Weekly Review: CrossFit

Hey Guys,

Kevin and I are starting a few new things this week, one of which is the weekly review. Every Wednesday, one of us will post a review of either a diet or exercise plan. Sometimes it will be books we’ve read or workouts we’ve tried, but we’ll always try to make it something interesting and relevant. This week, Kevin is reviewing the very popular new workout: CrossFit

I have always defined myself as a runner, but after 8 years in the Corps I kind of feel more like a jack-of-all-trades. Weight lifting, survival swimming, martial arts, miles of hikes with gear in excess of 75lbs were just some of the things I was used to doing every week. Having the daily demands of being a firefighter and Marine, just running fails to meet my needs no matter how hard or far, and even the daily group exercises together would never be enough to meet the physical goals I set for myself. This desire for finding the hardest, fastest most strenuous exercise led me to Cross Fit.

 Cross Fit is EXTREME, max effort exercise plan that has a daily routine that includes gymnastics, weight lifting, running, and pure old school exercises. You can find CrossFit online where a new workout is posted each day. Cross Fit has many mottos, but “mess you up” is my personal favorite and probably the most accurate. 

The Good: Every day the post a WOD or workout of the day. They have a huge pool of workouts and you can go months with out repeating. This can be a great exercise plan IF you want hard! It is an outside the box plan that will truly challenge and push you to you limits. Most of the exercises they ask you to do they have a video demonstration and have a step-by-step breakdown for the most complicated. They are becoming so popular that there are gyms that only focus on there workouts.

The Bad: You have to belong a gym to do all of the WOD’s.  Kettle bells, gymnast rings, box platforms and a pool are just some of the equipment required. Even with the videos, some of the exercises are more like human origami and figuring them out can be quite hard.

The Ugly: You need to already be at a level of high! Fitness to do the WOD’s they are not for the feint at heart.  Even the most fit people have a difficult time with this and I have seen personal trainers, marathon runners and other elite athletes succumb to rhabdomyolysis, a serious muscle condition which can be potentially life-threatening. And finally, if you are going to perform or try to perform exercises that you have never done injuries (and serious ones at that) can be quite likely, so be cautious when doing this workout and don’t bite off more than you can chew.



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