What is CrossFit really about?
It’s about enhancing your abilities, physical and mental! It’s about improvement and constant development. It’s about taking new steps every day.
This can be in all sorts of areas in your life. Loosing weight. Getting stronger. Make new relations. Learn new skills. Enhance self-confidence. The list is never ending…
The essential part is that you constantly improve yourself to be a better version of you, THROUGH CrossFit.
So how do we make this a conscious process?
How do we make it something that we are aware of every single day?
We set GOALS!
Setting goals is of huge importance if you want to succeed at something. It’s the only way you can acknowledge yourself for the hard work you do. Without goals, how would you know when you have succeeded?
The fittest man and woman on earth haven’t reach their position
without a conscious process towards specific, measurable,
attainable, realistic and timely set goals!!
So, first of all, ensure the goals you set are very specific. Getting a fitter body, be a happier person or to be healthier are NOT specific. Instead a specific goal could be to learn a certain skill, to take part in the social network at your affiliate, or to participate in a competition.
Second, if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Your goal needs to be of a measurable character, so that you can see the change occur. Again be specific: ‘I want to be able to do 10 strict Pull ups unbroken within 3 months’ or ‘I want to participate in two social events the next 6 months’. This is for you to feel the exhilaration of achievement – the exact feeling that will keep you motivated to continue to push yourself, and do the effort required for you to reach new goals.
Third, your goal should be attainable. A goal needs to stretch you slightly so you feel you can do it and it will need a real commitment from you. Even though, you have the best intention, if you set a goal that it too much for you it will result in your subconscious will give you a hard time, and keep reminding you of this fact that it is too difficult, and in the end it will stop you from even giving it your best. An example is this; we all know how hard it is to learn a muscle-up, if you don’t have the proper strength. To learn that within a month is not achievable for most people. Instead, setting a goal to do the right muscle-up technique skills and to strengthen your upper body, you will feel achievements all the time.
Fourth, is the part where you need to be realistic. This is not a synonym for “easy.” Realistic means the skills needed to do the work are available and that the project fits with your overall strategy and daily life. Here is where the strategies come in: you need a plan of getting there which makes the goal realistic. You need to take every aspect into account, so that the goal is realistic for you and where you are at the moment. A goal of doing a strength program and follow the regular daily WODs at your gym might not be realistic, if your body is not ready for this amount of training. Or a goal of never again eating sweets may not be realistic for someone who really enjoys these foods. Instead, set a program that fits your physical state, and set smaller more specific physical goals, and instead of never eating sweets again, have a goal that you will only eat sweets once a week.
Be aware to NOT set too easy goals, nor to hard ones – set the bare so that you are motivated by getting that satisfying achievement!
Fifth, always set a timeframe for you goal. If you don’t time it, you wont know when to celebrate You always need to have something to work towards – for instance, week, in three months, one year. Putting an end point on this will keep you on the target.
(foodnote: inspired by the well-known SMART theory of goalsetting)
If you feel that you need some kind of support to reach your goals, also check out the new project I set up. The mentalwod club is providing materials, tips, and exercises for CrossFitters who would like to train themselves to win the mental game.
What happens after we reach our goals?
Again be specific. What did you find challenging throughout this period of time? As an example, if your goal was to participate in a competition, you go through every single step of the way, and figure out what you need to work on to improve, for you to be even better. Was it the workouts? If so, what part – and why? Was it the crowd – maybe the media? Was it the expectations, your own and others? Was it your emotional state? Did you experience loss of focus, performance anxiety or anger and frustration during a workout?
Point every single thing out. Be specific.
By evaluating your self, you will:
1) Increase your self awareness.
By being aware of your reactions prior, during and after a competition, you get to know the reasons for your mental state. When you know the reasons, you know what to work on mentally. You become more aware.
2) Acknowledge yourself.
If you do not evaluate yourself, how will you know what to celebrate? How will you know what you did good, and what you need to work on? Prioritize this – don’t leave it at being just thoughts in your head. Write down your success – share it with someone – talk about it. Acknowledge yourself.
3) New goals.
When you point out your challenges. You know exactly what to work on next. This is your foundation for your next goal setting. Start over, you know what to do.
And then we start all over again. Its CrossFit. New challenges. New goals. New achievements.
To become the best version of ourselves, we need to take new steps all the time.
Janne holds a master degree in Physical Education and Psychology from the University of Copenhagen along with a European Master in Sport and Exercise Psychology. During her studies she has studied sport psychology and coaching in Canada, at the University of British Columbia, were she also got certified Coach by Coaching Association of Canada. Furthermore she’s a professionally trained Physical Educational teacher from The Paul Petersen Institute of Physical Education. Janne has worked as a CrossFit coach for several years, and is still an active CrossFitter herself. At the moment she doesn’t coach, in that she has decided to put all her energy into the mental training – helping athletes reach their full potential by having them train the mental aspects of performance.