1/20/13 - Diffusion of Responsibility: “Do Not Enter”

I spent this past weekend in Austin, Texas for CrossFit Central‘s annual event, The Fittest Games. ORIGINAL Nutritionals sponsored the event though I dig get around the venue to experience the competition, much of my time at the event was spent talking with people at our company’s booth.

A good friend of mine, Ingrid Kantola, dons the title Director of CrossFit Sport at CrossFit Central. Simply put, she was in charge.

Considering how incredible the event was, you’d probably be surprised at the topic I’m choosing to share with you all today. You see, the two indoor bathrooms at Central were covered in signs the read, “DO NOT ENTER” in order to keep the masses out of their bathrooms and encourage them to use one of the two dozen porta-potties outside assembled in a section devoted to be the bathroom area. Yet, hundreds of people probably used those bathrooms over the weekend.

The Women's Only Program has flare | #FakeGym

The Women’s Only Program has flare | #FakeGym

Poor Ingrid found herself baffled as she caught people in her transitions in and our of the gym to handle game day emergencies around the venue. “Really?!?” she’d say, “”Is this bright red ink not clear enough, guys? COME ON!” Then, she’d run off to handle more important duties.

From the outside looking in, I felt like I was watching human nature. Those signs, though clear as day, meant nothing to the people using the restrooms “illegally,” because they passed any responsibility on to the person(s) that used them before hand. Heck, some of the time there was even a line for the off-limits bathroom, which by Day 2 still had the “DO NOT ENTER” sign from the first day up and a new, slightly more direct “No athletes, coaches, spectators, or volunteers allowed!” sign, too.

I can say for a fact that 100% of the people that used that restroom knew they weren’t supposed to. I’d argue, however, that only the first ones to “break the seal” really felt any responsibility. Everyone else road the wave.

Why am I tell you this? Well, this phenomenon is the exact same thing we see in health and nutrition. If in an instance as clear as the “Do No Enter” sign won’t work, how do we fair when two thirds of our country is overweight or obese, for example? It can’t possibly be my responsibility if I’m overweight if most people are overweight, right?

When I tell you that wheat could possibly be the most destructive food in your life, you don’t hear me because literally everyone you know has a bowl of it for breakfast. Do you see where I am going with this?

If not, pretend for a second that every single soul on this Earth could lift their bodyweight, had healthy body composition, ate only real food, had healthy triglycerides, and “can run flat out for a half mile before [their] hands start shaking.” And, one person (you) were 30 pounds overweight, deconditioned and considered Captain Crunch viable fuel, would it be your responsibility then?

You can find “Self” in our Core Values for a reason. Own it.

Logan Gelbrich

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Monday’s Workout:

Complete the following for time:

5 Squat Clean Thrusters (155/105)
800M Run
5 Squat Clean Thrusters (155/105)
800M Run
5 Squat Clean Thrusters (155/105)
800M Run
5 Squat Clean Thrusters (155/105