If you follow our social media account and have a pulse, you know that we hosted Saberspook 2018 last weekend. Nearly forty teams competed in Scaled and Rx divisions, battling assault bikes, burpees, box jumps, cleans, split jerks, front squats, ring muscle-ups, double-unders and more.
I was privileged enough to compete in the scaled division and it was a truly awesome experience. This was my first competition, and I learned three major things about CrossFit. Of course, I knew in my head that these things were true before Saberspook, but there’s a difference between intellectual knowledge and actually feeling something, y’know?
1. I learned that CrossFit really is for everybody and every body.
One of the things that got me hooked when I started CrossFit is the variety of body shapes and sizes in every box. You simply cannot look at a person and tell whether they are fit, and CrossFit confirms this. A very thin woman might be able to hoist 200 pounds overhead, while a fat woman (like me!) can deadlift almost twice her body weight. I love not being able to judge a book by its cover.
There are many facets of our bodies that we simply cannot change, like our height and overall shape. CrossFit competitions render those unchangeable characteristics irrelevant. There’s no such thing as a disqualifying body, and because functional fitness incorporates so many different movements, there is also a “wheelhouse workout” for every body. To paraphrase Dr. Seuss, an athlete is an athlete, no matter how big or how small.
2. I learned that community is more important than winning.
CrossFit competitions might as well be a Care-Bear convention. Though we’re technically competing against each other, everyone is invested in seeing their friends and community members do well, and the camaraderie amongst your fellow athletes brings a contagious smile to even the most serious game-face. The loudest cheering at Saberspook came not from spectators there to watch individual people, but from the athletes themselves, screaming their support for fellow competitors from every gym.
Derek and I knew we weren’t gonna win any medals, but hoped for best costume. And who were we cheering for during the costume contest scream-off? Beauty and the Beast, that’s who. Because these people were awesome, and camaraderie is more important than competition.
On a serious note: people with news apps on their phones found out during the competition that a terrorist was assassinating people in Pittsburgh. It was a brutally stark contrast between the happiness and joy inside our box and the terror outside. You need the former – strong community, encouragement, and support – to combat the latter.
3. I learned the value of pushing your limits – especially when it’s scary.
Pushing your limits is hard, yo – and also the most important thing that you can do as a human and an athlete. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: growth and change only happen on the edge of comfort.
Several of our members signed up for this competition knowing that they struggled with a certain movements in their chosen division. They all put in extra hours at the gym to work on that sticky movement in the weeks and months leading to Saberspook. Some of those people were able to conquer the movement, some weren’t. And you know what? They ALL did the right thing by pushing themselves out of their comfort zone regardless of the outcome. After all, what if the person had signed up for the easier division (or not signed up at all)? Then there’s a ZERO percent chance that they would master the elusive movement. They banked on the higher chance, and committed themselves to nervousness, discomfort, and personal growth.
Your turn. How did your Saberspook experience pan out? What did you learn?
For more information about CrossFit Sabertooth, to see pictures from Saberspook, to sign up for a FREE intro session or simply to say hello, click here!