The importance of tracking your fitness:
Just one of the features to many CrossFit gyms is the whiteboard (which is often electronic these days). The whiteboard signifies so many different things we do. It holds our workout of the day (WOD) it typically has announcements for the members, and most importantly the daily results of our members.
Often, people who first come in don’t understand the importance of tracking a workout. “Why should I care how fast I did that workout, or how many rounds, or what weight I used?” The biggest reason is to monitor your progress. Much as a professional personal trainer should keep track of their client, you should track yours. Not only does it help you accurately remember what you have done to hopefully improve upon next time, but also it can serve as a mark for how far you have come since the beginning. Many of the members in our gym have been doing CrossFit less than 2 years. The whole purpose of the general physical preparedness (GPP) programming is to help you live a longer, healthier life. The CrossFit model truly does allow you to still make progress in areas 10 years down the road. You should care about your progress!
The Pro/Cons of the whiteboard:
CON- EGO: Often times CF athletes let the whiteboard take too much precedence on their progress; however, it comes from looking at other people’s scores/times/weights. Worry about Y O U !
PRO- It can be a competitive tool to help some work harder in the workouts, just don’t let it make or break your success, your personal progression is most important.
CON- Rep shaving, leading back to the last con, occasionally the athlete gets too competitive, and decides to do less reps, or tell a little white lie about their true results. — Who are you helping by doing this?
A side note: Why did you join CrossFit? To get in better shape? Lost weight? Get better at sports? Compete? Whatever those answers are, literally any answer… will not benefit from cheating the workout. No one in the gym cares how fast you did your time; they only care if it was an honest effort. If you need to modify, great you should modify because that will make you improve at a faster rate, rather than shaving reps or not meeting the movement standards. Have integrity, it will take you so much further.
PRO- a great time to celebrate personal records, a nice pat on the back that your hard work has paid off!
Side Note #2- Don’t get to caught up in RX, or modified. Your safety is first priority! You cant get in shape if you cant workout! Listen to your coaches, push the intensity where you can, and where it makes sense. If the RX weight you believe to be ” too easy”, then find the grit to move with perfect form faster with the lighter weight. Higher intensity does not always mean “more weight”.
Track your workouts, have fun, work hard, and have integrity.