“Doc, what’s my life expectancy? Will I eventually regress mentally and physically?” His response, “One doesn’t know.” I met his answer with great disdain. “One doesn’t know?” Seriously, how could he, a well versed esteemed and highly recommended neurologist, not know?
With his years of schooling and experience treating patients with this disease one would figure my doctor would give me answers that weren’t so vague. But that’s what makes this disease so down right frustrating! You could literally wake up on a Tuesday with brand new symptoms after being asymptomatic for 15 years or you could experience progressive symptoms for 15 years and none thereafter.
That’s why Multiple Sclerosis and Crossfit are so comparable to me. Crossfit can be the unknown also. Day to day the workouts change never getting the same workout twice. Workouts can have varied time domains, different movements and different rep schemes. One day you could be running a mile for time or doing a rep scheme of 21-15-9 of thrusters and pull ups or on another finding your 3 rep max deadlift. Let’s not even talk about regionals ( well when there where regionals), the Crossfit Open and the Crossfit Games. The participating athletes nor audience has clue what the workouts are until the day of the events and sometimes only minutes before an event is started. Can’t be anymore unknown than that.
Now of course the challenges of having multiple sclerosis are no where near the same as having a tough workout at your local crossfit box. However, there is a way to commonly approach the unknown of both effectively. Simply fight the unknown with the known! The known is your dedication of the hours put into your fitness. The known is your discipline with your nutrition and sleep. The known is working persistently daily to improve your functional mobility and developing a healthy mindset. No, the preparation beforehand doesn’t eliminate the challenges they both may bring but it definitely softens the blow a little.
Listen, don’t be fearful of the unknown of whatever these two may bring. Trust the work and trust your preparation which has and will allow you to be successful in both. Remember we are in a fixed fight in this thing we call life. We can either lose in the first round by knockout or in the twelfth by decision…I challenge you not to chose the latter.