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Monday
Jan142013

How CrossFit Applies In The Workplace

 

One of the best parts of CrossFit is that it has teaching points which carry over into other aspects of life.  Many people fall in love with the sport because of how it pushes them beyond their normal boundaries, and teaches life lessons along the way.

Specifically, CrossFit does have takeaways that are applicable for those of us who spend most of our waking hours in an office building or workplace.  As you get deeper into your training and experience with WODs, you can begin to sense a few crossover lessons that will help you in the conference room, or with co-workers Monday through Friday.

 

1 - Staying calm in the midst of chaos.

 

Let's be honest, regardless of your given occupation, sooner or later there will be a stressful and chaotic situation.  Success or failure in that instance can be dictated by one's ability to maintain calm and focus

Any CrossFitter past his or her first WOD can attest that after "3…2…1…GO!" - the entire scene around them turns into complete bedlam.  Loud music, barbells  and bumper plates clanging against the floor, the whoosh of the rowing machines, feet stomping at the top of box jump landings - a CrossFit box during a WOD is pretty chaotic.

Part of your responsibility during a WOD is to work hard…but remain calm.  You have to remain calm to remember the safety cues and teaching points for your Olympic lifts.  Calmness and awareness of surroundings is crucial to avoid danger as people sling kettlebells all around you.  You also have to maintain awareness for simple tasks like remembering how many rounds of an AMRAP you've already completed.  A CrossFit box mid-WOD can be a chaotic setting…actually it is ALWAYS a chaotic setting.  It is crucial to keep composure and situational awareness at all times.

 (*Note - After clanging a 24kg kettlebell off my right foot during the final few rounds of a Hero WOD last month, I learned a tough lesson about remembering your coaches' safety cues while things get hectic.)

Just as when CrossFit requires an athlete to maintain calm in the midst of bedlam, this applies to the workplace as well.  An employee who loses his or her ability to remain focused, or execute the simple tasks during a stressful situation is one you may hesitate to depend upon moving forward.

 

2 - Understanding your weaknesses

 

Most of us have a weakness somewhere in our CrossFit toolbox.  Regardless of your athletic background or specialty, there is always something that (initially) holds you back from achieving better WOD scores or times. (Mine is gymnastic bodyweight skills like muscle ups, and overall cardio work capacity.)  I've come to believe that the difference in pretty good CrossFitters, and those who become great, is the willingness to face those weaknesses and be honest about a current deficiency.

In the workplace, we all have different skill sets and areas of expertise.  You may be highly proficient in budget templates and financial spreadsheets, so your co-workers regularly seek out your help in those tasks.  Someone else may be more skilled in manipulating creative elements like PowerPoint templates or creative presentations. At the end of the day, we all have areas in our jobs that can be considered strengths, and accordingly some areas where we are not quite as proficient.  The task is to be honest enough with yourself to reveal where your deficiencies are.

 

3 - Invest in your improvement

 

Once you've identified your CrossFit weaknesses, the question now becomes "what will you do about it?"

 

There are basically two options to proceed:

 

Option A - Choose to do nothing about those weaknesses and groan, "Ugghhhh...I suck at (muscle ups/running/double unders/wall ball/insert skill here)..." whenever it appears on the whiteboard for that day's WOD.

 

Option B - Find time before class, after class, or during Open Gym times to attack those weaknesses until you proficiency improves.

 

Just like in CrossFit, employees have to invest time in their weaknesses in-order to gain greater proficiency.  It may mean signing up for a training course for budget templates and spreadsheets.  It could mean using a Rosetta Stone program to get better familiar with foreign languages. It may also mean requesting more presentation opportunities to become more comfortable speaking in-front of groups.

 

Whether it's in the workplace or in your local CrossFit box - weaknesses only improve with additional effort and time spent, working to get better.

 

 

4 - Applauding others' successes

 

In CrossFit, 95% of the time there is someone who is better than you.  To make things worse, usually that person is someone you know well and see on a regular basis.  One of the great aspects of the CrossFit culture is that despite the HIGHLY competitive nature - people don't let their motivation to compete hard morph into a desire to see others around them fail. 

