You or Fran?

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"Who's in Charge Here?"
from Motor City CrossFit

I was
recently talking to one of our members and one of the things we talked
about was her ‘inner demon’. Not sure if that is the appropriate term
or not – but whatever, it is. This is the voice in your head telling you
to pick up that bar when you aren’t 100% sure you’ll get it off the
ground. Or to jump on the bar even if you not sure you’re going to get
your chin high enough.

I found this conversation somewhat funny because just a few days
back I received this email from one of our members. Everybody probably
has a method to their madness…This is Jim’s.

When you are doing a tough MetCon WOD, who runs the show, your
body or your brain? For example, you are halfway through your squats on
the 18th round of Cindy and your legs are SCREAMING to your brain that
they need a rest. Does your brain obey the commands of the legs? Or
does your brain yell back, “SHUT THE @#*%-UP LEGS! I AM IN CHARGE HERE!
I will tell YOU when you need a break, NOT the other way around!”

We have to realize that the screaming legs, loud mouth
shoulders, and all other whining body parts that try to goat the brain
into a rest are just ignorant lumps of muscle fibers that tend to
greatly underestimate their own capacity. Think about all the times
when your complaining body had just about convinced your brain that you
can’t possibly do any more. Then something snaps you out of it, like JD
yelling, “you only have eight OHSs left, just pound them out straight
through” or “for the first time ever, you might have the chance to beat
Carey in a WOD – hurry up!” Then instead of stopping, you actually find
yourself speeding up! Your screaming body parts were wrong again.

So next time you are about to start a tough workout, why not
have a little talk with the “Usual Suspect” body parts first. Make sure
they know that your brain is in charge, and that they should keep their
whiney comments to themselves.


Bill pulling through one more heinous pullup in Fran, telling his body who's in charge.

IMG_0330 CrossFit Benchmark WOD – Fran
21-15-9 Rep Rounds for Time of:

  • Thrusters -95 lb. M/65 lb. W
  • Pullups

Compare to February 2009.

"Heidi got 1st kipping today and integrated a few into Fran. Justin (previous PR 7:40, today 4:45!),
Casey (from 6:07 to 4:48!) and Tara (PR'd last Monday at 6:57 and now 6:13 today!)
PR'd as Rx'd Fran today.  All participants pushed
intensity (Bruce 1st time as Rx'd) and left everything on the floor."  -Steve

Strong work, everyone!  Heidi, congratulations!


IMG_0329 IMG_0295


  1. Robin Moore says:

    WOW! Congrats everyone on your new PR’s! Can’t wait to get back with you on Sunday.

  2. So scratch the whole “Listen to your body” statement you are taught everywhere else…

  3. Sara, pretty much all conventional fitness wisdom is part of the status-quo conspiracy to maintain complacency. In fact, its not what the body is saying but who’s listening.

  4. Lisa Ray says:

    Certainly, the intent of this article and of me posting it is not to say that you should injure yourself. I think it’s pretty clear that the point is that we are all physically capable of far more than our mental voices would like us to believe. If you are having literal pain in a joint or are experiencing pain from overuse, I think we all realize that no one here is asking that you continue to push that.
    Burning muscles and fatigue and the mental voice that says “I can’t” because we think it hurts too much or because we aren’t capable, is the one we want to push past and have our eyes opened to the fact that we CAN and that lesson is rewarding.

  5. Oh yeah, a CrossFit conversation and some KIPPING PULL UPS!
    I go to work, come home, and wake up and everyone is a BEAST…
    LOVE IT.

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