It's Mental Toughness Thursday and today we're exploring the difference between practicing and performing. This post is inspired by an Instagram post by Ben Bergeron. Ben Bergeron owns CrossFit New England and is the coach for the 2016 CrossFit Games overall female winner, overall male winner, several Masters winners and the Team champions. He knows a thing or two about coaching. Here's part of his post:
"...most people are either training or competing, but never get around to actually practicing.” Most athletes don’t know the difference between the three. “Most people think that they’re training, but they’re actually competing,” according to Bergeron “If, after a training session, you’re concerned with the scores of other athletes or whether you beat your PR, you’re competing".
When you're at the gym are you practicing or performing? Which matters most to you, doing something correctly or being at the top of the leaderboard?
When we do our gymnastics progressions we are practicing. When we do our Crew warm-up we are practicing. When we do the Burgener warm up, or any work with the PVC pipe, we are practicing. Practice is incredibly important in the development of your athleticism and fitness. It takes many, many tries and sometimes many fails before something finally clicks.
Training is utilizing the skills we practice at higher intensity. It's the next step in your athletic and fitness evolution.
Performing is when you put it all together for The Open.
The workout of the day is intended for training. If you treat the WOD as a performance you are letting your ego get in the way of doing something better or more efficiently. When you push back on a Coach's cue, you are not open to practice and training, you are focused more on performance.
Next time you're in class, check in with your mental status. Are you nervous about the workout? Perhaps it's because you're thinking of it as a performance. Relax, this is training. Take a deep breath, focus on mechanics, consistency then intensity. Go back to the fundamentals and you will improve. If if work's for the Fittest Woman on Earth, it will work for you.
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