A few years back at the nail salon, I remember listening to the technicians speak Vietnamese and thinking about how amazing it is that there are so many different languages of the world, and how sad it is that we can’t always understand each other. I had no idea what they were saying until they started to GIGGLE. At that moment, I knew whatever it was had to be funny and I just instinctually started laughing too. Then it struck me…no matter where we are from, we all laugh in the same language! We can travel anywhere in the world, laugh the same way, and be understood. Mind blown ?
Fast forward to yesterday.
CrossFit Out of the Box is located in Pompano Beach, Florida. During the CrossFit Open, we get a lot of athletes who drop in to complete their workouts while on vacation. We get to meet so many interesting and amazing people since we are a hot spot for vacationing! Yesterday was the last opportunity for open athletes to complete their 5th and final workout. At lunchtime, a Brazilian family walked through our doors. The woman was an open athlete. She didn’t speak English, but her husband translated for her and asked if I could judge her last workout. “Absolutely!”
In case you have never heard of the CrossFit Open, athletes from all around the world complete the same workouts in the same exact manner; same, weight, time/reps, equipment etc. When you register for the competition, you are required to have a judge for your workouts. The judge makes sure you are meeting the standards of each workout so every athlete is tested identically. That is how the fitness level of the athletes is measured and compared!
When our drop-in athlete was ready, I grabbed my 20.5 scorecard and started the clock…she began her workout. Her husband and daughter stood by for motivation. As I watched her move, I realized that she was speaking our language. I knew how hard it was as she fought through her pain and pushed for that 60th wall ball. Her body language spoke to me. I said “Pick it up, you got this!”. Although she did not speak English, she knew exactly what I said and picked up the ball.
Another coach here at OOTB just finished the same exact workout 30 minutes earlier. She started cheering her on as she rowed…at that moment, they spoke the same language. For that 20 minutes, we did not need a translator. We did not need traditional words. We knew what she was saying and she heard us loud and clear.
Crossfit is more than just a type of workout. It is a sport that connects us to other people around the world. We share workouts, which means we share the emotions that go with them. The excitement, the power, and the struggle. When we see people doing workouts we have done before, we personally feel for them on different level because we KNOW what it’s like. We celebrate each others victories and learn from our failures. We motivate each other to keep going when it gets difficult.
CrossFit has given us the opportunity to push ourselves past the limit to prove, time and time again, that we are capable of much more than we ever thought. Together, we overcome fears by learning handstand pushups and box jumps. We make the seemingly impossible possible when we lift more than our own body weight. CrossFit has become a powerful universal language that many people know and love.
Do you speak the language? ??