Leave you ego at home
This is for anyone who does CrossFit or weightlifting. Everyday we trainers see egos getting in the way of progress. Everyday we see egos clouding judgement. Everyday we see egos holding some of you back. You’ve all heard the saying “you’ve got to crawl before you walk”. That’s true, and you have to walk before you can run.
There’s nothing wrong with scaling a movement. In fact, it’s where 99% of you should start out. How long do you have to scale a particular movement? There’s no one-size fits all formula to that and the simple answer is “until you master the movement.” If you can’t do an air squat with proper set up, depth, upright chest and return to the starting position then you don’t even need to think about a back, front or overhead squat. If you can’t front, back or overhead squat a PVC with perfect form then you need to keep doing reps with that PVC until you do. I don’t care if you have to use a PVC in a workout when others are using weight. You aren’t the others…yet.
CrossFit consists of functional movements. Simply put, these are movements that we encounter in everyday life. If you can’t properly squat down and pick up the remote from the floor then what in the hell makes you think you can do back squat reps at 225 pounds? Functional movements are simplistic in nature yet difficult to perform with out awareness of the correct motor patterns needed to execute the movements. When you’re in the gym and the trainer is explaining the movements you should listen. When they give you queues and corrections you should listen. You should ask questions if you don’t understand. Instead of wondering how you’re going to get through the workout and click that “Rx” button at the end you should be figuring out how to do the movements. If you’re new, do yourself a favor and learn how to walk before you try running. You’ll earn everyones respect and you’ll excel at a much faster rate.
Nobody cares how fast you can do crappy movements in a workout. Nobody cares how much weight you used if your reps suck. What the trainers and members who have put in the time and sweat to earn that Rx do care about is that you leave your ego at home and have an open mind when it comes to learning. Pay attention and gain an understanding of how to properly execute the movements- from the simplest to the most complex. 10,000 reps is what it takes to be an expert, but that doesn’t count if the reps are not performed correctly. When you have mastered a movement you can perform it flawlessly, every rep, without even thinking about it. Mastering movements also keeps you and those around you safe. No one is guaranteed to be injury free. One thing is for certain though, if you learn to walk before you run then you are setting yourself up to be as injury free as possible. And you’re keeping those around you safe in the process.
The only thing your ego is doing is holding you back. What your ego does is ensure that you actually take the absolute longest path possible to getting good. When you leave your ego at home and dedicate yourself to learning how to properly move then you will, without any doubt, get to the place you want to be much faster. It may seem slow at first but all that matters is that “you” are learning and building towards a toolbox of perfect movement. Then, and only then should you worry about Rx’ng or going big on the weight. Since we just mentioned weight this is also 100% true for the weightlifting movements. If you dedicate yourself to learning how to squat, press, clean, jerk, deadlift, snatch etc… and actually stick to the rep schemes and percentages that your trainer programs then you will hit more PR’s, more consistently and you will enjoy the life a lot more.
Take time, learn and grow as you go. It may seem slow but it’s actually must faster than the other path. Also, remember this- the only thing your ego will get if you bring it is CRUSHED. Don’t be afraid to scale. Learn proper form and then you get to do the CRUSHING. Best of luck!
Owner, Elemental CrossFit
CF L1 Trainer, USAW SPC L1