Posts Tagged ‘Blog Central’

Here’s a post from CrossFit Lisbeth. I lived this exact situation for…. the last 4.5 years of my life in regards to a pretty big part of my life. Talking, planning, “goal-ing” (that was for you, Rejalicious), asking, sharing, thinking….. but nothing changed.

I didn’t go to Business School, I didn’t walk away, I just talked. And complained. Inaction.

I know several friends who has been in the same boat for days, weeks, months, years in other areas of their lives, too. At a certain point it’s about doing one thing, though. And it’s something I say to myself more and more often as I “get older”.


The best part is, the more I say it to myself, and the more I’m doing it…. the better my life is getting. I “use my words” and speak my mind more often when I think something, and I feel better about situations. I actually train to try and get stronger instead of just saying “I wish I would get stronger”, and it’s working. I have accepted that certain people are the way they are, plain and simple, so instead of trying to change them (or worse, change myself on their behalf), I stress less about other people’s actions and live my own life. I mean, this stuff really works! 🙂

As Lisbeth says.. just ACT. Whether you share your goals/thoughts/ideas with others or not is entirely up to you. But when you feel a certain way about any given situation, realize that you have TWO choices on how to react to it. Accept it and move on. Or ACT and do something to try and change it.

It’s as simple as that.

Happy Tuesday!


~By Lisbeth

So, you don’t like something in your life. You’re complaining, you’re mad/sad/depressed/pissed off. You’ve got 2 choices:

1.) Take action

2.) Don’t take action.

It’s that simple. Choose one: Take action or don’t. Try to change it or don’t.

People talk about goals and charts and numbers and lists and plans. Maybe there is some ideal way to plan/structure/prioritize/accomplish everything. But for every piece of advice that tells you to do it this way, there’s another piece of advice that tells you to do it another way. Remember hearing that you should tell somebody your goals so they can hold you accountable? Well, there’s another psychology study that shows that telling somebody your goals makes your brain tick that goal off as accomplished, hence you should not tell anybody your goals. Hahahaha. Great. You gotta laugh or you’re going to cry.

But goals told or goals kept secret, so what. It still comes back to take action or don’t take action.

So, what are you going to do?

Most of you know how passionate I am about coaching. I love trying to help people achieve what they previously thought impossible. I love seeing the faces of athletes who run a full 400m without jogging or walking for the first time.  I LOVE hearing how people who are a bit older, have the medical numbers of a 21 year-old with decreased blood pressure, improved resting heart rate and an increased lung capacity in just one year’s time! (cough*Wes*cough)

While I love those things, I also work everyday to try and become a better coach, myself. This blog post, from CrossFit Games athlete Lauren Plumey of Coastline CrossFit, touches on what I agree are some of the most important qualities of a good coach! Hopefully I can show at least some of them when leading a class of athletes.  I agree with what she wrote so much!

I hope you enjoy this post!

A Good Coach…

~by Lauren Plumey

What do you see in the picture above? I see a coach. A good coach; and probably a good friend; post-CrossFit workout.

There is a reason that most CrossFit gyms chose the term “Coach” rather than “Trainer” to entitle their instructors. A coach is so much more than a trainer. And a good coach is a whole other story.

A good coach doesn’t lie to you and tell you that you’re doing great when you’re not. A good coach tells you what you’re doing right, and commends you for it, but then tells you what you need to “work on.”

A good coach does not sacrifice your safety for your ego. He/she will pull you out of the “game” when you are hurt, even if it causes his/her team to “lose”.

A good coach realizes that there are some things that just won’t be fixed overnight. And he/she is patient as you work towards fixing these faults.

A good coach thinks about you long after you leave the gym. He/she thinks about what you’ve done well, how you have made him/her proud, and how you can continue to get better. Sometimes this coach even “drops you a line” to let you know these thoughts.

A good coach can recognize a bad day. A day when you just “don’t have it.” And tells you to take a rest day. It’s not the end of the world…you’ll be back taking names in no time.

A good coach feels your victories and feels your defeats. Ask any coach, in any sport~I guarantee that they’ll confirm this. I’d go as far as saying a good coach would rather lose herself than see you lose.

A good coach is one you fear…not in the sense that you think they’ll hurt you, or penalize you with more burpees; but because you do not want to disappoint him/her.

A good coach will sacrifice his/her training, to make you achieve a desired end.

A good coach will tell you there’s hope–and actually make you believe there is–even when he/she can’t quite find it herself yet.

As an individual who didn’t engage in a sport until my mid-twenties, I never got to meet many great coaches, or even understand the importance of one. I firmly believe that in the short time I’ve CrossFitted I have witnessed some of the best coaching in existence. Some of this has been of those who directly coached me, or in simply witnessing other athletes be coach in their “boxes” and at competitions.

