Then, from the 2011 CrossFit Open:
AMRAP in 20:00
5 Power cleans (145lbs / 100lbs)
10 Toes to bar
15 Wall balls (20lbs /12lbs to 10′ target)
Want to see more of these great pics? Andreane made a photobucket from FranFest. Click here to kill your whole morning!
Difficult Easy vs. Difficult Difficult.
We’re big on discomfort zones. We believe that personal growth is best attained through systematic application and removal of stress. General Adaptation Syndrome depends on work and recovery, and progress in every part of life is the same.
There’s an optimal degree of stress (and recovery) needed to produce a desired outcome, and that’s our entire business: push you hard enough, let you recover enough. We do it daily in workouts, monthly in challenges, annually with the Open or the Catalyst Games.
Why do we ask you to do things that are ‘above your level’? To prevent the underreaching (or ‘difficult easy’) that the rest of our culture craves. The easy path is not ours to follow.
We ask beginners to come into an unfamiliar environment. We ask them to rethink the way they sit down and stand up. We challenge what they’ve been taught by their teachers, parents, friends and media about exercise and nutrition; sometimes we’ve even been too zealous, because we care almost too much.
We ask intermediates to sign up for challenges: 100km rowing in 30 days? No GRAINS? The CrossFit Open? It’s all because we want you to see that you CAN do it. You might not do it forever, but if ‘turning pro’ for a month means that you can be better afterward, it’s worth it. We’re giving you ‘Difficult Difficult’ occasionally so that ‘pretty good’ becomes normal.
And then, the hardest challenge of all for our advanced athletes: we ask you to rethink the way you sit down and stand up again. After you’ve mastered your snatch, muscled your up, and deadlifted 500lbs, we want to look at your air squat. You are never so good that improving the basics isn’t necessary. This is ‘difficult difficult,’ like sleeping in your little-kid bed as an adult: it feels too small, you don’t want anyone to know, the mattress is lumpy…but sometimes, you’ve gotta go home to get better.
I was a competitive squatter from 2002 until 2006. I’ve taught the squat for almost 20 years. When I realized that my squat technique wasn’t optimal for catching cleans and snatches, I didn’t want to start over. Scaling down workouts was ‘difficult difficult’ for my ego. Talking about weights that I used to lift was annoying. But catching a massive PR clean, and following with a PR snatch a few days later, was amazing.
It’s ‘difficult easy’ to show up, do the workouts, and pay your penance in sweat. Pushing yourself to something new will always be ‘difficult difficult,’ even if it means stepping backward.
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