Fellow box members offer support during WODs, and celebrate each other's PR's regardless of what they may (or may not) have been able to accomplish that day.  I'm sure it exists out there somewhere, but thankfully I have yet to experience a CrossFit box where members feel threatened by each others' success and openly (or privately) root for those around them to falter.

 

This can be a challenge in a workplace setting where promotions, bonuses, and raises are given out.  Our economic system creates an environment where not everyone can get ahead at the same time.  Sometimes your success means the person next to you will be passed over, or vice versa.  Certainly it varies by company or industry, but a workplace or an account team ultimately will not survive if its members are undercutting each other's success opportunities so they can grab success for themselves. 

A CrossFit box where members aren't happy for each other's PR's and improvement probably isn't a pleasant place to train.

 

Similarly, a workplace where employees try to derail each other's successes most likely isn't a tolerable place to work.

 

 

5 - Expand your network

 

One of the great thing about local CrossFit competitions is the chance to meet others in the city and develop new relationships outside of your own box.  It can be a chance to make new contacts with which to train, or share workout tips or diet strategies.  I appreciate having friends and contacts at a handful of CrossFit boxes in the local area, as well as a couple more in other states across the country. The more CrossFitters in your personal network, the better.

The same thing applies in your business career. The more contacts that can be made at networking events, happy hours, and mixers - the more resources at your disposal to either improve at your current occupation, or possibly learn of the next opportunity to pursue. The same principals that apply in CrossFit with regards to branching out to meet new people and expand your base, apply in the business world.

 

The joke goes that the easiest way to tell if someone does CrossFit, is that they won't shut up about it.  This is probably true - however in this case there are enough valuable similarities between CrossFit and the business world or office that it was worth the side-by-side comparison.  Hopefully this helps highlight some of the easy benefits that carry over from your next WOD, into the workplace.

Thursday
Dec272012

Most Inspiring Fitness People & Stories of 2012

As the 2012 year comes to a close, I thought it might be worthwhile to take a look back at a few of the people in fitness that provided tremendous inspiration. They all bring something different to the table, but the common thread is that their actions or stories help provide motivation to stick to your diet, or get off the couch, or fight through setbacks and injuries, or not let your age be an excuse, etc.

The Most Inspiring Fitness People & Stories of 2012, enjoy and be motivated.

Debra Cordner-Carson, CrossFit

A crippling fear of the ocean caused her to be disqualified from last year's CrossFit Games. The first event featured an open-water swim, and the emotional struggle caused her to be out of the competition from the very beginning.

She refused to let her fear take the same toll at the 2012 CrossFit Games. The intimidation of the ocean was still quite strong, needing several pep talks from coaches and judges while on the beach before the event began.

Cordner-Carson fought through her fears and finished the open-water swim (which was the starting leg of a sprint triathlon).  

After not making it past the opening event in 2011, she overcame her emotions in 2012 to finish 13th (out of 45) overall. Her inspiring attitude and example won the "Spirit of the Games Award" for 2012.

She also suffers from lymphedema, which causes build up and retention of fluid in one of her legs, but has not let this or anything else prevent her from becoming one of the fittest women alive.

"You don't always win everything. There are always roadblocks in life...I'll keep overcoming them."

 

Adrian Peterson, NFL Running Back

One of the NFL's best running backs (and one of my personal favorites since his days at the University of Oklahoma) suffered a horrible knee injury, tearing his ACL and MCL on Christmas Eve 2011 game against the Washington Redskins.  After surgery on New Year's Eve 2011, Peterson battled back to start the 2012 season opener. 

One year to the day from his surgery, Peterson rushed for 199 yards and scored two touchdowns in a regular-season finale win over the Green Bay Packers.  He finished with 2,079 rushing yards for the season, 2nd-highest total in NFL history and is a front-runner for NFL MVP. No athlete in the modern era has been able to return from ACL surgery and return to top form so quickly.

 

Kevin James, Actor 

The "King of Queens" sitcom star kept his hefty shape for movies like "Hitch" and "Paul Blart, Mall Cop" - but managed to lose 80 pounds to play a school teacher-turned-MMA-fighter in "Here Comes The Boom".

