My CrossFit Induced Identity Crisis?

photo courtesy of Adrian Valenzuela

If you are anything like me, you can look back and see that your life has been a series on ongoing change. What was appropriate for you at 15 is not likely appropriate for you at 50.

That applies to social norms, education, sleep, food, exercise, relationships and more. If you hang onto what is dear to you at 25, you will not grow to appreciate being 40.

I know you understand what I am suggesting. There comes a time, when we must reject what was dear to us, to embrace what is required to continue our personal growth. Sometimes it is painful, because we feel we have too much invested in who we are, and that may prevent us from achieving who we want to be. It is a process of personal evolution.

For the past two years I have seen a CrossFitter when I shave in the mirror every morning.

My identity was deeply rooted in my daily routine. I awaken at 5:00 a.m., pack my clothes for work, pack a lunch and breakfast, make a cup of bulletproof coffee. Then I kiss Suzanne goodbye, and drive to the gym to play with the kids (everyone under 40).

At work, in town, at church, at social events, it was always the same story, “Gee, you’ve lost weight, you look great, you look stronger, younger, healthier…”

Then I would mention my two-year transformation with Paleo and CrossFit. I thought I had discovered the Holy Grail.

After two years, I see my needs changing. I still love CrossFit. It is like a buffet of fitness alternatives. But like every buffet, there are things I love and things I can do without. There are things that will serve be better in the long run, than others.

I have attained a healthy level of fitness, now I am refocusing my attention on sustainability. I now need to pay more attention to rest, recovery, nutrition, stress reduction and more. In plain English, I am reducing CrossFit’s prominence in my weekly fitness regimen. Back to the buffet analogy, I am consciously selecting what I want to place on my plate, and determine what to leave behind.

You may be thinking that is not a big deal. On the surface I agree. But, if your identity has been tied to what you do, instead of who you are, you may be facing some inner turmoil. I didn’t start doing CrossFit to be a CrossFitter. But I became one along the way. I also didn’t start CrossFit to be a weightlifter, or a rope jumper, or a rower. But I discovered I like these things.  Things I had never experienced in my first six decades.

I still love CrossFit. I will always appreciate CrossFit for the good that it has done for me. CrossFit has been good for me physically, psychologically, emotionally, and socially. I love all my friends from this awesome community.

But as I take the best, and leave the rest, I no longer identify myself as simply a CrossFitter. I see myself as a man who is embracing every day, confidently, healthy, vibrant and alive. CrossFit has released the emerging athlete from within, and freed me to pursue many things I never could, or never even imagined. Can you relate to what I am saying on this page? Some will, others won’t.

Bulletproof Almond Butter

Coffee Beans and Almonds?? I just might work.

Coffee Beans and Almonds?? I just might work.

I recently let a maniac loose in my kitchen, and it was me.

I’ve begun putting a bizarre twist on some of my favorite foods. It doesn’t always work out well, like the Spicy Almond Butter (Cumin, Cayenne & Chipotle). That was a bust. I still have a small jar of it in the fridge if you want to try it.

Today, I was drinking a bulletproof coffee as I was making a fresh batch of Almond Butter. I got to thinking, how about coffee-flavored almond butter?

The next thing I knew, I had poured two large scoops of coffee beans among the almonds as they whirred incessantly in the food processor. The dry beans, affected the mix of almonds, so the oil of the nuts was insufficient to moisten the whole mixture. So I added three tablespoons of Kerry Gold Butter and continued mixing. Twenty minutes later, I had a bowl of almond butter that looked more like chocolate batter.

When I opened the mixing bowl, I was blasted with the fragrance of freshly ground coffee. I tasted it. Immediately I knew I had gone overboard. One scoop of coffee beans would have been adequate, and perhaps I should have ground them to a fine espresso grind prior to adding it to the nuts.

Bulletproof Almond Butter does have potential. I’ll make the refinements and report back to you. In the meantime, I’ve got a good caffeine buzz on. If you have a time tested coffee almond butter recipe, please send the link my way. So, who’s game? Want to try it?


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