I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Kelly Anne Graham this weekend at the Crossfit competition. She is an absolutely amazing woman who has put together an absolutely amazing book. She, herself, was a Masters Crossfit Games athlete who suffered a back injury that ended her career as an elite athlete, and her ability to Crossfit. Unable and unwilling to leave the Crossfit community behind, she has spent the last year recovering and assembling this book of stories written by who have been, for lack of a better term, “saved” by Crossfit (I will note she uses the term Functional Fitness, but for brevity’s sake, I’m going with Crossfit).
As I read through each of the stories in this book yesterday and again today, I was struck by the similarities in each of them; and how they mirror my own story. After suffering a major setback/injury/health issue, these survivors, happened upon a Crossfit box, slowly started to expand their physical capabilities, and overtime, realized that Crossfit had completely changed their lives for the better.
There are a lot of people that hate Crossfit. For whatever reason, they don’t believe in the concept, the methodology or the programming of the workouts; they think it’s a surefire way to injure yourself, possibly gravely; and so they turn their nose up at the entire concept.
Hey, I’ll be the first to admit that there are aspects of Crossfit that I don’t particularly agree with; and I do see that there is the potential (AS THERE IS WITH ALL ATHLETIC ENDEAVOURS) for injury. But rather than throw the baby out with the bathwater, I have chosen to make informed choices about how, where, and with whom I Crossfit . . . and I can say with 100% certainty that Crossfit “saved” me.
Why??? Well, engaging in Crossfit has made me stronger. I know now that I’m physically strong enough to conquer what ever gets thrown in my way. I mean that in the literal sense; I am strong enough to physically get out of danger. But also in the sense that I know I am strong enough to handle any other health crises that might come my way.
Engaging in Crossfit has taught me how to pace myself. As a kid, my nickname as “Have-it-all-Nancy”. I wanted to be, do, have everything. At once. I ran around so much, doing so much, trying to be so much, that I inevitably crashed, usually getting pretty sick for a few weeks at a time. Now I know that, just like in a long WOD (workout of the day), where you can’t give 100% through the entire workout, I can’t do, be, or give 100% all the time.
And most of all, engaging in Crossfit has taught me the value, beauty, and love that comes with being part of a community. I grew up as a figure skater. I have tried my hand at aerobics, spinning, boxing, yoga, and just regular gym workouts. But in none of those activities do you find a supportive and welcoming community like you do at a Crossfit box. Like I said in my post yesterday, you will likely find the most competitive people you will ever meet at a Crossfit box/competition, but they will also be the first people to cheer you on, support you, and push you to new heights.
So for all the people that aren’t so keen on Crossfit . . . pick up a copy of this book. Read a few of the stories. Try and put your assumptions about Crossfit aside. And try to see just what an amazing sport this can be.
PS . . . I have also managed to find a single amazing, magical yoga teacher and several wonderful people with whom to practice yoga . . . so when I refer to yoga above, I’m talking about the big group yoga classes I engaged in earlier in my life . . .
On that note, I was hoping to have an amazing recipe to share . . . but I made it for the family for dinner.
And no one liked it.
Back to the drawing board.