Beauty Secrets of a Crossfit Girl


“Iv found a few things that seem to really really work for me. My skin, hair, hands and ultimately, my smile”


GIRLS !!! It’s hard enough maintaining clear skin, strong nails , fresh eyes and healthy hair at the best of times, I know you know what I mean. Couple the stresses of life and the ever changing environmental climates with long days/weeks in a sweaty exercise facility with rubber matting, chalk clouds and a hands on approach to life …. We dont really stand a chance !! Or do we ?

With the changing weather around here (Scotland) comes hot and cold flushes in the box and even though I may not be sweating my face ends up clammy and sticky. We run on average 8 classes a day here at FFD Crossfit and by end of play I feel and look a bit dishevelled 🙈😂

My skin often breaks out, worse in summer with the humidity. My hair frizzes (similar to extreme bed head meets electricity) my hands were a mess , pitted with holes and rough patches , battle scars and wounds not to mention my nails 🙃 I’ve always been a fan of pretty nails and nice paints but regular polish just crumbles with training and working in these environments.

So , piecing myself back together , one bit at a time Iv found a few things that seem to really really work for me. My skin, hair, hands and ultimately, my smile 🙂

Number One. 1
My skin : I wash my face post mid-day training session, minimising the dirt on my skin but not over cleaning my face and washing away my essential oils etc …

I use St Ives apricot face scrub each morning and evening in the shower and once or twice a week I use LORÉAL skin expert Pure Clay face mask. I moisturise 3-4 times a week with Olay because my mum swears by it and she looks great with it. I don’t really use anything fancy or expensive, as long as my face is cleansed and moisturised it stays clear and in healthy condition. I would like to find a BB cream for daily use … any suggestions ?

Number two. 2
My Hair – my hydration really really helps this, along with taking Daily dose vitamins and minerals. I do occasionally (maybe once a month) use Moroccan Argan oil to replenish the Moisture in my hair . I drink 3L of water a day most days. On another note – I don’t use heat on my hair, really ever. I wash my hair twice a week with John Frida Curly shampoo and conditioner and then I leave it wet and all crinkled up for bed. I just sleep it dry 😊 when I get up it’s a giant bush of wrinkles , crinkles and curls and Iv been told it’s in great condition.


Number three. 3
My hands – I’m not just a coach, I’m also a sports physio so it’s important that my hands stay in good condition and are able to withstand my training and my career.

I file down rough skin and callus each week with a Scholl rough skin remover usually on a Sunday when I’m day dreaming out the window. I use a little razor to take the worst off, the rig can be unforgiving when your programmed 100 Chest to Bar 🙃. I have “Tear Care” for rehydrating and repairing my skin if and when I need it but I never really let it get as bad. I care for my hands most days , keeping them clean and clear.

I have my nails painted with Shellac or Gel polish, I do like the colours but it’s more so to keep my nails strong and protected. I wash my hands a lot between clients and classes and coaching and then with Lifting and hanging from bars, walking on my hands and then swimming and running my nails take a beating. I find it helps them grow and it prevents than breaking as well as allows me to feel a little more well kept.

Number four. 4
My nutrition – I have a well balanced diet of carbohydrates protein and fats, my calories are between 2500-3250 depending on the season I’m in and I always have vegetables and good fats in my meals. I take a daily supplement to support my body during my tough training. It’s called daily dose and it’s by Awesome supplements. It supports optimal health and well-being with a blend of fish oils, zinc, magnesium, B vitamins, calcium and vitamins A, C, D, E + K. It keeps me Awesome every day !


Number Five: 5
SLEEEEEEEP !!! I can’t get enough !
I often train early and late and over the quiet period of my usually ridiculously busy day (between 1-3pm) I will have an hours sleep. Iv noticed a huge difference in my recovery particularly, my skin and my energy adding in the occasional little nap. It’s not every day , maybe 2 a week , but it’s the secret to juggling a busy work schedule and training diary. If I had the opportunity to become a full time professional Crossfit athlete I would add in a recovery sleep every day because I personally value it far more than an extra training session or meal for my own development.

Young sleeping woman and alarm clock in bedroom at home .

I love to share my thoughts and ideas with you all and encourage you to leave your own below. Try out a few of these beauty secrets and see if they help you too.

Shel Xx


Are You Motivated By The Music ?


“There’s a place beyond the whiteboard where the real athletes are made “

At what point do you stop relying on the music , your coach , the competition , the crowd and the time to beat and just start self motivating ? Having seen such success and failure, the quitters mindset and the winners drive, I question you, who and what are you ?

