Workout101: The CrossFit Craze

I read somewhere that CrossFit is the opposite of Fight Club because..

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Just a few months ago, CrossFit was only somewhat of a cult favorite, popular with people whose gyms offered a class. Now though, it seems that it’s impossible not to know anybody who has joined the CrossFit craze. I myself live near a gym that offers a class and I can’t say I was never tempted to go in and inquire. Fanatics rave about 30-minute do-it-all workouts, real results and of course the “glorious” pain that comes after every session.

What is CrossFit? Why has it become so popular?

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Simply put, CrossFit is a diverse mix of high intensity movements.

There is absolutely nothing repetitive in CrossFit. Founder and developer Greg Glassman made it that way so that your body will not get used to a single repetitive movement and reach a plateau. This is also the reason why it delivers results over a short period of time – your body will never ever be given the chance to be truly good at something for it to become bored and stop working.  If you’re easily bored with monotonous sports like running or yoga, then CrossFit may be for you.

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Another misconception about CrossFit is that you have to be in an insane level of fitness to participate in a class. Not!  While pictures often depict people with rock hard abs straining to lift a big concrete ball, CrossFit can easily be toned down to your fitness level during your first few sessions; although you do have to prepare yourself for increasing intensity workouts in the future.

Each CrossFit regimen is based on developing ten physical skills:

  • Cardiovascular and respiratory endurance
  • Stamina
  • Strength
  • Flexibility
  • Power
  • Coordination
  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Balance
  • Accuracy

Unlike most machines in the gym, CrossFit doesn’t focus on only one muscle group at a time. It is a complete system, working as much muscle as it can at the same time.  It is about being good at several things at a time instead of one thing at a time such as in running. You will be able to do squats, climb ropes, splits, run and do flips in a single one hour session.

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We recommend joining a group for first timers. Most gyms offer classes, but if you can afford it, a one on one session is also possible. There is a strong sense of community in most CrossFit circles which provides a great mix of individual and peer motivation.

So what do you think? Are you going to try your hand at CrossFit?


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