Eat More. Be More.

Why I Started Crossfit

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing some of the reasons why I WOD. Here is the first installment:


Flickr image by Adrià Ariste Santacreu

Am I Doing This?

Before getting started I was worried about some physical problems from being so out of shape and if I’d be able to handle the workouts, but I also figured getting in shape was the only way my issues were going to get any better. So I lied, and said I wouldn’t quit. The reality is I had no idea if I’d be able to stick with it. But I was tired of being out of shape and struggling to find clothes that fit.

Day One

That is how long it took for me to get hooked. You don’t just jump into classes in Crossfit. You have to go to a couple of training sessions with a coach to learn the movements, terminology, and assess your level of fitness and skill (or lack thereof in my case). Some boxes (CF calls their gym a box) call the class On Ramp. My box calls it Elements. It’s a two-day boot camp designed to kill you, or so it seemed at the time.

I was told we’d go through movements and do a workout. I did enough air squats that I couldn’t walk right for days. Every muscle in my body hurt. And I liked it. I knew that this would get me in shape. But that isn’t what hooked me. It happened during the 400 meter run.

If you ever saw me running in the past, there was either a food truck ahead of me, or zombies behind me. In college I learned to fight because I knew there was no way I was going to run if I ever got into a bad situation. I hate it that much.

My run went well for about the first 20 meters. Then I started to suffer. I couldn’t breathe. My shins started to hurt. I was winded beyond belief. Every time a foot hit the ground I felt my fat drop like someone was throwing cement bags on me.

I think I made it 50 meters before I had to walk. Then I walked 20 meters, jogged 20 meters, walked 30, etc. I don’t think the coach really believed how out of shape I was until she saw me run. Here’s where it got interesting.

Coach to the Rescue

When she saw how much trouble I was having, my coach came out to meet me. She gave me specific distances to walk, then run. She coached me through more of that run than I ever would have thought I was capable of. When my mind said quit, she showed me that my body could do more. I was exhausted when I got back, but I knew this environment could push me past my mental barriers and self-imposed limitations.

The Fight Continues

I still fight this on a daily basis, but I’m getting better. When I want to stop I ask myself if it’s because I can’t go on or because I don’t want to. I try not to give up until I give out. I haven’t chased away all the demons, but I’m to the point where I can look them in the eye.

I still hate running. When I started, I couldn’t make a lap around the building. A couple of months in and I made all six laps during the workout. Not much longer and I completed my first 400m run without stopping. I still struggle, but I’ve made a lot of improvement. My next goal is an unbroken mile run. I just wish I wasn’t gearing up for it just as summer in Texas is about to hit us!