Writing on the Wall

This is how Dana White destroyed what could have been the best year in UFC history.

white mcgregor copyIf you’re reading this, you know the back story: Conor McGregor smashes media records and has a two year stretch that would rival any newcomer in UFC history. He’s like a character from Irish lore, driving a Bentley.

By all accounts he earns a shot at doing what few have done, holding duel championship belts. A thirteen second shot to the jaw of Hose Aldo put an exclamation mark where there was a question mark.

The momentum of enthusiasm leading to the 155 contest between Conor and Rafael Dos Anjos could not have been more fever pitched. There were more people watching a press conference for McGregor than a whole year’s worth of the Belletor promotion.

Maybe it’s the lack of quality water, a corrupt government, or an anxiety disorder brought on by how bad the Rio Olympics are going to tank, but whatever the reason, Rafael Dos Anjos does what many Brazilians have a habit of doing, and has to pull out of the fight. Which is a bit like someone kicking the cord to the dvd player on your favorite moment in a Rockie Movie. Except in this case it may take a year to plug it back in.

Dana White by no means wants to lose the media and publicity that he has accumulated leading up to this fight, so with twelve days to go, he decides to find a replacement for Dos Anjos. Somehow Nick Diaz, who has every right to fight McGregor, steps up to take the fight, except he can’t make weight.

This is where Dana White should say the following: “The fight is at 155; if you can’t make weight, we’ll find someone else.”

But he doesn’t.

For some reason White lets Diaz fight at a higher weight, and then lets the Conor up the weight again to 170, out of sheer hubris. I can understand that, at the time, Conor looked invincible at any weight. There was even a video of him “sparring” The Mountain from Game of Thrones. He looked beyond human. But of course, he’s not. And he loses to Diaz, essentially running out of gas after pounding the brainless Californian to a bloody pulp.

So UFC 196 goes down as one of my least favorite UFC paper-views of all time. There was an extremely boring main card and two major upsets. This I could have gotten over. Throw your hands up and say everyone has a bad night or point out the obvious, that this was an ill-fated plan from the start. No problem, lets get back to fights that matter. Title fights. Let Conor defend his belt and wait for Dos Anjos to get better. A no brainer, right?

Nope.

Dana decides to let this stupidity continue with a freakin rematch that means absolutely nothing in terms of titles. If this isn’t bad enough, Dana and Conor decide to get into a pissing match over the promotion of what should be the biggest event in UFC history.

Now UFC 200 is by all accounts a disaster and it hasn’t even happened yet. Meanwhile for fans of a sport that makes you wait an excruciatingly long for time for the fights you want to see, the wait for a Conor fight that matters will continue. While adding insult to injury we have to endure the circus side show and a “possible” tapping match between McGregor and Mayweather—why not let Michael Jordan fight Mayeather while we’re at it; after all, that who baseball experiment worked well for him. And that’s not to mention what may be the most annoying thing of all, the constant click-bate stories in our newsfeed that have about as much real-world bearing as a tweet about what Conor is wearing today.

All with one fatal decision to let two guys who should have fought at 155 fight at 170.

Maybe new ownership at the UFC is not such a bad idea after all.

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Watch Crossfit and get Better

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Watch Crossfit to get better at Crossfit.

We all love to watch Crossfit.

We watch on Instagram, on YouTube, Facebook, and on ESPN (damn it HQ! Why can’t everything be free!)

So here is some great news. Watching Crossfit might actually make you better at Crossfit.

Now I know what you’re thinking. “My uncle Bob watches sports all day, and he can’t lift his ass off the couch without assistance. Since when does watching fitness make you fitter?

For the rest of this blog….

http://wodnationgear.com/blogs/the-whiteboard/116392900-watch-crossfit-and-get-better

May the 4th be with you.

Today I want to tell my favorite star wars story.light saber tag

May 16th 2002.. The release of Star Wars II The Attack of the Clones.

My friends and I headed up to Kansas City to stand outside and enjoy the Comic Con like environment of waiting to see the newest release of the Star Wars Saga. We had always wanted to join in the festivities of the crazy fans that will stand in line all day to see a Star Wars movie. We chose the best theatre for the job which was an AMC in Olathe Kansas.

One of the guys in the group had a farm in Ottawa Kansas which is forty-five mile south of Olathe. That night we came up with one of the greatest games I have ever played.

Step one

Take as many semi-adult individuals you can find to your local retail store and buy toy light sabers.

Step Two

Find and open fields, preferable mowed and with the least amount of things to trip on.

Step Three

Wait for the Sun to go away.

Step four

Mix hide and go seek, with light saber fights to determine who is actually tagged.

Yes this is as amazing as it sounds.

Running around in the dark you could see epic battles between to two light sabers in the distance.

You could then make a choice of getting a better hiding position or heading as fast as you could to challenge the victor.

One could make the mistake of walking toward and ongoing battle between two opponents with ones light saber drawn and lit. This could lead to another opponent waiting pounce.
There may even be two or three fights going on simultaneously.

This seemingly simple game still brings a smile to my face more than ten years later. That is the magic of Star Wars. I know there is plenty to of reasons to begrudge the movies, but this memory reminds me of the power of great imagination, and the power of play.

I am Sisyphus

For most of us the Crossfit season is over.

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We trained all year to see how we would rank in the Open. It was fun, and hard, and inspiring. But it’s done.

Like many of you, I walked back into the gym on and realized that I still have passion for this. I still have weaknesses. And I still have goals for next year.
I am 34 years old and have been doing Crossfit for five years. Yet here I am again, at the bottom of the year-long hill, ready to get rolling.

I am Sisyphus.

Let’s talk about the Legend of Sisyphus. Sisyphus was a King who apparently was deceptive or dishonest. So the gods cursed him to push a boulder up a mountain. But when the boulder reached the top, it just rolled back down. Sisyphus was cursed to do this seemingly futile work for all of eternity.

We can take one of two approaches to this story.

First there are those who identify with the soul crushing futility of work. They see only external rewards, a number on the Scale, or when they fit into that pair of jeans. In Sisyphus they only see toil with no true reward.

The Second group says Sisyphus actually fell in love with the toil. It never goes into great detail of the psyche of Sisyphus but there are plenty of us who know that whatever our life goals and aspirations might be, we are all perusing goals in some way overlooking the futility of it all and just learning to love the process.

As a trainer, I work with people who come in with goals. Usually they want to lose weight, especially around their mid-section. I try to tell them right off the bat that those who fall in love with the process see the best results. These results come when you aren’t paying attention.

For some the scale is the boulder. Every morning it’s telling them they aren’t good enough. They want results—bad—, but they also want the process to end once they reach the top. Sadly, this mentality is usually not enough to keep the results they want. Sometimes, they get the boulder to the top, but they hate the process. And it’s crushing to watch it go back down the mountain.

Results can even get in the way sometimes. People can get all sorts of benefits from exercise but not recognize it because they aren’t a certain weight or dress size.
For others the process becomes they thing we love. We live for gym time. Oddly, we love the challenge, and the struggle. When the boulder goes down we see it as opportunity.
There’s another skill we can learn.

There’s another challenge we can conquer.

There’s another Open next year.

Is that crazy? Is it futile? Maybe.

But here’s the truth: One way or another, we are all Sisyphus.

We can either let the boulder crush us, or we can learn to love the process.