Why do you set up your Barbell ? Why do you sit and calculate your percentages ? Why do you come back everyday ? It’s not because it’s easy , that’s for sure!

Is it to beat the man you sit beside ? To proudly display your better time ? To prove to others you are superior ? Accepted ? Part of the team ? Or is it to actually prove something to yourself ? Don’t get me wrong, None of this are negatives, but are they the winning formulae for the success you seek ?

Ask yourself this ….

Are you here for yourself ? Is it all about the social acceptance and the family we create around you ? Is this for a better you ? A better tomorrow and a brighter healthier life ? … or

Are you only Motivate by the music ?

There’s a seriously dark place beyond the whiteboard where athletes are made, this place isn’t inviting, it isn’t pleasant and no one wants to stay for very long…. but athletes come here for one purpose, to break the mould, to build the foundations of a winner and to be the very best version of themselves. No pain .. and all that.

Here’s the truth about that though ..

If you can’t actually take yourself  there purely by your own desire to better yourself for yourself, if you don’t actually have that ON switch … then you’re not much threat to those who do .

The really dangerous athletes are the ones who can walk themselves to this place, sit them selves in the darkness and accept the fate they bestow upon themselves for as long as it is necessary.

No music

No crowd

No time to beat

No opponent

No praise

Twisted by design and a little sadistic.

It’s Me Against Me ….

and that makes me dangerous….

You Are Not Obsessed.

img_6519” Obsessed is a word used by the lazy to describe the dedicated”

Head down, eyes forward. Own what you have worked for.

As I travel on yet another trip to chase my rainbow I’m sent various messages regarding my choice to compete whilst my knee is less than perfect (though I will say my diligence to rehabilitation has proven effective so far and I have come far on my road to recovery physically, not yet mentally)…. and it gets my mind on drive.

How often do you justify your dedication to your lifestyle ? How often are you told it’s merely fitness ? How often are you judged for your desire to train and excel in a sport ? Your constant and unwavering focus towards your body, it’s ability and your ambition to constantly improve ? Daily, weekly ,monthly…. it’s unnecessary. Stop. Now.

I refuse to apologise for seeking a better future and a better form of myself. I refuse to be ashamed of what I can do and how I look, I am proud. Our bodies are designed to adapt to our external stimulus and the environment around us, this is true in both directional planes…. If you choose to sit sedentary for hours, never choose to challenge your body or your mind, eat less than nutritious foods and never challenge your heart, lungs, muscles or movements your body will adjust to this energy/skill demand and functional requirement. So I choose to wake early to challenge myself both physically and mentally, some days it’s emotionally too. I challenge my mind reading and writing about my passion, my body with varied movements, constantly changing weights I use, heights I scale, things I throw, places I visit and the duration of my training. I challenge this vessel I have to its limits to constantly feel alive and constantly increase the realms of human possibilities. Am I obsessed ?

You work a daily job to create a stream of income to support your life. A home and a car don’t come cheap so you work most days each week, this would be enough for some as far as daily routine would go … but not you, you turn up to the 6:30am class and you workout to ensure your body and mind stay young, able and useful. You are not Obsessed you are FOCUSED.


You have a friends birthday his weekend and you plan to have a drink or 2, this would be an open invite to get leathered and sleep off your Sunday without purpose … but, for you it’s a chance to see friends socially and use your day away from the office to work on your core stability and increase your power potential for the lifts your hoping to obtain. You meet your fitness family early Saturday and Sunday for a few extra sessions and still mange to live your life, looking and feeling great. You are not Obsessed you are DRIVEN.

It’s meal time again and your phone alarm goes off to remind you of it, your organised and so your meals are prepared, balanced and nutrition because you know you get out what you put into your machine. Being hungry and unprepared is the perfect excuse to grab a quick sandwich and packet of crisps, potentially a sweet treat too, you know yourself well enough to know that this is exactly what you would do and so you spend and extra 15 minutes in the evening packing a box with your salmon, asparagus and quinoa salad, loading 2 scoops of your banana protein into a shaker and squeezing a packet of nuts into your work case. You are not Obsessed your are PREPARED.

You plan your week around your training, following a programme to the dotted line to ensure you challenge various elements of your body’s capacity. This can perhaps limit your ability to participate in social circles however, there are long term and short term goals to be obtained and you are willing to except the process. Goals are set up be met. You are not Obsessed you are WILLING.

