Nick and I were watching a movie this weekend and one of the characters ended up hanging off the side of a blown up wooden bridge. As I watched this very fit man start to pull himself up, I wondered what it would be like if he wasn't able to do it. If all he was was a muscular man but with no strength. If he wasn't able to use those very nice looking muscles.
And it made me think about why I used to workout when I was younger. I mean, I've always been into fitness and working out, whether it was running or step aerobics or Jazzercize (yes, I did it...don't judge me). But I did it because I wanted to look good. I wanted to feel good in my skin. It never occurred to me that I also wanted to be strong (bear with me here).
This all came to fruition when I was coming home from overseas and was trying to lift my very heavy backpack over my head into the overhead bin and I couldn't. I wasn't strong enough. I had to ask the man next to me for help. And yes, this memory very clearly stands out for me. I never wanted to feel that way again.
I'd heard about CrossFit for awhile, but I had negative connotations towards it. I'd heard it was a cult and that everyone who did it "drank the koolaid," whatever that meant. I don't even know why I listened to any of those people because there really was no reason for me not to try it.
Yet, I was still nervous and very intimidated by it. It still took me several years to actually step foot in a CrossFit gym. And I still remember that day...walking in to a room full of people working out on a pull-up rig...something I couldn't do. But I was there...I'd committed to trying it so I stayed.
After my foundation sessions, I went to my first workout of the day, or WOD as we call them, and I can remember that plain as day too. I truly thought I was fit and in shape when I started CrossFit, but this workout...well, it humbled me, to say the least.
It was the benchmark workout Jackie, which is 1000m row, 50 thrusters with an empty barbell, and 30 pull-ups. To say I went out hot in the row would be an understatement. I gave it all I had thinking I had to push and would be able to do it all, no problem. I got through the thrusters with only hitting myself in the bridge of my nose once. And I used a thick green band for my pull-ups.
I don't even remember my time or how I felt immediately after, but let's just say I drove home and laid on the floor in my bedroom for about 20 minutes trying not to throw up. I went way too hard in that workout...I know that now. But I can also tell you that I went back the next day and the next and the next.
I absolutely fell in love with CrossFit. I fell in love with the workouts, the process, the movements, the growth. I was not only loving how I felt and looked, but I loved how it crossed over into my every day life. It truly is functional fitness.
Another memory that stands out for me is when my sister in law was in town with her son. He was super fussy while I was making dinner and didn't want to be put down. I made dinner with one hand all the while holding him in the other arm. It was at that moment I realized CrossFit wasn't just making me stronger in the gym, it was making me stronger outside of the gym too!
And I knew then I wouldn't have an issue lifting a heavy bag into the overhead bin anymore!
I no longer just wanted to look good, I wanted to be stronger and fitter for every day life. I wanted to build up the muscles around my knees so they would stay strong after my knee surgeries. I wanted to strengthen my back to help my scoliosis. And let's be real, I wanted to be able to carry all my groceries in at one time.
When people ask why I love CrossFit, this is it. The functional fitness part of it is awesome. Plus the workouts and the challenges of them are fun, and I've made some amazing friends and family from it. Shoot...I met my husband because of it.
I wish I had started sooner and hadn't let the opinions of others influence me to stay away for so long. If you've been thinking about it, heard about it, wondered what it was like, come see me. I know it can be intimidating but it really is one of the best things I've ever done.
What you see on TV is the best of the best...that's not your average CrossFit gym. So don't let it scare you...come check it out and form your own opinion.
I hope you have a beautiful week. And hopefully I'll see you cross fitting soon!
With love and wellness,