Riding the Storm Out

If it sounds like an old REO Speedwagon song, that’s because it is. We had a Company Commander in the Navy who loved to play that song for us when he was about to unleash hell on our bodies & minds. Fast forward a whole lot of years, and that song still plays in the back corner of my mind whenever effort gets stretched taut.

Last night the Chicago Cubs concluded approximately 534 hours of baseball by claiming the title of World Series Champions. 531 hours in the making, the effort finally climaxed & capped in the final three-ish hours.

Three hours . . . think about that. It isn’t much time to decide the title of Champion . . . but for a lot of people, it was the final three hours that mattered the most. If you don’t believe this, ask the Cleveland Indians if they would have liked to do those three hours a little differently.

Even better, after all those hours, the decision of who would be champion was separated by 1 point . . . the final score was 8-7, Cubs win.

Baseball isn’t for everyone, but the statistics behind what it takes to win are pretty interesting.

In near & dear Woodstock, Georgia, twelve of us collected together in an afternoon class to face yesterday’s WOD (workout of the day) . . . a 20 minute EMOM (every minute on the minute) of 15/12/ or 9 calories on the Assault Bike and 5 reps of a hefty Deadlift. Odd minutes were spent on the bike, even minutes behind the bar. Twenty minutes of near-continual & consistent effort is a lot for anyone.

The Deadlifts were hefty, not heavy. You should be able to do all five unbroken, but you didn’t necessarily have to. The bike should take anywhere between 30 & 55 seconds. You get to rest for what’s left of each minute. As John Wooden would have said, “Be quick, but don’t hurry.” A word to the wise is infuriating mid-effort, but that doesn’t make it any less wise.

What do WODs have to do with Baseball?


“Baseball is 90% mental and the other half is physical.” ~Yogi Berra

No matter how we slice up the math, the physical is the easy part. Pedal . . . pick the weight up, put it down . . . there’s not much to think about beyond technique, but after that, it’s a matter of doing. How fast do we do the thing we’re doing? Do we need to slow down? Can we find a denominator that lets us go fast enough but not too fast? How far is it from here to there? 

In music it’s called rhythm. In our activities it’s called pace. The rhythm if a song can change, & likewise, our pace can be modified to fit our environment & needs.

Be quick, but don’t hurry . . . The storm lasts as long as the storm lasts. Finishing in a hurry doesn’t change the duration of the storm.

Maybe the storm is an AMRAP, maybe an inning, possibly a season, or it could be an EMOM. Whatever it is, strategy is a mental calculation of our physical potential & capacity. What is your strategy? A good coach can help by pointing you in the right direction, a great coach can encourage & motivate you beyond your known boundaries. The Chicago Cubs spent a total of 107 years wondering, hoping, waiting to see if they could win, and in the 108th, drove home a victory. Riding the storm out is about being able to see beyond our current situation and going there.

Semper Fortis, always strong


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s