Our local YMCA offers a Cross Fit class that I've been tempted to try for sometime. I conned my hubby into going and so a few weeks ago I finally gathered my courage and took off for a 6 am class in hopes that I would find a full class that I could hide out in the back for. I walked in 10 minutes late (it wasn't my finest morning), opened the door and found 3 people. Seriously, THREE, PEOPLE!! One of which was the instructor....sigh...all three? Male. Well, there went my grand plan to hide.
Scott, the instructor, was great. He is very welcoming and was willing to walk me through each exercise to make sure I was comfortable with the exercises and doing them safely/accurately. Saying I was a bit apprehensive is a serious understatement. It's not like I don't know how to do hard things. I actually ENJOY triathlons, half marathons and seeing where my limits are. But, this? This felt like a whole new animal to me. Here's how my first class went.
We started with the following warm up routine. It's what they call the "Agile 8":
Check out the links for video examples
1 & 2. Foam Roller: Work the outer thigh (think IT bands), inner thigh, upper back, quads, and lower legs
3. La Crosse Ball Sit: This HURTS! I'm not a huge fan of it but I can see how it could be beneficial.
5. Fire Hydrant Cirles: I was feeling SO lady-like in a big gym with lots of mirrors, 3 buff guys...and me. Pride? Gone. Good stretch? Absolutely!
6. Mountain Climbers: These are NOT your average cardio mountain climbers.
7. Groiners: It's like #5 Mountain Climbers on steriods.
8. Static Hip Flexor Stretch: It reminds we a lot of a Warrior 2 pose in Yoga.
WOD - Workout of the Day
Conditioning: Bear Crawl across the room, Back Pedal to the start, 7 Hanging Snatch and a Push Press on each arm, We had to repeat that series as many times as possible for 12 min. I made it through 4 x...and thought I was going to die.
It was incredibly difficult, but I actually felt really great after (until the soreness presented itself). I'm definitely going to add at least one class to my weekly workouts!
Remember that guy I conned into trying Cross Fit? Well, he's now 6 weeks in, going 4 days a week and was willing to let me share his experience.
"I've never had a lot of upper body strength. I've always been a runner. Recently, I've added biking, swimming and been participating in triathlons. At the end of Tri season this year I went searching for a way to build strength. Dianne suggested I go to the Cross Fit class at the gym. I had never looked into Cross Fit and had no idea what to expect. Actually, I was expecting another fitness class with people lined in a row following the instructor. It turn out, that's not what Cross Fit is at all. Cross Fit is by definitition a "highly varied high intensity fitness program". In a Cross Fit class you will find people of all types working at their own pace an at their own level. You won't find a lot of equipment other than some basic standards, barbells, dumbells, pullup bars, etc. You won't be using a lot of marchines. As one Cross Fitter put it "YOU are the machine".
In 6 weeks, I've been doing CrossFit, I have made huge gains. I have over-doubled the number of pullups I can do. I have seen new PRs every week in bench press and shoulder press, and I have also gone from doing 20 pushups at a time to over 40. If you go, take your time. Start slow and have fun with it. Don't be intimidated by more advanced Cross Fitters. I have loved that even the strongest in the class have stopped and cheered when I've PR'd even at my meager level. Take time with the instructor and be sure to learn the correct form.
Give Cross Fit a try. You will see improvement again and again. I promise you won't be burned out. You will be doing new things every time you go. Soon you, too, will be able to do pull ups, push ups and will be jumping, pulling, pushing and moving higher, harder and faster than ever before." - Israel Nichols
What about you? Have you tried Cross Fit? What did you think?