CrossFit is a great tool for developing not only physical strength, but also mental strength! There is a lot to be said for the “mind-body connection” and the effect your mental state can have on your workouts, your relationships and your day-to-day life. I think most people would agree that we not only gain strength of body from CrossFit, but also strength of mind. Getting up in front of a group, taking a test, making a sales-pitch, standing up for yourself, or speaking your mind might not even phase you when you think, “I can deadlift a SmartCar!” or “My workouts are harder than this, and I get through those everyday!” The mental toughness that is developed through CrossFit is something that we can draw upon in our everyday lives.
One of my favorite books is Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence. In the book, sport psychologist Gary Mack writes about mental toughness, noting that, “like physical skills, mental toughness can be learned through quality instruction and practice.” For the next couple weeks, we are going to dig deeper into Mack’s Seven C’s of Mental Toughness. Let’s go!
Someone who is mentally tough is…
COMPETITIVE: They find a way to compete. They are energized by the chance to put it on the line in competition. When you step into the gym, find a way to compete. Compete with yourself, the clock, the girl or guy next to you, or your PR…just compete.
CONFIDENT: They have an incredible belief in him or herself and in their ability to accomplish the task at hand. In Mind Gym, the author writes, “Confident athletes have a can-do attitude, a belief they can handle whatever comes their way. They almost never fall victim to self-defeating thoughts.” Be confident. Believe in yourself. Believe in others. Be great.
COMMITTED: They make goals and commit to seeing them through to completion, focusing time and energy on their goals. A mentally tough No Excuses athlete is committed to finishing WODs strong, learning new skills, improving skills already obtained, attending class, making time for recovery and also committed to each other! Are you setting goals? Are you committed to the goals you set?
CONSISTENT: They do the same things over and over! Sound boring? To be a well rounded CrossFitter, you must be consistent. Consistency can come in the form of a positive attitude, tremendous effort and especially in sound movement and mechanics. Doing it right and with great effort will catapult you to new heights in your CrossFit journey. Consistency of attitude brings out the best in others as well! An athlete who is consistent holds him or herself to a high-standard and maintains it!
Start putting these first four C’s into practice! 3…2…1…go!