Once upon a time when a person would approach me with a question about training or diet I usually “prescribed” the following;
1. Consume less calories than you burn.
2. Ditch the carbs
3. Drink more water
4. Lift weights (and not the “girl” ones)
5. Do AT LEAST one cardio session everyday
This prescription was based on my experiences and my dalliances in the bodybuilding world. That’s how everyone did it, lift lots, walk lots, eat not a lot ..
Apart from points 3 & 4 I’m not that girl anymore and these days I have a “one sized fits most” answer;
“What should I do to get stronger?”
“How do I get leaner?”
“Where do I learn how to do handstands like you?”
“I’m a stay at home Mum, where do I go to make some new friends?!?!”
My reply? Crossfit!
I know at this point your thinking “typical cultish crossfitter” but after a year in the box this is what I feel crossfit has over other similar forms of training.
That doesn’t mean that instead of doing ACTUAL full range of motion squats that you can do ¼ squats. It means that you do full range of motion squats with either a very light weight OR no weight until you have become proficient enough to complete the movement RX. You become stronger as you learn how to move correctly.
Nothing is finite about crossfit it’s one of those activities where the better you get, the harder it becomes.
Lets take the handstand pushup (HSPU) for example. The crossfit standard is that your head touches the floor at the bottom and that your hands fully extended at the top. If either part of the movement is missing – no rep, pretty simple.
Most people start out working through the stinkbug progressions, then as they get stronger (from doing the correct movement but with less load in the stinkbug progressions) you move to kipping HSPU variations (raised, flat, deficit) against a wall which progresses to strict HSPU against a wall (raised, flat, deficit) and then you can even advance to freestanding HSPU’s (kipping and strict or even deficit)!
See what I mean? There is always another level to progress towards
I don’t just feel stronger, I am stronger. I know this because it’s tested.
I don’t just feel more proficient at wall balls, I am and once again I know this because I completed Karen (150 wall balls for time) 4 minutes faster than last time.
Crossfit benchmarking allows you to measure your progress.
However if you want to measure yourself against others, you can do that too!
Take to the field (if you want it)
I was talking to a friend who started her crossfit induction this week. She decided to come across “to the dark side” (as she put it) after being a spectator at the Crossfit HPU Playoffs. She explained that the training she was currently doing was “like doing all of the practice sessions, but never getting any court time” which I thought was a brilliant analogy.
And although you don’t have to be affiliated to a box to compete, it’s definitely advantageous to have some experienced coaches in your corner for weakness development.
The socks (and shoes) are cute
I’ve always had a thing for long socks, the more garish the better and at least now when people approach me while I’m wearing my garish long socks and enquire “Are you a crossfitter?” My heart no longer hardens at the mere thought of it whilst I spit back “No! I am not!” instead I just smile and nod my head affirmatively.
That does not mean I am against other types of training. If you want to do your daily morning cardio followed by an afternoon in the weight room – Sweet as! If you want to go to Zumba – Woohoo! You get your rump shaker on! After all if you love it and it gets you moving, who am I to look down my upturned nose at you?
However if you ever get the urge to throw some weight above your head, come find me ..
Till next time