Karen. It might take you a year, or 2, or 3. You might have to do it 2x/week or 3x/week. But I can guarantee you that when 55 come up in an Open workout, you won’t even have to plan for them, think about them, or worry about them. This same exact plan works for literally anything. CTB, HSPU, DU. Swap two numbers around and it works. The beauty of this is that it can start at a moderate to low intensity, and as you build slowly, it becomes intense. Intensity builds mental toughness, engine and energy systems — If you’re only comfortable performing at 170bpm, and anytime you go beyond that you hunch over and take a break…you’re limited, severely, in what you can accomplish.

Lastly: If you listen to and read the stories of these competitors, there are no excuses. I’m seeing 31 year old single mothers who work full time jobs making the games, 23 year old post-grad students who work and only have 90 minutes to workout 5x/week. If you think working 8-5, 10-7, etc. is what’s holding you  back, you need to seriously re-evaluate and realize that it is 100% your mentality that is holding you back. In one of the interviews this weekend I heard this and absolutely loved it: “I stopped blaming my coaches, my programming, my work, my kids and started accepting that I had control of my training, my mindset and my approach every day. I also discovered last year that people still love and support me even if I don’t make the Games, both were very freeing to me mentally”