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Reflecting on Workouts

We all know that the WODs are physically challenging, and of course, that is why we are here! We work hard so that strength and conditioning improve over time, increasing our overall level of fitness.

The mental aspect of CrossFit (and working out in general) is often something that we don't spend a lot of time reflecting on, yet it plays such an important role in how we feel about ourselves before, during, and after the workout, and in how we approach future workouts.

Maybe you dread box jumps or pull ups, and on days you come to the gym and see one of those movements (or heaven forbid, BOTH) on the board. What do you say to yourself? 

Is it "I've got this." "These aren't my best movements, but I'll try to improve today." "Well, this is a chance to practice!"

Or is it more like "OH NO WHAT HAVE I DONE?" "I'll NEVER get a pull up no matter how hard I try?" "Is it too late to leave the gym, will anyone notice if I disappear?"

We all know *in our heads* that practice and consistency will help improve almost anything in life, especially with some guidance from someone who knows how to help you tweak things to improve. But sometimes it is difficult to feel that way. It is easy to get caught up in the negative thoughts and emotions that we experience, forgetting that everyone else who is "ahead" of where you currently are also probably didn't have pull ups once upon a time or took a really long time to work up to the RX height on the box.

One thing that can help you change this mindset is reflecting on each and every workout after it's done. Ask yourself these three questions:

1. "What went well in this workout?" Because, chances are, something went just fine! Maybe you killed the run, or did the power cleans with great form. 

2. "What needs work?" Note: This isn't "what went wrong in this workout?" for a reason! EVERYONE needs to work on something, whether it's pull ups or muscle ups or achieving a better position in the bottom of a squat or mobility or coming to the gym consistently. Noting what needs work helps you reframe the less-than-ideal parts of your workout into a future-looking, improvement mindset. 

3. "What did I learn from doing this workout?" Maybe you learned that you need to think about pacing a bit more, or maybe it was that you went too heavy or too light with the lifting. Maybe you learned that a workout on your third day in a row after a long day on the job is a 60% day instead of an 80% day.

Taking the time to reflect briefly on your workout can help you develop a growth mindset about working out in general, and help you reframe those less than ideal experiences that you dread into challenges you accept, and maybe even feel excited about.

Give it a try and let us know what you think!

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