Many of you will have mixed emotions as we get ready to kick off the 2015 Open in just a few weeks. I think that if you manage your expectations and don’t place any added stress on yourself due to unreasonable expectations, the Open is the best time of the year. For 5-weeks we get to support each others goals and see them surprise themselves and be there for them when they need a little encouragement. For 99% of us, there shouldn’t be the fear of failure simply because that isn’t the goal. Your goal isn’t to go to the Games, it should be to show up and do the best you can every Friday night for 5 weeks. If you can stay consistent with that approach, you will have a great time and be anxious for each Friday night when you get your chance to test yourself and step outside your comfort zone for 10-20 minutes. When you lose sight of this, that is when people end up dreading this time of the year. They put expectations on themselves that are unreasonable and make themselves sick with anxiety and nerves. There is no need for this. Don’t fall into the trap of putting too much stock into where you end up on the leaderboard each week. It is a great tool to see where you stack up against others your age and sex, but it doesn’t define you.
Recently, we had a group head up to the “War of the Wod’s” competition in Greensboro. After that weekend, Dan Taplin sent me an email with some thoughts on his experience. I thought it was a great approach and very relevant to all of us as we get ready for the Open Season. He was nice enough to let me share it with all of Vitality.
“Today was a success for a couple of reasons. First, I left the building with no assistance which was a small victory for me. Second the advice you give in the gym all the time about diet (food/liquids) paid dividends for me today. I saw some people that crushed me in workouts early in the day, quit workouts in the end of the day because of cramps. Also the point you make about knowing your limits and being realistic also came in handy today when everyone around me was killing the weight in the snatch and I kept a realistic game-plan. I took last in that event, but you should’ve seen the line at the chiropractic and massage table from the bad mechanics they used while snatching. While they were suffering, I was comfortably resting in my chair eating a banana plotting how I could crush them in the bodyweight workouts later in the day.
I don’t know where I finished in rank. I don’t really care that much. I am just thankful I could do the work and come home in one piece.
Kindra and I both appreciate your coaches open door policy when it comes to questions about workouts, diet, or any other topics we need to discuss. You all are always willing to take my questions, or call me out on a bad movement yet tell me how to correct it. This goes a long way in my book and I think it is the key to our longevity in the sport.”
This is exactly the type of attitude I think we all need to take into the Open. This shouldn’t be a stressful part of the year, it should be a fun time of year, but it all starts with how you mentally approach for the 5-weeks. Click the image below to see a cool video of why others are doing the Open.