Eye of the Tiger

This is Justin Verlander. He is, without question, one of the top pitchers in Major League Baseball right now (if not the best). He has pitched a no-hitter this year and has nearly pitched 2 more. He's probably going to win the Cy Young Award this year. And he’s a Tiger!

If you watch him pitch, which you should, you’ll notice one dominating characteristic about him: focus. When he’s on, he’s on. No emotion, just pitching. Yes, the Angels tried to rile him up the other day and it kind of worked, but that was a team effort to stop him. He knows what he needs to do and he goes out there and focuses on the job.

I noticed this a few times this past weekend at the Crossfit games. First there was Elisabeth Akinwale. These athletes had to go through this row of monkey bars during a workout. Fun, right? They ended up ripping hands and morale. It takes a lot of shoulder strength and agility to quickly make it through them. This woman? She flew.
And it was awesome. She knew this was her workout, and she dominated. Pure focus, one rung to the next.

A lot of people were cheering for Pat ‘Manimal’ Barber this weekend. He’s kind of a Crossfit celebrity. Average guy; amazing strength. The last workout ended with pulling a sled across an arena with a long rope. Yeah, the Manimal was one of the first few with the rope, but everyone expected strong guy Jason Khalipa to finish first. Then, out of nowhere, the Manimal’s sled starts moving across the arena. he gets this sheer determination, this focus, and wins his heat.
In the back, yeah, he wins the heat.
The crowd roared.

And then, of course, is our own Cheryl Brost. Cheryl finished 13th last year in her first games. We watched her crush workouts through the Crossfit Open, then fight from behind in the Northwest Regionals to make it to the Games. She was so consistent this weekend. She focused on the workout in front of her and she showed grit and determination through each one. While the camera would focus on someone more well-known (Camille, ahem), Cheryl just did her best and finished strong. 13th last year. 7th this year. And at the end of every workout:

A true champion.

Thanks for inspiring us, Cheryl.

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