One reason people see great gains with CrossFit are because of the people around them. At CFDC we post our time or score for that day’s WOD on the whiteboard for all to see. I always check the scores of people who went before me and try to beat the best times. I constantly look around during the workout to see who I need to catch up with or who is right behind me. Sure it doesn’t matter because you’re just doing the workout for yourself, but it’s still fun to win. There’s no first place award, no shiny star, and no recognition (other than a high five!) but everyone wants to finish first.
A lot of people grow up playing competitive sports but as we get older we lose those opportunities to bring out our inner athlete. I look at CrossFit as my sport now. Just like any race it’s you vs. the clock. When I look at CrossFit as a sport I don’t go to the gym just to get in shape. I go to the gym to compete. When I compete I work harder, when I work harder I achieve greater fitness; which is the real purpose of CrossFit.
The competitive aspect of CrossFit drives me to work that much harder. If I stop to catch my breath and look over and the guy next to me is still working that motivates me to get going. There have been times where I didn’t think I would have even been able to complete a workout if it hadn’t been for those people around me going through the same thing, showing me that if they can do it I can do it.
You can try to do a workout by yourself and get a decent score. But ff we put your friend next to you and have you both do the workout you’re going to improve drastically because you’ll want to kick their ass so you don’t have to hear about it afterwards. The next day they are going to push you even harder and the cycle goes on like that every time you workout together. This is one of the things that make CrossFit so much fun. I’ve seen middle age women drive themselves to near failure trying to beat their husbands during a WOD (which makes the husband work even harder). Yet another reason why working out with a group is such a great thing.