I used to think I was in pretty good shape. Then I did my first Crossfit WOD and got my ass kicked. Turn’s out I wasn’t as fit as I thought. It was a workout appropriately named “Fight Gone Bad” and it left me lying on the ground panting for about 5 minutes. I went to that first free workout with a buddy who was also in really good shape. He hasn’t been back since.
I sometimes question whether the “trial by fire” approach is a good intro for someone who has no idea what to expect from your average Crossfit WOD. For me it was perfect, I love the challenge and I love pushing myself. For my buddy and many others it can leave them with a bad taste and no desire to come back for another session of getting wrecked. This reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from the founder of Crossfit, Greg Glassman.
“Expecting elite fitness from comfortable effort is naïve”
Crossfit is hard. It should to be. Getting in shape isn’t easy and you won’t get to your goals without putting yourself through some pain. You can choose to put yourself through pain during your workout, pushing your limits, or the pain will eventually find you if you if you’re out of shape. It will find you in your backyard gardening, getting groceries out of your car, when you have to lift anything heavy, in old age, or anytime you’re forced to exert yourself more than usual. By taking the initiative and picking how and when you go through pain will make your everyday life easier, more comfortable, and more satisfying.
An example is Brian Mente; a friend of mine who had back surgery a few years ago and after doing Crossfit for 3 months was experiencing less pain in his back than anytime since his surgery. He had tried traditional physical therapy, yoga, and I don’t know what else but what worked best was Crossfit. This program isn’t built to be a physical therapy program but it has done for many people what years of physical therapy couldn’t. How cool is that?
For an even better example of Crossfit as Physical Therapy check out Mel’s story at http://dallascrossfit.com/featured-athlete/melissa-mel-knourek Amazing stuff.