Food for Thought: Quality Over Quantity

With the Open over half way done, I thought it was a great opportunity to check in on the process for you all - How are you holding up?  How is it to workout with a judge right beside you?  Are you getting no-reps or are you an example of quality movement?  If you fall into the lots of no-rep category, what do you think your fitness level would be like if you raised your standards year round?  Read this piece from the Tabata Times and think it over.....

Here’s the situation: I walked out of the gym having completed the benchmark Cindy. For those unfamiliar, the workout is a 20 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) consisting of 5 pull ups, 10 push ups, and 15 squats. My score was not that impressive. It was decent, but nothing to write home about. The explanation comes in to play in the fact that while my rounds were not high, my reps were very good. I can’t call them perfect as I did not have a standards judge, but they were very close. Now, I’m not saying this to get applause, but it got me thinking. I looked through my old Cindy scores to see. I have had a much higher score before, but I know for sure that this time I had better reps. Yes, I was slower, but this time I was definitely better. So how many times has this happened before? How many times are we posting super fast scores, with super questionable movements?

Charles "Chuckles" C. getting judged on some quality chest to bar pull ups.

Charles "Chuckles" C. getting judged on some quality chest to bar pull ups.

A couple of years ago the Open had a WOD that contained Karen (150 wall ball shots) in the middle. People in the gym who normally had a six minute Karen time were suddenly sitting at ten to twelve minutes when they had a judge next to them. What does this mean? They were a gym full of cheaters? No. It just may be that we are not holding ourselves to the same standards, simply for the sake of finishing quickly. So what’s the point? Should we be working on getting fast and then worry about fixing our mistakes, or should we get the movements down correctly, and then work on speeding them up? I think we all know the answer to that. In my gym, we are held to high standards. We are asked to correct things, flaws are pointed out, and weaknesses are worked on. We have great trainers who make sure we have the methodology right before adding weight or adding speed, but sometimes they are working with someone else when our push-ups start to snake a little, or maybe our chin wasn’t over the bar for that pull up. That’s on you. You have the opportunity to not count the rep and do it again, or you can keep going for the sake of the clock. When we say we are athletes of integrity, we are not just talking about cutting reps or counting correctly; we are talking about making sure our movements are right and our reps are perfect. Integrity means honesty in all aspects, not just our counting.

Nothing gets past ref Alex "The Mouth" B.

Nothing gets past ref Alex "The Mouth" B.

Next time you are in the gym, think about this: Do you want to be fast or do we want to be good? In some athletes, there is not a difference. Some athletes are fast and accurate every time. I aspire to that. I know for sure I am not one of those. I am working on that. I’m doing my best to stay off You Tube under the hashtag “CrossFitters doing CrossFit.” Keep it honest and keep it strong. Soon you will be speeding up and rocking the perfect squat. And that’s really the point, right?! Be the best athlete you can be, and soon the amazing scores will follow.