Sometimes It Takes Stitches to Find the Right CrossFit

I have done a lot of really clumsy, stupid, embarrassing shit that I normally can just laugh off without thinking twice about it. I have had countless near accidents that were probably a hair away from cracking something open or needing stitches. Basically I have tempted fate many MANY times, and it finally caught up with me. In the most embarrassing way I ever could have imagined. It also gave me cause to pause (and re-evaluate).

As you probably know, I have been on a serious quest to find a different CrossFit box to switch to. I have taken this more seriously than when I have gone car shopping or even job searching (well in a past life at least!)  It is my health and well-being that are going to be affected and well, I take that very seriously.

Finding a CrossFit box is more than just finding a place to workout that has the right class schedule and is less than 7 miles from where I live. It is about finding the right environment, coaches and programming that are going to keep me getting progressively stronger all the time. I want to look and FEEL better every year because I do not want my 20’s or 30’s to have been my peak. (I say this about my experience, but I also encourage everyone to take that into consideration. A lot of people stay at a box often that is not the right fit for a slew of reasons, one of which is they may not even know what better is. This could be another blog post in and of itself so I digress).

I had found a box that I was going to try for a month, but I was not 100% sure if it was the right fit for me. I figured I would not know until I tried and was set to do just that until I had posted a blog I wrote earlier in the year called “4 Common Reasons CrossFitters Divorce Boxes” (link here) to a CrossFit Masters group I am in on Facebook as the members share information and questions. Anyways, I am glad I did it because an owner of a box that is just under 7 miles from where I live reached out to me to drop in. I think he just really wants masters athletes there which I am happy to represent (although after my embarrassing incident, he is surely going to reconsider).

I did drop in and I did like it. I was excited too because he invited me to come back the next day when he would be working out. I should mention, he’s a Regionals/Games athlete. I felt like I got invited to hang with the cool kids. So when I got there for my second drop-in, it kind of felt like meeting CrossFit celebrities. (It was him and 3 other equally bad ass coaches). Despite feeling intimidated, I was digging the vibe. It was a bit exhilarating to know I would potentially be a member at a box where there is that kind of caliber (and for the record, I am NOT insinuating I am ever going to be a Games athlete! I just mean it is inspiring as a unicorn to be working out alongside that talent and coached by the best of the best).

The workout that we were going to do had chest-to-bar pull-ups.  After the warm up, I figured it would be wise to do one or two before the actual workout since truth be told, I am not the best at them. I hopped up on a bar and swung (probably violently as I tend to do that to make sure my chest makes contact with the bar). It happened pretty fast so I’m not 100% what went down (or up) exactly, but at some point in my swing, I smacked my forehead at full force into another bar maybe 6 inches above the one that I was on. Yeah, I somehow managed to not see that when I picked my spot to do a pull-up.

I do not even know how to explain the pain of having my head go crashing into pure metal other it felt like this sort of slow shattering sensation. It was then very quickly followed by pure shock like “What the FREAK just happened?”  It is also possible that due to shock or denial, had someone not said “hey get down, you are bleeding” I would have proceeded to attempt another pull-up. (I never said I am the brightest bulb on the porch).

When I got down from the bar, I went totally numb at that point other than a little tingling in my nose which thankfully I did not break. I was being asked if my head hurt while we were attempting to stop the bleeding. I felt no real pain at that point. Just sheer and total humiliation. (And I probably said at least a dozen times, “I am fine. I am just so embarrassed.”) My ego hurt far more than my head, at least for the ten minutes until I left to go to Urgent Care.  I was also annoyed that I did not even get a workout in which made me even more so embarrassed. (Have I mentioned how embarrassed I was??)

Anyways, I did have to get stitches (3 of them) but it could be worse. I did not break any teeth. I didn’t crack my skull. It is just a bit of a gash prominently on my forehead that may or may not scar. (Also for the record, I typically cannot hit a target to save my life. You should see me trying to do wall balls. Yet, I somehow managed to hit my head dead center. I aced that one).

So I will probably be known as the new girl who needed stitches from a pull-up, but it also made me realize a few things.

For the first few days after my sweet little injury, I was freaked out about the realization of just how many things can go wrong. Because like any sport, there is always the risk for injury. I have already had my share of injuries, and really wanted to believe I was beyond that. I realized I could either continue to wallow in self-pity and fear what may or may not happen, or I could just get over it. I chose the latter. I knew that it would take more than 3 stitches to keep me away from CrossFit.

Despite how much of a drama queen I may feel like, it has made me very aware of something that I did not really want to admit to myself. I had lost my zest for CrossFit. Over the last few months, I have not been enjoying it. I have just wanted to get in and get out.  I have not really cared a whole lot about what my WOD times have been or how many reps I have done or even how much weight I have used or if I felt stronger than yesterday. And that is no way to be.

