We get it. CrossFit is pretty inspiring! Watching the games, seeing others perform well, personal breakthroughs in your local CrossFit community, coaches referring to you as athletes-- those things can build you up and motivate you to want to become as strong as possible and as fast as possible.
Who wouldn’t be? CrossFit’s emphasis on the development of overall fitness ranging from strength, speed, agility, endurance, mobility, accuracy and so on can get you excited whatever your fitness goal is.
So you hit the box, you look around and you start with the weight you can carry while executing the workout at the speed that you can. Life is good. Over time, you’ll want to clock in more and reps and a faster time.
After you make friends, you’ll feel like wanting to finish workouts in less time. Maybe a little faster than your buddies or a little closer to the time of the person usually ahead of you on the whiteboard. You’re now racing against the timer. You want to be better today than yesterday. You want to set a new PR and bring out that inner Hulk or activate your beast mode.
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to become better. But here’s the thing.
It is common for new athletes to get impatient with training. It is easy to forget that the process of growth is slow and steady. The desire for speed or increased weight can result, as a consequence in getting sloppy with the technique.
Mindsets or metaphors that make you feel “Hardcore” like “fake it till you make it” or “pushing past pain” or attempting to push forward with willpower and mental toughness isn’t going to help you like you imagined it will. Doing so will actually bring you more harm than good.
Instead we recommend that you:
Slow down. Looking for shortcuts is a formula for disaster. Whenever you find yourself cutting corners, you’re not really getting away with it. Instead, you are often sacrificing or neglecting something important. The consequence of skipping steps to shave seconds off the time often results in injury.
Reduce your weight. Stress is the ingredient that causes you to build strength. Too much stress and you have a high possibility of getting injured. Get to a comfortable weight until you are used to it. When you are used to it, you can add more. If a movement is wobbly, reduce the weight.
Focus on your form. CrossFit movements are constantly varied. If you’re new, it’s easy to forget the form. The perfect form maximizes your strength. In fact, slowing down and reducing the weight you are lifting won’t hinder your progress as long as you get the form right all the time.
Ask for help. Good coaches will hold you back during training periods. Even top level athletes ask for help often to ensure that their form is perfect.
The missing ingredient to perfect technique is patience. Ancient martial artists are known to practice one technique for years and slowly executing the movement until committed to memory.
The method of teaching is effective and ensured the survival of the martial arts, because back then, poor technique can result in death not just missing a competition or a few weeks or workout.
Fitness is a lifetime pursuit and because of that you need to commit to continuity. If you have perfect form, you’ll never get injured. In order to master your form, you’ll need to be patient and make the necessary adjustments we recommended.
Many beginners are in a rush to beat time or increase the weight. Even seasoned ones get impatient too. Professional athletes and coaches know that the key to maximising results is patience.