 

 

 

 

The Rock, Actor/WWE


As we (well, I) get older - it becomes increasingly important to find role models that prove aging is no excuse to let your fitness suffer. One of my goals is to be the best "older" version of myself - and one of the best examples of keeping fitness momentum is The Rock.

Even at age 40, The Rock looks better than he did at age 20.  2012 saw him relentlessly busy shooting movies like "Snitch", "Pain & Gain", and "G.I. Joe: Retaliation".  

He also made his much-anticipated return to WWE, appearing several times on Monday Night RAW and on pay-per-view events at Survivor Series, and  WrestleMania XXVIII in his collegiate home town of Miami.

"The People's Champion" trains like a madman, even on days packed with 10-12 hours of movie shooting and stunts.  

His diet is high carb (and standard high protein) to fuel his activity - eating up to seven meals each day with items like sweet potatoes, rice, oatmeal, chicken, fish, veggies (with each meal) and occasional steak and eggs.

His cheat meals were legendary (trust me, take a look...) as well, proving that you can enjoy yourself with treats every now and then provided you've earned it.

The Rock continued to prove in 2012 that getting older can also mean getting better.

 

Matt Chan, CrossFit

Continuing in the theme of proving that age doesn't have to be a limiting factor, Matt Chan (34 years old) became the oldest man ever to achieve a Top 3 finish at the CrossFit Games.

In a sport requiring both immense work capacity (15 events over 5 days) and recovery efficiency, being an older athlete can surely become an obstacle.  Most of Chan's fellow competitors fell in the 22-27 year age range. It's a simple fact that the human body is not capable of the same things at 34 as it used to be at age 24.

Matt Chan combats age limitations by being smarter and more strategic.  Many Games competitors train multiple times daily, Chan trains once each day focusing on making that workout longer and more intense to compensate.  He is also a possessor of advanced-level knowledge of nutrition and recovery tactics (ex: he spent 10-20 minutes on the rower after EVERY event to flush waste products and lactic acid out of his muscles to speed recovery).

Chan continues to inspire that whatever the body loses with age, the wisdom gained can help compensate and still allow a person to maintain a high level of fitness and performance.

 

Carrie Riggin, Fitness Writer/Consultant

One of the enjoyable parts of fitness is sharing what you know and learn with others, while hoping to directly inspire them to better habits healthier lifestyles.

 

Carrie manages a busy lifestyle balancing work, writing fitness columns, catering to NHL fans as a member of the Carolina Hurricanes' Storm Squad, but also continuing to find time to focus on herself and her own fitness.

"Regular people" need to find role models and examples that they can relate to, and between her columns, blog, and Instagram offerings Carrie keeps her fans motivated while showing them fitness can be fun. 

 

 

 

 

 

Lindsey Smith, CrossFit

Continuing the thread around not allowing the busyness of life to impede on your fitness schedule, Lindsey Smith balances family life at home (including a young daughter), plus a full-time job as Athletic Director at an all-girls school in Ohio and Level-1 CrossFit Seminar Staff instructor (which requires frequent travel). Her training schedule is built around balancing overall life, which necessitates workouts as early as before work in the mornings, or even close to 10pm at night.

She's also one of the fittest women alive, competing in the CrossFit Games in 2009, '10, '11, and again this past year in 2012.

Read, or watch (here and here) to learn more about how busy her schedule is - and it may cause each of us to hesitate before using how packed our schedules are as an excuse not to find time to train during the week. I know I personally feel put-in-check about blaming my schedule for missing workouts after learning about Lindsey Smith's dedication.

 

 

Thomas Davis, NFL Linebacker

As a Carolina Panthers' fan, I'm admitting my bias from the start.  With that said, any athlete who is able to overcome three consecutive torn ACL's on the same knee to regain his starting job in the NFL deserves placement on any list of inspiring athletes.

Thomas Davis proved in 2012 that sometimes, when everyone else says you should probably just quit - you don't have to listen.

