Annie recently celebrated her 500th class! We are so proud of all that she has accomplished since training with us. Her indomitable spirit inspires us all.
Annie Matney - Why do you Do CrossFit?
What was your fitness, CrossFit, or yoga "life" like before you started training with True Spirit CrossFit & Yoga.
My fitness level before True Spirit was not too good, basically, I didn't exercise so it was just doing bodywork (as a Rolfer) and doing life that was keeping me fit, and it was keeping me less fit that I thought. My husband and I would do some minor grappling :) and I was getting so weak I wasn't able to do it! I was going to turn 40 in a year and I realized that I was no longer going to be "strong" just by standing in the gravitational field. I would have to work for it.
What brought you to True Spirit CrossFit & Yoga in the first place?
When I started at True Spirit I had been looking for something for years that I could get into. I did yoga sometimes but... then one day I saw a friend at the grocery store and she was glowing and said she had just finished her CrossFit Level 1 training. She looked great! In fact, she was the third person who looked great that I met who also did CrossFit...and so I said, "I want to do CrossFit." She told me what to do and I did it. I was not afraid of CrossFit per se, I just wanted to try it since it made all these people look amazing. Since then I've become far less interested in looks and more interested in what people can do.
What was your first impression? Has that changed?
My first impression was that I had, without shopping around or anything, just fallen into the best CrossFit gym around. I mean I could tell from the beginning the amount of passion and dedication and energy issuing forth from Leslie and James and the coaches. They also drew a group of CrossFitters who liked to laugh, pretty much about themselves and everything else. And it was fun, and it was empowering, and I got great coaching and I still do. I love True Spirit.
What was the first thing fun or positive thing you experienced while training with us?
I think a funny early moment was the realization that I was allowed to pick up a barbell and move it around. I was surprised and a little nervous. But then I learned how much fun it is and that it makes you stronger and more coordinate, and then afterwards you laugh and you feel great.
Are you working on any special CrossFit related skill now?
I am working on taking another minute off a 5k I'm going to run in February, I never thought I'd be doing that....much less that I would be motivated and inspired about it (before CrossFit I thought exercise was drudgery). But that's what I've gotten from CrossFit, the confidence and motivation and skills to do different things athletically. But I think CrossFit itself is still my number 1 favorite activity for exercising :).
How has you life changed since training with TSCF?
I feel more empowered and confident and patient...and less perfectionistic now. The challenge of trying things I'm not good at and working on them gives me humility and I feel really excited when I am kinda good at something. So it's just a win-win. But my favorite thing about True Spirit---if not obvious already--is the community.
What's your favorite True Spirit CrossFit memory?
Any time any coach gets excited about something is a good memory, like when they are helping me or another person with a skill. I guess it was doing the Kittens and Cougars competition with Leslie as my partner and feeling terrified (I'm the kid who used to plead sick during gym class) but I felt so honored to be on her team so I really tried hard. Also during that competition I saw Meg doing burpees and just leaping out of them (shout out to Meg!) so I decided to to 100 burpees a day for 100 days...& I finished that in 108 days. Anyway, it's fun to see what other people can do and feel inspired by that.
The Myth of Overtraining
All of us, at some point, have experienced a few days, or even an entire week, where we feel drained from our workouts. Some of us might be feeling this way now after the CrossFit Open.
Rather than feeling energized and revitalized from a session at the gym we feel sore, crabby and weak. While it's easy to attribute these feelings to "Overtraining," what is most likely happening is that we are "Under-recovering."
Recovering from our workouts and training sessions consists primarily of three important lifestyle practices:
3. STRESS MANAGEMENT
If we are not making optimal choices for these three lifestyle practices then we are just not able to recover from the physiological stress of our workouts and training.
Many of us are using wearable technology devices like Whoop, Garmin, Oura, Polar, FitBit and others. All of these types of wearable tech can help us learn how to prioritize recovery and customize our training sessions so that we can maximize our fitness gains.
Our programming at the gym is constantly varied so that we have longs days, short days, heavy days, and REST DAYS. This variance helps prevent us from going too hard too frequently. However if you're adding lots of volume on non gym days, or doing high intensity double days, you can potentially set yourself up to be in a recovery deficit.
If you're using wearable technology, you can use your own biometric data to help guide your training intensity and volume. You can also use it to help you prioritize important recovery practices like sleep, hydration, massage, contrast baths, restorative yoga, foam rolling, and optimal nutrition (like prioritizing protein.) You can read how other Whoop users have developed optimal recovery practices here.
Sometimes, hard-charging folks like us CrossFitters find it hard to take rest-days, easy days, and low intensity days. We know we should "listen to our body," yet sometimes we don't heed what it has to say. Give yourself the space to adapt and learn how to be a mature athlete by giving equal measure to recovery as you give to training.
Record your WOD on Beyond the Whiteboard.
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