AAAhhhhhh…FINALLY! A chance to sit down and get back to something I USED to do with relative frequency…BLOG! For those of you that came from the old gym you may remember some of my previous blogs in which I not only coached but also took time to rant a bit about the subject of the day. Needless to say its good to be back at it, haha.
As I sit outside typing away and attempting to somehow impart what simple advice I can to the members of my gym, I simply can’t do it without looking back at the last year and taking inventory of the experiences that have brought me where I am today. My sweet baby girl Marley came into the world exactly one year ago today and I could not be a happier or luckier man to be able to have her as the latest addition to my little family. I thank my wife every day for giving me my daughters and for loving them the way she does. Of course, having a second child was not nearly enough excitement for one year….we also had the best CrossFit Open Season/Event we have ever put on in 2015! We not only moved locations and worked out in our driveway in the meanwhile but with the help of the most generous and caring friend I have ever had, BUILT an entirely new gym in order to make it happen. We have seen our Wrath family grow to add some of the most outstanding and amazing people I have ever met and for that I am truly thankful.
Now with all of the change and “newness” that we have had to manage this past year I also could not think of where I am in terms of my own journey with what I love so much…fitness. I would be lying to myself and any of you reading this to say I am better than I have ever been. With how and where I had to dedicate my time and energy this last year my own fitness had to take a back seat. The circumstances of life always seem to get the better of us and my life is no different. I know how often I am sure you all find yourselves thinking that owning a box must be awesome because you “just get to workout all day.” Oh if it were so, haha. Sorry to disappoint you all but trust me, if the above statement was true you would see a very different Coach Zach in front of you every day at the box. The truth of the matter is that usually running the box means caring and doing more for others than for my own fitness. I find it funny that I always preach the importance of recovery and sleep and yet I am sure that it has been over 3 years since I have gotten adequate sleep. I am sure the 5AM crew gets the brunt of it from me in that regard. Nonetheless, I am forever grateful to be able to help other people and to see all of YOU grow and become better versions of yourselves.
Now keep in mind that I do not say any of this to invoke sympathy or simply to be overly nostalgic. I am actually reflecting on the reality that I am simply NOT where I WANT to be. Have I taken a few steps back? Yes….no question!! Will I have my best finish in the 2016 Open to date? Not a chance in HELL!!! Do I let that thought further discourage me and keep me from picking myself back up? F&@% NO!!!! See, when I get frustrated that I have to work for MONTHS just to get back to a fraction of my old PRs, and I have to LIVE on the Assault Bike to get some of my engine back again. I try to use that as an opportunity to realize that I am where I am not because of the path that lies before me, but because of the path that lies behind me. I think of truly how far I have COME since I started my journey nearly 6 years ago and how 5 kipping pull ups in a row seemed impossible. I am more amazed at the idea that while I may not be forever improving on a daily or weekly basis and that I may fall off the paleo wagon from time to time, I can still make a choice every day with what I am going to do with my life. I can make a choice to change for the better because, thanks to CrossFit and the knowledge I have gained in my fitness journey, I now know WHAT needs to be done. I know HOW to get headed back in the right direction and to achieve MORE. Many times people are left discouraged in their life decisions not because they don’t have the desire to change for the better but they honestly do not know WHAT TO DO. To paraphrase wise words I once read, “they (we) are kept from (the right path, getting help, improvement) because they know not where to find it.” I am sure that many of you have gotten frustrated in the past with fad diets and the newest workout DVD and the new “bikram/intense/Define/Orange/Yoga/Pump FUSION” thingy that you tried and got next to nothing out of it. Something about what we do at Wrath has helped (or at least I hope) you in a way that those things could not. I have seen so much improvement in all of you that I know that you all have been able to see and feel what the HOW is. You may feel like I do in looking at where you “once were” and seeing that you are not there anymore and this may discourage you. DON’T LET IT!! Take joy in the fact that you KNOW HOW to change for the better and improve. You know HOW to have fitness integrated into your daily life. And this all leads to the ultimate idea I want to share with you and the thing that brings me more excitement than anything else…YOUR BEST IS IN FRONT OF YOU!!
Understand that this doesn’t mean that if you were a semiprofessional athlete 20 years ago that you can somehow make it back to the big leagues lol. But it DOES mean that with the combination of your own determination and inner drive along with the right tools and support (such that found at Wrath J) your best life is in front of you. Regardless of age or where you sit today you should look to the future with hope and excitement. The journey is hard and the road seems long from time to time and we are certain to fall every now and then. This doesn’t mean we are not meant to succeed!! This means we are human and we struggle. But there is beauty in struggle. In struggle we find out what we are made of and we grow stronger. But keep in mind that his growth comes not without struggle. Pushing ourselves past our perceived limits by our peers and the right training can take us to a better place.
I hope that all of us will look at the past year and be thankful for where we are today. Take time to look at what has brought you to where you are now and then take time to refocus your efforts on the future and what CAN be. Make goals for this next year and WRITE THEM DOWN!!! Share them with someone else that will help you hold yourself accountable. Do not hesitate to let us know how WE can help you accomplish them. Whether you have increased ten fold or have fallen off the wagon a bit simply realize that the hard part is done for you already. You know the answer! You know the HOW!!! Do not let the negative experiences of the past discourage you. In the immortal words of Mark Twain, “20 years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”