 

 

 

Kortney Clemons & Tatyana McFadden, United States Paralympians

I had the opportunity to have dinner with Kortney Clemons and his family in Indianapolis prior to the U.S. Track & Field Paralympic Trials this spring.  Clemons is a sprinter who lost his leg serving as a combat medic in Iraq.

He won the 2008 U.S. Paralympic Track & Field National Championship, and was featured in the 2009 documentary Warrior Champions.

Tatyana McFadden is a two-time Chicago Marathon wheelchair winner, who won a gold medal in London this year in the Women's 400m T54 event. 

McFadden was born in Russia with an underdeveloped spinal column and sent to live in an orphanage. She spent the first six years of her life using her arms and hands to get around before being adopted by a U.S. family and brought to live in the States.

She began to participate in wheelchair athletics as a young girl, and progressed to winning Parlaympic medals (silver, bronze) in Athens (at age 15), Beijing, and her first gold in London this year. She was even nominated for an ESPY as Best Female Disabled Athlete.

To call the atmosphere at the U.S. Paralympic Track & Field Trials "inspiring" would be sadly ineffective. To watch men and women who have lost limbs serving our country, or battled disease or deformity their entire lives, but declined to make excuses and continue to work hard and compete was one of the most incredible sporting environments I've ever witnessed.

I bought a dry-fit t-shirt at the event to remind myself during workouts once in a while that no matter how tired I am, how sore my various "injuries" may be, I'm still truly blessed to be able to do the simple things like run and jump with both legs. We fall into traps of complaining about nagging injuries, but these Paralympic athletes fight through far worse conditions everyday and still show competitive spirit out on the track in their respective events.  It was an honor to watch Kortney, Tatyana, and the rest of the field compete that weekend.

 

 

Jenny LaBaw, CrossFit



Continuing in the spirit of overcoming obstacles, Jenny LaBaw is one of my favorite CrossFitters for that same reason.  Without question an elite athlete (finishing 6th in the world in the 2011 CrossFit Games), she also spent most of 2012 as a prime example of how to fight and overcome setbacks.

LaBaw battles epilepsy, and decided to open up to the public this year about her condition in this powerful video:

She qualified for the 2012 CrossFit Games, and got off to a solid start - placing 7th and 4th (out of 45 women) on the first two events, a triathlon and military-grade timed obstacle course.

Hard luck struck her two days later, as a pre-existing neck injury flared up, causing her to struggle through the next two events.  I was in the stands with the crowd that day as she missed the time cap for the morning event, featuring 400m runs, split snatches (an Olympic Lift for those of you about to Google it), and bar muscle ups.  

It was a tough scene watching such a skilled and inspiring athlete struggle so mightily that she was moved to tears.  For me, and others around me, moments like that "humanize" great athletes because it makes them a little more like us.

Eventually her neck injury would cause her to bow out of the 2012 CrossFit Games, but true to form she did not cause that to interrupt serving as a role model, as she met and inspired a 5-year old girl also dealing with epilepsy later that weekend.

Winning, setting PR's, and earning medals are great things - but sometimes athletes like Jenny LaBaw provide us with greater levels of inspiration with the things they power through and overcome than anything else. There's no doubt that she will be back in 2013.

----------------

Hopefully this small list is a solid reflection of just a few inspiring athletes and stories from this past year - and serves to help set the positive tone for 2013.

 

Monday
Nov052012

Thoughts on CrossFit From a Woman's Perspective - Part II

The second installment in a continuing series of testimonials from the ladies of CrossFit Dilworth. Once again, this is hopefully a great chance for some of the women I train with each week to provide a glimpse into what CrossFit has added both to their fitness, and their lives overall.

 

EMILY K.

As a female, what does CrossFit mean to you?

"I started CrossFitting for purely superficial reasons – to get “in shape” for my upcoming wedding. I’m almost embarrassed as I type that. While CrossFit did change my body in ways I never imagined any form of exercise could do, at some point it became more than a daily trip to the gym.

The initial intimidation wore off, and I began to welcome what I previously considered fears. The movements whose names I did not understand (what is a Clean and Jerk?? A Manmaker?!), the knowledge that I would finish last in the class, and the nausea that ensued from pushing myself beyond my physical limits were somehow addicting.

