This article is part of the “How Healthy am I?” series, where I test myself in various ways to check exactly what results “Healthy Living” is producing.
So how fit am I, really?
I know I feel pretty healthy, and according to my numbers, everything looks pretty good…
Well, today we put that question to the test as I experience my FIRST CrossFit WOD (Workout of the Day).
According to Wikipedia, CrossFit “combines weightlifting, sprinting, gymnastics, powerlifting, kettlebell training, plyometrics, rowing, and medicine ball training.”
Their definition of a healthy, fit person “requires proficiency in each of ten general physical skills: cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, agility, balance, coordination, and accuracy. It defines fitness as increased work capacity across all these domains and says its program achieves this by provoking neurologic and hormonal adaptations across all metabolic pathways.”
Right on their home page, they suggest a daily WOD.
Essentially, you’re changing up the muscles required so frequently that your body is forced to adapt, overcome, and become stronger.
Check this out for a quick look at CrossFit:
To call this workout style “intense” would be putting it lightly. :-)
CrossFit has really exploded over the last few years – there are now competitive games and thousands of gyms and trainers around the world that offer this approach to fitness.
It’s even used to train the police! Watch out criminals – an officer may just snap you in half!
- A number of different stretching exercises targeting hips and shoulders, mainly – it’s all about flexbility!
- Then 3 sets of:
- 10 Thrusters: from a squat position, explode up driving weights over my head
- 10 Burpees: from a standing position, drop down to the ground and then back up as quickly as possible, finishing with a jump
Here’s John and I stretching pre-workout:
Form is pretty good, right? :-)
Here’s a quick intro + my workout!
Music: “Can’t Hold Us (Instrumental)” by Macklemore x Ryan Lewis
Here’s me before (I had NO idea what I was in for) – and after (I’d like to think I barely had the strength to keep my eyes open!)
- CrossFit is WAY more challenging than I realized.
- I would read about John’s workouts on Facebook and I thought, “that’s insane – no human can do that!” So I knew this would be tough; I don’t think I anticipated exactly how demanding CF is. Plus, I can’t remember the last time I went to a gym or used free weights on a regular basis.
- It was awesome to have my buddy (and en*theos team member!) John to coach me through this – just as he’s been drilled on the form, he was able to assess what I was doing properly
- Mark Sisson recommends all-out sprints every 7-10 days. When I was doing that in Hawaii, it was tiring – and fun!
- I made it through. It may not have all been pretty, I didn’t set any world records – yet I didn’t collapse, I didn’t give up, and I didn’t need to go to the hospital at the end of it! I did have pretty sore thighs and triceps for about four days – in fact, I couldn’t even raise my arms past my shoulders! To me, it was hilarious. :-)
Did I pass? By my standards, YES.
Am I ready to go toe-to-toe with my buddy John or anyone else practicing this regularly? HELL no! :-)
Would I do CrossFit again?
It’s not my intention right now to push myself like this on a regular basis – not to mention, I’d need to carry separate workout clothes and do laundry much more often. However, I’m always up for the occasional challenge!
Since that WOD, I’ve incorporated that routine (without the dumbells – can’t find space in my backpack!) into my rotation of morning workouts, and with the right music on, it can actually be pretty fun!
Are there any other exercises, challenges, or tests you’d like me to consider for future installments of this series?
Have you done CrossFit – what is your experience?
How can you challenge yourself on a fitness level?
I’d love to hear your answers + any other comments you have below.
NEXT GUIDE: TAKE THE TRAIN FOR FREE!
Take the Train for Free + Other Legal Amtrak Hacks will be available TOMORROW (11/2) – in time for YOU to take advantage for any upcoming holiday travel!
Until next time,
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