I think I had my best ever crossfit workout today. It is makeup day and I wanted to try the KB swing and run workout all week! I intentionally only gave 70% (i think) and I stopped and took 3 breaths every time I felt I couldn’t do it any longer. The run for the first time ever actually felt like rest time and I didnt rush through and focused on my breathing. My time was 23.07 and I was not on the floor or dying at any point during the workout or after (I only noticed this because the person next to me fell down to the floor after and that’s how I usually feel as well but not today!) It felt SO good. I can’t even explain it in english but I feel like something has just clicked and makes sense now.”

Do you approach your workout like a Roman or a Vandal?

The Romans were masters of engineering and many of their great projects still stand today.  They left behind churches, forts, amphitheatres, roads, aqueducts and bath houses.  Their skilled craftsman built things to last.  No doubt it took long, meticulous planning and very careful work to bring these great constructs into the world.

The Vandals took much less time to tear down Roman churches, fortifications and artworks.  The Vandals destroyed much but left behind nothing but a bad reputation. 

Do you approach your workouts like an artisan using the best tools to render a glorious sculpture or do you throw your body at the workout like a wrecking ball with the intent to destroy whatever stands in your way?  Are you building a work of art or running a demolition crew?

I’ll admit that in my early years the latter best describes my approach to CrossFit, Judo and any other physical activity I participated in.  I substituted raw aggression and brute will for talent, skill and patience.  I won’t say this approach never worked, I occasionally out-pointed a craftsman or two in my berserk approach to fitness.  But more often than not I just ended up broken and battered, body aching, ego shattered while athletes with a more methodical, scientific approach passed me by.

I’ve been CrossFitting since 2005 and I can tell you that the WOD-wrecking Vandals of those early years are nowhere to be seen.  They have left nothing behind but the memory of a few glorious personal bests and some hefty rehab bills.  The athletes who are still forging ahead, enjoying fitness into their 50’s took the other approach.  We adopted a philosophy of using workouts to build our fitness instead of breaking our bodies.

To do so we had to stop using workouts as punishment.  We had to stop seeing workouts as a way to exorcise our personal demons.  We had to get over our “no pain, no gain” mindset and get okay with our bodies not aching for days after every workout.  We stopped mistaking training for competition and obsessing over the Rx. 

We’re not slackers.  We work hard in the gym but we’re not reckless.  We prioritize form over speed, technique over load and we approach each day with the goal of being able to come back and do it again tomorrow.  Each workout should leave you feeling better – fitter, stronger, healthier, happier – not broken and battered.  If not, you need to adjust your pacing.

Of course different gyms have different philosophies.
Photo courtesy of D’Knee captured at an actual gym.  Rule #2 is my personal favourite.  

Monday WOD
We will be doing this one outside so we can take some overflow.  As long as you are okay lunging outside with everyone else, wait listed members are welcome.  Knee pads are recommended for this one.  Bare knees should not make contact with concrete!  But even members wearing knee pads need to be careful not to bounce your knee cap off the sidewalk, please slow down and touch down with control.  Not only will it make you stronger by developing your muscles the way the lunge is intended to do, it will keep your knees healthy.  We have done this one previously so you may have a chance for a personal best!

Warm Up
3 Rounds:
10 Reverse Lunges
200m Run

Lunge and scaling options
Run and alternatives

4 Rounds
100m Walking Lunges
300m Run

5 min Hanging Hold AFSAP
Every time you come off bar = 50 push ups