There were quite a few readers, many of them new, who recently visited to read last blog. I wonder why that is… (That wasn’t a question.)
I met the lovely Jaclyn, Heather, and Einar for a trail run. A trail run! We met at Harris Park at 1:30. And it was very good.
However, just an hour prior to the run, whilst packing items for the upcoming move, I hit my head HARD on the corner of a drawer. The wound immediately began bleeding profusely and my teeth hurt. Yes, I hit my head so hard that my teeth hurt. Jeff jokes that I hit my head at least once a week. That’s 52 times a year. And that’s probably a conservative estimate.
Anyhow, we ran counterclockwise on the trail. I am relieved to report that, even though it’s been since November since I’ve run the trail, I haven’t slowed down! Yay! I took the lead from the start and I kept that lead.
Fifty percent of the runners fell. Jaclyn wasn’t one of them, nor was I.
Whilst running I ruminated on the upcoming move and whether or not I’ll look for opportunities to coach CrossFit. I’ll likely take a break from doing so and instead focus on my own strength and conditioning. And running! I feel my most confident and happy whilst running. I truly do!
I also reminisced about coaching failures and successes. I began to think of one athlete in particular: Alex. I remember the day she and her husband, Brian, dropped by the box for their first visit (and as a way to determine if they’d like to join). The workout included rowing and, well, Alex and Brian both demonstrated shitty rowing form. They both, however, were very open to feedback.
And Alex has continued to be open and responsive to feedback. She’s an absolute pleasure to coach. Yes, she’s competitive. More often than not she’s most competitive with herself and is the first to voice displeasure with her own performance. She’s a very gifted athlete: exceedingly strong for her size and excels and just about any bodyweight movement.
When she joined the box she couldn’t perform pistols. She has mastered pistols, and completes them as fast as any other female at the box. I remember the day she said, “I have pistols now.” And she most certainly did. She also struggled with double unders. She focused on improving her form and now can successfully complete a significant number of unbroken reps.
I most remember the moment she completed her first bar muscle up. She was beside herself with glee, having struggled with this movement for, well, I don’t know how long. The thing that I admire the most about Alex is that once she gets it, she gets it. In other words, she doesn’t lose the ability to complete a movement.
I’ve seen far too many athletes cheat. Some cheat by not completing the movements as required, e.g., not squatting below parallel even when they are able to do so. Others cheat by shaving reps, e.g., completing 8 reps when 10 are required. Some cheat by not completing movements as required and by shaving reps. That’s the most egregious. I have never seen Alex cheat. I have seen her lose count, but she always errs on the side of not counting reps, e.g., if she loses count she goes with the lowest number in mind. Can’t recall if this is the 10th or 15th rep? It’s the 1oth. Can’t recall if I completed 7 or 8 rounds? Then it’s 7. I admire this about her.
And you know what I like most about Alex? Alex. She’s a genuinely kind and caring person, self-effacing and modest. She’s also fun and approachable! I’m going to miss coaching her and witnessing her continued improvements in strength and conditioning.
Brian’s just okay. (Brain has also shown tremendous improvements in both his strength and conditioning, but the focus is on Alex.)
P.S. Don’t be jelly, Jaclyn. Or Brian.
P.P.S. We received an offer on our house! It’s getting real, folks, and we may be closing on our house in Asheville as early as January 30. That’s less than 2 weeks from today!