Let Go of the “I Can’t…” & Embrace the “I CAN…”

This piece was written by Shanna Duvall one of the owners of CrossFit Asheville (my favorite gym besides CFNP).  She is a great coach and one hell of an athlete, I can’t wait to see how she does at the regional this year.  The article really hits home for me as an athlete, I often focus on what I can’t do as opposed to celebrating what I can.  As a coach I watch you guys gals do the very same thing.  Take the time to read and please comment if your moved to do so!  Also like CrossFit Asheville on facebook.. Could be our way of saying thanks for taking the time to share!



I am excited to announce that I won the Winter Open at CrossFit Works in Tucson, AZ yesterday (as announced on Facebook & Twitter).  Personally, this is a big victory for me to acknowledge my development in the sport of fitness and continue to build excitement about the possibilities ahead.

If you missed the live streaming yesterday you can view the full day of videos  or specifically the check out the final event here (second video under “WOD 4″). 

To summarize, I moved from 7th-2nd place over the 1st thru the 3rd of 4 events.  Throughout the day there were ups and downs; from feeling wonderful to stand up 170# of a front squat, to getting cut short on 25% of my Air Dyne test due to equipment malfunction.  I stayed focused on the present moment, on doing what I could with each repetition, with each minute of work, with each hour of rest.  Going into the final I focused on keeping myself present and achieving the best I could in that moment.  If I did a rep, I was proud.  If I rested, I focused on feeling as fresh and relaxed as I’ve ever been.  It’s taken me several years and many experiences to get to this point, but I have started to apply this mindset to every workout in a competition and every one of my training sessions during the week.

During the down time between events yesterday, I found myself observing the conversations of others.  I found that I’m not alone in often feeling like “I’m never good enough”.  In fact, you hear other people say it all the time, even if they are not using those exact words.

In particular I overheard a lot of chatter before the first event, the Clean/squat/jerk ladder.  It was obvious that many had been practicing throughout the week and there were many statements such as, “I couldn’t even lift X on Wednesday”.  Instead of focusing on the lifts made that week and what felt good about those, the focus was on what “should” have, or “could” have been done.

Why do so many of us have the tendency to focus on what we cannot do vs what we CAN do?!?  In my personal experience,  this comes from the safety I feel in keeping myself small.  I was raised to be humble and not boastful.  I was raised to down-grade the positive attributes of myself so to not bring attention.  In doing so, I create an environment for other individuals to keep themselves small.  Living large does not have to mean being better than others, perhaps living large can mean thinking better than I thought yesterday, being more present today than I was yesterday, having a greater acceptance for the ups and downs of external life, and being in each and every moment with excitement and curiosity.

I would like to create a new possibility for the fitness community of Asheville that I hope spreads into the fitness communities across the world!  Let’s hold ourselves accountable for what we CAN do each and every day!

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