Do you remember your first Crossfit experience? I do, and will never forget it. I was a young lad at the ripe ole’ age of 36. The workout was Fight Gone Bad. I was, from what I thought, in tip top shape for my age.
Needless to say, my body laying lifeless on the ground, drenched in sweat, on the edge of meeting the classic Crossfit clown we all know as pukie, proved otherwise! I was beat, broken and yet I loved every minute of it. It was the feeling of being challenged both mentally and physically that hooked me from the very beginning. I guess you could say, that experience awoke something inside of me.
Maybe it was the fighter and competitor in me that wanted more and wanted to do better. Fast forward to a thousand or more wods and seven years later at 43 years old, that drive and fire to constantly better myself still exists. It has never died. The best thing about it, my 43-year-old self can beat my 36-year-old self in Fight Gone Bad or any other wod. Now, this is not the case for everyone. Crossfit can be hard on you as you get older. If you are not conscious with your training and recovery, your crossfit years can be cut short. Training smart, not just working out, will help you avoid injuries and continue to progress and enjoy Crossfit for years to come. Over time, I have figured out how to properly train, eat, perform and avoid injuries as a masters athlete. Here are 5 tips and tricks that you might find helpful in your masters training.
1. DON’T GO 100% FULL THROTTLE ALL THE TIME
Oh that thing that we all love, that magic that hooked us on the first day….Metabolic Conditioning. Fran, Grace, Isabel and all those Hero WODS we LOVE to hate.
That love affair can go on for months, maybe even years. You remember when you started? You couldn’t stop talking about it. Maybe you lost some social media friends because they were sick of hearing about your workouts that tore the palms of your hands or that run that made you puke. Who cares! You love it and you metcon yourself into delirium every day. As great as it is to metcon, it is possible to do so much of it, that you burn yourself right out.
For example, it’s Friday morning and you did not take your scheduled rest day on Thursday and your box has programmed an amazing WOD that you just can’t miss. Your body, or that angel on your right shoulder, is telling you….Hey, maybe you should have rested yesterday. You have maxed me out at 100% in every work out this week. Let’s have a rest day. Now pops up that alter ego, that 17-year-old on your left shoulder and says hey, don’t be a quitter, lets do this. So the battle goes on.
The key is, you have to find your balance by listening to your body and getting the proper recovery. Sometimes that 17-year-old exists physically and mentally and some days, he or she is there only mentally. Keep in mind that it’s okay to dial it back to 75%. Hopefully your box programs around a load and de-load and mixes in some good strength training and EMOMs.