Become an Invictus Athlete

Rasmus during the 2016 CrossFit Open

Breaking It Down: How to Get Through a Long Grueling Workout
(Originally Published June 26, 2016)
Written by Holden Rethwill

“CrossFit Open Workout 16.1…I’m 7 minutes in and on a good pace. My splits are exactly where I want them to be and my body is up to the task of finishing the remaining 13 minutes. Ok 10 minutes just went by I’ve got to be close to done…I look at the clock which reads 11:00. Only 4 more minutes went by?! Oh man, ok 9 more minutes to go, I’ve got this. The 15-minute mark hits and I find myself thinking about years and years of football that have conditioned me for this moment. Ok it’s the 4th quarter, now is the time to leave it all out there.”

The first week of the 2016 CrossFit Open caught many of us by surprise. A 20-minute pure test of grit and determination. Many athletes completely overestimated the workout and found themselves out of gas with time still left on the clock. We’ve all been in situations like this. I am a firm believer that it is how we approach it mentally that separates us.

What do you do if you find yourself in this place?

For me, the answer came from my past. I found myself leaning on the years and years of competitive football I played prior to finding CrossFit. A sport where there is four quarters, the 4th being the most important. Fifteen minutes in all I could think about was pushing for that final 5 minutes just like I had done in countless games before.

I find myself doing this often with longer, more grueling workouts. Choosing to break them down in my head and giving myself checkpoints helps me to remain calm in situations like these. When I hit that final push I know that it’s time to give everything I have left in the tank.

But I didn’t play sports?

Not everyone grew up on the gridiron, diamond, or hardwood like I did. But everyone has the ability to break things down to seem less daunting. Even if you didn’t play sports, you know what one-fourth, one-third, and so on, are. Taking a lengthy task and breaking it down into smaller portions, and telling yourself where you want to be at each of these checkpoints will help you stay in the game longer from a mental standpoint.

Ok but what about the first 15 minutes?

The final push isn’t the only thing that matters. How you get there can be equally as important. It all goes back to the old glass-half-full analogy. Rather than looking at something and saying you’ve got three-fourths left and stressing yourself out, try saying you’ve got one-fourth done and that’s one less you have left to complete. It’s positive self talk like this that will help you to push from one checkpoint to the next.

Whatever it may be, finding what helps you push beyond can take the mental block out of a workout and in turn, work to your advantage. Next time you’re sludging through the mud in a workout like 16.1, I encourage you to try breaking it down and giving yourself checkpoints to push past and keep that “one less piece to get through” mentality. If you’re looking for some more tips on positive self-talk during a workout take a peek at Breaking the Mental Barrier by Josh Bridges, someone I consider a master of mental toughness.

Do you use a different strategy to push through long workouts?

Also Check Out…

Why Some Athletes Choke In Competition

Attacking Longer EMOMs

4 Ways To Improve Performance In Competition

Our Top 3 Supplements For Joint Pain
Written by Calvin Sun

Is your training program taking a toll on your joints? Or perhaps the ravages of time have begun to catch up to your orthopedic health? If you’re experiencing joint pain or soreness, you might be tempted to reach for a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug like aspirin, ibuprofen (known on the street as Advil or Motrin) or naproxen (aka Aleve).

In a previous blog post titled, “The Case Against NSAIDs”, I discussed why ibuprofen, aspirin, and other similar drugs might not be ideal when it comes to managing inflammation in a health-conscious athlete.


Top Ten Lessons I’ve Learned from Invictus
Written by Invictus Member Toby B
(Originally Published July 22, 2012)

1. It’s okay to fail. Two years ago, in my very first group class, Michele taught me how to bail out of a back squat, and then made me lift heavy enough to have to practice it. Knowing I could fail safely (and with full support from the people around me) made it possible for me to take calculated risks instead of staying in my comfort zone, and to learn from my mistakes instead of fearing them.

Deadlift 101: The Pull
Video by Hunter Britt

Many wonder how to most efficiently pull in the deadlift. In this follow up video to Deadlift 101: The Set-Up, Hunter explains the three components to the pull – push, rock and pull. Put these three things into practice and watch your deadlift numbers increase.

Also Check Out …

The Fault Of Overextension

The Importance Of Accessory Training

Why Do We Single-Leg Deadlift If We Have Two Legs

Deadlift 101: The Set-Up
Video by Hunter Britt

Do you struggle with the set-up of the deadlift? Perhaps you are someone who never feels your hamstrings engaged when you start to deadlift. Maybe you have trouble replicating the same strength in your pull off the ground every time? Or, perhaps you are someone who’s clean and deadlift set-up look exactly the same. If this is the case, then watch the video above on how to properly set up for the deadlift.

Also Check Out …

What About Lifting Belts

When To Use Mixed Grip Or Double Overhand

The Finish Of A Deadlift