We all remember Aesop’s Fable of the Tortoise and the Hare, right? The bragging Hare constantly gloated to the unwavering yet slow Tortoise about how incredibly fast he was. Fed up with the Hare’s boasting, the Tortoise challenged him to a race. Halfway through the race, after gaining a quite an advantage on the Tortoise, the over confident Hare stopped for a nap. But the Tortoise never stopped… he kept going at his slow yet steady pace and he won the race!
What does this have to do with CrossFit or working out? The moral of the above story is a perfect metaphor for success and longevity as an every day athlete in the “race” of life! We are on this planet for a good long time. While we’re here, we can either train for the short game or the long game. There’s nothing wrong with the short game… especially if you’re a competitive or elite athlete. However, if you’re an average “Joe” or “Jane” like most of us, the long game is the only game that makes sense!
Training hard and with the “Go Big or Go Home” or “No Pain, No Gain” mentality can be sexy, get you some short term gains and yes… it can be fun. It can also lead to over training, repetitive stress injuries, comes with a higher risk for major injuries and for most of us, the fun doesn’t last very long (it’s referred to as the short game for a reason, just ask pro athletes who are washed up by the ripe old age of 35). In this case, slow and steady really does win in the game of life.
Sure, being the Tortoise may not come with the big, sexy PRs but it does come with slow, steady improvement as well as providing the strength and stamina to carry you through the different phases of your life. My personal goal (for myself and for our members) is to be able to continue doing this until I die. Maybe that sounds trite, but that really is my long game. If I make any headlines, it’s more likely to be because I’m a 90 year old still busting out kipping pull ups and not because of a 60″ Max Height Box Jump or a 300lb Deadlift. At that age, if I can take a tumble and pop back up without a broken hip because my bones are strong from lifting and I have the strength and range from squatting, etc… I will indeed have won the race!