Tuesday 150428 Consistency Part I

Consistency, Part I

I just finished the best book on mindfulness I have ever read, Search Inside Yourself. It is mindfulness for those of us who think in straightforward terms. There is no woo. I’ll talk more about it later because I wanted to home in on a particular concept that is important in mindfulness meditation and CrossFit: consistency.

One of the secrets to success in CrossFit, meditation, weight loss, writing, and all other skills is consistency: setting a schedule for yourself and sticking to it.

It means showing up to the gym on the coldest, grayest, crappiest days of your life and doing something. You don’t have to do everything (see below about doing less than you can), just something.


Consistency keeps your skills improving

Our bodies adapt to the activities they are most used to. You’ll get so much more out of 5 minutes per day of practice than 70 minutes every 2 weeks.

Julie Foucher, who has podiumed multiple times at the CrossFit Games, had a BTWB profile that looked exactly the same each month (prior to it going private), plus or minus some lightning bolt PRs! We mortals can achieve our own successes using the same method as Julie: consistency.

The movements that we do in CrossFit require practice to improve at and practice to maintain. Think about how long it took you–is taking you!–to get really good at the Back Squat. Double-under. Handstands.

Coming inconsistently to our constantly varied program means that you may miss out on practicing a particular skill a LOT. Skills build on each other, simple to complex. Inconsistent practice means being stuck in the simple skills.


Consistency itself is a learnable skill

Lucky for us! Becoming consistent in your exercise is a skill to be learned, just like you learned the Snatch.

Each time you come back to the barbell in a workout, you are getting better at coming back to the barbell. Each time you come to the gym, especially if you talk yourself into coming to the gym, you are getting better at coming to the gym!

Here’s an illustration: look at the differences in days attended from June 2010 to June 2012.



I looked at every month in the intervening two years and June 2012 was my first truly consistent month*. My struggle for consistency in attending CrossFit classes took over two years.

Practicing consistency

It will probably not take you two years to form a consistent practice, because you will know some ways to become consistent that I didn’t:

  • Learn to appreciate the skill aspect
    Getting yourself to the gym is a skill in itself: you have to plan your clothing, food, transportation, recovery, coordinate schedules with friends, and make all of the other little arrangements before talking yourself into going to the gym. Those are all learnable skills and there are always ways to improve.
  • Do less than you can
    If going to the gym is a burden, you won’t want to do it**. Lighten the burden for yourself, you’ll make more progress with consistent light work than with inconsistent attendance.
  • Be honest with yourself
    Learn when not to come to the gym by understanding what you can handle. Setting an ambitious schedule is very different from being able to stick to an ambitious schedule.

Part II will go into detail about these three ways to maintain consistent gym attendance.

The desire to stay home does not go completely away, even after years of consistent work. Each time you cajole yourself into the gym, you are practicing cajoling for that day when you really don’t want to come in. Being able to arrange your fitness (and knowing when to back off) is a truly valuable skill!


*There is also a clear volume increase over those two years. My point is not that you need more volume: the increased volume is a consequence of 2 years of work. Increased work capacity seems to come agonizingly slowly, and yet looks drastic when you compare over a long enough time frame.

**Directly from Search Inside Yourself!


Monday 150427

Dawn_Patrol_Farmers_CarryDawn patrol: the 5am class does Farmers Carries.


Oakland CrossFit – Welcome To CrossFit East Bay

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Oakland CrossFit – CrossFit East Bay

Who We Are

Oakland CrossFit – CrossFit East Bay is an old-school CrossFit Box  established in 2007 and located at 66 Franklin Street in Beautiful Jack London Square, near Uptown and Downtown Oakland, California. CFEB was founded and is run by Maximus Lewin, L2 one of the first 100/13,000+ worldwide Affiliates, with his wife, Andrea Lewin, L2.  Email us with any questions!

What We Do

CrossFit East Bay provides a life-changing workout program. We serve members who seek change for the better in their lives, are glad to work hard to achieve it, and love a challenge. We use scalable, simple, elegant, systematic, enjoyable and measurable methods of group training and testing to deliver life-changing fitness, flow and peak experiences in as little as three-five hours per week of diligent practice under our expert guidance.

Our Facility

We are located at 66 Franklin Street, Suite 100B, Oakland CA 94607, in Jack London Square.

This is a state-of-the-art facility with 15 dedicated platforms, Rogue Ohio Bars, Rogue Competition Bumper Plates, 75 feet of Rogue Monster Lite Racks, five C2 rowers, Assault Air Bikes, 206 dumbbells (up to 100 lbs), 50 Kettlebells (up to 106 pounds), 14 climbing ropes, 14 sets of rings, indoor prowler pushing AstroTurf area and more.

CrossFit Games 2009 Team Chipper

CrossFit Games 2009 Team Chipper

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