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Nov 14 2012

The Fastest Growing Sport…ON THE PLANET-PART II

by at 3:01 pm


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So, I last left you with my decision to try out the fabled Crossfit, and whether or not I survived her infamous workout….

Upon entering the first box I tried (in the Crossfit world, a “box” equates to a gym), what struck me first was not the lack of exercise machinery, but the fact that there were no mirrors. However, I quickly realized that the ethos of Crossfit was in leaving your ego at home, and performing each exercise to the best of your ability with the appropriate weight. I don’t know about you, but every regular gym I have been to consisted of several overly muscular meatheads who would spend more time hogging the weight rack and staring at themselves in the mirror than actually getting any serious exercise done. The fact that this box was devoid of mirrors was oddly reassuring.

After a quick introduction with the coaches, I stepped right into my first w.o.d. (workout of the day). This began with a warmup that included some handstands, lunges holding a weight plate over my head, and plenty of burpees. I was then directed toward a giant whiteboard that had the w.o.d. posted, along with several names, weights, and times for the day. I was given a rundown of the correct form for each exercise, and before I knew it, the timer on the wall was counting down from 00:10. This wasn’t going to be a workout session where I might do some work, grab some water, chat briefly to someone, and then carry on. This was going to be a flat-out, work your tail off, heart pumping monster.

Now, I consider myself to be a generally fit, active, and healthy person. I’ve played competitive sports from a young age, and was a collegiate athlete. But I can honestly say, I had never experienced a tougher, excruciating, and fulfilling workout. I started off with 30 box jumps on to a 20 inch box, before quickly moving on to 20 pull ups. There was no time for rest, or so I thought. As the workout continued, I tackled several different exercises, including wall balls (squatting down with a 20 lb. medicine ball, before exploding up off your feet and launching the ball high against a wall), back extensions, and the jump rope. The notion of no rest quickly evaporated, along with the air in my lungs. I found myself having to take 30 seconds here and there for a quick sip of water and to catch my breath, all the while sweat was pouring from my forehead and veins threatening to explode out of my arms. When it came to the last exercise, 4 rope climbs, I succumbed, and collapsed on the floor, spent for the day.

Although my preparation for the w.o.d. could have been a LOT better, I was astonished on how much variety and work could be done in such little time. When I finally managed to drag my broken body to the shower, and eventually dress myself to step out of the gym, I began to experience an incredible high that comes with completing (or almost completing) intense exercise. Needless to say, I was hooked.

I am now two months in to my Crossfit career, and I am still experiencing the high. Granted, some of the exercises are complicated and can be frustrating (handstand pushups and clean and jerks are a real pain), and the cost of gym membership is high (around $150 for students), there is NO way I am going back to a regular gym. I have lost weight, packed on muscle, and feel more flexible and generally fit for everyday tasks.

Stay tuned for another update on my Crossfit experience!

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Oct 18 2012

The fastest growing sport ON THE PLANET

by at 9:52 am


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If you’re a sports and exercise fanatic, chances are you’ve already heard about Crossfit, and have known about the unique fitness program since it was founded in 2000 by Greg Glassman as Crossfit, Inc.

Since then, Crossfit has grown enormously and is practiced by members of approximately 4,400 gyms worldwide as well as fire departments, law enforcement agencies, military organizations, and high school, collegiate, and professional sports teams, such as the Miami Marlins. In addition, the ‘Crossfit Games’, which have been ongoing since 2007, has also grown tremendously in size and in sponsorship-first prize for the winner in the men’s and women’s competition at the inaugrual games was $500-in 2012 it was $250,000. The Games have also become a televised event, covered by ESPN and sponsored by Reebok.

There is no doubt that Crossfit is rapidly growing in name and stature-but what exactly is the appeal behind it? How has a relatively simple idea grown so quickly, and where will it be 10 years from now? Of course, the best way to answer those questions was to actually jump into the “Crossfit Cult”-and this is precisely what I’ve done.

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