July 07, 2010
Psychologists and doctors have offered perspective on the mental aspects of CrossFit, so original firebreather Greg Amundson delivers a CrossFit coach’s guide to goal setting, self-talk and an indomitable spirit.
Several years ago, CrossFit founder Coach Greg Glassman pulled me aside at a Level 1 Certification and said, “Greg, the greatest adaptation to CrossFit takes place between the ears.”
Greatly influenced by this remark, I set out to become a student of the mental aspects of CrossFit. Through observation, practice and research, I discovered something remarkable: the world’s best CrossFit athletes had learned to control and optimize their self-talk. This potent mental skill resulted in their ability to formulate and achieve their goals—both inside the gym and out—with consistency and grace. The natural extensions of their positive self-talk were optimistic energy, mental toughness and indomitable spirits evident in their physical accomplishments in the CrossFit workouts.
I concluded that Coach Glassman was indeed correct: the mental adaptation to CrossFit was of critical importance to CrossFit athletes and coaches hoping to forge elite fitness. Now, nearly four years after the seed was first planted, I hope to share the key lessons learned as a result of the spark Coach Glassman set inside me.