If a patient with a heart condition goes to see a Doctor, they might get told what they need to do. Eat healthier, stop smoking, exercise more. Easier said than done! A smart Doctor will help them figure out how to do it.
It’s not hard to imagine that together they might come up with a plan that involves playing a sport. Finding a hobby. Doing something that they’re passionate about. It makes sense, because those are the kinds of endeavors where the challenge, engagement, and intensity of it all has the power to divert lives.
This weekend myself and Coach Maya competed in The Cascade Classic, a large CrossFit Competition in Seattle! We each competed in 5 events over two days, against 45 other athletes from all over the country. One of the workouts was:
40 Calorie Ski Erg
1.5mile Assault Bike
For a medium sized stocky dude, it turns out i’m relatively fast on my feet. I was in the lead after the 2nd run, and then skied and biked like I was being chased – which I was! I finished first in my heat, and the thing i’ll remember most is the last 20 seconds of the bike, eyes shut, lungs bursting. Challenging, engaging, intense, and powerful!
CrossFit competitions seem counterintuitive because how are they healthy at that level? You move fast, you want to win, you sacrifice technique, and you add more weight. All things that we say not to do in normal workouts at the gym!
Competitions aren’t an everyday thing, and there is risk involved. But it’s the same risk in any sporting event. Soccer, skiing, hiking, biking, climbing, and any other fun thing that gets your heart pounding will have that component.
And while we have fun in the gym, it’s with friendly games and encouragement. While we record workout ‘scores’ on the board, the competition is within our mindset. While we strive to improve work capacity, it’s with progressive loading, consistent technique work, and being willing to chase ourselves.