Francesco was in the gym on Monday and every time he's back in San Francisco and at Arena Ready it reminds me of how much his presence, and of course his lovely wife's presence (miss ya Sarah D!), are missed here at home. This last time it jogged my memory of a post he wrote a little over a year ago following the 2016 CrossFit Games California Regionals - when he initially posted it I remember feeling so touched when I read it. Turns out I still do when reading it today.
The original post is included below - thanks again, FDP, for sharing your thoughts, and for everything you've brought (and continue to bring even as a traveling "part-timer") to this community.
I never thought much of the name "Arena Ready". Watching Sarah compete at the regionals this past weekend, and seeing all of the support we brought for her changed that. It took three years of working out with you all to finally get what Arena Ready really means. I think it can be described as the sum of the parts below.
Athlete: Has a commitment to constant improvement and being comfortable with the uncomfortable, and most times, ugly. This provides an inherent focus and drive keeps the body moving, rep after rep, without hesitation.
Coach: The Third Eye, The Maestro, The Pacemaker. The Coach speaks louder than the pain and chaos and reminds the Athlete of not only their focus, but of their ability...that they have done this before, have been in pain before, have been challenged before, and have always figured a way out. When the Athlete's eyes go dark, the Coach's voice is there to move them forward like a marionette, or a seeing-eye dog. They know when to push, and when to hold back...the right balance to keep the Athlete in the zone without breaking down.
Team: The Team understands, because individually, they have all been there. They can feel the barbell in their hands, smell the chalk in the air, and see the sweat dripping down their faces. They know what it is like to look over and see someone else go on to the next movement and wonder if they can continue to push on. Then, they remember getting stung repeatedly by double-unders, the first time pulling themselves above a bar, and the feeling of landing a perfect split-jerk. The fire in their bellies begins to burn bright, and then they shout and cheer. They are loud and furious, not only because they want their Athlete to know they are in this together, but to let every other competitor out there know that their Athlete is special. Their Athlete is loved and supported. This electricity stirs their Athlete, and pushes them forward. The Athlete inhales, and the Team exhales. They are one.
None of these things stands alone. Being Arena Ready means you have all three, at all times. It is what makes our gym and all of its members special.
Many thanks to Rob and Sarah for creating the anti-gym, the community that we all love and can't live without. Thanks for making us all Arena Ready.
WOD for 07-12-17:
1 Hang Power Snatch + 2 Hang Squat Snatches:
5 Sets of (1+2)
Climbing as technique allows
AMRAP 9 Minutes:
12 Chest-to-Bar Pull-ups
12 Lateral Bar Burpees
12 Hang Squat Snatches @ 115/80 lbs