John O’ Says It’s Time to Give Yourself a Break.

Thanks to EAD | CFAH athlete John O’ for taking time to once share his thoughts with his fellow athletes; this is John’s third blog post. An EAD | CFAH athlete since November 2011, you can usually find John O’ training with the early morning crew weekdays and on Saturday mornings. Have a thought or two you’d like to share with your fellow athletes? Let us know … we’d love to hear from you!

CrossFit by its nature is competitive. It’s easy to get caught up in the WOD and look at your results and sometimes feel defeated. I think it’s time you gave yourself a break.

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John O’ encourages us to redefine what it means to win.

When you start CrossFit, I wish the coaches would give each athlete a yardstick with that athlete’s name on it, because the true nature of CrossFit is to get a little bit better each and every day. The only person you have to measure up against is yourself. Give yourself a break.

I recently came back from a month off due to injury, and the first workout I showed up for was Partner Murph. While I felt sorry for my partner Laurie R, and was sucking wind by the sixth round, I did not hyperventilate and nearly pass out on the second run like I did last time. For me, that was an improvement. While I was not as strong as Laurie in the WOD, I gave myself a break and felt good about finishing better than I had before.

Set your goals, ask your coaches how to go about achieving them, and get to work. That’s all you need to worry about. Over my three and a half years coming to EAD | CFAH I have said, or heard, things like this after bumping fists with fellow athletes after a workout or PR attempt:
“Yeah, but I scaled it.”
“I couldn’t do the pull-ups (fill in double-unders, toes to bar, etc. here).”
“I only increased my PR by 3%.”

Give yourself a break.

Commit to your goals.

Commit to your goals.

The only measure anyone cares about at EAD | CFAH is whether you are committed to getting better. Did you finish? Great. Try to finish faster next time. You did one round of the WOD Rx? Awesome. Do one more next time. You did three Pull Ups without a band? Work on getting four next time. It’s all about the measure of yourself and your effort. If you are willing to give it all, and put yourself out there, I promise that the coaches and your fellow athletes will rise up to support you and celebrate with you at every accomplishment.

If you ask any coach or athlete at EAD | CFAH, I would bet that the greatest joy that each gets out of coming to CrossFit and being part of this community, is seeing people do things that they didn’t think they could do. When you see the look of pure elation on the athlete who just did their first Double Under, first Pull Up, first Muscle-Up or first Rope Climb, it is an awesome thing. Give yourself a break when it comes to comparing yourself against others. Set your goals, go about the work of achieving them, and we will all celebrate you.