On July 2nd, 2015, my family got a whole lot bigger. I married the love of my life and became a father to an incredible four year-old little girl. Ever since then, it has been a crash course in fatherhood. Now, I have been a CrossFitter for much longer than a father, but it hasn’t taken me long to recognize how each relates to the other.
They are both humbling. – I’m 6’7” and weigh 240#. She’s a bit over 3’ and weighs about 45#. Despite our physical differences, she can do or say things that just break me down. Granted I’m a sensitive guy, but still, she turns me into a little mouse! In CrossFit, the same happens every. single. time. I start a workout feeling confident and in control, soon my lungs and muscles are burning, and I’m thinking, “this is kicking my butt!” Both fatherhood and CrossFit consistently make me feel very strong, but weak at the same time.
They both take consistency – Fatherhood is a full-time job. It doesn’t matter if I’m tired when I get home from work, if she wants to play house, color and draw, or put together a puzzle, then that’s what I’m doing. My goal is to consistently show my love for her. To me, the same thing applies to CrossFit. My fitness is important to me, so I make time in my work and travel schedule to consistently train and eat healthy. To get better at anything, whether it’s being a father or being fit, takes consistency.
“If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.” – Unknown
I have strengths and weaknesses in both. – In CrossFit, my strengths are rowing, longer workouts, and maybe power snatches. My fatherhood strengths include patience and I’m pretty darn good at making funny voices. In both fatherhood and CrossFit, I’ve got FAR more weaknesses than strengths. In both instances, this is what I’ve learned.
Use and enjoy your strengths. When I row, I’m going to push myself as hard as I possibly can. When she’s having a rough day I’m going to give her all the patience that she needs. However, if I want to be a better father or a better CrossFitter, I’ve got to work on my weaknesses. Whether it’s muscle-ups and mobility, or planning ahead and being a good disciplinarian, the only way to improve those areas is to give them time and effort.
All I can do is my best. – No one else knows what your best is. Only you. Others who know you well, your spouse, family, coach, even your kid may have an idea. But only you know if you are giving 100%. To reap the full benefit of both fatherhood and CrossFit, you’ve got to consistently do your best.
“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.” Steve Prefontaine.
One last similarity, they’re both more rewarding than I ever could have imagined. That’s what happens when you put forth energy into things that are worthwhile.
~ Karl Eagleman aka Tall Karl
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