In my last post, I wrote about some of the fall-out from competing at the Galt Games. I was physically and mentally hurting. At the time, my response was to resist becoming discouraged and to redirect my frustrations into working harder at becoming a better CrossFitter. However, what I really ended up doing was the exact opposite, and it turned out to be exactly what I needed.
Being an all-or-nothing type of person, I have a tendency towards developing a one-track mind about goals, usually to the detriment of other areas of my life. I go to CrossFit three to five days each week. I read about it daily. I talk about it with others daily. I write about it. I will wake up early for it, and I will reschedule other things to the extent it’s possible to allow me to go to the WOD. I am an active part of the CrossFit community.
I considered all of this, and then considered what I had done lately for my relationship with God. As a Christian, my relationship with God is always supposed to come first, and I realized that my priorities had become jumbled. The last couple of months have been marked by sporadic church attendance and pretty much complete absenteeism from my Bible study group during the summer. I read the Bible and/or Christian writing probably half as often as I read about CrossFit. I don’t very often share my faith with others, whether it be via this blog or in person. My level of involvement with what is an absolutely stellar singles Christian community at my church has been casual and intermittent at best.
This realization was quite convicting. The God to whom I am supposed to be giving my first and best had been receiving my crumbs and leftovers. My priorities are not reflected in my lip service, they are revealed in my actions. Are there areas in your life that you say are a priority or that you know should be important, but you allow them to get buried beneath other things? It may not be God for you – maybe it’s your health or your family. I challenge you to list out your top five priorities in your life and then examine where most of your time and energy are actually going. Are they in alignment? If they aren’t, what can you do about it?
This leads me to what I did. I took about a week off from CrossFit to allow me some time to physically recover from the nagging injuries that I’ve been plagued with. I also disconnected from CrossFit to realize that I am still me without it and that life goes on in the absence of it. I’ve balanced my reading so that I am spending time in the Word at least as much as I am reading articles on Breaking Muscle and Tabata Times. I physically went to church yesterday for the first time in a while, and I spent most of this long weekend reconnecting with friends from church and meeting even more new people in the community. And you know what? I have peace. I feel fulfilled. All of that angst I had about my body and about my level of proficiency in CrossFit has melted away. There is nothing inherently bad about CrossFit and there is certainly nothing wrong with being passionate about it, but it should never preempt my passion for pursuing God. And for that reason, I am thankful for the negatives that came out of the Galt Games because it revealed to me just how out of whack my priorities were.
All of that being said, I am not abandoning CrossFit, I just need to ensure I don’t let it become bigger in my life than it ought to be. My CrossFit gym is having a team paleo challenge that I signed up for that starts tomorrow. I actually don’t have all of the rules/details yet, so I don’t have a lot to share at the moment, but I’m looking forward to introducing a higher level of discipline into my nutrition than I have had for quite a while, and I see this as an opportunity to care for and be a good steward of the strong and healthy body the Lord has blessed me with. The challenge lasts for six weeks, so I will plan to post the before and after pictures (even though it’s scary). I am going to focus on nutrition first and conditioning second (ahem, this means running in addition to metcons). My plan is to post weekly updates during the paleo challenge, so more to come!