Goals and Training Motivation

-the object of a person's ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.

Let's talk about goals, but more specifically let's talk about training goals.
Training for most of us is something we look forward to in our day, it's good to get a sweat on, lift some weights, run and jump etc. We enjoy exercising and being active, we love the feeling we get after finishing a good hard session of training, all is right in the world in those moments after finishing a workout when we're sitting in a puddle of our own sweat, drinking a Fit Aid and chatting with our mates.

But some days it can be hard to find the motivation to get your butt to the gym. Yep, getting there is the hardest part, pulling yourself off the couch or driving the extra distance from work instead of going straight home can be a mental battle. And most days once we're in the box it all gets better, and we're glad we didn't take the easy option.
But some days, getting our sweat on just isn't enough motivation to get to the gym and we'll succumb to flicking through TV channels on the couch.
And until of late, I wouldn't have understood what the hell you were talking about, why the fuck would you choose to stay home on the couch over getting in the gym to get the work done...

Because over the past 7 or so years of my training, I have been fortunate enough to have always had goals. My goals were both long term and short term, but there was always a focus to the training.
All that changed when getting back from California after competing at the CrossFit Games and deciding to no longer compete in the sport of CrossFit. I found I had nothing to train for, nothing driving me to push harder during tough workouts. Along with that I had little direction and I was just taking it day to day.
I had no goals and nothing to keep me accountable, something had to change...

This is where goals are an important part of our training and fitness journey. Having a desired outcome -our reason why- is a great motivator to get to the gym and get the work done. It is something that I have taken for granted over the years, since I've always had a reason why, and it isn't til now that I can appreciate the daily struggles to stay motivated and driven, some of us can have from time to time.

But having a goal is not going to do it for us alone, it's not a magic pill that ensures success and unlimited drive to reach your end goal. We need to add in a few other elements to ensure we stay focused, stay keen and set ourselves up for our best chance to reach our goals.

Being accountable to your goals and having a carefully laid out plan to achieve your goals is imperative to success.

Accountability is an easy one.. Put it out there! You don't have to post it on social media or anything like that, but speaking with your coach, talking to your friends, especially your friends at the gym, about your goals can really keep you accountable. Because as you know, if you don't rock up to the gym one day, especially if you've announced you'll be there, everyone knows you're not there!
Another great way is to write your goals down and pin them somewhere you'll see them daily. The constant reminder keeps it fresh in your mind and will help to keep you driven.
So being accountable not only to yourself but those close to you is an important part of goal setting.

We've all heard it, "Failing to plan, is planning to fail". All of our big goals will have many smaller goals along the way, we must map it all out before we start, and plan how we're going to achieve each of our smaller goals to get us to our end goal. This is a great motivator to keep putting in the effort as there are many chances for celebration and the feeling of real achievement, especially when our big goals may seem out of reach at first.
Obviously speaking with your coach is the best way to both set your goals and then set your plan to achieve them.

As for me, I have now set myself a new goal and found myself a coach! I am now accountable and working towards an end result. I've put it out there and now going through the process of achieving it.
My training motivation is back, my plan is set and I'm content in knowing I'm doing all I can each day to reach my goal.

If you have been struggling for motivation of late, please take the time to sit down and write down what it is you want to achieve, both long term and short term. I want you to share them with myself as your coach and others you want to help hold you accountable.
If you find it hard to think of anything you want to achieve, or don't think it's achievable, please don't hesitate to have a chat with me about it. We can work together in laying out a plan and setting some targets for you to hit in 2017. Happy training!!

Book your spot NOW and kick start your 2017!






3 Ways to Step Up Your Training

With so much information on the internet about strength and conditioning these days, there are so many answers and so much advice out there. Anyone with a smartphone can get them selves working through a training program and on the road to increased strength and conditioning.

Sure, someone can have a great program, all the equipment and access to Youtube for movement demos but there are certain ingredients to your training that can't be downloaded from the net.

Now everyone trains for lots of different reasons, and I'm not saying one way is right and others are wrong. But for those out there that are looking to push the boundaries of their fitness, or get themselves out of a rut or plateau and/or just want to mix things up a bit then this is something for you to consider.

