The other day, I was sitting with some fellow CrossFitters at the gym, and we were just talking about this and that. And then, one of them shared a great story. He was at a presentation a while back, and the speaker asked the audience this question:
Say you were driving in a Miata, and suddenly you come to a bus stop with three people. One is a long-time best friend who once saved your life long ago. The other is an old woman who you can tell by looking at her doesn’t have much longer to live. And, the third person is the love of your life, and you know that if you two reconnected, your entire life would soar in a different direction.
Who do you choose to get into the car with you?
The old woman?
Or, the love of your life?
Take your time…
Have you picked one yet?
Who did you choose?
Now…I’ll be honest, I picked the love of my life. One CrossFitter chose the old woman, and the other two in our group also chose the love of their life.
And then, the story went on…
He proceeded to tell us that as many people tended to choose one person, there was one woman in the crowd who finally said…
“I would get out of the car, hug my friend, and then I’d give her the keys and tell her to and drive the old woman to a Hospice, and I would stay with the love of my life at the bus stop.”
Damn! Why didn’t I think of that?! 😉
So often, we restrict ourselves. We put limits, build boundaries, and keep ourselves inside the box. We tell ourselves we can’t do something because of x, y, and z. We make up these bullsh** stories as to why we can’t do things, or have things, or achieve things.
We start to believe our own lies and limitations.
How sad to think that our own worst enemy is actually our own self.
I see it allllllllll the time in my business. So many people tell me why they “can’t” do CrossFit. Or, CrossFitters telling me why they “can’t” do something in the workout.
The truth is, more times than not we are putting those restrictions on all by ourselves, and most of them are due in large part to past painful experiences. We were hurt or disappointed in the past…scarred…and now we are protecting ourselves.
When he was telling us the story and asked us the same question as the speaker, we all put that limitation on ourselves when we only chose one person to get in the car with us. He never told us we couldn’t get out of the car, or that we couldn’t give the car to someone else, or anything like that. He never gave us any kind of restrictions. We just made that assumption and accepted that one person was our only option.
We did not think outside the box.
And, the funny thing is, as a CrossFit coach, I am constantly thinking outside the box in order to scale and modify the movements for individual needs and abilities. So, it actually frustrated me that I “fell for the trick.”
It made me realize, though, how much I actually restrict myself. I’m so good at thinking for others, helping others, and showing them new and better ways, but when it comes to myself, I am still a work in progress.
Slowly, but surely, I am loosening the ties, knocking down doors, and opening windows for myself.
Recently, I strained my back during a heavy Clean & Jerk workout. I didn’t do anything wrong, per se, it was just one of those injuries that, unfortunately, in the competition world, it just happens from time to time.
Now, I am being tested as to how well I can think outside the box. I rested for 3 straight days, and then yesterday I did a scaled workout. I felt sore today, and honestly, very discouraged. After talking to my chiropractor, though, he gave me a good pep talk and reality check.
Fortunately, my back injury is not so severe that I can’t do anything. I can do some movements. I just have to take the time and patience to figure out what those movements are.
So, I can either feel sorry for myself, sit in the Miata like a lump, and choose one person.
Or, I can accept this new challenge, get out of the damn car, and be proactive!
So, I came to Open Gym this morning and did some strength work. I can do strict pull ups, strict push ups, sit ups on an AbMat, air squats, and even Bench Press without any pain. That’s five movements I can do with my injured back. Tomorrow, I will test some more, and add to the list. Each day will be a new adventure, and a new way of training for me.
Every setback is just a pathway for a great comeback.
Get out of the Miata.
You DO have other choices.
You always have choices.