I fell in love with CrossFit from my first workout, understanding innately that it was orders of magnitude more effective in training the human body over ANYTHING I had ever done before (including triathlons, weightlifting, basketball, volleyball, tennis, and long distance cycling). Back then, though, I couldn’t fully comprehend the potential power of it. In fact, neither did our founder, when he first started the movement! What finally opened my eyes was the concept of Virtuosity that was awakened in me as I completed my Level 1 Certification. Simply put, it’s doing the common uncommonly well. It’s a commitment to the basic fundamentals, boring as that may sound. In our case, that’s a commitment to teaching proper technique and the necessary mobility allowing our athletes to perform it consistently at pace under load.
From time to time yesterday at our final Open WoD Throwdown (16.5), with the box shaking from all the exhortations to our members burying themselves in an extremely challenging workout, all I could do was smile. I was smiling because no one in the joint was being denied repetitions, or “No rep’d.” Not because we have kind, compassionate, caring judges (which we do, they’re just firm at the same time), but because EVERY MEMBER THERE took their movement seriously, which was not only a great reflection on each of them, but it showed their RESPECT to every other athlete there. By doing so, it legitimized everyone’s scores and provided a fair and exact accounting of their fitness on the day. In the room, it wasn’t about beating anyone, it was about doing your best and raising everyone else up at the same time so that they could find theirs! A rare concept in today’s day and age and there was a palpable feeling in the room for those of you that were able to share it.
My point is this (and it’s been a pretty well kept secret): your fitness is just a means to an end at CrossFit Dynamo. If that’s all you want from us, that’s great and I’m glad to supply your daily dose. But, when you’ve taken the time and done the grunt work to get lower in your squat while you maintain proper spinal posture, press to full extension overhead, touch your back knee when you lunge, you not only add years to your ambulatory and active lifespan, you strive for and achieve perfection. You begin doing the common, uncommonly well. And if you think that kind of thinking/striving/achievement stops when you leave Dynamo’s double doors, I think you’re in for a surprise. Especially those of you that have taken the time to write down at least five things that you feel will make you happier/better and then open your letters to your future selves.
I’ve come to the understanding that the reason that CrossFit hasn’t yet taken over the world, is that the majority of people are still in “pain avoidance” mode for them, for their children. We simply want to protect ourselves and your little ones from any and all hurt. But, nothing grows without challenge. That includes your physical well being, your character, and the depth of your emotions. Some have turned to pain meds, or alcohol, or whatever they can to deny that that the world is not always a panacea.
You see, CrossFitters around the world, understand Life isn’t a total joy ride, we embrace that fact, and actually go out of our way to make Life even harder. Paradoxically, it makes our daily grind a little easier, sweeter, and our overall experiences and perceptions better! By mixing laughter with agony, something special happens. To paraphrase the linked vid just above:
The world’s peoples strive to find a way to LOVE EACH OTHER through our relationships, and our philosophies, and our religions. CrossFit has found a way to do just that starting with the premise of finding each person’s genetic potential and our search for being our best possible selves. The highest and purest form of CrossFit has become a mechanism for inculcating a certain set of values. It’s also found a way to bring people of different value sets together to be able to love each other. Values like “Commitment, Honesty, and Camaraderie” are best received through “the physical province.”
Heady stuff, for sure. But, to me, that’s the purest form of Love, the selfless love for one’s fellow man. Putting others before one’s own needs and desires. I, and the rest of your coaching staff, demonstrate our love for you on the daily, by relentlessly perfecting your movement so that you come closer to moving virtuously.
That love culminated yesterday in 16.5. I felt it yesterday pervading the box. It fills me now as I write this and relive all the feels that were yesterday and can never be taken from me … or from you, if you were fortunate enough to share it.
So, my sore and tired athletes, a sincere and complete thank you from the depths of my heart for your amazing outpouring of effort, determination, selflessness, and sense of fair play yesterday. It’s a privilege and an honor to be associated with some of the best salt on the face of this Earth. I love me some CF Dynamo Community!