Posts Tagged ‘Thought of the Day’

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I can’t believe we’re already into 2014, but I will tell you what, I’m stoked for what I’m confident will be one of the best years. Ever.

As many people come out swinging with their New Year’s Resolutions, I’m sure that will mean a new wave of athletes walking into CrossFit gyms all over the country for the first time. Now unlike some, I try not to “hate” on people who are making a positive change in their lives. So if your goal is to lose weight, get in shape, or Clean and Jerk 300lbs, more power to you. If CrossFit is something you’re giving a shot for the first time, welcome to the family! For those of use who are already in the CrossFit world, let’s gear up for another awesome year in the gym!

Now one of the things I love sharing on my blog are articles out there related to CrossFit in general. “Why it’s so dangerous”, “How to deal with your changing body”, “How to eat like a champion”, etc, it’s all fun for me to read and share. And knowing how many people read this blog who are all at different stages in the CrossFit “career”, I figure at least one person out there will be able to relate to at least one of the posts that I share. And if it helps even ONE person, it’s worth it for me to put it on my blog. Even if it’s not the most relevant topic for you, you probably know at least a few people who are starting CrossFit, and can benefit from the “10 Things to Know Before Starting CrossFit” type articles.

So, without further ado, the first “Link Drop” of CrossFit-related articles of 2014. Like em? Share em! Which ones do you like the most and why? Excited for the feedback from you guys and gals.

Article 1-
Is CrossFit ‘Destroying the World?’ 10 Tips to Make Sure It Doesn’t

Good reference for the new CrossFitter, with some things to look for when trying to pick your gym.

Article 2-
Finding Success in 2014

Great post, for athletes of all ability levels, with 5 key pieces of advice on how to reach your goals this year: Direction, Motivation, Dedication, Believe, and Enjoy. The last two alone make this post worth reading.

Article 3-
Crossfitters: You may be in Danger!

A more satirical post from yet another person who was frustrated at all the articles being released telling us how DANGEROUS CrossFit is for people. The findings are accurate, but it’s a light read. Check it out.

What do you think, friends?


CrossFit Founder, Greg Glassman, released a video today that has been circulating around the interwebs.

In this short clip, he shares a conversation he had with the CrossFit Physician that compares the human body to a car and says that we should view our body is if there were “No Spare Parts”… when this part goes, you’re done. He explains (and this is my own summary/interpretation) that he views CrossFit trainers as useful agents to help make a difference in how people live their lives and take care of their bodies so that we can run our cars for as long and healthy a life as possible.

Then, Glassman draws a comparison that I was able to relate to on pretty much every level.

I’ve got an analogy for you. Physicians are lifeguards. Trainers are swim coaches. When you need a lifeguard, you need a lifeguard, not a swim coach. But, if you need a lifeguard, you probably needed a swim coach and didn’t get one.” ~ Greg Glassman

In my life, I’ve held both of those positions for many many years (Lifeguard and Swim Coach), and can tell you that those two roles hold distinctly different functions in a person’s life. While I honored the responsibility and valued the impact of knowing that my actions were charged with changing someone’s life/death status (Save them, they live. Don’t save them, game over.), it was definitely not my dream job.

Instead, I’ve always enjoyed giving people the tools to improve their own lives so that hopefully they would never need that lifeguard to jump in and save them.

Good news, friends… I’ve been a lifeguard AND a swim coach for over half of my life. You’re in good hands, regardless. But if it were up to me, I’d rather be your Swim (CrossFit) Coach.

Carry on 🙂

p.s.- No running on the pool deck!

Video courtesy of CrossFitHQ YouTube Channel

This past summer I had the amazing opportunity to go to California to watch the 2012 CrossFit Games. I knew some of the athletes, had friends from all over the country going to watch, and made some really great new friends, too. It was kind of a win-win-win-win-win scenario!

One of the people I met there, and now consider a friend of mine, was a woman named Leah Van Hoose. Leah is the owner, and a trainer, at CrossFit Nation in Easton, Maryland.

Now, most of the stories from the Games aren’t appropriate for my blog… mostly because our group had free beer and promised not to post stories from that weekend on the internet! 🙂 I’m just kidding, but what I CAN say, is that Leah is amazing! (She is the young lady to the right of me in this picture below.)

CrossFit, Smashby Training, CrossFit Games, Thought of the Day, CFGamesCrew

Part of the awesome crew I got to hang out with at the CrossFit Games!

Today, she posted a link to an article she wrote a while ago on Facebook, and I read it for the first time… it is amazing.

The post is called “Confidence Learned Confidence Earned” and was featured on I’m just going to direct you guys to the link to read it there yourselves, but let me summarize it the best way I can:

One day she started to lose her hair. Over time, her two boys would also lose their hair. There has been no medical or chemical explanation as to why this happened, but the post discusses her challenge(s) and her journey into accepting the change in appearance, and how she realized that (even though she DOES look great) looks aren’t everything in life!

I have to share my two favorite quotes from the piece, though… as they’re incredible.

