For much of my time spent as a CrossFit coach, I’ve tried to change people’s perception of CrossFit and what is considered “normal”... It’s part of the deal when you undertake this profession, and it’s one hell of an uphill struggle...
In my opinion, wanting to improve your movement skills, lifting heavy stuff, and basing fitness on measurable capacities is normal. Eating real food and sleeping well is normal. Being relaxed is normal.
But today, after walking down the highstreet, I realized that I am wrong... What we do isn’t normal. - There’s nothing normal about women doing muscle ups and deadlifting twice their bodyweight. - There’s nothing normal about men pushing the limits of their glycolytic pathway. - There’s nothing normal about people eating vegetables and taking Cod Liver Oil. - There’s nothing normal about a room full of in shape people.
Do you know what is normal? - Normal is sickness and mild chronic pain until you die. - Normal is losing your breath after 2 flights of stairs. - Normal is a medical intervention and drugs to keep you alive. - Normal is a room full of out of shape people mainlining Salted Toffee Frappuccinos and breathing through their mouths…
If I can’t even convince myself that what we do is normal, then how can I convince anyone else?
What we do is not normal in this day and age, because right now, a normal existence is to be a fragile, incapable, overweight adult on painkillers…
Not a criticism, of course, just an observation… I’m not going to tell anyone what to do or how to live - you choose your own path - but I am still going to voice my professional opinion…
Sit the f*** down and consider reality...
“Oh, I couldn’t do that, it’s too hardcore...”
“Nah, I’d end up throwing up…”
“I’m more into powerlifting / computer games / zumba / etc…”
Statements like these are common when normal people explain why they don’t want to try CrossFit... To be honest, whether one trains CrossFit or not is beside the point…
While this may not be your cup of tea, I personally think a double bodyweight deadlift, a healthy body fat percentage, a couple of strict muscle ups, and a decent 300 foot prowler time are excellent physical aims for most trainees... But, what about actual life? Forget about physical aims, your cup of tea and ‘forging elite fitness’ for a minute and realize that everyone needs a basic level of fitness just to survive…
Putting it this way: if sprinting two flights of stairs gets you out of breath, then it means you are only a short run away from being in serious trouble...
When did everyone stop caring about having enough basic fitness to make it through life?
What happens when life throws you a curveball...? Can you wrestle, sprint away up the hill, climb the fence and continue your escape?
[Can you carry a sandbag close to your bodyweight for 300 feet? Can you sprint 200 meters with plenty of juice left over? Can you perform 5 strict pull ups?]
Did you know that the squat is actually a basic, human resting position? Can you rest in the bottom of a squat for 10 minutes?
[Do you have the bare minimum mobility?]
These are modest capacity goals that should be easy boxes to check... If you can’t I’d be concerned, not because you probably aren’t shredded, but because you are a human trying to navigate through life.
And on the subject of navigating through life, if two flights of stairs does get you out of breath, how will you ever view the sunrise from the summit of Kanchenjunga, or Mont Blanc, or f***ing any mountain anywhere? How will you ever freedive in the Persian Gulf? Or learn Muay Thai in Thailand?
Consider the reality of how much of a liability it is to be unable to complete modest physical tasks without being incapacitated.
Consider the reality of how limited your life will be if you are unable to complete modest physical tasks without being incapacitated.
“Sit the f*** down and consider reality…”
~ Coach Collins
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