From time to time, I am going to be asking content experts to write blogs for our community to get fresh perspectives and information out to our community. Here’s a great, short blog from a friend and client of mine who I asked to blog.
Let me introduce myself.
Lynda Schmidt, married, mother of two teenagers, Full-time Nurse Practitioner and avid CrossFit competitor. I am 46 years old and have been Crossfitting for three years. I have been competing for the last three as well. I finished 4th in my region and 69th in the worldwide open this year.
I met Darin through his page 4Tfit on Facebook. We began a conversation and realized we had a lot in common. He also could tell from my pics what types of problems I was having with my low back pain. We got together and he evaluated me. He gave me a lot of great advice and even made videos for my coach and chiropractor. Great stuff!
I saw him at my most recent CrossFit competition and told him I was so impressed with his passion for the sport of CrossFit and the older CrossFit athlete. So I asked “Darin, what can I do to help?” His answer, “write a blog about your latest competition.” I am very hesitant to do this because it was my worst performance since I began CrossFit. It was a women’s only competition, but there was no age separation. I decided to compete to have fun with the other ladies from my box, Premier CrossFit. I finished 20th out of 50 female competitors. Yes, I understand that most of these ladies are half my age, and that I should be happy to be able to be there at all. But after self examination of my performance, I feel that I did not prepare myself properly.
As older athletes we need to train smarter to be able to continue to compete and keep our bodies at top performance. I did not train properly, both mentally and physically. I was defeated before I ever walked into the box to compete. I kept saying to myself “I’m the oldest one here, what was I thinking?, these girls are going to kick my tail!”, and they did. So in that aspect, I was definitely defeated mentally at that point. I should have been focusing on my strengths. I also didn’t taper off my training schedule that my coach set for me, we discussed it, but I thought, “I’ve been training hard, the movements are all very standard CrossFit stuff, I should be fine.” Right?…Wrong! I should have tapered down my training. My body gave out on the first WOD. I have never had problems with box jumps, but because of the intense squatting I have been doing, my quads felt like lead after two rounds, i couldn’t open my hips or lift my legs to save my life! You should prepare yourself for every competition like it’s the Open or Regionals.
I don’t want to make excuses for my performance. There were a lot of tough competitors who earned their rank and beat me fair and square. This experience has taught me some very valuable lessons for competing. Please learn from my mistakes. As older athletes we need to put in extra time for mobility and recovery, to keep our bodies performing at their best. We also need to train smart and keep our volume and intensity at levels we can tolerate to keep us moving, regardless of what level we are performing at. This should speak to the casual CrossFitter as well as the addicted competitor! We love this sport, we want to continue for as long as we possibly can. We want to be mentors to the youngsters in our boxes.
So be smart. Train smart. Compete smart!