I’ve asked this question a million times myself, so I get where they are coming from. Most of us inherently want to reach a point of comfort in our lives. The paradox is that most of us also want to be challenged and pushed. At some point, either due to boredom, curiosity, or competitive drive, we feel this urge to venture outside our normal routine. Most of us also realize that growth entails falling off the bike and scraping our knees but getting back up and trying over and over until it clicks. Despite the pain and fear involved, there is a powerful attraction to growing. Before CrossFit, most of us were in a “comfortable fitness box,” only going outside that box occasionally. CrossFit provides a healthy environment to push through fear, anxiety, and struggle alongside others who know exactly what we are going through.
If we peel back a couple of the layers underneath this question, we have a great opportunity to establish expectations, address misconceptions, and set them up to be successful. Here’s what they are really asking:
1. How long before I see the results I want?
It would be nice if all we had to do was follow a predictable formula of A + B = result C, but things rarely work that way. Results are not always predictable, and many individual factors come into play. If we just focus on results, we set our athletes up for frustration and disappointment. Helping our athletes shift to a focus on the process allows them to enjoy their development. A process-based focus also allows them to experiment with failing without identifying themselves as a failure. There is definitely a time and place to set specific goals — focus on a number on the scale, a certain weight in a lift, or a time in a workout — but building the foundation with quality movement and proper nutrition is what will allow them to achieve those goals. Initially, just focusing on consistently showing up willing to learn, work hard, and have fun is a win in my book. Trust the process and let the results come naturally.