The fact that I am still looking forward to going back and becoming a member is very indicative of how much I am in need of a change.  The reputation of their box is astounding and getting a small taste of it has like reawakened the bad ass hidden in me (well I guess re-awaken is up for debate. I am not a bad ass, I just want to feel like one. Again).

I know that when I can get past this little blip (because in due time, it really will be just a blip), in the long run, I will get stronger there. I also know that I am sure to discover my areas of weaknesses and problems with technique that will be hard on the old pride too, but a necessary evil to get better. If I can handle walking out of a box after 15 minutes to get stitches, I can handle anything.  My point? The experiences that leave us humbled are often the ones we need the most.

 

 

Dear Universe: I Got This

Foreword:  Can I first take a minute to say THANK YOU? I have been confident in my decision to leave my corporate ­­job and start a new journey. I expected SOME support from my close friends and family. I had NO IDEA that the support would literally come from every single person I have talked to, interacted with and who have been following my posts (and last week’s blog). You would think that as an adult hearing another adult say “I am proud of you” would not give you warm fuzzies, but guess what? It sure as shit does. Having so much validation from everyone has not just humbled me, but has given me such a confidence boost. It is also keeping me accountable and motivated because I feel like this is not just my journey, but something bigger that is going to inspire many people.

Also I really need to work on an elevator pitch for what it is I want to do. For now, let’s just say a fitness coach.

I believe that many of us approach change with practicality. We like to have a backup plan, Plan B, planned out just as well as Plan A. So it is really not surprising that quite a few people have told me (upon learning that I am venturing into something very new, very different), “Well you have great skills and if your plan does not work out the way you want it to, you can always come back here or find another corporate job.” I am very grateful that I am respected and valued enough to have that option, yet I am not allowing myself to even entertain it, not even for one micro second.

I am a strong believer that what you put out to the universe is what you get back. So if I even tell myself or I tell someone else or I tell the universe straight up that I am ok with returning to a job similar to the one I am leaving, then I am essentially giving myself permission to not succeed at my journey ahead. I cannot give myself a fall back plan that  involves returning to a job that does not inspire me. I have to believe in myself and my abilities (and divine timing) that I am on the path meant for me. I have to believe that I CAN (and will!) succeed at my dream. I have to believe that I do not belong in a traditional corporate environment and that I should not ever go back again (unless it is because they want me to coach their employees for healthier living! #shamelessplug).

I have nothing but excitement for what is ahead of me, which if you know me, speaks volume. I am not someone who typically goes with the flow or just “trusts”. It has taken me a long time to get to where I am, and I am choosing to focus on the positive. By giving myself permission to return to the corporate life is like telling myself I may not be good enough to do what I want to do. I would never say that to a friend or my sister or a niece or a nephew that they “may” succeed. I would tell them, “Absolutely! You got this!” So why would I tell myself anything less?

I had an epiphany watching a recent Facebook live that one of my respected leaders at Pruvit (the company I am an independent promoter for) posted.  She talked about how when she herself chose to take a leap of faith to promote, she had a lot on the line financially. She really did not even have the money for the small investment to get started. She did it though, and she told herself that she would and HAS to sell the product she was investing in. And she did. Pretty damn quickly too.

When she was telling that story, I realized I had the complete opposite mindset when I started promoting. I told myself that the worst case scenario was that if I did not sell the initial batch ketones I had to purchase that it was just a little bit of money and no major setback. And guess what? It took me months to completely sell them. Why? Because I gave myself an out. I told myself “it is ok if I do not succeed.” And after hearing my leader talk and having many conversations this past week with many people about my sort seemingly crazy but admirable career change, I realized that I need to ditch that thinking, with ketones and with my future business. I need to tell myself that I HAVE to do this. And I will. I believe that 100%. And I have to do it without a backup plan or contingency thinking.

I also think that we give ourselves permission to not succeed because it is easier on our ego. It is far harder to give something everything we have and not succeed than it is to maybe give half our energy and fail. Because then, it’s like, “Well I didn’t really commit to it.” Or “I knew it was risky, so I’m ok that I did not do well.”  If I am walking away from a solid income and stability, why on earth would I want to take any chances that I cannot replenish that? Girlfriend would have to be crazy. Which I am not. I am practical and sensible, yes. And even pragmatic. In this scenario though, where it is my livelihood and more importantly my happiness and mental sanity, I am completely committing to this. I want to. And I have to.

Committing to something obviously is not solely a way of thinking. I still have a lot of hard work cut out for me. I have to commit every fiber of me to this. Probably just as importantly, I have to work on a little thing too called confidence. If I believe in myself and my plans, then others will too. (People snuff out doubt and weakness like hounds, and that just comes back around in the universe). For the first time in my life, career wise, I am being very brave. I have no room for giving myself an out, even if it is hardly detectable.  Instead, I will stay focused, stay positive, and hustle my buns off. Because there is a lot of amazing, fulfilling, beyond- my dreams success waiting for me.