AMRAP, what’s that? A smooth flow you drop in the morning?

I’m lean, I eat clean, I’m chasing my dreams
Making my gains, removing them chains
Place all the blame
on me I can han-dle
Not a lame
hold a flame
See the can-dle
Made to dismantle
All of my obstacles
Want to rap about pounds
Look at me cuz I lost a few!

Okay, let me put my microphone and sunglasses away for a second and get serious.  

For all the non-rappers AMRAP is an acronym that stands for As Many Reps As Possible a CrossFit concept that you can take with you throughout your life to maximize your output.

As Many Reps As Possible

In CrossFit there is a rep cycle called AMRAP, in 60 seconds, do as many reps as possible.

Are you the type that will go all out and truly maximize your output here or do you ‘take it easy’?

If you are an animal in these situations: congratulations, you’re ahead of the pace.

If you are the type to ‘take it easy’: don’t worry, we’ve all been there.

Just know that if you ‘take it easy’ in the gym that can seep into the rest of your life.

If you want to be a top performer you better think long and hard about how you AMRAP.

Don’t Kill Yourself

It is tempting to try and go from the ‘take it easy’ type to an animal in a single session, but keep in mind you still have to live your life.  If you’re too beat up to move the next day, what did you prove other than the fact you don’t know your limits?

Try to improve incrementally.

We Can’t Improve What We Don’t Measure

Next time you are doing an AMRAP set, count what you get to.  Log that in a journal.  Set an attainable goal, and hit that number the next time.

We are goal-oriented creatures of habit. 

Set time-bound goals to get where you want.

AMRAP in Life

Start to do this and it will seep into the rest of your life.  

The first step is to schedule your days, whether you make the schedule or the universe does, this is already happening.

Empower yourself by taking control of this schedule.

Make things timebound to make sure you are maximizing every minute of every day.

If there’s anything we can learn from CrossFit it’s that efficiency maximizes gains.  The only thing in this world we have absolutely zero control over is time.  However, we are in complete control of how we use it.

We know that a second will be a second, a minute will be a minute, and hour an hour; so on and so forth.  

The question you have to ask yourself is how valuable will your time be?

Will you schedule your time and focus your energy on that schedule to make sure you are getting more done; or will you fall into the trap of saying yes to distraction and spread that light inside you so thin that you can’t fully see anything?

Preparation is the Father of Execution

If you want to become a top performer, executing on a consistent basis is the key.  In sports, the talent and fitness of most professional athletes are extremely close, that is what separates an average player from a hall of Famer.  The players that end up standing out are the ones who perform at a high level, consistently.

So how do you execute consistently?  Prepare consistently.

Take a quote from one of the greatest (although admittedly problematic) coaches of all-time Bobby Knight: “The key is not the will to win. Everybody has that. It is the will to prepare to win that is important.” 

How do you prepare to win the week?

Go From Take it Easy to Take it Over

Use your phone’s calendar app.  Whether it’s iCal, Google Calendar, or another productivity app of choice, use it! 

Create your routine.

Build slack.

Set up a time in the morning to review your day then set up a time at night to prepare for tomorrow.

Then all you have to do is execute.

3 Tips for Preparation

Fill Your Schedule

Even if you have nothing scheduled for a certain time, make sure to fill that with something productive.  Then make sure to schedule yourself some leisure time, this way you won’t feel the need to fit leisure time where it doesn’t belong.

Stick to Your Schedule

Be punctual, make sure you are starting and finishing everything on time.  In CrossFit, your trainer won’t give you an extra minute to hit your rep goal.  If we think the same way in life, we will be able to increase our productivity.

Meal Prep

Certainly, at Project Lean Nation we are a little biased and believe one large piece of preparing for success is based on what you’re prepared to put in your body on a daily basis.

If we understand that our time is valuable, then we should consider how much time we waste thinking of what to eat.

We’ve all been there.  It’s 10 am and a co-worker brings up lunch.  Now for two hours, you have intermittent conversations based on food that not only distract you but also end up with you eating something that will lower your productivity for the second half of the day.

Then you head home and the cycle begins again.  

Are we cooking? Should we go out?

If you are on a PLN plan, you can earn yourself back 10 to 20 hours of your week, and that’s on the low end. 

If you value your time at $15 an hour, which again is on the low end, you’re looking at saving at the very least $150 worth of productivity.  Then factor in the actual food cost, which let’s say you’re a thrifty shopper and can spend $5 on your average meal.  That’s $70 for 12 meals.  So total about $220 in actual cash and time.  

PLN will charge you $100 for 12 meals and save you the hassle.  That’s over $100 in savings.

How do you value your time?

Make Your Time Valuable

If you start to live the AMRAP concept, your time will become more valuable.  

If you learn to schedule your days better, your output will become more abundant.

If you focus on preparation, your output will consistently improve.

AMRAP, it’s not just an acronym, it’s a way of life.