What the heck is CrossFit anyway right? It seems like everywhere you look these days the name CrossFit is staring back at you! Let’s get one thing straight right from the beginning, I am not an exercise freak or muscle head type…I’m just me, 44 years old, a husband and a father of two boys. I work in San Francisco for the most part which is an hour from my home, so I don’t have a ton of extra time lying around to waste on things that I don’t see value in or that don’t give me a great return for my time, and CrossFit does both for me (key phrase…”for me”). It’s not for everybody and it may not be for you, but without a doubt it’s something to look into.
What is Crossfit: A basic definition of CrossFit is “constantly varied functional movements performed at relatively high intensity”, for a more detailed, in depth description of CrossFit visit the CrossFit.com site here. If you are anything like me, long drawn out definitions and details make me glaze over and fall asleep so I’m just going to break down my top 5 reasons why CrossFit is worth checking out…sound good? OK, let’s go.
#1 Sitting on the couch doesn’t work:
Ya, so I’ve tried the couch thing and for the record, it sucks. What can I say, I hate sitting on the couch and watching TV…I’m not a doctor or anything but I’m pretty sure it will suck your entire life right out of your ass…just say’n. I noticed the more I sat on the couch and watched TV the more unhappy I was and the bigger my belly was getting, not a great combo. Another big motivator was not wanting to set such a lazy example for my two boys…I want them to see me active and living life, not inactive and just watching someone else’s life on the screen. So anything I could do to have fun and get healthier during the time typically spent watching TV, I was all in!
#2 Getting old is bad enough, getting old and fat is the shits:
I’ve heard it said that as you get older, you get wiser…I disagree, sometimes age comes alone. If I’m not looking in a mirror and you ask me how old I think I am, I’ll probably say 25-30…It’s crazy but I just don’t think I’m getting older, until I look in the mirror…ouch! So I figured if I’m going to get older, and I am…then I refuse to add insult to injury and get fat at the same time, right? It’s so easy to do. I was eating more often, bigger portions, crappy food and was sitting my ass on the couch watching season 845 of survivor or something…tell me about it, I was heading the wrong way. I definitely cut out a lot of the crap food (80/20 rule baby…80% good, 20% let’r rip) but without a doubt it’s the physical activity that has made all the difference for me. Even if CrossFit is not for you, find something that you love that will get your heart rate up for 20-30 minutes a few times a week…I had to get really active and the older I get the more activity it takes to see results.
A benefit of losing a few pounds is feeling good about myself. I like how I look and how I feel, I’m not going to make the cover of mens health or anything but that’s ok, I like that I can wear a shirt that might cling to me and I’m cool with it. I don’t have to always wear a sweatshirt or jacket or something because my gut is hanging out…that’s a drag. It feels good to feel good.
#3 Quick and unpredictable workouts:
CrossFit is ADD proof, true story! Ask my wife, ask my kids, ask anyone that knows me…I get bored really fast! I hate routine! Over the last 20 years I have joined and quit our local gym probably 5-6 times. When I see a treadmill or stationary bike I instantly think about how bored I’m going to be, I can usually talk myself out of even getting on the things. This is why CrossFit is awesome…you never know what the WOD (work out of the day) is going to be or how long it might last, it’s random and varies every single day…it’s perfect! The workouts are built around pretty simple movements or activities and with some practice anyone can do it. You just gotta wanna!
#4 Great community and friendships:
This was a serendipity for me, I was just looking to not be fat (actually I was also just trying to be nice to my buddy EA Morgan who opened a CrossFit near my home. I figured I’d go a couple times just to shut him up..just so he’d stop asking), but friendships..who knew? I have made some really great friends through our box (our facility is called a box, not a gym…not sure why, but it is). Back to friendships, maybe it’s because when you’re trying to hammer through a bunch of pull ups, box jumps and burpees and you think you are going to die you look next to you and there is someone going through the exact same thing and they’re encouraging you to push yourself and finish strong! The saying “misery loves company”, guess it’s really true and going through a little misery during a hard workout with other people has been a great way to create some friendships that I am so grateful for today.
#5 My wife stopped sleeping with socks on (if you know what I mean..wink-wink):
Let’s face the facts, it’s more fun to get naked with people that look good naked…just say’n. I’m not going to get all Dr. Phil on ya but the truth is that sex is important in all of our relationships and when we feel good about ourselves it’s going to improve all areas of our lives. In my opinion the most attractive thing that I find in another person is confidence…period! Feeling good about yourself and being confident about how you look is going to up your game. My wife Megan has always said that she loves me and thinks I look good no matter what my weight or condition is, that’s one of the things that makes her so wonderful, but I know this…she likes it better when I’m in shape.
So, there you have it. These are not the only reasons or even the best reasons to give CrossFit a shot…they’re just my reasons. My guess is that if you do check this out and you decide to run with it, you’re going to come up with a great list that is all your own. Do this next, go to the Crossfit.com affiliate locator and find a CrossFit box near your work or home, stop in and ask a few questions…check it out. Another great tip, ask some of your friends on Facebook about a local CrossFit affiliate that they would recommend.
Finding a CrossFit box and checking this out is just like everything else in life…just making a decision and taking the first step is 90% of the work…I say, do it now.