My friend and I signed up for 2 free trial classes at a CrossFit gym. I'm having a hard time explaining what CrossFit is exactly. I did find this video which might give an idea:
... and this explanation:
CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists, and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide.Though that still doesn't really give you an idea. So far I can really only describe the experience we had. Our class was really quite short, but very intense. We started with a warm-up of the following:
Our program delivers a fitness that is, by design, broad, general, and inclusive. Our specialty is not specializing. Combat, survival, many sports, and life reward this kind of fitness and, on average, punish the specialist.
- 5 chin-ups
- 100M sprint
- 5 burpees
- 10 squats
- ..... x 3 sets
After this, we were told that our squats were way, WAY too slow and our burpees were too slow and not intense enough. We then began "the workout":
- 5 chin-ups
- 5 burpees
- 10 squats
Doesn't sound like much, does it? We were to aim to do 15 sets of the above in 15 minutes. My friend and I made it through 10. Everything is done fast, fast, fast - deep, deep, deep - hard, hard, hard. The exercises themselves don't sound that hard, but when you are going that hard and deep, they are killer! In 15 minutes I was dripping a ton of sweat, probably more than I've ever dripped in that short a time period. It was intense!
Burpees are all the way down and out, chest to the floor, back to feet and jump up - and done quick, quick, quick! The instructor demonstrated them this quick ... mine weren't so quick (fast forward to about 1 minute into this).
Now, in review, I completely understand and appreciate the benefits of these types of workouts. I KNOW they change your body in very positive ways. I'm working towards doing more of this. Apparently their workouts vary every day (as they should) and while we just did a short, intense workout - another day could be completely different - yet always intense.
In knowing how great these workouts are ... I'm not completely sold on the program. First off, there is very little I like about the instructor. Not that he's there to be liked, that's not his job. He knows his stuff and I'll completely give him that, but he came off as very arrogant and cocky. He knows best, his methods are best, and there is no other way. They offer a 6 week program, which he admits should really never be 6 weeks because this is for life, not short term (and I completely agree). But he made the statement that "if you can't stick to a 6 week program then you should just shoot yourself". What???? I get what he's trying to get across, but really???
Then there was the woman who did our consultation afterwards. I will give her credit for having an amazing body and she seemed quite knowledgeable. However, there were a few things that irked me and I can't wrap my head around them.
She asked what our goals are and what we're currently doing fitness-wise. After we told her she pretty much sat back and said "well, when you're ready to get serious about changing your bodies and are ready to give up the distance running ... then come back to us." She said that long distance running is only making us fatter and reducing our muscles and that the more we run, the less chance we have to see the changes we want in our bodies. She said if we wanted to follow their program, we would have to give up running and cycling like we are currently doing.
Now, I do know that I see better results when I'm running shorter and faster, and incorporating lots of muscle building activities. So I will agree with her to a point. But to say you have to give up an activity that you love in order to achieve a better body is just nonsense. Besides, I'm looking for balance in my life. I'm not looking to erase every "unhealthy" morsel from my diet just so that I can look model perfect. I know by not going in 100% that I won't get 100%, but I'm happy with 90%, heck I'm probably happy with 80%. I'm not going for elite athlete with a perfect body. I want a decent body and to be in good shape. It just didn't sound like there was any wiggle room there.
She also said that our bodies (in our late 30's) were much better designed to be slim than hers (at 19) because her body is wanting to have babies and to stay slim she is fighting her hormones. She said at our age, we are past that stage and our bodies WANT to be slim. Hmm, never in my life have I heard anything like that. Ever!
So, I took some good from this, I found some bad - and now I just have to sort through it and use what works for me. We have another session next week where I will give it another open look. They do offer a 3 week fat loss challenge program. It's $97 - but you can go as often as you like during that 3 weeks (up to 5x per week). It's not something I can consider right now, but possibly in the late fall, when my friend is done her marathons, I might look into it ... just for the 3 weeks, as a challenge. We'll see. Gonna sit on it and think about it for a while.
Honestly, I think my workouts have been becoming more well rounded lately. I could certainly incorporate more of the hard core, intense, short burst exercises like we did at this class - and I aim to do that. But, I still know that if I'm ever going to see the changes I want again, I HAVE to clean up my diet. If nothing else, this class did help to pound that into my brain a little more. I KNOW this is where I need the changes, but sometimes you have to hear (and see) it quite a few times before you're really inspired to make those changes.
Lately I've been working out hard and just wasting it with my diet. This is stupid! Really, REALLY stupid. I'm putting way too much effort and time into exercise, for nothing. Well, not quite nothing, but pretty much. I'm fitter, but I'm not accomplishing what I want.
Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend! My plans are all up in the air right now and I'm not certain what I'll be doing. With any luck I just might get out for a hike. Just might have to do some scrambling around to fit it in. Have a great one!!!!!