There’s a running joke on the internet. CrossFit people LOVE to talk about CrossFit. A year ago I wouldn’t have thought I would be one of those people, but today I can tell you it’s true. A day doesn’t pass when I don’t talk about CrossFit.
It starts when my alarm goes off at 4:45am. I ask myself…Beth, do you really want to get up and go? Then, get out of bed to my quads and glutes screaming….why are you up? Get back to bed! Walking across the room, every cell in my body is telling me I’m sore. I can’t today. But I keep walking. I get up and get to my box nearly every morning.
It is addicting and those who haven’t experienced CrossFit (but have friends who talk about it) might call it a cult. I may have even been one of those people just a year ago. I won’t go that far but I will say, after nearly a year, I am a believer.
KT and I each had our own paths to joining our box, CrossFit Pure, but KT took the plunge far earlier and is responsible for bringing me in to the CrossFit community.
It wasn’t easy to get me to try it. KT would tell you I was full of I can’t. I won’t fit fit in. I’m not athletic enough. I don’t have time. I just can’t. But those were all just excuses or poor reasons to not invest in myself. It took about a year of her asking, persuading, coaching, nagging, or verbally dragging me before I gave in.
KT and the Box Babes welcomed me with open arms. They told me it will probably be like death for the first few days but you can do it and we will be here to support you. And that is where my Pure family journey began in late summer 2017.
Before I joined Pure, I had been a committed walker / jogger for years. In 2016, I set a goal of moving for 750 miles and managed to clock well over 1,000 miles. That was an accomplishment. I was still considered morbidly obese, but my cardiovascular health did improve and I managed to keep diabetes at bay. Even still, I wasn’t getting the results I wanted, the ones you see in the mirror and others might take notice of. I lost about 10 pounds that year, but I wanted more.
Fast forward to today, when I will soon celebrate my first year CrossFitversary. I can’t believe I did it but I did. I committed to something out of my comfort zone. I made a financial and time commitment to myself despite scheduling challenges and long commutes. I survived and now consider myself an athlete of sorts. Maybe not an elite athlete but I compete every day at the box, even if it’s just with myself.
I had my annual physical yesterday. My doctor marveled at how much I have improved my health this year. My blood pressure is excellent, my heart is strong, and as a bonus I lost over 25 pounds, which is about the same as what I had lost the previous three years combined. Holy wow, I did that. Me! The girl who thought she couldn’t turned into the girl who believed she could and did it.
I am now able to look in the mirror and see how much I have changed. I am physically stronger, mentally stronger and I am capable of taking on many life challenges I face by slowly chipping away at them. I feel better. I look better and more confident. I eat healthy foods most of the time.
Looking back, I was afraid of CrossFit for several reasons.
As many of my friends can tell you, I am about the least athletic person on the planet. I can trip over flat ground (and do so often). I have no coordination or sense of my body. Growing up, I had permanent scabs on each knee. My Dad called me “Grace” (since I had none).
Having heard some of the things CrossFit athletes did, I was convinced I wasn’t capable of lifting weights on a barbell, doing burpees, or jumping on a high box without injuring myself and those around me (and also eliciting ridicule from the actual athletes there). Then, there was the scheduling. The friends I had went to a class I couldn’t attend due to my work schedule. How would I endure this by myself?
I can now share that all my fears about CrossFit were quickly laid to rest.
Movements were taught step-by-step by capable, patient, qualified coaches…scaled versions helped me build up if I couldn’t get it that day.
Even though I technically went to class by myself, the people at my class welcomed me quickly and encouraged me from the very beginning (which isn’t easy at 5:30 am!)
Finally, I now find seeing people and enduring the pain / accomplishment to be a beautiful part of the process. These are people who I would have never met otherwise. Some people who are crazy healthy and fit actually cheer for me – me! And are pulling for my health, fitness, effort, and happiness (even as they play a role in it).
CrossFit is the real thing. My story is real and still unfolding. I’m just one of many who have been transformed by CrossFit and community, and I’ll keep talking about it to anyone who will listen.
Think about your health goals. Maybe CrossFit isn’t for you today, but what might your next step be? If you feel scared, find a buddy and get active. It might be a nightly walk today and yoga next year. Define your path and skip along at whatever pace works for you. Remember if you never try new things you will never see the world and all that it has to offer.