Thank you Jason Leydon, David Plumey, and Ben Kelly for your superb coaching throughout the years; and for providing me with the skill set to coach others that I care about. And thank you to our great coaching staff at Shoreline CrossFit. You all possess the aforementioned qualities, and many more.

Take the time to thank your coaches when you get a chance–it may even be you basketball coach from high school–shoot him an email. I bet he’ll appreciate it…

Today’s installment of “CrossFit Blog Central” isn’t actually from an actual CrossFit blog. It is, however, an article written for “The Human Factor” column of’s website. “The Human Factor” is described as “profil(ing) survivors who have overcome the odds. Confronting a life obstacle – injury, illness or other hardship – they tapped their inner strength and found resilience they didn’t know they possessed.”

Yeah, I know you thought I’d like it, too! Stories, and people, like this are the motivation and inspiration behind a lot of what keeps me going. The author of this particular piece is none other than Kyle Maynard. Kyle is, in my mind, a CrossFit Celebrity because he has been featured all over the CrossFit website over the 3+ years I’ve been following the program. He is one of those athletes that if I were to see him at an event, I’d get nervous and want a picture with him. Yep. I’m that guy. There’s another obvious reason why Kyle is so inspiring in what he does. The CNN article introduced him like this: “Despite being born without arms or legs, Maynard has played football, wrestled, and he’s hoping to hike Mount Kilimanjaro.” Yep.

When I came across this article that was posted by CrossFit, I knew the next hour or so was going to be spent “Maynarding”. Just watching videos and reading articles about this amazing man!

Ok, so enough about how I feel about him, let’s share the good stuff with you! I’m going to share a few of my favorite quotes from the article, and then obviously let you click on a link to read the full piece yourselves!

One of the reasons we require so much motivation to start on the path to improving our health is that we build up a huge lie in our minds of how improbable or even impossible reaching our goals will be. We think about how hard it’s going to be to resist dessert or how much time exercising is going to take away from our lives.

I try to talk to my athletes about this all the time. Instead of setting this HUGE milestone that will take months/years to accomplish, I prefer to set mini-milestones along the way so we give ourselves REASON to celebrate! Positive reinforcement from YOURSELF is so key to help you stay motivated and “on the path”.

It’s always going to be the same in your life too. We’ll never be where we want to be until we learn to slow down and enjoy our individual journey. As long as you are doing something to move towards the direction you want to go in your life and your health, you cannot fail.

Read those last three words. If we get to the place in life where we can ENJOY THE JOURNEY… where we embrace the process and enjoy the steps we’re taking to improve ourselves (in ANY venture), you cannot fail.

There you have it, folks. This is hands down one of my favorite posts I’ve written, and it’s all because of Kyle Maynard and his positive impact on EVERYONE! To us his line, his motto… his mantra that he’s had for his whole life… No Excuses. You’re the man, Kyle!

Click here to read the full article!

For more info on Kyle, here’s and AWESOME video from when he was featured on Oprah. Please take 13 minutes and watch it so you can learn more about why and HOW Kyle got to be where he is today. So. Cool.

Finally, as a CrossFitter, Kyle also owns a gym. No Excuses CrossFit. The video below is a Testimonial from some of his athletes talking about how (not only Kyle, but) CrossFit training can help change lives in a variety of ways.

I’m inspired today! I hope you are, too!

Over the last few weeks, I’ve had some conversations with some of the athletes I get to work with that have gone really well. I mean, surprisingly well! A lot of times, people who are in the gym are expecting (or hoping for) perfection. They want to ALWAYS PR. They want to ALWAYS feel good. They want to ALWAYS feel like they did really well in the workout.

Well, that doesn’t always happen. Sometimes you’re really sore. Sometimes there’s too much on your mind outside of the 4 walls of CrossFit Lakewood. And you know what? Sometimes you just don’t really feel like working out!

BUT, and here’s the catch. You still showed up. Even if being at the gym wasn’t your first choice, you still came in, and you’re still going to leave better than you were when you came in… hopefully a bit happier than when you arrived, too!

The conversations I’ve been having with people have made me so happy because they (you guys!) are doing a GREAT job of:
Keeping CrossFit in Perspective!

I am SUPER competitive. I ALWAYS want to do really well, and when I don’t, it can definitely get me down. You guys are helping me chill out those pressures on myself a little bit. If a CrossFit issue is the biggest problem I’ve run into today… I’d say the day went pretty well, right? What you guys are reminding me to do, is the same stuff I try to work on with each of you.

Take a “problem” of yours, and instead of getting upset at yourself, the barbell, the weight… focus on what we can do to IMPROVE the situation, and learn from where we are at that exact moment. Pretty simple concept that can be easy to forget “in the heat of the moment”.