You choose not to succum to injury and you choose not to admit defeat in the face of adversity. You could easily walk away with your current achievements and you could easily take your seat on the panel of the previous…. but you won’t, and you don’t. You set your daily routine around your requirements and you loving support your own rehabilitation, you care for your body and its ailments alone with diligence and mindfulness because you know, you know this is only the beginning and this is an opportunity. Do not wavy and do not faulter. Except the challenge to train through discomfort knowing your own body, except the challenge to know your mind. Grit is not given. You are not Obsessed, you are EXCEPTIONAL.

Each and every time you are questioned. Each and every time you begin to explain yourself, your goals , your ambition and your focus remember this ;

You owe them nothing. Your goals are only to be achieved by your hard work and dedication. This world isn’t for everyone and these choices are not for the average, the soft minded and the lazy. They are for the one FOCUSED. DRIVEN. PREPARED. WILLING & EXCEPTIONAL.

You are not Obsessed, you are Inspirational.

All the Carbs in Marbs……

The final goodbye at the airport with one member missing already.
The final goodbye at the airport with one member missing already.

I sit staring down the barrel of the gun as I wait for my aeroplane from Malaga to take flight home to Scotland. The bright lights narrow on the runaway and blur as I recap my awesome trip, Iv spent 5 days at Mikes Gym in Marbella, Crossfit Mijas. Surrounded by athletes, fitness professionals, like minded friends and many trying to bring something unique to our industry. To say I felt at home & inspired wouldn’t even nearly give justice to my feelings of the atmosphere and vibe created by the company around me and the surroundings we settled into in this short time.

I return home feeling focused, inspired, well fuelled, and a little fatigued. With a few training PB’s under my belt from the trip and a couple temporary bruises and scrapes though I really got off lightly in comparison to one of our knowledgable nutritionists Simon Herbert with an outstanding injury record tallied over the days. Simon may well be the only man to chalk his face before he lifts 😂 and wear a helmet while he swims 🙈

Being the only female on this training retreat I had to hold fast to a more vivacious approach to my days training and down time and my general attitude in order to at least track pace of my male team mates. There’s no greater incentive to succeed than the (probably unwarranted) belief you may be considered the weak link (it’s an ovaries thing apparently) . Que, Fast pace , game face, no tears me. An all male environment is something I sit with daily and theres no reason not to embrace the challenge of competing against the testosterone driven species. Grit can be gained here from lose and confidence from a successful challenge. I was All in All of the time, lip gloss and lifters at the ready.

I met some seriously driven individuals including “The lean machines”, John and Leon , a dream team pair of Youtubers smashing stellar information out for fun on the daily. These guys were thirsty to learn about all things crossfit and happy to return knowledge of media, the fitness industry and their message of eat well, move better and feel awesome. With absolutely no ego, open minds and a new set of lifters each I watched as they thrived on the atmosphere of friendly competition and I smiled as they excelled in their own performances and the new skills they learnt and perfected being coached along by Zack George and Sam pullen my fellow crossfit partners. So many of us will have taken away from this camp much more than just a few banked workouts, an average tan and a love for Spanish donuts. We lived together, trained together, chilled together, grew together and laughed most hours.

Zack George is formidable, fast, strong, focused and fearless. He poses a threat to every workout he faces. He has that ON switch many athletes prey to find deep in their workings and he isn’t afraid to grab it by the biscuits and press it, it near broke a few of the guys on a few seasons, highlights being that of a hellish skierg marathon 😂 . I’m sure I heard John shout “Why you do this Zack?”

Sam Pullen is ridiculously driven, he’s a tank with an engine to admire. All the spirit of 10 men and techniques to boot. Sam has a serious body weight/power ratio ! He may be one of the most genuine guys Iv ever met too, a great attitude to life and training and a very knowledgable coach. He’s everything you would want an athlete to be and one that will be remembered when he makes the big stage.

During this trip the team behind it all Jack coomber and Olivier walkes debuted skills with seriously heavy lifts and bro sessions ☺️ embracing each workout we scribbled on the board and every count down timer we set, both a part of the awesome supplements team they kept us fuelled and fired with everything we needed pre/during and post these sessions. Thanks guys, it really was awesome to spend that time with you.

My nutritionist Carl greenslade “happened” to be one this retreat 😂 and it made life so much easier having him make protein treats AND then seeing him deep throat a donut !! Thank god, he is human after all and I threw my shake down my neck and then followed suit! The calories don’t count when you split them with your nutritionist FACT. He watched me train, adjusted my meals and threw extra at me when he heard my hangry voice sliding into conversation. He is sharp and applied and a very valuable member in my artillery of supporters.

