Just the other morning I was talking with Henry after the 6:30am workout about how he uses CrossFit workouts as part of his preparation for SEAL training.  His progress in just the last couple of months has been noticeable and he’s determined to work hard now so he can give his all when he gets to training.  He also shared his story with me about his previous experience with SEAL training.  He said he went into it without physically and mentally preparing himself and was behind the power curve from the beginning.  Coupled with the stresses and strains of being separated from his family, he decided to DOR (Drop on Request) from the program.  He said the straw that broke the camel’s back came after one of the instructors questioned the “fire in his heart”.  Understanding that it’s not unusual for the instructors to try to get the SEAL candidates to quit, he initially dismissed the statement.  Over the next few days, however, he found his thoughts occupied by what the instructor said until he woke up from a deep sleep around 3am one morning, decided to get dressed, reported to the cadre of instructors, and DOR’d himself.  He said he just came to the realization that he had indeed lost the fire in his heart and wouldn’t be able to continue giving the program and his teammates his all.

Needless to say, his story resonated with me.  It got me thinking about my training, my goals, and my priorities.  Whether the “fire” Henry spoke of could be interpreted as passion, drive, motivation, sense of urgency, love, or anything to that effect, I realized that my training lately had been missing a critical element, fire.  This weekend’s NLP competition was an awesome experience, and although I placed 10th I know I could have done much better as I’m sure many of you who competed probably feel the same way.  If nothing else, competing helped rekindle some of my own fire especially after seeing you all train hard and push yourselves through Saturday’s tough workouts. 

For everyone who came down to Irvine on Saturday, whether to compete or cheer, I hope you feel the competitive fire in your own hearts burning.  Many of us have the Clash of the Affiliates competition in our sights on Sept 11 and/or the next NLP Invitational in December to shoot for, but if not I encourage you to find something to help focus your training and provide you the fuel to help keep your fire burning hot.  What are your goals?  What stokes your fire to fuel the intensity in your workouts?  Feel free to share in this forum, but I hope you at least have something in mind or written down in your workout book.

So I ask again, what’s that burning smell?  No it’s not the refinery up the street, but it’s the fire in the heart of each and every member of this up-and-coming gym, pushing themselves to do today what others won’t, so tomorrow they accomplish what others can’t!

WOD 08.18.10

Deadlift 1×5
Press 3×5

24 Responses to “What’s that Burning Smell”

August 18, 2010 at 7:16 AM

Great post Sean! My goal is no more bands (or binky) starting September 9th.

And to beat Brian every day.

August 18, 2010 at 7:42 AM

I want to finish in the top 40% for the December competition. When we put up the “girls” board, I was to have the number 1 spot in at least ONE WOD.

And to beat Anna every day.

August 18, 2010 at 7:50 AM

this is such a good post! and my goal is to do at least one workout as rx’d before sept 30. i can do it!!! and, also, if we’re trying to beat people, i’d love to kick scott’s ass in several consecutive WODs. :)

August 18, 2010 at 8:05 AM

Goal is to beat Brian, Anna, and Drew everyday.

August 18, 2010 at 9:43 AM

1)Lose the gut that has taken me a lifetime to build
2)Unassisted pullups..bain of my childhood
3)Toes to bar/Knees to elbows..bain of my adulthood
Great post Sean. Good luck to Henry in his SEAL training!

August 18, 2010 at 10:09 AM

great post! my goals:
-pull ups without bands (*sigh* one day)
-normal people push ups! (no bar, no knees!).. hopefully I can achieve this by november
-lose a few unwanted inches around my waist

August 18, 2010 at 10:11 AM

@Melissa – Why the hate? Why do you want to kick MY ass? :) j/k

@Xuan – I feel you brother! Personally, I’m hoping to knock another 10-20 off the gut by the end of the year. Your pullups will come soon. T2B & K2E are killing me as well, but I’m sure they will come. Paleo is the answer. I know it sounds crazy. Give in to the dark side!! :)

My Goals:
-Drop another 10-20 lbs
-Complete Fran Rx’d
-Sub 3 hour Malibu Olympic Tri (Sept 11th)
-Sub 1:45 Half Marathon (Nov 14th)

August 18, 2010 at 10:24 AM

My goals:

- 2x bodyweight deadlift
- legit 4min Fran, 3min Grace and never have to do Helen again unless I can get in my car and around the block.
- 225 clean and jerk
- and long term bodyweight OHS

August 18, 2010 at 10:32 AM

@scott, what 1/2 marathon are you doing?! omg i need to train with you buddy!

August 18, 2010 at 10:38 AM

My goal us to help everyone attain their goals (no binkies), finish in top 5 next competition, qualify for nationals in an oly meet by the end of next year, and to keep letting Sean beat me (in wods). :-)

Michael H
August 18, 2010 at 10:40 AM

Great post Sean! My goal is to look good naked just like Jake.

