So you are interested in trying a new or different approach to fitness. You may have seen the CrossFit
Games on ESPN and thought that those people are amazing but…..”No way is that for me.” We I am here
to tell you that those stars were once beginner’s as well. Julie Foucher, second place finisher at the
CrossFit Games, is videoed here in 2009 struggling with a light, simple barbell complex.
She was a humble beginner learning the lifts for the first time with a terrific coach Doug Chapman,
who happened to be my coach at my first CrossFit certification in the summer of 2012.
So who do I think can benefit from CrossFit?
Beginners to weight training – If you have NEVER weight trained before (or trained only on machines),
CrossFit is a great place for you to start. You’ll learn how to do all of the important lifts in a super
supportive and nonjudgmental environment. You may even find yourself to love the feeling of holding
People looking for support and community – This is the appeal to CrossFit for me. You’re not just a
membership payment…you’re a person that needs help. The trainers are here to not only give you a
great workout, but fix you technically and offer encouragement at the same time.
Fitness fanatics – You know those people that love to work out every day and feel like something is
missing if they don’t? The way CrossFit is structured; you are working out with regular consistency. The
general protocol is 3 days on, 1 day off; but if you are feeling great and not to sore, then take on more
days in a row.
Former athletes – CrossFit has built-in teamwork, camaraderie, and competition. Almost all workouts
have a time component to them, where you either have to finish a certain number of repetitions of
exercises in a certain amount of time, or the time is fixed and you need to see how many repetitions you
can do of an exercise. There are even local and national competitions that you can do to tap into your
Weekend warriors – Do you love to run a 5K, Spartan, or would like to participate in events like this in
the future? CrossFit offers what we call GPP or general physical preparedness so you can be ready for
your chosen event. So what the hell does that mean? There are 10 basic skills that we all need to
function at a higher level. They are:
–Cardiovascular/respiratory endurance: The ability of body systems to gather, process, and deliver
–Stamina: The ability of body systems to process, deliver, store, and utilize energy.
–Strength: The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply force.
–Flexibility: the ability to maximize the range of motion at a given joint
–Power: The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply maximum force in
–Speed: The ability to minimize the time cycle of a repeated movement.
–Coordination: The ability to combine several distinct movement patterns into a singular distinct
–Agility: The ability to minimize transition time from one movement pattern to another.
–Balance: The ability to control the placement of the bodies center of gravity in relation to its support
–Accuracy: The ability to control movement in a given direction or at a given intensity.
There are a few people for whom I don’t think CrossFit would be as beneficial, but this
doesn’t mean they won’t enjoy it:
Mirror looker – If you are the type that likes to looks at yourself in the mirror and stare at your bicep
during the eccentric movement of a curl, you probably are not going to like it at CrossFit. Why? We
don’t have mirrors. When lifting, you need to maintain a neutral spine and head so you should be
looking straight ahead, not looking for a mirror.
Egos – Ego has several working definitions, but we’re referring to ego as “an exaggerated sense of self-
importance.” Our egos misguide us to do a lot of negative actions in the gym, including:
-Ignoring the coach’s recommendations on weights and technique
-Sacrificing full range of motion, and worst of all
-Higher potential for injury.
I encourage you to explore the CrossFit community. Do your research. Ask questions. Utilize our free
class. Decide if CrossFit is something you would like to give a shot!