“Leave your Ego outside” – so what does that actually mean?
Almost everybody walks into the box with the singular intent of having a good time whilst working out with friends. But there always seems to be a handful of individuals who are here to prove something. To others. To themselves.
“A” wants to lift heavier then “B”, “A” cheats on his/hers reps to keep up with “Bs” pace. “A” struggles to clean heavy but will do it anyway, so he/she will not look bad in front “B” and of his/her CrossFit mates.
And while wanting to be the best at something always comes with great intention, it should never be prioritized over caring for your community or listening to your coaches.
Yes, nobody likes to be criticized and it’s often easier to build up a wall to protect ourselves from what seems to be a rejection of who we are, but walls need upkeep and at a certain point, the use of our egos to toughen our exterior becomes too exhausting.
“If you don’t learn how to check your ego at the door you are in for a world of hurt. Not only in potential injuries but also by stalling or slowing (or even worse, regressing) your progress.”
That the point. Injuries. You don´t know the correct technique, but in your old gym days maybe you were one of the strongest in front of the mirror. It shouldn’t not be a problem to clean that 100 kg, that´s not even your Deadlift. And if you can not lift it from your hips, your brute biceps will help to do the rest right? WRONG.
You now reached the point where you have to fight against your ego. And it´s not an easy fight. But think about all the risks you do to your body by lifting heavy with bad technique. Back, shoulder, ankle, wrists. Is it really worth it just to impress someone who does not care about that at all?
“By cheating your reps, you cheat on no one but yourself”
Your Coaches plan every WOD. They really do. By doing less reps or not executing properly you will not reach the training level that has been carefully programmed.
Scaling is not your Enemy
Everybody scales. The strongest lifter can struggle with Double Unders. Squatting twice your bodyweight does not mean you can do strict HSPU. But here is the great deal about CrossFit. You can do the WOD anyways. By scaling.
Another great step for your Ego. You know you can hit the weight. But for reps? On time? Be aware that your technique will get worse the more exhausted you become. And then we return to an increase in the risk of injury.
It is not all bad about this whole Ego thing
A big Ego is good. It helps you to get through your WOD, it helps you to stand up again when failing. You do not become a Champ when you not believe in yourself. Yes, CrossFit is a competitive Sport. Yes, all the Athletes you see at the Games do have quite big Egos.
But they can leave it outside. Immediately. And that may be the biggest fight. Find a balance between your Ego and being humble and you will set yourself up for success.