1- Training with a crew that are at a level you aim to be.
When we train by ourselves, or consistently train within a group that we are the fittest and strongest, we can fall into the trap of complacency.
Instead of pushing our self to the very end, we may take the pedal off the gas and start to cruise if we are in front of our training buddies and going to finish the workout first.
The same complacency can creep into our strength workouts too, we can take the easy option instead of putting the extra 5-10kg on the bar for your last set and putting yourself into the situation of a heavy grind that will not only test your legs but steal part of your soul.
Intensity is the key to progress, be honest with yourself when evaluating your training efforts and you may come to the realisation that you are leaving valuable gains out on the gym floor. Training with a crew that are at the next level is a great way to get the most out of yourself. Just by being around guys that are fitter, faster and stronger than you helps break the mental ceiling that you put on your own performance. You see it can be done, so you work harder to get it done.
An environment of friendly competition is a great place to get the most out of yourself and push your limits to the next level.
So get yourself involved with a crew or gym that have a wide range of solid athletes, and get in the mix.

2- Find a Coach that has reached your goals themselves, or has coached others that have.
The best way to reach your goals, is to find a coach that has been there themselves, or has many testimonials from clients that have reached the same goals that you are working towards.
With so many people involved in strength and conditioning these days, it's good to do your homework and find the best coach around to help you with your training and reaching your goals.
There is a lot to be said about working with someone or a group of people that have been through the process before and have seen success.

3- Find or keep an alternative hobby to training.
Depending on your goals, whether it be to make Regionals, keep fit for life or reaching your goal weight, training can become all consuming. It's great to be focused and enjoy your time in the gym but it's good to keep it all in perspective. Unless you are realistically training to make the CrossFit Games, then its good to keep an even balance in your life. 

When you're in the gym, give it your 100% effort and focus. When outside the gym, refresh your mind from training and be present in the other great things in your life outside of training.

If you find yourself constantly worrying about how things will effect your performance in the gym, eventually your results will suffer due to both mental and emotional fatigue.
Finding something outside of your gym life and your work life, something totally separate from the two is a good way to disconnect from the stresses of work and the constant 'obsessing' of CrossFit and/or your health and fitness.
It's important to weigh up why you are training and how much you are willing to sacrifice for your goals.
Your performance will increase and keep increasing as long as you keep healthy, enjoy your training and give it 100%!

Workout Time Caps. Why Am I Getting Cut Off?

"Oh damn, I got cut off again!"

I wanted to write a piece on the workout Time Cap. I believe this is a very over looked marker, when figuring out if you need to scale a workout or not, and how much you need to scale the workout if doing so.

First things first, you have to listen to the Coach. The Coach will explain the desired stimulus of the workout before starting, this will be in the form of how long the workout should take and how you should break the work up. This is not something you just brush off because you looked at the workout at lunch time and told your mates that you're going to RX it tonight.
For example,
The workout is Fran, 21-15-9 Thrusters 42.5kg/30kg and Pull Ups. You may or may not have noticed, but some days we do Fran with a 6 minute cap, while other days we do Fran with a 12 minute cap. So within the programming, there are days I want you to be able to move fast, go unbroken on more sets than not, and finish the workout quickly, hence the 6 minute cap. This may mean you have to scale the weight on the bar and may even have to scale the pull ups to be able to finish the workout in under 6 minutes.
On other days, I'll encourage you to do the workout RX'd, or a little heavier than normal on the thrusters, or perhaps with a lighter band-or no band at all for the pull ups, if I believe you have the capacity to do so. This doesn't mean I think you can do it fast, but I know you can get through the work safely and without it turning into something too horrendous to watch. This would be a 12 minute cap day, and possibly a chance for some crew to hit the workout RX'd for the first time or having a crack at beating their old time.

So that's the reasoning and thought behind the sometimes dreaded, but sometimes welcomed Time Cap. (depending on how much you under scaled and the workout is kicking your ass)
It's not there just to make you feel bad for not finishing, but it's there so you scale the workout appropriately for the day.

I hope this helps!