There are so many SERIOUS problems in the world. So many people going through struggles I could never imagine. And I let myself get upset over a workout?

THANK YOU to the CrossFit Lakewood Family for helping me keep life in perspective a little bit more, and thank you to Lisbeth and her blog, for sharing another gem.

As Fran (an amazing member of the CFLW Family) said to me the other day (and it really hit home and made my heart smile):
“I appreciate you.”

All of you. Really. Thank you for all having such a positive influence on me. I try daily to repay even a portion of what you all mean to me.

I am thankful for all of what I am blessed enough to have! Friends. Family. Health.

(Sometimes it’s just nice to remind YOURSELF of what you’re thankful for, to do it “out loud”!)

Grateful For These Problems

~by Lisbeth

Be grateful for your problems. They’re here to teach you.

Be thankful, especially if your problems are “first-world”: the coffee isn’t hot enough, your new shoes don’t fit right, the boss didn’t say “Thank-you” and you just didn’t like the workout at the gym this morning.

Those are great freakin’ problems.

Be happy your daily vocabulary doesn’t include phrases like white blood cell count or transplant, or visiting hours. Be thrilled you can take your health for granted. Be happy you can take your friends for granted. Be estatic you can take your life and safety and security for granted.

We are lucky, so very lucky, if our concerns center on chalk abuse and not child abuse, on “Did he get to depth?” and not “What do you mean he didn’t make it to school?” And that our CrossFit concerns, while very real and valid and centered in our lives, are exactly what they are: sound and fury.

Her wall-ball didn’t touch the mark. I bounced my deadlift. He didn’t lock out.

Yeah. Good problems. Be happy, be grateful, and go help somebody.

Sometimes I think that Lisbeth Darsh is reading my mind when she posts on her blog. I literally had this same exact conversation with friends multiple times this week.

The conversation was about women. CrossFitting women in particular. And how AWESOME they are to me.

There is something that happens when you get that mix of strong, independent, athletic, humble, caring and confident… yeah, it’s pretty incredible.

What is sad, is when guys (or sometimes other women) don’t truly appreciate those qualities. I’ve found the reason (99% of the time) is jealousy. Yeah, she might be able to squat more than you, or run faster, or get more double-unders in a row, or maintain her composure better when life throws wrenches in her gears. Instead of hating, or making cynical comments, or making excuses for why she can… just take notes.


Check out her post below. Strong women: love ’em!

Never More Beautiful

~by Lisbeth

A woman is never more beautiful than when she is strong: this, I believe to be true.

There’s something about a woman showing strength and confidence that is sexy and arresting to many people. Whoever you are — man or woman — the image of a strong woman will provoke a reaction. Sometimes, this is positive. And sometimes there is a backlash.

Love strong women or hate strong women: you can have your opinion but really it doesn’t matter. You can’t change what is — that’s like trying to change the sun: pure folly.

And if the image of a strong woman bugs you? Then you really need to look closer. Look at what bothers you: really look hard. Why does it anger you? What threat is it to you? And ask yourself: what are you afraid of?

A lot of what is written below in the post from the CrossFit Lisbeth Blog is how I try to live my life every day. This rings ESPECIALLY true for me “CrossFit Life” while I’m in the gym.

To her final question: “Are you old school?” I would need to say: Yes.

Are YOU?

Old School

~ Posted by Lisbeth on Oct 12, 2011

What is Old School?

Integrity, honor, commitment, doing the right thing. Being impeccable with your word. Not gossiping. Treating people like you wish to be treated. Being true and honest. Reducing bull**** in life instead of adding to it.

Being polite.

Getting your chest to the deck on a push-up.

Opening your ears and shutting your mouth when someone else is speaking.

Sitting all the way up in a sit-up.

Counting all your reps . . . and adding more if there’s any question in your mind.

Not counting the wall-balls that don’t go to the top of the mark.

Getting your chin all the way over the bar in a pull-up, not just up to the bar. (Except on butterflies!)

Facing your fears, whether they’re handstands, overhead squats, or some bogeyman under your bed.

Calling your mother, even if you don’t really like her. (Or your sister, your brother, your grandma, etc.)

Wiping down your bar, even if you don’t think you bled on it.

Respect. Apologies. Minding your own business.

Putting away the bumpers in an orderly pile.

Community, not cliques.

Looking people in the eye when you talk to them.

Helping break down someone else’s bar.

Introducing yourself to any new person in the gym.

Finding and throwing away your water bottle at the end of class.

Cheering for everyone in class (even people you don’t like that much) because we all bleed the same color: CrossFit.

Having respect for those who came before you.

Being a human first, and a CrossFitter second.

Are you old school?

