Why We All Need To Embrace CrossFit
As health and fitness enthusiasts, we’ve all heard of the term CrossFit, or maybe you’ve been to the gym and seen people performing a set of highly-intensive workouts, and when asked, they might have mentioned CrossFit.
But what is CrossFit?
Why do the workouts seem almost impossible to perform?
And most importantly, why should you join this particular health and fitness movement?
This article aims to answer these and other health and fitness-related questions. Enjoy!
Table of Contents
- What Is CrossFit?
- The “Almost Impossible” Workouts
- Why Should You Join The CrossFit Movement
- Addressing Your Safety Concerns
- How To Get Started With CrossFit
What Is CrossFit?
According to the founding organization, CrossFit prescribes “constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movements.”
Therefore, it is safe to say that CrossFit is a health and fitness regimen characterized by constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movements.
Let’s break this down a little bit further and try to understand what this means.
Constantly varied means that the workouts are continuously different from each other.
High-intensity means that the workouts happen short term under maximum stress and functional means that you will perform multi-joint movements in a wave of contractions from core to extremity.
Further breaking down CrossFit, we see that it is a core strength and conditioning program designed to incorporate ten recognized fitness domains, these are;
- Cardiovascular and Respiratory endurance
The “Almost Impossible” Workouts
With a health and fitness workout program designed to cater to the domains mentioned above, CrossFit requires that you slowly progress into performing each workout.
Hence, the organization provides training materials for both you and your trainer to guide safe workout execution.
At first, you may see a workout, say a snatch, and think of the possible ways it could go wrong, and yes, it can go wrong, and it has gone wrong in the past.
However, since the program is designed with specific health and fitness goals in mind, the organization does its best to provide a series of steps to teach you how to perform the workouts.
And with a community-focused structure, the people around you will help you reach optimum health and fitness and celebrate with you in the same.
The CrossFit method is hierarchical, building up several components;
- A diet that acts as the molecular foundation for health and fitness.
- Metabolic conditioning builds capacity on the three metabolic pathways(building from aerobic to lactic acid, and finally, the phosphocreatine pathway).
- Gymnastics to develop body control and increase the range of motion.
- Weightlifting and throwing to develop abilities in external object control and power production.
- Sport, which creates a competitive environment atmosphere through randomized fitness movements.
Why Should You Join The CrossFit Movement
There are vast health and fitness advantages to joining the CrossFit training regimen, from improving strength to making new connections, among others.
Let’s dive into some of these benefits:
Helps Improve Physical Strength
As earlier mentioned, CrossFit workouts are performed at a high-intensity and involve multiple joints.
Due to this, the workouts contribute heavily toward gaining muscle strength and general muscle stamina.
Putting in mind that lack of strength is why people are admitted into nursing homes, CrossFit contributes positively toward the population’s overall health and fitness needs through strength and stamina development.
CrossFit also provides opportunities to increase strength through participating in the workout of the daily challenges.
Incorporating these challenges will give your muscle some variety.
Another way would be adding some extra weight to your workouts.
Regularly challenging your strength levels will eventually improve your overall health and fitness.
Helps Improve Aerobic Fitness
CrossFit has a significant focus on high-intensity anaerobic workouts.
However, these workouts contribute heavily toward developing aerobic fitness.
You are probably wondering how anaerobic workouts can contribute to aerobic fitness, right?
Hear me out–performing high-intensity power training (HIPT) helps increase the VO2 max, that is, the maximum amount of oxygen you can utilize while exercising.
Better? Here’s more evidence to prove the point; according to the CrossFit Manual, performing anaerobic workouts allows you to exert a considerable amount of force over a short time duration.
Therefore, when properly structured, it is expected that CrossFit will help you develop a very high level of aerobic fitness.
CrossFit does this to evade the muscle-wasting cons of performing aerobic workouts such as swimming a mile.
Helps Boost Your Agility, Balance, and Flexibility
The functional nature of performing CrossFit movements is designed to mimic day-to-day activities, hence reducing the risk of work-related injuries.
Movements such as kettlebell swings, squats, and overhead presses mimic activities such as lifting, carrying, and lifting objects over your shoulders.
For this reason, CrossFit contributes to the general population’s health and fitness goals by improving the quality of life.
Helps in Weight and Calory Management
Many health and fitness followers aim to lose weight, and one effective way of doing it is burning calories consistently.
CrossFit workouts have the reputation of burning more calories than other workouts.
For instance, a 165-pound female performing a CrossFit workout will burn 13-15 calories in a minute as compared to one working with traditional weightlifting machines who will burn nine calories within the same time.
As you work out though, remember that dieting suggestions are an added advantage if you’re aiming at weight loss. It helps to have and follow a concrete plan in that regard.
Addressing Your Safety Concerns
CrossFit does come with its fair share of risks for injury as with any health and fitness regimen.
These risks increase each time you add the training intensity or training weight goes up.
Some of these injuries include;
To increase your chances at safely cruising through CrossFit, it is essential that you work with a trained health and fitness professional, in this case, the CrossFit level 1-4 trainers. The higher the trainer level means the higher the professionality.
Slowly increasing your training pace and gradually increasing the weights will ensure you slowly but safely increase your health and fitness level.
For a CrossFit beginner, it is not safe to start training if you are pregnant, injured, or have a severe health concern.
In such instances, having regular health and fitness checkups at a physical therapist’s office will inform you when to start the training.
How To Get Started With CrossFit
The following steps will help you get started with CrossFit training;
- Go for a health and fitness check-up
- Find a CrossFit Box (Crossfit affiliate gym) near you.
- Signup for at least three private or semi-private training sessions
- Once complete, sign up for a group session, or keep working with a personal trainer
- When you are familiar with the movements, you can try out W.O.D challenges
You must work with a personal trainer to avoid compromising your health and fitness progress.
Health and fitness regimes evolve each day; one such evolution is CrossFit.
The training program is unique as it borrows from various workout programs to develop a core strength and conditioning aspect of health and fitness.
Seeing as we all need to execute our day-to-day activities with ease, embracing CrossFit will help us achieve this as it is designed to increase full-body control, stamina, and strength.
Being able to cruise through life with ease while retaining optimum health and fitness must be the best thing that can happen to us, right?
If so, join the movement; after all, you will make more connections as a bonus. And when you get better, lend a hand to the next beginner in line.
Good luck, and keep it CrossFit!