My best friend and drinking buddy is a really great guy and fun to be around. He is also about 30 pounds lighter than me. This weight differential is not just because he is about 6 inches shorter than I am, but it is also because he has become obsessed with a new trendy workout called CrossFit. If you stay up late at night, you might have seen the “CrossFit Games” on ESPN2 and thought to yourself how you could totally do that! Well, I am here to tell you chances are good that you cannot. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 35.9% of adults age 20 years and over are obese and 33.3% of adults 20 years and over are overweight. Basically there is a 69.2% chance that you are either overweight or obese. However, workouts like P90X, Insanity and CrossFit have given people hope of creating a better you. Those programs can work if you are dedicated enough. Dedication is the key to any workout regimen. Today, I would like to tell you a little more about the CrossFit revolution.
The workouts that are the trademark of this strength and conditioning program are very difficult. One workout that would make me throw up is called the Murph. It starts with a 1 mile run, then 100 pull ups (I can hardly do 1 pull up), 200 pushups, 300 air squats and then they finish with another 1 mile run. This is one of their more difficult days, but it still sounds like something I would be vomiting through. In gyms all over the country “CrossFitters” gather together to do these workouts together and honestly, I am very impressed by them.
My friend first heard of CrossFit from his roommate. She was going into the military and she needed to get prepared for the physical challenges that were waiting for her. The first class that he went to was so difficult that he knew he was not doing the right training before. He continues to go because he loves the challenge and he loves the people. “The people at your CrossFit gym become a second family to you,” he told me. Everyone chooses to be there and are all going through a shared struggle. My friend said that you share in all of your “wins and losses” as a family and you are there to inspire each other to achieve the previously impossible and pick each other up during the rough times. That sense of family is not something that is easily found at a gym.
Looking at the CrossFit website, it says that, “CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operation units, champion martial artists, and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide” (In my friend’s case, he is an accountant with a big ego and likes to workout). They also say that they use their same routines on elderly individuals with heart disease and cage fighters one month out from televised bouts. They scale load and intensity to fit your particular needs.
So maybe you are an accountant (that can’t win a game of fantasy football) or you are going into the military, CrossFit is good enough to train your body and give you the confidence to take on any of life’s challenges.
My friend says that anyone can do the CrossFit program if they are dedicated and want to do well. When you struggle and when you fall down, your gym-mates will be there to pick you up and help you finish. That is not something that you find at your local corner gym.
So how does it work? Well, you can try to do the workout I described above by yourself. However, I would not recommend that. It is actually pretty easy to find a local gym near you that has a CrossFit program. Now this gym may not be your local 24 Hour Fitness. Sometimes, these gyms are located in garages that are filled with large tires, ropes to climb, and an assortment of large weights. This is a workout that is done outside of the ‘normal’ gym most of the time.
So if you want to give this workout a try, find a local location that does a CrossFit program and see if you have the guts and the strength to complete the workout. My friend showed me a light “cool down” workout that they do and I was sore for a few days afterwards. I think I will stick to the old fashion workout. Running, sit-ups and pushups.