December 10, 2017
I received a message recently on my Facebook page from someone who had read a post I wrote a while back called “I Hate My Body”. The reader told me that he could relate and that I had inspired him to “push play” when he got home from vacation and get into shape. I’m not gonna lie. I got a little choked up. It’s not often that anyone tells me that something I did actually mattered to them in a personal way. It actually made me rethink how often I need to write about “real issues” or just the foolishness that I normally do. I pretty much landed with I’m just gonna be me but if I can make a small difference every now and then I’m gonna try. I’m also gonna be a smartass from time to time and by “time to time" I mean almost always...
It’s funny. I’m in a different place now physically than I was when I wrote that post. For one I am older. There are days where 47 years old makes me feel like a grandpa but somehow I find myself in the best shape of my life. I would say that makes me a GILF but I’m not a grandpa. I would say DILF but I don’t like that term either. It sounds like a pickle. I guess since imma CrossFitter I could go with CILF. Truth be told I’d take any “ILF” at this point. Sorry. I think I lost my focus there for a second...
Anyhoo ~ In my very advanced age I have come to realize that it really is never going to matter what kind of shape I am in, I am always going to be insecure about my body. A while back it was like a thousand degrees in the gym and in my brilliance I wore a cotton t-shirt. I like the shirt because it looks good on me but I wasn’t even done with the warm up and I was soaked. Now the MacGyver in me said “Take your shirt off and you’ll be fine” but the introvert in me said “Suck it up fatty and stay wet”. I went with the introvert.
Why do I still do this? Because at the end of the day there are only two ways I can fight the insecurity in me: Tequila or CrossFit. They both make you think you look good naked but only one really does it. I try to stay away from the tequila so I’ll stick with my CrossFit plan for now but it does beg the question “At this point of my life, why am I still so insecure about how I look or concerned about the opinions of others?”
For one, CrossFit drives the behavior a little. It’s a competitive environment by design. Very often during WODs the more “Elite” men think “3-2-1 Go” is a countdown to undressing. Heck, even the women, because of the physical nature of the workouts and heat we typically workout in, will have to strip down to sports bras and short shorts. You combine those two and human nature will move you very quickly from having a lifting or time goal in mind to “I wish I looked as good as that person”.
Second, we measure everything. Weight moved, reps scored, and time domains just to name a few. Virtually every single workout gets scored on Wodify so you are always kind of forced into comparison mode and determining if you are improving. When you add on top of that the hundreds of Instagram posts of athletes and fitness models flexing their abs while drinking a low fat organic kale and fax seed protein smoothie made from sensibly harvested and hand milked almonds, it tends to make you feel a bit inadequate.
The feeling of inadequacy is a real b*tch but just a few days ago my very wise and mature 21 year old coach said something to me that helped me get my mind around how to control this. I was asking a question about how I should break up the workout and he said to me “JFW, not everything is a competition. Sometimes you need to just practice holding on.” It was good advice for the workout but great advice for life. I tend to view most things competitively. It’s just how I am wired I guess but I need to find more time to practice which includes working on and recognizing the things in life that make me special. I may not ever have the body that I want to have but I am a decent singer/songwriter, I like to write and if you don’t ask my daughters for their opinion on this, I am moderately funny. My point to all that is I am going to try to find the time to recognize what I am as a person and not focus on a comparison to others. I also am going to try to make a concerted effort to recognize things that are special in others when I see them and I encourage those of you that may have this issue as well to do the same. If we all took a second to do that for each other, over time I have to believe we will all be a little more confident, a little more secure in ourselves, and most importantly, kinder to each other...
(Note: This blog should in no way be interpreted as a suggestion to no longer workout in sports bras and booty shorts. Be yourselves ladies...)
December 5, 2017
Twas the night before CrossFit and all thru the box
A few athletes were stirring, some in knee socks
They were stretching their hammies and taking good care
in hope that a "PR" soon would be there
The bars were nestled and snug in their racks
While the athletes got ready to squat heavy or snatch
Coach was in her Lulu as I stretched out my bod
We had just settled our brains for a long winters WOD
When out in the lot there arose such a clatter
I sprang off my foam roller to see what was the matter
I ran thru the box and flew like a flash
I moved faster than sit-ups giving butt rash
The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow
gave the lustre of mid day to objects below
When what to my wondering eyes should appear
But fully loaded Rogue Sleds pushed by ones we hold dear
With a really ripped driver, he pushed the sled without a hitch
I knew in an instant it must be St. Rich
More rapid than eagles, his partners they came
as he whisked and shouted and called them by name
Now Fraser, Ben Smith, Scott Panchik and Hoerner,
Go Tia & Annie and the rest of the Dottirs
To the top of the rings, watch the muscle ups flow
now dash away, dash away 3-2-1 GO!
And then in a twinkling I heard the clock ping
and bam! they were off, doing their thing
A few had stopped to get their hands chalked
but Rich was so fast the others seemed shocked
He was dressed all in Reebok, his money unspent
It seems nothing is on back order when you have an endorsement
his droll little mouth went upward real nice
his beard looked like something left over from Miami Vice
He spoke not a word but went straight to his work
knocking out burpees and a few clean and jerks
His form was impressive, the WOD a nice match
and when it was over all I could say was "Nice Snatch!"
He sprang to his sled, to the team gave a nod
Right then I got busted as I stared at Annie's bod
But I heard him exclaim, 'ere he drove out of sight
"Happy CrossFit to all, and to all a good night!"