I left the title blank because I don’t have a sweet quote for that. I don’t think those apply to what we do. In fact, the only way I see failure in the gym is by not showing up or not being coachable. You have to crawl before you walk and walk before you run, right. Honestly, I am getting tired of watching people fail on movements. It is partly my fault for allowing some of it to take place. It also has much to do with ego, but the point I’m getting to is that failure does not build success in the gym.
Struggle builds success.
Hard work builds success.
Mastering the basics builds success
I noticed recently that failing at reps is becoming common practice. This is true for any box out there. Many people want to put up big numbers. They want to do the cool movements like snatch or muscle up. They want to push themselves to the limit. Those are all cool things. I want you to strive for more and push yourselves, but
Ask yourself these questions:
-Did failing 10 muscle ups in a row increase your gymnastic skills?
-Did over loading the bar for a snatch and sacrificing your technique make you a better lifter?
-Did you get stronger by failing a squat because you loaded a weight that your body wasn’t ready for?
-Was it worth it to wreck your back as you rounded it to keep up with another member in a wod?
-Is what you’re doing making you a better athlete, making you more fit, or getting you closer to your goal?
-Are you in control of your workout or is your ego?
Now, I’ve gone on long enough. Here’s what I recommend:
-Start by aiming to push yourself as hard as possible every workout without failing any reps.
-Do everything only as fast and as heavy as perfect technique will allow.
-Listen to your body. Somedays you will come in ready to smash the weights and the wod. Some days you wont be able to do a single squat with your 10 rep max from 2005. Some days you will just have to take it back a notch and do the best you can for that training day.
-Ask me what scale or version to use for a movement that you struggle with (including use of bands)
-Learn the basics and go through the progressions before full movements!!!
I want to talk a little more about that last one, because it is what originally got this post going. Every movement has a progression or a scale. In order to be efficient, you have to master the basics or the individual pieces of a movement. You will never be able to do muscle ups if you either can’t do strict pull ups or your kip sucks. You will never be able to hit full squat snatches if your overhead squat or foot work sucks. There are plenty more examples of these. This week I will be working on a progression chart for all of our main movements. It will give you a key for scaling, as well as movement hierarchy to hone in your skills. I will design the chart and it is up to you to stick to and master your level before moving to the next step.
Train Hard Train Smart