I¬†thought to myself, “You can’t write a blog about your best friend. ¬†People will think you’re showing favoritism, being biased“. Then, I thought to myself, it¬†IS my¬†blog…I can write about whatever I want, and because she’s my best friend, I don’t even have to ask her permission. So, here it is…
Over a month ago, Coach Bradley gathered a team for the CrossFit Team Series Online Competition. ¬†Despite not feeling incredibly competitive, I agreed. ¬†He was eager, and it was low pressure. Shlee was also invited to join our team. ¬†After much coercion, she became a member of Team SCF 1 along with Adam Greenberg, Bradley and me. ¬†She joked around and said that we should rename the team, “S%*#, We Got Shlee”.
Rewind a year plus prior to this… Shlee definitely reached what we call a “CrossFit Plateau”. ¬†She has been doing CrossFit since 2009. ¬†She has competed at the national and regional level both as an individual and on a team. ¬†As the CrossFit and the gym grew and athletes changed, she was replaced on the team and became quite content with CrossFitting to stay fit and coaching her athletes at SCF.
But, I knew there was more under that tough exterior. ¬†Once upon a time, Shlee was a competitive collegiate soccer player, and I remember what she was like in 2010 when we trained for Regionals together. ¬†I knew that the fire of competition hadn’t completely extinguished…Well, a little fireball, ex-soccer player, ultra-competitive athlete (Janice) knew this too, and wouldn’t let Shlee rest until she joined the SCF Competitor’s program. ¬†After about a month into this, she joined the aforementioned team.
Fast-forward to today...Team SCF 1 placed THIRD in the Northeast Region out of 116 Rx teams in The CrossFit Team Series. ¬†We placed 37th in the WORLD out of 1,018 rx teams (https://teamseries.crossfit.com/#/).
Now, every athlete on the team played their part, but what I saw in Shlee was absolutely inspiring. ¬†Trust me, I had fun and performed decently because I enjoyed the low-pressure environment, but Shlee…Shlee made it¬†memorable. ¬†When she needed to “bring it”, she always brought it. ¬†She Pr’d in every heavy lift of the competition, at one point lifting her “one rep max” snatch FOUR times fatigued in a WOD. ¬†Without a doubt, there was even one WOD where she was the MVP with her ninja speed handstand push-ups and deadlifts!
What can be learned from this?
Well, there’s a few things…First off, just because you’ve plateaued, doesn’t mean you need to remain there. Perhaps you just need a goal, something to which you¬†should aspire. ¬†Secondly, competition can teach us much¬†about ourselves. ¬†Many of us respond best to pressure. ¬†The competition can be just what it takes to create the pressure to help us to reach our full potential (sign up for the competition at SCF on November 15th!).
And lastly, when it comes to athletic performance and results, it is easy to only look for satisfaction in our own output. ¬†However, just as much gratification can be gleaned from keeping a close eye on our peer’s¬†accomplishments and basking in these alongside them.
Thank you to my team: Adam, Bradley and Shlee for giving me the opportunity to see this.