1- “What happened was with acceptance for me, everyone else accepted it to. People see what you project. If I wasn’t comfortable with my head why should they be? We feed off each other’s emotions. I had to be confident. I was still Leah. I just looked a little different”

2- “The hardest time not wearing my bandana was in the grocery store that first time. I felt like everyone was staring at me, and they probably were. How often do you see a tall, fit, bald woman in shorty shorts and tall socks in the grocery store? I embraced it after I got over the initial fear. Yes people were staring and it was OK, I just smiled, they smiled back and I continued on my way. The lady at the checkout told me that she had been waiting for me to ditch the bandana and I was much more beautiful without it. Exactly what I needed to hear!”

Please click here and go read her post, and then come back here so you can comment and we can chat about it. I am so thankful to know such awesome people!!

I am a sucker for motivational movies/quotes, etc.

The scene below is a video I’ve seen on YouTube many times, and is from the movie Coach Carter.

The quote featured, (which is part of a real speech given by Marianne Williamson) is one that I come back to often. I use the words to remind myself why I, personally, have likely never taken that FULL DEVOTION to certain things in my life, and instead chose to create excuses as to why I “couldn’t” achieve a task.

Please read this transcript often.
Print it out and look at it every day.
Remind yourself of your TRUE goals when you hit a bump in the road and want to stop moving forwards.

Is it because we’re afraid to fail? Or… is it because we are so scared at just how successful we might become?

I’m still working through that one, myself 🙂

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Carry on…

Today’s Thought of the Day is simple:
Your excuse is invalid.

When I write that, I’m not talking at you, the reader of my blog. I’m talking to myself and sharing that inner monologue with you.

I will tell you what, when I want to, I can create some pretty big excuses. Why DID I do that? Why did I NOT to that? Why haven’t taken a step in the right direction? Why am I putting off STARTING that project for another day, week…. month? It’s something I’m constantly working on trying to improve, but I’m not there yet.

There are certainly plenty of times where a desired outcome is simply unrealistic. However, for the sake of this post, I’m referring to times where I can make a change, and choose not to instead. When these situations come up, I often think of the image below.

CrossFit, Smashby Training, Your Excuse is Invalid

Meanwhile, sometimes I complain about being too tired to work out.

When I have so much to be thankful and appreciative for, I feel as though sometimes I am being wasteful of my abilities and talents, and don’t like that feeling at all. If I’m healthy enough to work out, work out. If I have the physical ability and mental strength to accomplish a goal, why have I not accomplished it or made strides towards it yet? I have been working diligently towards trying to have that conversation with myself less and less often and instead just making the most of my time and living with fewer regrets.

I am not saying I haven’t accomplished anything positive, just acknowledging that I have so much more I want to do, in so many areas of my life! Does that make sense?

Well stories like the one in the video below are the types of stories that keep me motivated. Here’s a brief summary from the hourlyupdates YouTube page:
“Ali McWeeny of Ellensburg was once a force to be reckoned with in the world of weighlifting, but that all changed three years ago when she lost her left leg in a boating accident.

Doctors said she would never lift weights again, but McWeeny had other ideas. She’s now competing again, and her inspirational story was enough to bring her former coach out of retirement.”

Yep. One-legged weightlifter.

So, that brings me back to my initial point. My excuse is invalid. Time to buckle down and do some work.

How do you feel about this topic?

This video is perfect. Why? Because it’s titled “The Science of Procrastination – And How To Manage It” and I kid you not, I’ve had it open on my desktop, waiting to blog about it, for OVER A MONTH! How ironic is that? The excuse I’m going to give is that I’ve been too busy to share it, but the truth of the matter, is that I’ve been procrastinating!

This video, from the crew at AsapSCIENCE, discusses some of the biggest explanations for WHY we procrastinate, and suggests some very simple solutions for how to minimize that habit! I’ve even tried some of these lately, and as long as you’re motivated to be more productive, I can tell you that they do work!

Take a few minutes and check out this quick video! …. or just put it off until later.

This topic also reminded me of an article written by a good friend of mine, Adam Griffin (who works at an amazing company called Full Contact). His article was titled “4 Easy Tips for Managing Your Busy Schedule“. Yep, only four! Click on the link to go straight to the article, but here’s the summary: 1- Have a plan, 2- Create time blocks and stick to them, 3- Hire an assistant like a boss, and 4- Work in Sprints. He breaks each one down into easy-to-follow suggestions, so check out his ideas and give it a shot!

All I am going to say is that you should make the time to watch this 28-minute video as soon as possible. I’ll paste the video summary below, so you can read it for yourself, but wow. The story covers Danny Dean, an athlete who suffered a serious neck injury, and his amazing road to recovery. The perseverance of the human spirit is so inspiring to me. Videos like this also help me keep my “problems” in perspective. I wake up every day and try to be thankful for all of the things that I am lucky enough to have, and this was my morning gut check.

To answer your question… no, my eyes did not water watching this. I swear.
I’m serious! I’m not crying, it’s just raining… on my face.

All jokes aside, this is one of my favorite videos that CrossFitHQ has shared with us, to date.

Congrats on your progress so far, Danny. I’m excited to hopefully hear more updates over the next few months and years. You are an inspiration!

