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Don't aim for "Maintenance"!

Every so often a certain type of person walks off the street and into our gym to enquire about Crossfit. The conversation usually goes along the lines of:
“Hey, I read about Crossfit in Men’s Health or Fitness Illustrated or Women’s Day or heard about Crossfit on ‘The View’. Apparently it’s a pretty good fitness program…yeaaahhhh I’m pretty fit and strong. I mean, I work out. But I really just want to MAINTAIN my strength and fitness.”

MAINTENANCE doesn’t have much meaning in our world.  In fact, the concept of maintenance goes against almost everything we believe! Crossfit to me is all about striving for constant improvement. The thought of not moving forward in some form or another gets me angry. If I have not increased my capacity or made strides towards improving, then I start becoming frustrated! JUST ONE new personal record or personal best every week is very attainable and should be something to motivate and excited you! It’s a great ego boost knowing that you have improved yourself or experienced growth in some way or form. And it’s always gratifying to learn a new skill.

Now here are some more unusual ways to go about hitting a new PR:

  1. Hit high-rep PRs during your warm up. Let’s say that you have programmed to hit a 3 rep max (RM) front squat for the strength portion of your training. Try hitting a 10 RM (or even a 15 RM) in your warm up. That way, no matter what happens with your 3 RM, you’ve already hit a new personal record/best. Your training session has already been productive! Then try and beat that benchmark next time you front squat. And knowing what your 10-15 RM are can only help when high rep front squats come up in a metcon.
  2. Learning a new skill is also setting a PRs. Can’t handstand walk? LEARN! Start working through the progressions, each time you get through a progression better than the last, you‘re improving yourself as an athlete. Overhead squats getting you down? Spend an extra 10-15 minutes after class doing the most perfect overhead squats you can with a broomstick or empty bar. If by the last set you’re moving with faultless form, you’re taking steps towards a better overhead squat/snatch.
  3. Record EVERYTHING. There are a hundred smartphone applications out there to help you keep track of your lifts/metcons. Or a simple notebook will do the trick. Knowing your strength numbers and benchmark times means you always have something to beat. And it’s one of the most rewarding feelings after a workout knowing you smashed your previous times! I want to leave you with one more piece of advice. The longer you train, the harder it will be to hit new personal bests. DON’T get yourself down. If you don’t get new PB’s every week, that’s ok. Because I don’t know about you, but I’m in this thing for life; so if it doesn’t happen today just keep on fighting and improvement is inevitable.

Fight for every rep, every pound and EVERY INCH.

 

 
 

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