CrossFit Invictus Member Brandon Mantooth in San Diego

How to Avoid Getting Punched in the Mouth
Written by Bryce Smith

Have you ever thought to yourself, “I’d crush that workout!”? But then, when it comes time to actually do it, you load up the prescribed weight and about halfway through find yourself stripping weights off the bar?

Training at high intensity is a very humbling monster and when you receive a visit from the fatigue fairy, the things that once looked super easy on paper now feel near impossible. Just like Mike Tyson used to say, “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” Everyone has a plan until they get so tired they are walking like a drunken sailor. Check out some of my words of wisdom concerning to how to avoid getting punched in the mouth:

  1. When attacking a workout, make sure you know and understand the time domain and the number of repetitions required so you don’t come out of the gate super strong and then die by halftime. Know your limits and then strive to go slightly beyond them.
  2. Understand that just because you can lift the prescribed load in a strength portion, it may not be the proper load for you in a conditioning session. With volume accumulation and heavy breathing, loads that sometimes feel light seem to get whole lot heavier.
  3. Make note of some of the skills that you are good at as well as the ones you struggle with. The skills you think you are proficient at may not be so good after a twenty calorie sprint on the assault bike or a fifty calorie sprint on the rower. My advice would be to practice skills in a controlled environment to start and then slowly begin adding intensity until you are able to do them while tired. Once you can do that, I recommend working on skills while fatigued or after performing cardiorespiratory movements like rowing, running, assault biking, burpee-ing, box jumping, or after isometric holds with objects or positions.

By getting yourself sweaty, uncomfortable and breathing heavy, you can really challenge your mastery of certain skills and most importantly, learn to strengthen your mindset with those movements. The things that once took a ton of thought will soon come to you like second nature. This will enable you to perform those movements at a higher intensity while fresh and with greater efficiency while fatigued. All of these things will help when you are trying to stick to your plan for any given workout. Trust in the process and know that challenge and failure lead to growth. Take note of the times you get punched in the face and try to strategize on how to avoid that in future workouts.

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