Why People Do CrossFit

You will hear a ton of reasons to do CrossFit.  It’ll make you fitter.  You’ll get stronger.  You’ll get muscle definition.  It’s fun.  It’s not boring.  It’s challenging.  It’s something different every day.  No workout is ever the same.  All these are true and more.

But there’s something deeper, something more meaningful, something that drives CrossFitters to do it.

And it’s this:

The feeling one gets when they accomplish a move they thought impossible.

It’s an endorphin rush like nothing else.  It’s a high for all day.  It’s confidence unimaginable.  It’s plain awesome.

The first time I climbed a rope, I was on a high all day.  I never thought I’d ever be able to climb a rope.  It’s downright fun.  Where were ropes when I was a child?  I feel like I’m re-capturing something I should have done thirty years ago.

The first time I did a pull-up.  Wow was that awesome.  I’ve been working out for most of my life.  I’ve always wanted to do a pull-up.  I’ve never been able to do one even though I considered myself fit.  It was in a workout with 60 pull-ups and I did them all.  I also tore a callus in the process, a badge of honor in my book.  So, so worth it.

I signed up for the CrossFit Open, obviously with no chance of winning, but just to see how I measure up against everyone else.  I read the CrossFit Open Workout 16.1 and was worried and scared.  Can I do this?  Can I hold a 65 lb bar overhead and lunge?  And what about chest-to-bar pull-ups?  I’ve never done those.  I was nervous all day long.

Yesterday, during the Open Workout 16.1, I did a chest-to-bar pull-up for the first time.  I didn’t think I’d be able to do one.  I did 16!  I RX’d the Workout, including the 65 lb overhead lunges.  Was it pretty?  No.  Did I do it?  Hell, ya.  And I feel amazing for taking the time (even with a low score) and doing it.

This morning I’m sore.  REALLY sore.  Do I care?  Nope.  Not one bit.  Because I accomplished something yesterday.  Something I’d never thought I’d be able to do.  Something I thought only the pros could do.  And here I am doing it!

I’ve only been doing CrossFit for a little over 3 months.  I thought it’d take me a lot longer to do all of this.  The possibilities in my mind are endless.  Where will I be in a year?  The thought is exciting.  The possibilities are endless.

Did I do this alone?  No.  The coaches in my box are amazing.  They keep pushing.  Keep helping me.  Keep rooting me on.  All of that matters.  Yesterday, my coach said to me, “I’m making a commitment to you to work on your kip.  It will change your world.”  Those words are indescribable to me.  As much as I am committed to getting better, so are my coaches.  Having supporters in this world makes all the difference.

That’s why I do CrossFit.  For the indescribable feelings I get from accomplishing physical exercises I had never thought I’d ever be able to do.  For the true amazement at what my body can do.  Every time I do something previously undoable, I think how amazing this body is that God designed and gave us.  It definitely gives a whole new meaning and appreciation to your body as a temple (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) and how you are God’s.  When I accomplish something, I honor Him.  And that is truly powerful.

That’s why I practice.  Why I work hard at home and at the gym.  Why I get up at the butt-crack of dawn and haul my butt to the box.  Honoring God.  And honoring myself.  Giving me the self-confidence I need to face the heartaches of this world.  It’s truly a gift from God.

What’s next?  The sky’s the limit.  I’m aiming at double-unders (still my nemesis) and the Olympic moves which I struggle with all of them.

Who knows what the next 3 months will bring?  All I can say is this:  I can’t wait!

CrossFit Level 1 Certification Course

I recently completed my CrossFit Level 1 Certification Course.

My biggest question I had before signing up was this:  is it worth it?  Is the $1000 price tag worth it?  Will I ever reap the money back in coaching?

The answer is a resounding YES!  It’s so worth it.  With a caveat:  you might not reap the $1000 back immediately.

I have very little CrossFit experience.  At the course, I had only had one month of experience and felt out of place.  Over half the participants were getting re-certified meaning they have about five years of experience since becoming certified.  Very humbling.

Our trainers were amazing and some are well known in the CrossFit community aka GIANTS.  Very, very cool to be learning from the best.  All were Level 4 certified and there aren’t that many that are.

Broken up between lectures and break out groups, the two days flew by quickly!  It was information overload, but luckily I’d read the manual twice and felt very versed in the lingo.

CrossFit is an open-source methodology meaning anyone can visit CrossFit.com and read the workouts.  Greg Glassman, the Founder of CrossFit, believes the more people contributing ideas, the better CrossFit becomes.  He began posting his WOD’s (or work out of the day) online in 2000 and hasn’t looked back since!

There are a TON of misconceptions about what is exactly CrossFit.  According to Greg Glassman, CrossFit is “functional movements, constantly varied, at high intensity.”  It’s a different work out every day that targets specific metabolic pathways such as anaerobic or aerobic to achieve fitness.  It prepares the body for the unknown and the unknowable!

Most people have an idea of what CrossFit is by watching the CrossFit Games every July on ESPN.  Yes, the Games is a great introduction to CrossFit but keep in mind–THESE PEOPLE ARE PROFESSIONALS!  They train every day for this competition.  The average athlete at a CrossFit box (what CrossFit calls their ‘gyms’) around the world cannot do what the Gamers do.

Can you get hurt?  Sure, like in any sport.  Is it preventable?  Yes!  That’s why there are trained coaches to assist you in the correct form before you add the intensity.

Is it for everyone?  Yes!  All the moves are scalable, designed to progress up to the difficult moves.

The course covers nutrition which CrossFit recommends either the Zone Diet or a Paleo Diet or a combination of the two.  The Zone Diet is based off of Dr. Barry Sears’ book The Zone:  A Dietary Road Map.  It differs from the Paleo slightly.  Paleo eliminates all dairy and wheat products.  Sears says you can eat these in moderation and in the correct proportions.  It is less restrictive.  My husband and I started the Zone Diet in mid-November and I’ll post on that at a later time.

At the end of Day 2, the test is administered and I was nervous!  A couple of the questions I had no clue and to me were obscure in the manual.  However, I passed!  What a relief!

Will I become a coach?  Probably.  In the near future?  No.  I don’t feel I have the experience to coach others.  I’m still working on Mechanics, the first phase of CrossFit, before adding Consistency and then Intensity.  I can’t do a double-under, a pull-up, or a rope climb.  I’m just not strong enough.  Will I get there?  You bet!  But until I do, I will build on my knowledge from the course, learn from other coaches around me, and gain proficiency in the moves.  CrossFit will be there when I’m ready.  And even if I don’t end up coaching, the knowledge and experience was well worth the price!

Who knows?  I may even open my own box!