What’s more, these fears were empowering because little by little, I overcame them. Except the nausea – that still happens, just ask any Crossfitter."

 


How has CrossFit changed the way you approach your fitness?

"Empowerment is perhaps my favorite word to describe how I feel as a female crossfitter. Feeling strong inside the gym translates to feeling strong outside of the gym.

Working out alongside like-minded males and females who share in both my triumphs and defeats is exhilarating and motivating. I could not and do not remember what exercise was like before CrossFit, nor do I care to ever go back."

 

 

KRISTI

What does CrossFit mean to you?  

"Well, where do I begin…..I got to a place in my life where I had gained weight and was at my heaviest. So I tried: P90x, Group Power, Spin classes, Insanity and Kickboxing, which I did see some results but not enough because I still struggled to keep the weight off, tone up and I got bored. So I decided to try Crossfit (which I was pretty intimated by) and my body started changing, I noticed definition in my arms/abs and legs.

Crossfit also introduced me to a new way of eating and I have never felt better. So what does  Crossfit mean to me? I can’t really sum it up in one word because it’s so much more then that…..Physical, Emotional, Life-changing, Community, Healthy Living, Challenging and Passion but in order to really know what Crossfit means--you have to experience it for yourself!!"

 

How has CrossFit changed the way you approach your fitness?

"I was never really scared to weight lift: light weight and high reps. I was very scared of lifting heavy weights because I never wanted to look like a bodybuilder, I always wanted to have lean muscle and be tone. So when you so start lifting heavier weights you do get a little bulky but what is happening is your muscles are getting bigger and pushing the fat out.

Over time your muscle/body burns off the fat and then you have a lean/tone body. The important thing to remember is muscle burns more fat than anything! Now, I get excited when I post a PR (personal record) with any of my Olympic lifts! I also learned it doesn’t matter how long you work out, but the intensity you workout at…..Now I can’t imagine working out for two hours (like I use to at a gym)."

 

What would you say to other women who may be scared of, or intimidated by CrossFit?

"We were all there….walking into your first Crossfit box - everyone is yelling at/cheering for each other, dropping weights, equipment you never seen in a gym before, men with no shirts on and women in sport bras. It’s a lot to take in but after your first couple classes you find yourself craving that atmosphere and then you wonder how you ever workout before.

Working out a regular gym with different machines, treadmills, trendy classes, and everyone with iPods on (with no interaction with each other) is pretty boring and not effective to reaching your fitness goals. Once you start, your friends will begin saying stuff about Crossfit and won’t understand why you love it so much….. some of my friends call me “Crossfit Kristi” and personally I don’t mind it at all because I have never felt stronger and healthier!"

 

 

AMBER

Why is fitness important to you?

"Growing up I never thought much about fitness, ate horrible and thought if I'm in decent shape now I'll be fine later. It wasn't until I was diagnosed with a heart condition and had surgery did I realize how important it was to challenge myself mentally and physically at the same time. My biggest struggle was as simple as walking up the stairs. I couldn't go but a few steps before my heart would pound, I would have a hard time breathing get frustrated and have to stop. I knew I had to do something if I wanted to enjoy everyday activities long term."

Why did you start CrossFitting?

"I decided to start CrossFit after talking to multiple people who had been doing it for only a short time and their bodies were completely transformed. I would get text messages from a friend in Seattle with a daily WOD and thought she was talking a different language. I had to keep asking “what is this?”, “what does that mean?”....”TTB...(toes to bar)...where is the bar??”

It took a while to convince me that what this fitness fanatic was doing was something I might be capable of. I was told I would absolutely love it and become addicted but I still harbored a fear that I would be too weak and not be able to keep up. I finally faced my fear when Jackie (who also trains at CFD) said, "Try it once, if you don't love it you don't have to come back. Just realize that everyone around you is at a different level and you go at your own pace."

 

What keeps you coming back to CrossFit Dilworth?

"The challenge, sheer exhaustion and the definition I see in places I never knew there were muscles! But most of all, it’s the environment. From the first class I took and still today, I've been encouraged not to give up and take it at my own pace.

