Crossfit plays beautifully into the obsessive tendencies of an athlete. In some ways it’s great, because athletes are likely to be relentless in the pursuit of their goals, committing and persevering with learning. However, it can be miserable too, when you hit those plateaus and feel like you’re not making progress – despite the time and effort you are putting in (even if you are making progress but you are not seeing the results yet).
Following on from the last blog post, I’ve been talking to Coach Bill Carey about this, and another practical idea discussed, was planning pre-empting this dip with a ‘booster’ session. Maybe a Monday, mid-week or end of the week when you are feeling fatigued. Think about when in your week you might need a boost?
Consider all of the elements of your life outside of training too. When do you have a natural dip in energy? When do you have a day of meetings, more challenging work tasks or classes or clients who test your patience?
Dips in energy can lead to dips in mood, so avoid dips in your training by learning strategies which you can use during these times to manage these factors. In fact, I encourage you to go one step further and create a habit of them.
Plan a ‘strengths’ session around these days. You may not need it every week, maybe once a fortnight. It may not be a whole session (if you are attending classes, doing something different could be a little disruptive) but you always have some control. Stay after session and do fun extras, a run if you like, or some gymnastics if that makes you feel good. Just make sure you are doing a bit of what you enjoy – even if you mix this with less interesting drills, something playful maybe. Research shows that we learn 10 time more quickly when we are enjoying something so getting into this stress-free state will benefit you on many levels.
Although we love to train as hard as we possible can and suffer as much as we can, this mentality can take its toll. Top athletes will have teams who help them to live a performance lifestyle, monitoring their mood and their mind-set and adapting their program to suit and support them to make continued progress.
Most of us don’t have this luxury so you will have to be your own psychologist. Be smart and empower yourself by developing a toolkit which will enable you to make progress.
Want to develop your toolkit? Get in touch and ask about my development programs or 1:1 coaching to learn how to master your mind-set.
Photo Credit: Gareth Smith
Ever Patient Coach: Bill Carey