So you’ve started CrossFit and you’re already hitting PRs. Great! Now you want that elusive muscle up, 300# back squat, or you want a faster Fran time. What do you do next?
Much like in life, it’s important to set attainable goals in CrossFit. That way, you have something to work towards and look forward to in your workouts. So what can you do to get there?
Step One: Assess Your Skills
Think about the progress you’ve made recently. Did you just start stringing together kipping pull-ups? If so, muscle ups might be a ways away. Did you just pass 200# in your back squat? You might need a specific squat program to bump you up to the next goal. Talk to your coach about your recent progress and where you want to go from here.
Step Two: Set Short and Long-Term Goals
A muscle up comes easily for some, not so much for the rest of us. If it’s about six months in the future for you, set some shorter term goals to reach for. Maybe you want to get 15 consecutive pull-ups or ring dips in the next two months. Setting shorter term goals will set you up for success as you work towards the long-term goals.
Step Three: Plan Your Work
Goals don’t just happen (usually). It takes time, effort, and practice to reach them. If a muscle up is on the horizon, you’ll need to do a lot of skill work to get there. Look up videos for progressions and write them into your schedule. Many times, this will mean adding additional time to your normal workout routine. But staying 15-30 minutes beyond your normal workout will give you valuable time to practice. Write down you goals and look at them often. It might help to have a workout journal where you can log your skills and weights. Seeing your goals in writing will remind you of what you’re working towards.
Step Four: Do The Work
Practice, Mobilize, Rest. Let this be your mantra as you put in the work towards your goal. Practice on your own but don’t forget to get help from coaches when needed. One or two cues can help you clean up your skill work and get you on the right track. Make sure to treat your muscles right and mobilize before and after your workouts. Take the appropriate rest days so you can relax and focus on the fun stuff.
Step Five: Have Fun
It’s easy to get caught up in a goal and forget about the best part: fun! Involve other people in your goal. Bask in your successes, but try not to get frustrated if things don’t work out. Celebrate your accomplishments. Keep doing the work and keeping the goal in mind.