January 16th: Birthday Burpees and mental anguish.
First of all, happy birthday to Sam, who suffered though birthday burpees galore! Thanks to the vast powers of the internet, (and not just the birthday announcement on facebook.) trainers everywhere can find out when your birthday is and congratulate you appropriately.
And now to seriousness: As a trainer, it’s important to properly gauge your athletes. Some athletes are stronger then others, some can perform specific skills better. However recently, I’ve noticed that the athletes that I train regularly are taking whatever thrown at them without breaking a sweat. (Metaphorically speaking anyway.) They’re routinely performing much better than I anticipate.
This is good. Progress is being made. People are growing. Consistent training is paying off in increased performance. I (being outwardly benevolent) am pleased.
The side effect, of course, is that your athletes start to feel a little confident. And who can blame them? They’re crushing tough WOD’s. They should be confident. But I (being secretly tyrannical) grow slightly concerned.
I start to think: given enough confidence, athletes might begin to grow cocky. They might begin to think that because they crushed last weeks training, that they’ll crush todays as well. One thing to will to another. Confidence will lead to pride, then to hubris. Athletes might begin to openly mock the iron fist of authority held by the trainers.
The whole system would fall into chaos. Anarchy would reign. The riot shields we have would finally come into use.
Enter today’s WOD.
AMRAP 20 mins.
30 Double Unders
30 Overhead Squats
30 Toes to Bar
30 Ring dips.
Physically, it’s bad. Mentally, it’s worse. At lower reps these skills tend to test strength. At higher reps, it’s a whole different ball game. The idea behind it was to test the athletes ability to stay focused and controlled during skills that require a high degree of coordination, control and focus. Recovery is key, as is the ability to stay calm and collected.
It’s also a great way to keep everyone (including trainers who’ve done it.) humble.
Good job and see everyone next week.
“Birthday Boy!” To Sam, for obvious reasons. Good man for not complaining. Rest assured, everyone has to do it.
“Poker Face” To Cian, who came in a little rough this morning but was smart enough not to let me notice too much.
“Brutally Honest” To Simon, who admitted mid WOD how much he actually hated me overall. I was touched.
“Honorary sailor” To Colm, because the amount he swore would make anyone nautically inclined take pause.
“Baptism by Fire” To Anna, who walked in to my class after a month off, saw the WOD and instead of running away, beat it. Welcome back.