“After Danny Dean broke his neck eight years ago, he was only able to use 20 percent of his right side. Physical therapists told him whatever movement he regained in the next 18 months would be the most he would ever have. The former competitive wakeboarder became resigned to his fate.

Then his wife started doing CrossFit.

Thus far, there hasn’t been a week in which Dean hasn’t seen improvement under the watchful eye of CrossFit Forever Strong owner Jason Speck.

“Pathways that hadn’t been worked are starting to redevelop and starting to work again. Muscles that hadn’t known how to contract and how to pull are now contracting and pulling,” the coach says.

The two are focusing on seeing how much function they can create on Dean’s right side.

The 32-year-old says he’s never felt better since his accident.

“I had no set goals before,” he explains. “I kind of just resigned to modern medicine and technology to maybe save me one day. The outlook now on those sorts of things is totally changed. I do want to be 100 percent healthy again.”

Video by Carey Peterson.”
~Summary from the Video Page from CrossFitHQ

Here is the final post on this short little 3-part series I started last week, trying to encourage women to give CrossFit a chance, despite a common perception that it’s only a workout regimen performed by crazy men.

Please read the summary pasted below from the Woman v. Workout Series on YouTube.

“Join fitness model Lauren Berlingeri as she takes on a crazy new challenge each week. Whether training with the FDNY, tossing axes with STIHL Timbersports legends, or bounding through parkour routines, our fearless host manages to land on her feet with a smile (well, most of the time!).”

In this episode, Lauren Berlingeri “Attempts CrossFit” at EVF Performance (with coach Eric Von Frohlich), home of CrossFit Upper East Side in New York, where she will complete the workout Fight Gone Bad with CrossFit competitor Jenn Hunter.

Hold on for a second before you watch this video, though…

I may not be a fitness model, but this type of a “job” would be AMAZING to have every day.
If you guys know people, or have suggestions as to how I can start to do something like this, please let me know!!
Ok, enjoy the video!

My favorite part is when Lauren asks her trainer a question while he is teaching her the Sumo Deadlift High Pull:
Lauren- “What are we working here?”
Coach- “Everything. It’s CrossFit.”

On Tuesday I posted this piece that featured some tips for female weight lifters, trying to offer encouraging words to women who may be considering taking that type of training more seriously (which they should)!
Here is the second of three articles or videos that I will be sharing this week on the topic of women getting more into CrossFit. Check it out!

Why CrossFit is seducing more women
~by Alexia Brue

Just under two weeks ago, posted an article which went through a woman’s journey into trying CrossFit. The piece discuss the author’s initial reservations with giving the program a shot, citing that felt as though the program was geared towards “Marine-wannabe guys,” more-so than women. She then mentions that as popularity began to explode (with “4,400 boxes nationwide and Reebok aligning itself with the sport, not to mention the major PR of the CrossFit Games“) that women started to become more involved.

The two main reasons Alexia claimed women didn’t want to try it out were that they were “worried (about bulking) up and that they simply couldn’t do the workout,” which often times included movements that athletes weren’t even able to complete at the time. How great is it to know that CrossFit workouts are universally scaleable to anyone’s ability level?! And as for the bulking part (and my favorite part of the piece), check out this quote:

“Women are finally catching on that they won’t bulk up if they do CrossFit,” says Bender, now a coach at 212 CrossFit. “Bulking up has to do more with your genetics and your diet.”

Boom, I couldn’t have said it better myself. Click here to go over to the article and read it for yourself! It’s short and sweet, but a great read.

Do you guys enjoy these posts? I know I do!

CrossFit is continuing to grow in popularity. Quickly. The appeal of the program’s effectiveness is spreading, and groups of people who were often intimidated or uninterested in training at high intensity are starting to come around. One of those groups: Women!

With the interwebs at our fingertips, there are now so many women out there who are able to share their stories with the rest of the world, and show a hesitate friend that CrossFit really can be fun for them.

This week I am going to be sharing THREE articles or videos with you that have been circulating this week. I hope you enjoy them and pass the on as well!

10 Things New Women Weightlifters Should Know
~by Aimee Anaya Everett

In this piece, Aimee Everett (of Catalyst Athletics, which is an AMAZING resource for ALL weight lifters) gives 10 really good “Head’s Up” suggestions and things to realize for a woman considering getting more involved in Weight Lifting.
(Men, you’ll see by looking at some of the points below, this advice isn’t geared towards you. Still read the post, though. Information is the best weapon, and you can share this stuff with your female friends!)
The points below are totally valid, and some of them are really funny, too. Check out the summary here, but please click over to the actual post to read the whole thing!

10 Things New Women Weightlifters Should Know
1. Lift with other girls.
2. Know that you will cry.
3. Your cute skinny jeans aren’t going to fit anymore.
4. You will more than likely pee a little when you squat or clean heavy.
5. You need to learn patience.
6. Have a life and interest outside the gym.
7. Shorts and tights.
8. Nails.
9. Knee sleeves.
10. Have fun.

(Photo below comes from Shaughnessy Photography – Featured Athlete: Anna Dold Fisher)

AnnaLift, Shaughnessy Photography, Anna Fisher, Colorado Open, CrossFit, Smashby Training

Anna doing work.