As much as we’d all love to spend hours upon hours at the gym every day, most of us only have about 60 minutes here. With such limited time, we better make the most of it! Now, there are tons of things you can do outside of the gym to make your time inside the gym better… eating well, getting enough sleep, etc. Let’s skip that stuff for now and focus on the time that you spend inside these green and orange walls. I’d like to offer you 4 easy things that everyone should be doing every time they’re at the gym. They may seem simple and maybe a little too obvious, but if you make a real effort at each of them every day, the quality of your time spent here is guaranteed to improve!
1. Show up on time. When I was growing up, my uncle would always remind us that “To be early is to be on time; to be on time is to be late; and to be late is to be forgotten.” I used to think this was so annoying, but as I get older, I recognize the value in his point. Running through the door at 6:00pm on the dot and trying to tie your shoes, grab a barbell and listen to the coach, all while finding a place to ditch your gym bag is not the ideal way to kick off a class. When you can, show up early… even just 5 minutes early! You’ll be able to catch the tail end of the previous classes workout, get some extra mobility time in, and be ready to go when your class starts. And being late? Forget about it! In addition to the terribleness the penalty burpees that you’ll have to do, you could miss out on some valuable information at the start of class. Of course traffic happens and life gets in the way from time to time, but for everyone’s sake, do your best to keep the lateness to a minimum.
2. Participate in the warm up. No, I mean really participate. I understand that some of you may be drilling the power clean for the 973rd time in your CrossFit career, but that’s no reason to zone out. Is your power clean perfect? Probably not. Top athletes in all sports spend tons of time practicing basic drills, and so should we. Really think about what you are doing as you do it. Listen to the cues the coaches give and do your best to follow along. Have a question? Ask! Drill barbell movements with the same precision and effort you would if you were maxing out. Trust me, it will pay off when you do try to hit that new PR.
3. Say hi! Don’t know the person lifting on the platform next to you? Say hi! One of the best things that separates CrossFit from other gym routines and group fitness classes is the community. We are all in this together, so get to know your WODmates. Introduce yourself to new members. We all remember how intimidating your first days of CrossFit could be, so help them feel welcome. In between sets on the platform, share some stories of your weekend, nutrition tips, your favorite place to buy workout clothes… whatever! It’s a great way to meet new people and it makes class much more enjoyable. Nobody wants to work out in a quiet, somber atmosphere where everyone has their heads down, focused on themselves. Bring some life to your workout and have a little fun!
4. Stay the full hour. Or maybe even longer! (gasp). Yup, a full 60 minutes… that’s all I’m asking for. Remember when you used to spend that long, or maybe longer, crushing it on the elliptical? It’s awesome if you absolutely destroy a workout faster than anyone else in class, but nobody can give you a high five or congratulate you if you make a bee-line for the door while everyone else finishes up. Stick around and cheer on your newly-made friends as they finish up. (Remember, we’re all in this together.) Grab a foam roller and work on some extra mobility. Cheer on your friends while you roll out… endless options here. Just like when you’re late, you could miss out on useful information when you bail out early on class, and you’re definitely missing out on lots of fist bumps and post-WOD water cooler chat.
And here’s a bonus tip: Always have fun!
High Bar Back Squat
Clean and Jerk (Pick your weight)
Level 2 -Rope Climbs (2-2-1-1-1)
Level 1 – Pull to Stand (5-4-3-2-1)