The Difference Between Training and Competing

By Coach Josh Workout Comments Off on The Difference Between Training and Competing

There’s a difference between ‘training’ and ‘competing’. and I am drawn to CrossFit because of this difference.

When I was young (I still am young, but when I was young-ER) everything felt like a test. In High School for example, just being called on in class was basically a competition. It was an opportunity to either A) look super cool, or b) have my voice loudly crack in Japanese class and have everyone laugh. A chance social encounter felt very clearly like a win or lose scenario. Understandably, it was exhausting.

In the gym it can be similar. It’s so easy to see defeat at every turn. The bar feels heavy: -1 point. You didn’t do as many pull-ups as last time for whatever reason: -1 point. You scaled a movement while someone else didn’t: -1 point. Your biceps looked smaller in the car window reflection…-3 points. Clearly this is not right! You still put in work. You got sleep and got up early to workout. You revved your metabolism, mentally engaged in a physical challenge, and fricken’ did it! Do you know how rare that is?

For myself, after a career of looking at my biceps in the mirror every day, CrossFit re-introduced to the concept of ‘training’: The idea that goals are realized over larger chunks of time to be broken down, practiced, and re-visited. It’s the difference between focusing on consistent effort, or win-or-lose situations. Consistent effort leads to the accumulation of small improvements and learning, which leads to growth, which leads to depth of character, which leads to world domination.

The funny thing is, even the days that are labeled ‘competition’, are STILL training days of a sort.

So when you miss a workout, have a bad meal, or get a bum night’s sleep, do what you can in service of the larger picture. Don’t give up on yourself, you’re still an athlete in training.


CF Vashon Team

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