After asking for some guidance from the members at our box today, I received some great advice:
- Figure out my “why” for why I should keep doing crossfit or stay in shape.
- Find some goals to focus on in the short and long term.
- Don’t forget to take time to celebrate the victories, big and small, along the way.
- Find ways to have fun with your skills and gainz. Time is short. Make the most of it. Don’t just work at the box — get out and play sports, go hiking, do things that make your heart happy (physically and metaphysically).
So we’re going to break this down a little…
Jimmy suggested figuring out why I am doing this in the first place. So I think I’ll start there.
It’s a damn good question. When I started CrossFit in February 2013, I was doing it to fulfill a promise. I promised my wife and Miss Charlotte that I would give CrossFit a shot once I lost enough weight (down to 240 at the time). And a few months earlier I decided I wanted to get healthier so I could be around for my wife and daughters as they got older.
As I became more proficient at some of the movements, I began to do it because I wanted to see what I was capable of. The community of coaches and athletes I became a part of was instrumental in doing just that. I got stronger. More confident. And that filtered into other parts of my life. That was the first couple of years… 2013 and 2014.
At some point in 2014 or 2015, I did a team workout where I tripped and fell running uphill — I’m talented like that. That was the beginning of accepting that injuries happen when you are actually doing stuff. During that spill, my hip got out of whack and that led to knee issues. Add that to the shoulder issues that I’d had since helping my wife move years and years ago. And then more recently, add that to the forearm and grip issues I’ve struggled with over the last year.
I didn’t start this part of my journey until I was 42 (only months before I turned 43). And I have been going ever since. As a result, there is bound to be some wear and tear on my body. I get it. I’m not a youngster. I have scars from CrossFit and before. Shins. Elbows. Even one or two on my back from catching a door at one point or scratching myself up on a wall.
But CrossFit has become a habit. A good habit, but still, a habit. I have managed to get 3-4 workouts a week in most weeks. Some weeks it’s more. Some it’s less. But overall I’m pretty consistent. Monday. Tuesday. Thursday. And Saturday when I can get in.
So when I ask “Why” I still do CrossFit, it comes down to a few things:
- I love the community. I feel like it’s one place where I belong, which is important. Many of those folks have become members of our extended family and I would definitely miss them if that ever ended.
- It’s one way that my wife and family can do active things together where we’re on a more even keel. I am not an athlete in the traditional sense and have no talent for team sports like soccer or softball, so this a way we can share some time and get some physical work in at the same time.
- It’s enabled me to get my health back in check and get off of cholesterol and triglyceride lowering medication, which I was .
- I like being able to lift heavy things and do movements I was never able to do before. I’m stronger and more physically skilled now than at any time in my past, even as a kid.
And here’s the “But”… you knew it was coming.
- I am having a hard time getting past my own physical weaknesses and injuries.
- As I get older, I’m adjusting to my own mortality and the fact that time is moving more and more quickly.
- I fighting with my weight again, which has climbed back up to the mid 230s.
- With changing schedules and commitments, I’ve not been able to work out with my family nearly as much as in the past.
So I am struggling and I’m not getting anywhere quickly, beyond mired in my own brain.
I think it’s going to have to come down to setting some new goals. I don’t have any right now and I need some goal posts. And I also need to accept a few things.
This is a long list and I know I likely won’t hit everything in the next 12 months, but it at least gives me a place to start.
- I would like to work myself back down to the 210-215 weight range. I’m at 235 currently, so that’s a 20 pound drop and quite doable in the next 3-9 months with more disciplined diet and exercise.
- Macros seems to work well if I can figure out ways to fix my protein deficits.
- Meal planning is a must. And coming up with easy-to-measure meals would also be nice.
- Making the measurement task as easy as possible.
- I would like to work on strength to the point where I can consider body weight or above for the following movements:
- Push press (current PR: 185#, historical PR: 195#)
- Bench press (current PR: 230#)
- Clean (current PR: 195#)
- Clean and Jerk (current PR: 175#)
- Deadlift (current PR: 345#, historical PR: 355#)
- I would like to figure out:
- Freestanding handstands
- Handstand walks
- Bar muscle-ups?
- I would like to get better at:
- Chest-to-Bar pull-ups
- Running (ugh)
- I would like to improve my times on:
- Fran (95# thrusters and pull-ups) – want it to be sub 10, fastest was “freestyle Rx” at 10:17
- Isabel (135# snatch) – current PR was 2:54 with 85#
- Mile run – I think my current PR is somewhere in the 12 minute range
- I would like to figure out a standard morning mobility routine that helps keep the kinks away.
- Perhaps some yoga.
- Perhaps some romwod.
- Some combination of movements to work on the knees, hips, shoulders, forearms, wrists, calves, and back.
- Something I can do at home during the day when I need a movement break, each morning when I wake up, and possibly before bed.
This is a long list. Better get cracking.