Mr. M and I spent the weekend at the CrossFit Games in Carson, CA. Honestly, I didn’t expect to enjoy it even half as much as I did. I had a really, really good time. Why, you ask? Well, it goes something like this.
Once you get to know me a little better, you will better understand my struggle over health, body image and food. I have tried CrossFit three different times and each time it fizzled out. Yet, I think that I am started to grasp the why of the struggle this weekend and a path out of it.
We arrived at the StubHub Center, on the grounds of Cal State Dominguez Hills on Friday morning around 10am. It was a zoo trying to get in because the Teams (teams of 6 – 3 men and 3 women) were doing a 6 mile run in pairs of two each holding one end of a two to three foot piece of heavy rope – causing an upset to the incoming traffic patterns. But, as soon as we walked up I saw it – the bodies…the fitness…the genetic expression of great health.
Honestly, I have never seen that many really fit people in one place.
80% of the attendees were crazy fit in various states of minimal clothing. Guys shirtless in board shorts and girls were in booty shorts and sports bras. I am not exaggerating that most people’s hats and sunblock covered more than their clothes and everything exposed was pretty lovely.
Then we saw the next event – a cardio intensive Men and Women’s event. 3000 meter row. 300 double unders. 3 mile run. The set up was impressive. The effort was impressive. Pat Burke in the first photo runs MBS CrossFit where we work out (Mr. M much more than me lately)
I had a small meltdown on Friday of body shaming but then I rallied as it hurts and isn’t fun (it upsets Mr. M) and doesn’t help me get where I am going. But, these people really made me think. Why do I want what they have so much? How do I get their healthy for me?
In my last post, I outlined about how I needed to focus on what makes me happy and how getting up early and doing CrossFit didn’t make me happy. But, I have come to an similarly aligned conclusion after the weekend though a bit refined.
In The Paleo Coach by Jason Sieb, one of his main points is that your goal needs to change from aesthetics (looking hot) to health. Heather talks about it all the time. Being healthy and making good choices will lead to the best expression of your genes which Jason likens to a peacock or the men in the photo of this post. We are ALL attracted to the best expression of genetics in potential mates. And, you get the best expression by eating to nourish your body and being active to support your body’s needs.
This really resonated with me when I read it last year, but as I have come to find, aesthetics runs deep for me. Its everywhere outside of me and seems to permeate every facet of my thinking. I know it shouldn’t but it does and media doesn’t help that. Jason goes onto explain that aesthetics will lead to shallow goals – and by shallow I mean small ones we don’t take to heart – and accordingly in so many instances the habits won’t stick – hence yo-yo dieting and unhappiness. They are a means to an end and not the goal which is really good habits.
I want to look amazing. I don’t think that will ever end. But, I know concretely that I need health to be the goal with a great body that is the result of better inputs. CrossFit gets a lot of slack in the press but they are onto something. They support getting better every day. To facing your fears and conquering them. To not worrying about the mirror but instead the weight on the bar or the height to climb on the rope. The Games athletes are nothing short of absolutely amazing and I watched them in awe (while applying sunblock and drinking some Corona’s that were equally amazing) while hanging out with a group of people from the gym that I know would do everything they could to support me. That, my friends, is community and the power that holds the CrossFit Nation together.
Words with Lisbeth posted an awesome post today about getting it done. I love her. Read through her posts – they are about life and inspiration and doing the work. It talks about the people that just give 90% and how the work is in the last 10%, the last few yards and how that the great, the important, the life changing is in that last 10%.
So why am I hanging out at 90% in my health and fitness when I strive for 100% at work and in relationship with Mr. M?
Guys, I am scared. What if I can’t? What if I am not good enough? What if I fail? What if I look three months pregnant forever?
The answer is simple. I need to have faith. In me. My excellence. My power. My love. My body. I have to embrace where I am and believe in the goal. Ladies and gentlemen I have it for my mind which though my work affords me a lifestyle I sincerely enjoy. But, I told it straight that I don’t want to get up early. But, since work comes first as a daily priority there is a choice that has to be made every day. If I have to choose between work and working out, I will choose work every time. Frankly its just easier – I have that part mastered.
I am not a fledgling at work like I am in my own health. But, greatness comes with sacrifice. And Aristotle said it best when he said:
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
If you pair that with Eleanor Roosevelt who proudly said “Do something every day that scares you.”
In me it creates a woman who gets up early to work out doing CrossFit and Bikram which make me a bad ass yogi. Then I can shower where I revel in the fact I have just conquered the hardest part of the day. I can then go to work where I am a respected and loved bad ass. Then, I come home to where I am loved and cherished.
Holy crap, take a pause, that sounds like a pretty good day – except for the waking up part. That is still going to suck =)
What are you doing every day that scares you? That inspires you? Who are you reading?