Lisbeth Darsh makes me smile. Her blog, which I have featured about 5 to 17 dozen times here, has some great messages and some powerful concepts to take with you in your journey. This one today, I just read and smile.

Not a cute little smile, but a true, heart-warming, “I know and LOVE the feeling” smile. This is what CrossFit is about to me. Not just adding weight in a workout at the gym. That’s just one scenario. But surrounding yourself with people who help push you just a little bit farther than you’d like because they KNOW what you are capable of accomplishing.

And then you… hearing that little “push” from a friend charge on, even if the butterflies creep in and you get a little nervous, because in the back of your mind you knew you could do it all along, anyways. Or if nothing else, you were excited for the challenge. Excited for the ability to be “Better than yesterday.”

Thank you to all of the people in my life who help give me that little push ALL of the time. I appreciate you more than you know.

Getting Called Out

~ Posted by Lisbeth on Oct 6, 2011

The woman next to me called me out in class today.

I was about to strip some weight off my barbell to get down to the RX (women’s) weight for the metcon and she yelled over at me (and wagged her finger!): “Na-uh. Don’t you dare. You can handle that weight.”

I was shocked. And kind of pleasantly surprised. See, this woman doesn’t really know me. Barely knows my name. Doesn’t even Facebook. So it doesn’t matter to her who I am or what I do for CrossFit. She just knew I was someone about to not live up to my potential and she wasn’t going to let that happen, not during her gym time. She stood there and gave me a staredown that would make a mugger give back a purse.

I gave one more try, with a grin, and nodded at my barbell: “But that’s RX plus.”

Now, she smiled too: “That’s okay. You can handle it.”

Ah. Accountability: it’s what’s for breakfast at your CrossFit affiliate. I did the RX plus weight and was glad I did. Sometimes you need to get called out. It’s good for your soul, and your lift . . .

It’s not really a “blog post”, per se, but it is about CrossFit, and the community is passing the video along. So yeah, I’m calling this a Blog Central post.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. “I. Want. To. Be. In. A. Cool. Commercial. Like. This.”

(thanks to my friend, Tom Nugent, at SnoRidge CrossFit for sharing!)

As CrossFit continues to blow up in popularity, more and more media sources are going to start covering the “emerging sport.” The latest article I’m sharing comes from the Fast Company website, which is a site founded on the concept of, connecting “ideas and people.”

They cover as many different lifestyle topics as you can imagine, and I have a feeling that this article is going to reach a much larger demographic through its posting. Also, it’s written from the perspective of a relatively new CrossFitter, so many of “our” concepts, terms and thought processes are actually written so the “Non-CFers” out there can understand.

I’ve shared a few parts of the article below, but go ahead and click here or at the bottom of this post to view the entire piece.

~During my four-month experiment with the growing exercise brand, I learned that CrossFit proposes that elite athleticism and seemingly impossible workouts can be survived with a little help from supportive peers pushing each other through the pain.

Group workouts pack the most functional movements of olympic lifting, gymnastics, and calisthenics into a 10-20 minute sprint. The routines are slowly creeping their way into the regiments of all-star athletes and armed forces divisions around the world. They’ve put me in the best shape of my life.

~”I think CrossFit can be for everyone,” says Val Voboril (who is … 9 months pregnant). “It made my pregnancy easier,” she contends, as the “strength, conditioning, and endurance,” helped her deal with the added weight of carrying another human being.

At CrossFit, however, men aren’t always the alpha dogs, such as 106-pound Ting Wang, who deadlifts nearly 3x her body weight in the video below (I still can’t deadlift double my own weight).

Here’s how the author, Greg Ferenstein, closes out his post. I would say it’s not too hard to agree with him with at least the statement below. The next 12 months will be very interesting for the future of the “Official” CrossFit movement.

The strength of CrossFit’s market-oriented approach may also be its biggest challenge. Since workouts and individual culture are largely decided by independently owned gyms, CrossFit can only maintain a level of quality to the extent that trainers buy into the core philosophy and execute smart business practices. Moreover, since Glassman can’t patent “functional, high-intensity movements,” there’s nothing to prevent a Gold’s Gym or military division from wholesale adopting CrossFit’s basic approach without renumeration or giving credit. Ultimately, the survival of the official brand will depend on Glassman’s ability to maintain its community as the exercise program swells.

Click here to read the entire article!

How do you get almost 20,000 people to watch your YouTube video in just over one week?

Well, if you’re Jason Auer “of Power”, you name your video “2011 Crossfit Games Winner” and let the worldwide community of CrossFitters eat it up!

In a matter of days I saw this video pop up on my News Feed on Facebook over a dozen times, and there is definitely a reason why. This is hilarious. Jason, if this year didn’t work out, there’s always next year!