My daughter, Kayla, was never much of a team sport athlete. Unlike her twin, Becca, and younger sister, Nikki, playing soccer was not on her to-do list after about age 10. As a matter of fact, for the first 15 or so years of her life, it was hard to get her exercising at all.
Right before her senior year of high school, however, the fitness bug hit her full force. She became a gym rat, taking and teaching Zumbah and working out like crazy. To say that she is the fittest and most health conscious of the Hansen girls would be an understatement, particularly since she has totally embraced the fitness concept of CrossFit Training. I have been slowly getting up to speed on Crossfit from chatting with Kayla but decided that researching the subject for a column would get me more acquainted.
Fitness guru Glen Glassman created CrossFit in early 2000. Since its inception, there are more than 4,400 affiliated Crossfit gyms in the United States and that number is growing rapidly. According to the website, Crossfit is the sport of “fitness” based on the principle of constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movement. In laymen terms, that means a butt-kicking workout that involves weight training, functional exercise, cardio strength and balance exercises that differ every single workout. The principle is nothing extremely new. Many fitness experts see the value of muscle confusion to get results in a shorter period of time. Here is a sample workout of the day from the website: 100 foot walking lunge; 50 pushups; 50 double-unders; 25 knees to elbows; five rope climbs, 15 feet; 50 box jumps, 24-inch box; 25 overhead squats, 65 pounds; 25 L pull-ups; and 50 sit-ups.
Participants time their workout and, as they progress, work to achieve their own personal best performance.
There are many unique qualities to CrossFit training that are very appealing to participants. For one, the workout is high intensity, so the time commitment is minimal. You can choose when and how often you go to the “box” (gym) to workout. According to Kayla, you have a coach or trainer who concocts the workout and supervises the CrossFitters. They are there for instruction and to encourage participants. Also, despite working on bettering their times, there is not so much of a competitive feel between participants but more of wanting to help each other to succeed. And finally, the social aspect is also a big component of CrossFitting. Kayla tells me that there are planned social events weekly to get members of a certain “box” together for fellowship.
I also figured out that one can CrossFit alone if you have the equipment, space and know-how. You can use the workout of the day posted on the website. I, for one, think CrossFitting sounds pretty cool. Now if only I could find a “box” here in RobCo to join.
CrossFit is a licensed program whose instructors must complete a certification and keep it current. The upfront cost for a CrossFit Gym is about $25,000 to 30,000. Price-wise, memberships can run anywhere from $90 to $150 per month depending on the area. If you are interested in learning more about the CrossFit Craze, visit the website at www.crossfit.com. You can also check out the hard core CrossFitters who compete in the CrossFit games which airs on ESPN.
Kathy Hansen has more than 20 years of experience in the health and fitness field and a daughter that can deadlift her body weight. She can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amanda L. Crabtree, MPA-HA
Public Relations Coordinator
Southeastern Regional Medical Center
PO Box 1408
Lumberton, NC 28359