The star of this show had to be Mike himself, the master in command of the whole works. This place is incredible … name something you want to train with, use, lift, climb, jump, swim, ride, catch, hit, pull and push … it’s here and I’m not kidding. A massive gym space with various areas to lift, train and sweat including a boxing / fighting paradise, a HUGE outdoor obstacle course, a combat zone, a bunch of platforms, rigs, bars, balls, boxes, bikes … all built and expertly ran by mike and his team. His “Unique” handling of athletes has inspired me to take a more direct attitude to a few of my clients. We awoke daily to Mike affectionately shouting down the line of cabins (brace yourself this is explicit but very true) “Get Up You C**TS” spoken in a very very English accent with a smile on his face and an ambition to instil effort into everything we do. He’s a legend. He an athlete and a machine and he doesn’t F**k about which is handy really as that’s actually the motto of his gym, plastered everywhere on everything are a million stickers : Don’t f**k about, Do it like you mean it! I take home 1 massive sticker for the gym wall, that’s a score!


Awesome supplements gave us all this opportunity to focus on our bodies and our minds, in a beautiful place with exceptional professionals and people. Drowning out the external noise of life I seen a clearer vision of success and it resonated with my inner competitor. It blows my mind to think I was apart of this experience and earnt my place along side these guys.

Touchdown ….. Home to continue progress on my journey to reaching my potential, one step closer and 8 friends richer.



10-20% of all those who train intensely experience overtraining which results in chronic decreases in performance and impaired ability to train. (Raglin J, Barzdukas (1999). Overtraining in athletes: The challenge of prevention. ACSM. Health Fitness J. 3:27-31.)

Admittedly, It’s very easily done. You spend your week training all of the various movements that you love, followed by those you don’t love but need to work on, followed by those you hate but do anyway for the “gains” and before you realise it, it’s Monday again and it’s back to the grind.

There is a certain level of training required for health and well being. There is an additional demand for those training towards a greater goal than just a satisfactory waistline and then again, there is an exceptional demand for those of you hoping to take exercise and training that one step further with a semi pro – pro career in sports. Do not be fooled, each of these varying categories of exercises require adequate rest and will all equally suffer and slow their own progress without it which may be known as overtraining (OT). So many believe that overtraining will speed up progress but the truth is it won’t, it will almost certainly slow it down. Think about it logically for a split second, if your training furiously Monday – Monday and then you attempt a max effort lift or a timed workout for your best effort, how fresh are you? How representative of your fitness is it after such little recovery? Surely a hard 4 days with a few days rest prior to max efforts would see better performance? Let’s move on …

Overtraining in sport is very common, however, OT in Crossfit is far to prevalent. Let’s take it from the start here, brand new cross fitters (the cult-fitters) who catch the “bug” instantly after that first emotional high 5 post workout see the fittest on earth and decide that in 6 short months they will make it to the games. This action plan is quickly followed by a 12 WOD week and a double helping of reduced carbohydrate intake. Que the chronic overtraining syndrome and a taxi to injury city. Do not pass go my friend, your time here is over. Then you have the opposite end to this scale, the seasoned Crossfit “athlete” who believes their step up to the big levels will follow post triple training days and “Sunday Clubs” without any real focus, direction or periodisation of their programming. Going all out in all directions over long periods of time will not improve your long term ability to produce an increased capacity or performance. It will however decrease your ability to recover efficiently, it may increase your risk of injury, it can leave you vulnerable to common colds and flu, open to infections and all other conditions usually fought off by the immune system. It may lead to serious conditions including Overtraining syndrome (OTS), chronic fatigue and possibly adrenal fatigue which will be covered in a later article. OT can also occur in those athlete who believe they are “maintaining greatness” with a few sedentary/low level days followed by a monster mash Monday where they will cover all movements known to man over a brutal 5 hour body assault which will be proceeded by another day or 2 of Sweet FA. The problem here is the exhaustive stress of exercise regardless of the daily attack it’s still an extreme attack without sufficient recovery to which your body will not take kindly.

What ever your sport, If you compete in numerous events over the course of a day or weekend then you should be taking a FEW days off, maybe even more. Not only have you physically given all you could under extreme competition pressure but you will have exerted adrenaline by the bucket load mentally draining yourself as well as stressing your vital organs over an entire day. Not something you can bounce back from with a Krispy Kreme and a nap. There should be no justifiable reason to be in the gym the day following a competition other than to drop off your kit OR to do light mobility and catch up on who was sick during the days training.

