As I was knocking out some kipping pull-ups at the gym yesterday during warm-up, the woman next to me was doing her pull-ups from a box and said that she couldn’t wait until she could do kipping pull-ups. It took me almost three years before I finally was able to do one. Now I can do about 10 in a row. I told my gym-mate that.
Then I had one of the hardest workouts I have ever had at Crossfit.
10 Pull ups
30 Double-unders (jump rope with the rope going under me twice for every jump)
10 Clean and Jerk 85lbs
The 5x on top means I had to do that rotation 5 times. It took me almost 40 minutes. I had the highest time of anyone.
About half way through the second set, someone was telling me that I should probably just do 3 sets, that doing all 5 would take too long, that I was not strong enough to complete this WOD, that I should lower the Clean and Jerk weight by 10 pounds, that my allergies were getting in the way and that was a reasonable excuse for not finishing, that if I continued I might have an asthma attack and I should probably quit. I had to constantly tell that someone to Shut –up! But, that became exceedingly difficult as that someone was me.
To overcome the quitting-voice-in-head I had a persistent, if quieter, mantra, “just go until your body forces you to quit.”
In retrospect it is an affirmation that the hardest part to working out is not lifting more weight or getting better numbers it is in getting over the defeatist mentality that is ever-pervasive. Whether it is trying to go a little further with each run, trying to finish 5 sets in a WOD, convincing myself that with every attempt I am getting better at kipping pull-ups, or just getting my entropic ass off the couch, the hardest part is convincing myself to do it.
Today, my legs are sore and I can start feeling that my lats are going to be achy. But, what I feel like I really improved yesterday was the muscle memory of talking my brain out of talking me out of pushing a little harder.
***WOD = Workout of the Day.