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A thing about op-eds

Good morning and welcome to the weekend edition of the Morning Chalk Up. This is Justin LoFranco, your Editor-in-Chief, to bring you a quick wrap-up of the major news items throughout the week.

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“Sometimes you have to dig a basement before you can build a foundation.” — Jeffery Brannigan

A Note About Op-Eds…

Last weekend, we ran an op-ed titled “What Rep Cutting Says About Your Character.” In it, longtime coach and owner of a 10+ year affiliate Jeff Tincher, dives into the topic of rep cutting.

“As much as I love the CrossFit community, there is a subject in CrossFit that confuses me and troubles me deeply, a subject that few talk about in public. It has become more prevalent in my gym and it is time for me to stop ignoring it,” Tincher wrote.

Rep cutting is nothing new; it’s certainly not going away anytime soon.

In selecting Tincher’s op-ed for publication, the editors hoped to offer a point of view from an experienced coach. We recognize that not all opinions on this topic will be the same, however. This is why we’re publishing a rebuttal, of sorts. Coach Rachel Binette, a Certified CrossFit Level 3 Trainer, believes there’s another way coaches should address this situation.

Regardless of where you might land on this topic, it’s our role to elevate topics of discussion that reflect current trends. These op-eds are intended to stimulate conversation not necessarily pit one coaching philosophy against one another. In the end, CrossFit is about saving lives and providing a safe community to become the best version of yourself; how we get there will be different for many in this lifelong journey.

Justin LoFranco

What Complaining About Rep Cutting Says About Your Character

By Rachel Binette

I read the op-ed “What Rep Cutting Says About Your Character,” I saw the re-posts, the internet applauding, and all I could think was, “Nononononono…”

Not because I disagree that rep cutting is bad. 

But because, as a mindset coach with Mindset Rx’d, this op-ed misses the point. It misses why people cut their reps, it misses how character is developed and personal growth achieved. It also misses the opportunity that this issue presents to reflect on and build our own character.

Why do people cut reps?

Ultimately, the question really is, why do people cheat? We love to answer judgmentally — they cheat because they have a bad character, because they like taking shortcuts, because they’re unwilling to work hard enough to earn the spot. 

But this is not the real reason. This is the reason we give ourselves so that we can soothe our egos and feel superior.

The reason people cheat is because they don’t believe that the effort they put in is good enough. They believe that they have to stack up in a certain place in order to be worthy. And because a desire for belonging and worthiness is critical to our sense of social safety, they are willing to cheat to get there. This applies to the CrossFit athlete at your local box, and it applies to the professional athlete in any sport. 

This is a classic case of fixed mindset, a key component of social psychologist Dr. Carol Dweck’s work. In a fixed mindset, an athlete believes that their abilities are innate: they have a built-in ceiling on their potential that they cannot change. They may cheat, or they may not try hard in the first place. People with a fixed mindset believe that failure is a sentence on their worth, and they will avoid it at any cost. 

In athletes with a growth mindset, failure is an opportunity. They believe that they can develop their abilities and they find self-worth and security in the effort they put forth to improve. 

For our rep cutting athletes, training is not an opportunity to improve their fitness — it is a test that they are deeply afraid of failing. Their sense of belonging is constantly threatened, so fear and shame rule their behavior. 

Continue reading…

Key Takeaways from the 10 Year Affiliate Summit
Justin LoFranco

Morning Chalk Up Editor-in-Chief Justin LoFranco attended the ten year affiliate summit hosted by CrossFit in Whistler last weekend. Here are the key takeaways from the gathering of some of the longest-standing members of the CrossFit community.

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CrossFit and OCR Square Off in Lake Tahoe
Tommy Marquez

The long-standing rivalry between obstacle course racers and CrossFitters will be put to the test this weekend at the Spartan Race event in Lake Tahoe, CA. Four elite CrossFitters are going head to head with four elite obstacle course racers in “The Faceoff presented by FITAID,” a competition from the mind of Hunter McIntyre.

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CrossFit Open Prep By the Numbers
Tommy Marquez and Chad Schroeder

This is a landmark year, marking a full decade of the Open. For 10 seasons now, affiliates around the world have gathered for weekly workout announcements, “Friday Night Lights,” and countless hours of leaderboarding. 

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Soledad O’Brien: “I was wrong” about CrossFit
Jessica Danger

On Tuesday, CrossFit received a ringing endorsement from media personality Soledad O’Brien. Her two tweets to more than a million followers prompted dozens of positive replies from fans sharing their own successful health stories with CrossFit.

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The Story Behind WIT, The Global Training Retailer
Justin LoFranco

Since the opening of their new store in the heart of London’s financial district 18-months-ago, WIT has been on a meteoric rise in training. Today, they ship worldwide, averaging 30-40 countries daily. 

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If you need a few things to sort through in between football this weekend, we got you covered. 

  1. If you’re still on the fence about the Open, here are Make WODS Great Again’s top reasons to just do it.
  2. Once you register, make sure you are ready with Armen Hammer’s spooky line of SneakyFit apparel.
  3. Macy Tarlton shows off her adorable pet wallaby.
  4. Lindy Barber got engaged.
  5. Sara Sigmundsdottir competed in local competition in the men’s division and still placed 8th.
  6. Ya’ll went crazy for this low carb chocolate pumpkin mug cake recipe. 
  7. Make sure to tuck your gym into bed tonight, like a champ.

…and this post about being a beginner gave us all the feels. 

Oh and let’s not forget…

How to do a Dumbbell Snatch (Ebenezer Samuel and Brett Williams/Men’s Health)

Human Hearts Evolved for Endurance — and They Need It to Stay Healthy (Chris Gorski/Discover Magazin)

Russian Doping Scandal: Wada Suspects Russia Manipulated Laboratory Data (Dan Roan/BBC)

A Day in the Life of Pat Vellner (Nate Edwardson/YouTube)

Five Training Insights from the Endurance Coaching Summit  (Alex Hutchinson/Outside)

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