How to get through a tough work out


“It always seems impossible until it’s done” Nelson Mandela

I couldn’t agree with this more! If there is a work out of the day (WOD) posted that includes rowing, running, ring dips, chest to bar pull ups, or heavy lifting I feel it is impossible to accomplish in a decent amount of time. These skills (believe me there are many more where those came from these are just a few that come to mind) in which I am weak. I think “This WOD is going to take a long time and I will be the last to finish.” First of all, I dislike very much being the last one, but it just happens. So once I get that out of my head then I begin to strategically think about how I am going to conquer the WOD. The following are some strategies that work for me and may work for you:

Top 10 strategies to get through a tough workout:)

1- When needed, take a 3 second break…this is equivalent to 3 breaths. No more…no less.. time is ticking:)

2- Do one more than you think you think can do. Keeping safe of course. If I am upside down in a handstand and I am doing handstand push-ups, and I can’t quite get that next one. Then I will stop because I don’t want to land on my head. 

3-Turn away from the clock. At Crossfit we base our scores on how fast we can do something or how many times we can do something in a given amount of time. Therefore, I turn my back to the clock if need be.

4- If I am doing chest to bar pull-ups- I turn to face the wall rather than facing the gym. This way I am concentrating on my pull-ups rather than noticing how many people are getting done before me.

5- If the WOD involves running, I want to be better at it. I pace myself with someone who I feel can challenge me, but yet not kill me at the end to not be able to finish the WOD. I have been doing that lately and I feel I am getting stronger in this area.

6- Rowing- Well…still working on that one… just being honest 😛

7- Ring dips and heavy weights …I scale. I don’t like to scale, but I also want to get the work out done in a timely manner. I also don’t want to hurt myself either:) There will be a time when I don’t have to scale!

8- After EVERY SINGLE wod I ask myself what is one thing that I can take away from that work out that went well. Doing that really ups my spirits. I use to get down on myself a lot for when I was the last one, or having to scale a skill, or so and so beating me all the time. I have learned that every single person has his/her weaknesses and strengths and life is so much better not comparing myself to someone else. I do feel it is good to have a little friendly competition, but only out of building strength in each other. 

9- With really long WODs…ya know the ones that take 45 minutes to complete…the ones that have like 50 push-ups, 50 pull-ups, run 2 miles, 50 air squats…etc. I break up the sets. For example, 5 sets of 10 or 10 sets of 5. Whatever my muscles can handle at the time. Sometimes even when I do that, my strategy changes through out the WOD because I thought I could do more.. or less for that matter:) 

10- For the WODS that are less than 10 minutes and high intensity…I just hammer it out. That is definitely where the 3 breath rule comes into play. There usually seems to be a skill that I feel can be my “breather” (it never really is, but it’s just a mind game for me). I use that skill to reset my mind for the tough skill. I think to myself, “I only have x amount of rounds or reps left.” Once I start the tough skill then I think “that’s 1 less, 2 less, 3 less.. etc” of course while thinking of shoulders back, tummy tight and all the other form ques I give myself:)

After using one or all of these strategies, the work out is DONE!! What I thought was impossible is now possible:)

Until next time…try one of the above to see if you have found yourself a new strategy:)