The support you receive from people when you're the only one who is still doing the WOD and yet somehow you don't feel judged....it’s a feeling that is hard to describe. It’s the chants from those around you telling you "You got this, Amber" that make you seek out that last ounce of energy you thought was spent. The coaches and members at CFD have provided an environment that makes me want to push myself and make me realize it’s not what you can't do, it’s doing the things you never thought you were capable of."

Sunday
Oct212012

Should You Be Skipping Breakfast Everday?

Sometimes you can stumble onto a key learning by accident, and that has been my experience the past week with the notion of meal/nutrient timing.

One of my goals over the next few months is to (constructively) shed a few pounds and that led me to question the effectiveness of the amount of meals I was eating everyday.  Eating anywhere from 5-7 meals each day (depending on hunger) meant my body was almost constantly breaking down food and would usually not have much opportunity to feed off of stored body fats.

I've written on the benefits of Intermittent Fasting (IF) previously, and still believe in its benefits with a targeted approach to fit within your schedule (both work/life schedule and training schedule).

After consulting with a few friends and one of my coaches at CrossFit Dilworth - I was led to a strategy that both combines the benefits of IF, as well as something called "Carb Backloading".

The simplest explanation of Carb Backloading (CBL) is that you save your carbohydrate meals for the end of the day, usually post-intense resistence training workout in an ideal scenario.  To optimize this sort of approach, Intermittent Fasting would also be employed, anywhere from two to four hours after waking.  Using IF first thing in the morning has benefits, minimizing the fat-storing effects that early morning cortisol has on your body. Conversely, eating a large meal (particularly one with sufficient "breakfast carbs") upon waking halts the fat burning enzymes present in the body in morning hours and primes the body to store fat soon thereafter.

I certainly don't expect anyone to take my word alone on a controversial topic like this one, so please begin with this article as you work to develop an opinion.

Common opinion has always been that one needs a "hearty breakfast" to "jumpstart your metabolism".  This has been my experience as well - however articles such as the one above (including the scientific data behind it) has caused me to rethink things.  Many people can't spend their days within 50 feet of a kitchen to eat every 2-3 hours.  IF and/or CBL gives people with busy schedules a certain degree of freedom from constant meal prep and eating throughout the schedule.

It is important to note that skipping breakfast does not mean going without the caloric allotment or macronutrients that would have been included in that meal.  When done correctly, IF/CBL mean that lunch and dinner will be sufficient enough to cover the calories and nutrients that would have previously been ingested at breakfast.

Old habits and lines of thinking die hard, so I would encourage anyone with doubts or fears to simply do what I did, and consume the research, articles, and testimonials with an open mind.  Even if still not converted, it's good to learn a little more about the nuances of the human body, particularly the interplay between fat burning harmones vs fat storage harmones, and how times of day affect both harmones.  It is never a bad thing to have a more strategic approach behind the foods we put into our bodies.

To get you started, I've included a few other write-ups here, here, here, and here.

 

Sunday
Oct072012

Thoughts on CrossFit from A Woman's Perspective - Part One

From an outsider’s perspective, CrossFit can be intimidating – particularly among females.  I figured it was important to give a few of the ladies I train with at CrossFit Dilworth, a chance to express their thoughts on the sport, as well as the impact it has had on both their fitness, and lives overall. 

This is the first portion of what will hopefully be a series of testimonials to come…

 

 

 

Kylie 

As a female, what does CrossFit mean to you?

"To me, CrossFit is challenging, intense, intimidating, painful, exhausting, nauseating, exciting, empowering, and exhilarating. It's not just a workout...it's a lifestyle, it's a community, it's a support group, it's an extended family.

It's nerve racking and panic when learning the day's WOD, yelling and bitching while doing it, and then wondering what torture tomorrow's WOD will bring because you can't wait to get back and do it all over again."

 

 
How has CrossFit changed the way you approach your fitness?


"CrossFit is a commitment and it's a passion. It gives me the desire to push myself to the limit and to do more and do better. I feel guilty if I leave the gym knowing I somehow could've done more, whether if it was an extra few reps or a few seconds faster.

