Fear Factor

By Hilary Achauer

In Coaching, CrossFit Defense

April 24, 2015

PDF Article

Kevin Ogar, Tony Blauer and others explain how to overcome trepidation to find success in the gym and in life.

It was July 2010, my first week of CrossFit. The affiliate had opened a month prior, and I was the only person in the noon class. After I warmed up, the coach brought out a 20-inch wooden box and told me to jump up on it.

I looked at the rough edges, eyeing the sharp corners, the screws embedded in plywood. My coach was looking at me expectantly, so I bent my knees and made a half-hearted jump, rising a few inches off the floor. I was nowhere close to the top of the box.

I kept trying, but each time I got ready to jump I’d look at the box and hesitate. Finally, my coach pointed to a tractor tire in the corner of the gym.

“Jump on that,” he said.

“How tall is it?” I asked.

“Just jump on it,” he said.

I walked over to the tire, bent my knees, jumped and ended up on top of the tire.

“That’s 22 inches tall,” my coach said. “Now jump on the box.”

And I did. I didn’t improve my jumping ability on the walk to the tire, but a soft-edged target removed my fear. Once the fear was gone, the task became manageable.

Everyone feels fear at some point in any challenging athletic endeavor. Even the most experienced athlete eventually finds himself or herself face-to-face with a weight or a workout that makes the knees shake.

Everyone feels fear. The secret to success is managing that fear.

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1 Comment on “Fear Factor”


wrote …

'Just let the fear be there'.
Great article and totally in agree with that. Coach not to deny fear, but to use it. Coach not as a 'superhero without fear', but as a human.

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