So how do we increase performance without OT? Everyone is different however, generally speaking, athletes train regularly to increase performance. Performance increases are achieved through increased training loads (Reps, sets, intensity, frequency, duration) Increased loads are tolerated only through interspersed periods of rest and recovery—training periodisation. Overreaching is considered an accumulation of training load that leads to performance decrements requiring days to weeks for recovery. Overreaching followed by appropriate rest can ultimately lead to performance increases. However, if overreaching is extreme and combined with an additional stressor, such as under eating, long work hours, personal stress or worry, overtraining syndrome (OTS) may result.

What does constant training without rest do to your performance? Both physically and mentally? How do we spot the signs ?

Signs of Over-training

Symptoms indicating over exertion can be classified in the following way:

Movement coordination symptoms:
-Unable to continue relations of movements such as high volume squats,
-Increased incidence of disturbances in random movement (Spasm, cramp, twitching)
-Disturbances in rhythm and flow of movement
-Lack of movement concentration
-Reduced power of differentiation and correction of direction
Condition symptoms:
– The feeling of “The empty tank”, Zero energy.
-Diminished powers of endurance, strength, speed.
-Increase in recovery time, loss of ‘sparkle’ (competitive qualities)
-Reduced readiness for action, fear of competition, giving-up in face of difficult situations
-Confusion in competition, sudden lack of focus
-Susceptibility to demoralising influences before and during competition
-Increasing tendency to abandon the struggle
Psychological symptoms:
-No amount of sleep is even nearly enough sleep for you
-Increased irritability, obstinacy, tendency to hysteria, grumbling, defiance,
-Becoming Argumentative, avoidance of contact with coach and colleagues
-Over sensitivity to criticism, or increasing indolence, poor incentive, dullness,
-Hallucinations , anxiety, depression, melancholy, insecurity

What to do if you spot the signs ?

Close personal observation can help eliminate the possibility of serious effects of over-stressing.
As soon as symptoms are noticed, loading should be reduced and recovery pursued. All performance checks and competition pressures must be removed and active recovery put in their place. It is important to understand that the longer you survive without your required rest the longer the rest period will become when it finally catches up to you. Instead of a day or 2 a week on a consistent basis it may become a month or 2 of complete rest to adequately recover the over used muscles and mind.

A qualified coach will be able to help you make sense of your training plan and allocate certain days as rest to enable you to attempt more challenging movements or workouts as well as max rep efforts with a true representation of what your fresh muscle is capable of shifting. These considerations along with adequate fuelling with a nutritionally balanced diet and you may just be on your way to training smarter rather than training harder. I feel it would be rude not to briefly discuss the nutritional aspect of OTS and so let’s quickly examine the mechanics behind the number one contributor to OTS (Over training syndrome), a lack of carbohydrates.

Low carb diets – Without adequate CHO daily there will be low muscle glycogen (the fuel source derived from carbohydrates stored in the muscle) which can impair performance because of inadequate fuel for the workload. Low muscle glycogen also results in increased oxidation and decreased concentrations of branched chain amino acids (the essential nutrients needed by the body and found in foods such as meat and diary produce) This can alter synthesis of central neurotransmitters involved in fatigue. Because decrements in performance and fatigue are hallmarks of OTS, decreased muscle glycogen may cause OTS.

To summarise all of this, overtraining is very common and it can come in many forms from consistently training daily without rest to overtraining in 1 day (5 workouts on Monday and nothing until Friday when you hit a mega workout again) without constancy over the rest of the week. If you feel tired during a workout, you probably are. If you train daily and are injured easily and often this too is a sign of fatigue and under recovery. It isn’t impressive to ignore the importance of rest and recovery, it doesn’t make you bigger and stronger than the guy on the bench or more determined to “make it”. It slows your progress, it compromises your performance and it will contribute to your risk of injury.

Slow down, take a break. You will be very surprised how strong you feel when you return.


Rest regularly and allow your body to grow and progress.
Train consistently across the week without a weeks worth within one day.
Eat well and allow yourself your number one energy source, carbohydrates.
Focus on your own program without compromise just because “Never Rest Rick” is in the gym.
Be aware the longer you put off your rest the longer the rest period you need will become.
Rest after competition, not doing so will almost always result in niggles and injuries/illness.
Thanks for taking your time to read over this brief insight into this overtraining article, if there are things you would like to add send it over to


Sheli McCoy , Mres, BSc Hons,CFT,CPT,Dip Sm 


Welcome to the Complete Phyzique blog page. I, Sheli McCoy, will regularly post informative and educational articles relevant to most sports persons, Prehab – rehab , common injuries and solutions, body care, muscular maintenance, Crossfit and athletic development. I also post Updates on my own Crossfit experiences, qualifiers , competitions, camps, workouts I love & hate and general chat I just have to get out there.

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