So you’ve grabbed your gym stuff and are headed for your class… Here are some tips on how to make the most out of the (probably) best hour of your day. These make you more “coachable”, help you advance faster and get even better results.
Dive in and leave your troubles outside of the gym. I used to practice martial arts. In these Eastern sports you take off your shoes before entering the gym. As you take off the shoes you leave the dirt outside, you leave your everyday worries and struggles outside as well.
The time in the gym is *your* time. Shut off, dive in. Concentrate on the things the Coach says, make every move concious, focus on feeling what your body does and how it feels, be aware of how you are moving, feel your breath when you push harder… As you do that you automatically forget about the other stuff going on in your life. The break will reinvigorate you – many top level performers say a workout a day helps keep them efficient and creative while working. So your only “worry” should be on squatting with that weight.
Show up early. Try to be 10-15min earlier than your class starts. This way you might also get to see the class before you finishing up – observe how they are doing the WOD, maybe pick up a couple of cues or tricks. This time before class is also a great time to work on your personal goals and/or mobility issues. Being mobile in the area you are about to work with greatly improves your training effect.
Ask if you don’t understand something. In effect: Ask if you want to know anything. Don’t assume. The coach is here for you, it’s his/her job to make sure you know what and why you do it – and excactly how. Observe his movements, listen to his cues – try to correct yourself as you hear them. Also ask for help whenever you need it.
Choose an “off-beat” class. Smaller class sizes allow you to interact more with the coach. In general we at CrossFit Horgen, Meilen and Rapperswil-Jona think there should not be more than 12 people to a coach. This way you are getting the feedback you need to keep moving forward. Also this allows to tailor each and every workout to your needs, your intensity or your limitations. (Can’t use your left knee today? – No problem! We can find another movement for you so you can still get a good sweat on.)
Call the coach over. It’s even easier than it sounds. A simple “Hey Coach, can you check my form?” can go a long way. While the coaches are always going around and correcting, it is always great if you get the timing right and are ready to go as he walks by. Give him your best rep (or two, or three) and see what he has to add.
Give your teammates some love. While we all train to our own personal ability, what gives you your last boost is the team. Being around people that are working hard, motivates you. Contribute to it by giving them a high five, an encouraging “You got this!” or just sticking around after your last rep to see them finish. There’s always plenty of time to clear away the barbells after everyone is done.