Workout of the Day

When Showing Up Isn't Enough


Let’s take a look at a case study of a hypothetical athlete. This individual rarely misses training days, and has spent the last seven years “in” their practice (be it CrossFit, weightlifting, bodybuilding, running, etc.). They show up, they put in work, perhaps even a few hours of it every day, and they remain consistent. At first glance, they seem to be doing it all right. And yet, they have very little to show for their efforts. They seem to check all of the boxes, but their performance is mediocre and they don’t have the qualities you would expect from an athlete who has spent years consistently in a dedicated practice. It’s a strange phenomenon, but it’s not all that uncommon. There are times when “doing everything right” is in fact a way to hide from your responsibility for the outcome.

This individual in our imaginary case study has, in their mind, an immunity to responsibility for their outcome. They are “doing everything right,” after all, and so if their performance remains mediocre, they are in the clear and the reason must be something external. Luck, predisposition, the practice itself, whatever. The real crux of this situation, though, is how we define the process. This individual defines training, or the process, or whatever you’d like to call it, as a series of boxes to check. They have chosen their checklist and have settled into it. They are doing the training equivalent of punching the clock in a dead-end job. Yes, there is work involved, but if training is an effort aimed at progressing performance (and it is), seven years of never adapting to the fact that you are only producing mediocre and stagnating results is not really a dedicated training effort. It is an effort that views quantity as the only significant factor and ignores the importance of quality. We know, however, that training requires constant adaptation, as the target and the required stressors and recovery change as the individual develops. So while the individual who takes responsibility for their results sees stagnation as a sign that they need to change something, the individual in our case study sees it as a sign that the situation is deterministically settled and out of their control.

We are vocal about our belief in the importance of showing up and committing to the practice, and we stand by this; but make no mistake, showing up and punching the clock is not enough. You’ve showed up, yes; but did you get what you came for? If the practice stops yielding results, it’s your responsibility to seek out the changes that will set you on the path to progress, because that’s what the process is really about.

- PS


  • 18 min AMRAP

    • 10 hang power snatches (95/65)

    • 10 burpees over bar

    • 50 DUs