Here’s a little story….
Johnny has had one of those days where he feels like he should have just stayed in bed! And he also has the feeling that this day could easily turn into one of those weeks. You know the ones – when it’s a struggle to make it through the daily ritual of life let alone turn up to CrossFit and train. But Johnny goes anyway. Resentfully, of course, and the WOD is a sluggish, unbearable slog where his energy levels are as non-existent as his motivation. It’s not Johnny’s fault, at least he bothered to turn up. But he wonders why he actually bothered and his mind drifts instead to whether the Broncos will even make the top 8 this year.
Johnny goes through the motions of the WOD half-arsed – until out of the corner of his eye, he notices Sally smashing out her WOD. She’s really working hard and pushing herself. Johnny can see that she has a weight on the bar that’s really challenging for her, yet she is still maintaining technique while she struggles to complete every rep. Her performance is impressive and so inspiring that Johnny breaks his Broncos reverie and hauls ass for the back end of the WOD. Sally’s inspiring effort has meant that he has ended up putting in a big effort himself. Johnny and Sally Hi 5 each other at the end of class and head to the Members’ Lounge for a recovery drink.
Now it doesn’t matter if ‘Sally’ is one of the strongest or fastest members of the box or one of the weakest or slowest. It was her ACTIONS and EFFORT which inspired Johnny. That this person was giving their all – right here, right now. It’s these inspirational efforts that make CrossFit classes so effective. We see it every day at CrossFit 4504. Our members don’t set out to be inspirational – they’re usually just trying to get the WOD done so they can die quietly on the floor in a pool of sweat. But that’s the thing with Inspiration – it encourages others to push their boundaries.
You can inspire someone you don’t even know – simply through your actions. Here are some of the ways that you may be inspiring others….
- Show Pride, not Ego
Have you ever finished a WOD well outside the time of everyone else, still fighting for every last rep? Or had THE MOST exhausting week at work but still made the effort to train and train hard? What if you’ve recently stepped up to a new level of technique or heavier loads and the struggle has never been more real in every WOD? How about if you’re injured but still training with modified workouts just to keep moving?
Then you have INSPIRED someone.
It’s all too easy in the above situations to let old mate Ego get into your tired mind and body…”Give up, old friend,” Ego says. “Save yourself the embarrassment and let’s just go home to the couch. We can share those chocolate Oreos and moan about how we never wanted to get fit anyway.”
Don’t let Ego win. By showing up, taking pride in yourself and not giving in no matter how sucky it gets you are exhibiting an intention. An intention to holding yourself accountable. An intention in taking a step closer to smashing your goals. An intention to strengthen not only your body, but your mind. And so next time something happens in life where it would be simpler to give in, you can flip Ego the bird and say “I got this – just you watch me.”
Take pride in yourself. Know that you are capable of so much more than you realise. And guaranteed, if you approach your training this way, you will have inspired someone else to do the same.
- Be Enthusiastic and Encouraging
This is something we’ve seen in spades here at CrossFit 4504. Enthusiasm is contagious!!
Do you love it when certain people are in the same class as you because they are generally so positive? Do they encourage everyone to keep going? Will they always give it their all and push you to do the same? These people are inspiring in their enthusiasm and encouragement. They know the WOD will be hard – but that’s partly why we train, right? To push through to the best of our ability and congratulate each other at the end.
Sharing the fun of CrossFit is inspiring in itself because we all love the release of happiness and positive endorphins which come from exercising in good company. Pushing yourself further takes you a step closer to achieving your goals. Your steps may be small – and at times, even backwards – but at least you’re moving. The CrossFit 4504 members and coaches inspire each other every day by showing enthusiasm and encouragement. They’re proud of themselves, but the pride they show in all of our athletes and our box inspires all of us to keep going. And like we mentioned earlier – the positivity and celebrations shown in our classes are contagious.
- Let Your Imperfections Show
Think about a movement you aren’t particularly good at. If it comes up in a WOD do you rush through said movement, not bothering to maintain the standard you know you’re capable of? Do you shave reps just so you finish with a faster time? Is this the way to be INSPIRING?
We all know the answer to that one!
You inspire people when you are GENUINE. You don’t need to be perfect or ‘The Best’ to inspire others. WTF is perfect anyway? People will be more inspired by how you handle your imperfections. Let people see your imperfections for what they are – and acknowledge them.
Everyone’s definition of perfect is different anyway and just like a Lorna Jane t-shirt, ‘We Were Born to be Real, Not to be Perfect.’
Sure, there’s always someone out there who will be better, faster or stronger. There always will be. But that’s not a reason to cheat. Don’t compromise your standards or integrity just for the sake of false praise. The most inspiring members of CrossFit 4504 are those who show INTEGRITY. They will give an honest assessment of themselves without any false pretences of perfection. Remember, you are training for YOURSELF. By putting in the effort every time you train you will see the changes you want for yourself…and that’s when others will be inspired.
They’ll see you making mistakes but not quitting. They’ll see you putting in effort and reaping rewards. They’ll see that you’re not here to be perfect.
So you know now some of the different ways in which you may have inspired others. You don’t have to be the strongest or the fastest in every movement. Or any movement for that matter.
You do have to work hard.
You do have to push through adversity.
You do have to persevere.
Admit your weaknesses and put them on your list of things to improve on. Work on your weaknesses. Be enthusiastic about where and when you train and why you’re there. Be inspired by the actions of those around you. Know that if you’re putting in the effort that you ARE inspirational.
It’s a pretty cool thought knowing that while you are achieving goals for yourself, you’re also inspiring someone else in the process.
Be an INSPIRATION.