I’m definitely looking forward to the clash next month and have recently realized to keep up with you guys I need to maintain a consistent diet, complete a rx’d benchmark WOD with a respectable time and up the ante on the weights even if it means I’m going to fail along the way. Cause that’s only going to fuel that hunger to keep pushing!

August 18, 2010 at 10:55 AM

@Pooja – Michelle and I are doing the Malibu Half Marathon. We should definitely go for some training runs together. When is your next race?

BTW – Michelle came home from CF yesterday, saw my buddy Brian and I on our brick transitioning from the bike to run and decided to join us for 6 miles!! She’s CRAzy!! I would be worried about burnout, but luckily she’ll be getting some much needed “rest” days this weekend in Vegas!

For those who don’t know a “Brick” is a 2-sport workout, either Swim and Bike or Bike and Run, during a Triathlon training session. And a “Trick” is when you do all 3 sports in a training session. Not to be confused with the “Tricks” Jake is turning on the mean streets of the ‘Gundo.

August 18, 2010 at 11:05 AM

Scott, stop asking me for a ZJ. If you have to ask what it is, you can’t afford it.

August 18, 2010 at 11:48 AM

Anna: You sooooo don’t need bands =). My goal is to be strong like Avelyne and Ruth (and make it look easy like they do) and to make better numbers like Anna and Steph =P (stop tryin to make me look bad LOL).

Great post! This is something I think about almost every day.

August 18, 2010 at 1:40 PM

AWESOME Post! I work right across the street from the BUD/S base and constantly see them running around, keeping that motivation high! My goal is to get a muscle-up (finally)!

August 18, 2010 at 1:56 PM

Geez it’s a vocabulary lesson everyday on here!

Awesome post Sean! I feel ya on the competition and the loss of drive. Somewhere along the road, CF just became routine for me. I stopped pushing myself and became content. After my performance this past weekend though, things are changing. I will no longer be afraid to fail in order to push myself to be stronger to succeed. I will get my muscle up and I will master dubs. I will surpass my BS and press plateau.

The gloves are off.

August 18, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Since I pretty much just started I’m still in awe of how strong everyone is, especially the ladies. My goals are pretty much the same as Pooja’s – being able to do a “regular” pushup, be able to do pullups without a band, be able to do a WOD without modification.

August 18, 2010 at 4:19 PM

Great post Sean! I think that’s what drew me to Crossfit in the first place. It’s the kind of activity that requires a kind of drive from the mind and heart that you don’t really find anywhere else.

My goals are to learn kipping pull ups in the next the month (no bands), to start learning HSPUs, muscle ups and pull overs, and to perfect my lifting technique (pretty much all of mine need work) so I can start setting some lifting goals. Hopefully in the next couple of weeks I’ll be able to set more specific goals!

August 18, 2010 at 4:37 PM

Sean, Ruth, Avelyne and Jake, I didn’t get a chance to say congrats on a job well done in the competition. I got to watch your heats and you guys killed it. Job well done and it was great to see CF Intrepid represented well at the NLP. We’ll see you guys in December at the next event!

August 18, 2010 at 4:37 PM

As my doggie Maile would say, “I LOVE the Chase”.
My fire and drive comes from all you hard core Intrepid Ladies!! Every day that I walk into the gym, look at the board and I pick a lovely lady to chase. Then it’s ON!!
Thank you Ruth, Avelyn, Anna, Alia, Becky and Jenna for lighting a fire under my ass that is causing that freakin burning smell :)
1. Beat Mike!!
2. No More Bands (Pull-ups by my b-day, Hand stand push-ups, ring dips . . .)
3. Faster run times
4. Master Cleans and Snatches
5. Complete bench mark WODs Rx’d

August 18, 2010 at 9:11 PM

Love all the comments today. Keep up the great work everyone!

August 19, 2010 at 8:47 AM

Little late to this post…

Thanks for bringing this up Sean!

My number one goal (and really the reason I enjoy CrossFit so much) is to reach the point of absolute exhaustion in every workout. You know, that feeling when you have nothing left to push yet somehow find energy through encouragement of your peers or your own mental adrenaline to finish the WOD. If I can reach that point every day and learn to push that boundary of giving up further and further away, then each day will be improvement over the next. This “goal” seems to be a never-ending one (you can continue to push your threshold), but obtaining the ability to ignore fatigue and strengthening my mental strength will give me complete confidence in competing and succeeding in CrossFit. This sort of skill is something CrossFit teaches us all to use in everyday life, not just in the walls of Intrepid :) .

August 19, 2010 at 10:00 AM

Echoed my thoughts exactly Nick (on all accounts even being late), however i will have to add my goal of not getting my butt kicked by a jump rope anymore.

Excellent post Sean, I really enjoyed reading this and all the responses. Also, best of luck to Henry in his pursuit, hopefully Crossfit is helping you achieve it!

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