Early on Saturday morning, I found myself in the basement of a building. As I looked around, I saw big wire cages, cement balls, huge truck tyres, poles and chain hooks hanging off the ceiling. Sounds scary, right?
Welcome to CrossFit.
I’ve been wanting to try this for a while after hearing so many great things – and my recent review of the top celebrity workouts reignited this desire. Joining a small group of other Cross curious individuals, we were given the who/what/why on this popular fitness activity.
Some examples ofCrossFit. And no, luckily I didn’t do handstands during my first session.
As part of this, we were asked things like, “who do you think are the fittest athletes?” I was a little worried I may be the most clueless, but with others giving answers like “a referee” and “car racing driver”, I felt a little better. The first thing that sprung to mind for me was Usain Bolt (yes, fab answer if I may say so myself!) We then learned that CrossFit was designed by taking many different sports into consideration and creating one training regime that can combines the benefits of each, giving the ultimate in overall fitness and agility.
After this, it was time to hit the floor and learn some moves. First up, squats. I’ve done lots of BodyPump classes – no problem, or so I thought. If you think you’ve squatted… until you’ve done CrossFit, you haven’t. Oh my gosh, you have to get down so low. At first we were just practicing the technique with plastic poles (and it hurt enough with those), but all too soon, it was onto the real weight bars. This was tough! We then ran through deadlifts and overhead presses.
These are the squats I’m talking about. Look how low the guy at the front is! I was originally squatting like the gent at the back, pretty good right? Not good enough by CrossFit standards!
Now to put it all together! The first challenge: a seven minute continuous circuit of overhead presses, deadlifts, squats and a 100m sprint. I know you’re thinking, seven minutes is nothing. So did I, for the first 30 seconds. Let me say, what followed was an abrupt “Welcome to CrossFit”. I’ve never worked out so hard or been so exhausted in such a short time.
We then discussed nutrition. Our CrossFit instructor subscribes to The Paleo Diet – I’ll do a separate post about this soon, there’s a lot to it and it sounds so interesting! He explained the benefits of eating like our caveman ancestors, which includes a lot of meat, seafood, vegetables, fruits and nuts. The health benefits do sound fantastic. He also spoke about a diet high in carbs (breads, pasta, rice etc) and how this “third world” style of eating should be avoided. He mentioned we are lucky enough to have access to such great, fresh, nutritious foods and that living on rice or high carb-based food with very little nutritional value is what’s eaten in “third world” countries. I’d never heard it put like this before.
Our session, that somehow lasted two hours, was now over and I left feeling quite inspired to eat better (see the feast I cooked up afterwards!) and get myself fitter (so a seven minute workout doesn’t kick my butt so much in the future!)
Post CrossFit Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Salmon, Spinach and Mushrooms. Delish!
Now, two days later, I’m left with a lasting reminder every time I need to carefully lower myself up or down into a chair – when I said it kicks your butt, I wasn’t joking.
I really enjoyed my little CrossFit taster, has anyone else tried it? I’m trying to decide if there’s a future for CrossFit and me… whether you’ve tried it, or you haven’t (and might just want to hear regular tweets about my post-class suffering), I’d love to hear your thoughts!
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I hope you all have the most fabulous Monday – and aren’t as sore as I am after CrossFit! I’d love to hear your thoughts, should I keep it up? What’s your go-to fitness activity?