At some point Charles Barkley coined and my Dad began to often use the term HIBLET. (Or however you spell it) It was Barles Charkley’s way of pointing out an athlete who seemed to have “had it but lost it”. In the past 6 months… that’s exactly what I let myself become. The downward spiral began as October ended, and by December my Fran had gone from 6:33 to 10min, my Filthy Fifty time shot up from sub-24 to 30 minutes flat. I shake my head in shame just thinking about it.
In the past 6 months… planes, trains and automobiles have taken me from CT as far as Hawaii and back, as cold as Aspen and as hot as Austin, TX – and countless places in between. As much as I love leaving town, it comes at a cost. Consistent training, access to a kitchen, plus any sense of daily routine become elusive, if not impossible. CrossFit life became increasingly difficult to maintain while on the road, and I will own up to throwing my hands up in defeat.
Do you ever find that after eating something you LOVE over and over and over, you get sick of it and need some time apart? Like pizza. You eat it 3 days in a row because 1) it’s freakin’ delicious and 2) you haven’t had it in so long – then the carb coma sets in as you say in your head “okay, pizza, I think we need some time apart. It’s not you, it’s me.”
Just shy of 2 years ago, I drank the CrossFit koolaid. I don’t regret it for a minute. However, spending years as a lone ranger at a globo gym with just a few casual acquaintances along the way can in no way prepare anyone for the global community they become a member of after they suffer through their first WOD.
You join CrossFit. You take it all in. You learn the moves. You meet the people who you don’t yet realize will become extended family. You start achieving goals you previously thought were physically impossible. (Handstand pushups WHAT?) You get high on the endorphins, PRs and your newfound strength. It infiltrates the way you think, the way you eat, the way you sleep, the way you spend your time outside of the office.
When you’re sent out of your CrossFit comfort zone (admit it, we’re in the minority), only then may you realize that your lifestyle change/journey/transformation – whatever you call it – can be overwhelming to other people. It then overwhelms you in trying to figure out how to strike a balance between your home habits and the tight schedule and limited time/resources you may end up with while away from home.
Baking yourself a tray of paleo treats? Forget it. Bulletproof coffee every morning? Hah. CrossFit’s 5 miles away and you don’t have a car? Too bad. The earliest WOD the local box offers is 6a and you have to leave for work by 7a? Tough Cookies. You just got back at 7p and your coworkers want to meet back downstairs in 45min to head out to dinner? Sucks to be you.
If you’re like me, you become overwhelmed by it ALL… and you give up. I had to take a step back, because it became more exhausting trying to figure out how to go about my day than just shutting up and going with the flow.
I’ve left and come back days, weeks, even months later, not recognizing 30% of the faces in the gym anymore. Then again, I don’t even recognize the person looking back at me in the mirror lately. She’s taxed by lifting barbells loaded with weight that I used to toss around during warmups like nothing. Her Grace time is 4:30, far cry from the all-time 3:04 she’s capable of. However, she’s taken Fran down to 8:48 and the Filthy Fifty around 25 minutes again. Progress in the right direction.
Life is a bit easier to manage when you know what to expect. If you go to the same office, same WOD time, with the same people, with the same meal plans week in and week out — life is manageable. Happy. Stress Free. In my case, it became effortless to the point where I took it for granted. It wasn’t until I started traveling increasingly often for increasingly extended periods of time that I realized how overwhelming ‘effortless’ actually was. I folded like a napkin.
Crossfit life went from being everything that made me happy at home to the bane of my existence while out on the road. The onus is now on me to figure out how to find a happy medium between the the two.
At the end of the day, I just want my pants to fit.