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More often then not when I tell people I do Crossfit I hear “Really? Isn’t that some cultish fitness craze?” These people only know what has been sensationalized in the media. Do stories of regular people lifting a bit of weight make news? Not, instead their heads are filled with visions of men flipping tractor tires and pregnant women lifting Olympic weight bars.
But it’s not what they think.
Now I can’t blame them for getting it wrong. I actually had trouble finding information on it when I decided to find out more. I came across a few websites that looked pretty technical and/or not very “newbie” friendly. But what I did read intrigued me and I decided to find a gym and do an intro session.
And from that first session I was hooked! I walked in during a class and saw women lifting Olympic bars. I wondered wide-eyed and asked how much one woman was lifting…it looked so heavy! – and was surprised to hear it was only 35lbs. I must have had a quizzical look, because he explained that everyone lifts at his or her own level. Some beginners start only with 15 lbs. You work toward your personal best at your own pace.
It is also important to note, that although the deadlift, clean, jerk, and push press are integral to Crossfit, they are not what its all about. It also incorporates many elements for a full body workout. Things like plyometrics, HIIT, and aerobic activities such as rowing and running.
I think why I really like it is for the social aspect however. I was drawn to weight training many years ago. I LIKE seeing my muscles get defined and look strong (NOT huge, just defined), but it can be quite a solitary endeavor. At a Crossfit class you get the best of both worlds.
Weight training, aerobic conditioning, and the social atmosphere all combine to create a perfect workout situation where I work out more often and enjoy it at the same time. And I have to admit…I kind of like that look of awe I get from those who have never tried it. Makes me feel like a bit of a tough girl!
PS – To be perfectly honest, there IS a tractor tire in my gym. However I have never been to a class that includes using it. This is not to say they never have or never will, but it is definitely not a daily occurrence.
PPS – To quote Dr. Andrea Shore (Coquitlam Wellness), a fellow kindred spirit from my gym – “I haven’t lifted the tire, but if I did I would make it my b*tch!”