This morning I took my first crack at the fifth workout of the Crossfit Open. Up until this point in the workout I’d been doing reasonably well for having only done it “full time” for three months. I was middle of pack in my division. Workout 13.5 let me know that my ranking was a mirage. I couldn’t get out of the first round. I’m bad a pull ups and worse at the CrossFit “kipping” version. Prior to CrossFitting I was dependent on the assisted machine to provide enough counterweight for me to string together reps.
This morning it was me and a bar and a judge and four minutes.
I left angry and frustrated and disgusted with myself. I went home and sat in a dark room for thirty minutes and fumed.
The good news, and it took me a few hours to find it, is that I have a clear picture of my reality. I suck at pull ups. I don’t know to kip. And I have twelve months to do something about that before the Open comes around again. The assisted machine was fine and necessary, but it didn’t tell provide me with an accurate picture of my fitness. A better way to say it is that I abused the machine and used it to lie to myself.
Sometimes when I’m in a therapy session I’ll tell my counselor that I’m frustrated that I’m a middle-age man working on the issues I’m working on. I feel like I’m wrestling through a part of my emotional repertoire that I should be more skilled at. Sometimes she challenges me and says that I’m doing advanced work, but just as often she’ll let that statement stand. She’ll reply with by telling me that I can’t grow from where I think I ought to be but from where I really am.
I suspect we all have difficulty with admitting where we really are. Years ago I read a study that revealed that something like 80% of all respondents think they have above average intelligence and looks. In other words the average human respond for a person to imagine they are better off than the are.
So this is a human problem and not one unique to religious people. Still, its good to know how this trait distorts our spirituality: Continue Reading…