Vulnerability and Fear

In the very basic form, what we do is help people overcome their fear and vulnerability.  We, as a people, are not born to “walk alone” and this is a reason so many of our clients are successful.  They are not alone, they have support from Coaches and other members.  The premise of this post is to expose the difference in what you could be feeling about moving forward, with caring about your health and wellness.  To put this into perspective, I am going to first address one of my vulnerabilities and level the playing field.

Fact:  Content is king when it comes to a fitness facility or any service based industry.

Fact:  I personally feel most vulnerable putting out content: written, video, or otherwise.

These facts are in direct conflict.  They create a rift in my daily “flow.” I sit down and say, “I’m going to write about this,” but then I will stop half way.  I am not stopping due to lack of ideas, I am letting my vulnerability get in the way.  It takes direct action to fight through this vulnerability.  Sometimes it even takes prodding from the people in my life who know this is a factor.  Now that I have exposed something I feel vulnerable doing, I am going to relate it to what you may feel signing up for a “No Sweat Intro”.

I meet with multiple people a week and I am stood up by multiple people each week.  What is the factor which separates the people who “do” and the people who “don’t”?  It is not overcoming fear, but over coming vulnerability.  Most people are stuck in a rut when it comes to health and wellness.  They have tried all the fad diets, quick workouts, did the New Year resolutions, but nothing has worked.  The one thing which could change the entire trajectory of their health is walking through a door where people are there to help and guide you.  People are there who care about you and your success and people who can empathize with your vulnerability.

The case I am making with this post is to not mistake fear with vulnerability.  Every.Single.One of us feels vulnerable with something.  The difference is how you address it.  As I write this I am in my own head, but when I feel really vulnerable about something I read a quote by Theodore Roosevelt, “Man in the Arena.”  I am not going to link it or put it in this post.  If you need it, you will seek it out.  Once you seek it out and decide to face your vulnerability, come in and have a conversation with me. Schedule a time to come in and get started here.

Coach Austin

Client Stories

Bryan Carter: “Don’t Let Fear Hold You Back!”

Brief personal history and journey towards beginning CrossFit:
Hi! I am Bryan Carter. 22, and a senior at UW Oshkosh studying Theater Performance & Political Science. I rejoined CrossFit Oshkosh in June of 2018 after feeling that I had plateaued in my own individual exercise.  I desired an extra push, and a community to be a part of while on this journey to self improvement. Needless to say my consistency, drive & support of the Ardent Fitness staff and community have gotten me this far. There’s nowhere to go but up.

What brought you to CrossFit Oshkosh?
One of my fraternity brothers was on the coaching team and really encouraged me to do it. He is someone I really value and trust so I took him at his word.

Your first impression of CrossFit Oshkosh?
I was MORTIFIED. I walked in and saw people dripping as if they had just ran out of the shower!  But I had no idea how welcoming and supportive everyone would be through the process of learning movements, understanding the jargon but also just feeling more comfortable being in the room. Don’t let fear hold you back from this experience.

What has been your biggest hurdle since starting?
I have struggled with pushing myself in the workouts! It is so intimidating moving so much weight but with the encouragement and expert teaching from the Ardent Fitness staff & community I have been working more and more at my actual level and the results are rewarding!

What is your favorite aspect of CrossFit Oshkosh?
I love the relationships that I have with each of the coaches! To this day, they are still pouring encouragement and knowledge into me on how I can be better. It’s pretty hard to plateau at CFO. They remember when they were in your shoes and they desire for you to succeed. Also I can be a bit of an amateur comic and they always laugh at my jokes, so they’re all good with me.

What are your current CrossFit goals?
Continuing my nutrition journey into 2019 stronger than ever. If i eat like crap, I will not see much progress but great nutrition guarantees results.

What is something we don’t know about you?
A year ago I had a size 41 waist, now I am a 33… nutrition plus Ardent Fitness…NUTRITION + ARDENT FITNESS!!


The Hollow Position: Are You Doing It Right?

The hollow position. This position can be very easy to “half-ass”. Many people tend to think they are in a solid hollow position, but if you are able to have a full conversation, or hold for minutes on end, you are most likely not in the correct position, and completely missing the benefits of the hold.
A correct hollow hold goes as followed:
To begin the hollow position start by lying on your back.
Your legs should stretched out and straight (ensure they are fully straightened by flexing your knees)
Your feet should be together (bonus points for pointed toes!)
Your arms should be reaching overhead in a locked out position (straight elbows), squeezing your ears.
When you lift your legs and shoulders off the ground, the hollow position has been achieved. It’s important to make sure you keep your lower back pressed to the ground, so there is no space between your mid-line and the floor. You know you’re doing a hollow hold correctly if you are squeezing every inch of your body.
One test you can do is to have someone come lift your feet- like we tried with Desiree.
Top Image: We told Desiree to get in a hollow position, then lifted her feet. As you can see, her hips hinged, causing the angel of her hips to narrow and break her solid hollow position. This means, she more than likely was not squeezing and engaging as much as she should have been to receive the benefits of this hold.
Bottom Image: We then talked through the idea of energy shooting out of her extremities (fingers & toes) and told her to flex and engage her whole body. She got into another hollow position, this time focusing on engaging, and again we lifted her feet. As you can see, her hips stayed up and her solid hollow position stayed strong and unbroken! This shows that Desiree understands the concept of keeping her whole body tight, and she now knows what it should feel like as she progressed through her gymnastic skills (kipping, handstand holds, and so much more!).
Another thing you can do to test your hollow position would be to try and hold the hollow position for a full 60 seconds, making sure every muscle is engaged and the proper position is being held. To ensure there is no cheating, use a timer to count your minute. If you cannot hold the position with integrity for the full time, then you might need to start with a scaled version such as tucking your legs in towards your chest or bringing your arms down by your side.