Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger; the mantra of many CrossFitters. I will definitely not devalue pushing ourselves to our limits, but is this always true? Is an injury worth it?
The blog posts over the past few weeks have touched on safety, but I want to talk about it a little more as you can never discuss this topic too much. For anyone who knows me, the topic of safety is fitting. I am a uniquely breakable/injured/recovering person. Please do not misinterpret this as a disregard for safety. It is the opposite, in fact, as I am one of the clumsiest people to walk the earth. Hence, I have heightened awareness of safety in the gym. Regardless of if you are cursed like me or an acceptably capable person, please note some important tips for your well-being.
1. Listen to the coaches. Ok, I know this seems obvious or self-serving, but I promise there is value behind this. How many of you know exactly what you look like every time you do a lift? Exactly. You don’t. So trust the coaches, aka the people who can see you when you lift. None of us want to bring you down personally by asking you to drop your weight or alter a movement. We want you to be safer, and better long-term.
2. Ask a coach. There are more of you than us. We cannot always watch every one of you, even though we want to. Please do not be shy when you need extra help or have a question about a movement. Appropriately seek us out because we want to help you. And it’s likely better for you if we do.
3. Listen to yourself. The coaches are definitely great resources for you, but we are not you. We have no idea how tired you are or if you haven’t eaten enough in any given day. We will advise you to the best of our ability, but you need to listen to your body. If thrusters RX are not a good thing for your tweaked back, don’t do them. Help us to know where you are so we can coach you properly. Additionally, if it is not a good day for you to work out, don’t. I will reference point #3 made in this previous post.
4. Check your ego. We are not here to show each other up at the risk of ourselves. We are here for wellness, comradery, fun, and to spur one another on. Trying to deadlift 6,000# because the person next to you is doing it is an awful idea if your 1RM is 7#. Injury waiting to happen.
5. Be aware. This was also referenced in a recent blog, but bears repeating. There are always a million things going on in the gym and it is easy for us to get in our own world for the sake of getting work done. However, please pay attention to people, equipment and obstacles around you.
6. Wrap your thumbs. It took me about 4 years and a concussion to learn this lesson, but there is a right way to hang on a pull-up bar.