 I was a competitive athlete up until college and have remained physically active since. CrossFit has changed the way I work out for the better and has provided more changes in my body than years of previous exercise programs. I can deadlift 250lbs, press 150lbs over my head (which I never had a desire to do until I started CrossFit), and I am strong... but I am not bulky or manly looking (so ladies do not fear!)"


What would you say to other women who may be scared of, or intimidated by CrossFit?


"For any female on the fence, give it a shot. It's the most fun you'll have while working out and you'll meet some of the best people and make some of the greatest friends...especially if you come to CrossFit Dilworth!"

 

  

 

Gracie

As a female, what does CrossFit mean to you?

 

"CrossFit is not only one of the most effective fitness programs, but also a way of life (not to sound too corny or anything...). For me, CrossFit started out as an awesome workout, but has grown to be the hub of my community and friends.

 

The best part: CrossFit is the vehicle to reach my definition of personal success. CrossFit is like having a second job - but one that you are overly passionate about and give your all to on a daily basis. It’s wonderfully rewarding, but can also be painfully frustrating.

Some days you feel like you are on top of the world, and other days you feel like the world is coming down on you. Like all other walks of life, there are good days and there are bad. But each day is new and you get to continue to work on your personal goals towards achieving things you never would have thought you could have done 6 months ago.

 

I believe CrossFit touches everybody who tries it, in different ways. For some, it’s simply a workout. For others, it’s a way of life. Many find camaraderie in the tough workouts, and friendship in the after hour parties. A few find CrossFit to inspire a new career as a coach. For me, CrossFit meant something much different when I started to now. Before it was just a tough workout. Now It has become a road to community and friendship. Above all, it is empowering and inspiring especially as a female athlete."




How has CrossFit changed the way you approach your fitness?

 

"Crossfit has definitely changed the way I approach fitness. Before CrossFit, you could call me the generic old "cardio queen". I ran alot, would do some light dumbbell circuits here and there, but no structured programs and definitely no heavy weights - because, as many girls complain, I didnt want to get "bulky". I could lose weight easily this way, but I had no tone and no definition in my physique. But as I began Crossfit and learned more and more about it, I realized i had been doing it wrong all along.

 

The key to fitness is not to spend hours upon hours in the globo gym on the treadmill, stairstepper, or elliptical... The key is to lift HEAVY. I had never truly seen the type of transformation that I have seen in females' physiques until I joined Crossfit. Women that say they are scared of getting "bulky" do not understand that they will absolutely NOT get bulky with Crossfit unless they are eating a certain way and taking tons of supplements.

 

So to say that my approach to fitness has changed after discovering Crossfit would be a huge understatement. I am a strong believer in short, high intensity workouts now over long, slow endurance based workouts (that I did as a former cardio queen). Fitness can be defined in many ways and varies largely for most people, but I truly believe CrossFit is one of the most effective forms of fitness out today."

 


What would you say to other women who may be scared of, or intimidated by CrossFit?

 

"YOLO. No just kidding.

 For those ladies that may be intimidated by Crossfit, I would say to just jump in there and give it a try before you judge it. You can never truly understand something until you experience it for yourself, so why not try it out? What is the worst thing that could happen? I know at first it is very scary and intimidating- people throwing around barbells, all chalked up and dirty, yelling profanities, loud music and super ripped guys/girls sweating through their clothes. But when it comes down to it, you are only doing it for yourself.

 

 Crossfit is an amazing fitness program, and regardless of intentions when you first walk in that door, it will leave you breathless and sore for a few days. I will say that women specifically should ease into it, especially if you aren't currently working out at an advanced level. Crossfit is great for everybody and will not only give you a great workout, but will help you build muscle that will in turn burn fat (if that is your goal). You will NOT become bulky.

 

Another thing - Crossfit can be modified for everyone, according to your level of comfort and/or any past injuries or sensitive areas. There are always ways to scale a workout, so do not ever feel like you can't do something. So to women who may be scared or intimidated, just give it a try before you completely blow it off! You may just end up falling in love...."