December 3, 2014
9 Odd Things That Happen When You Start CrossFit
By William Imbo
December 5, 2014
CrossFit rookies—welcome! Below is a nice little list of the changes that will inevitably come about in your daily lives if you decide to pursue CrossFit for the long term. You might think there’s no way that any of these could possibly happen to you. But as the CrossFit veterans reading this can attest to, don’t be surprised if three months from now you look back through this list and consider it to be your new norm.
1. Your fitness goals will change.
You may have signed up for CrossFit in the hope of losing some weight and feeling healthier overall. But over time, those goals start to develop and become more specific. You start to attach a number to them. Hitting a double bodyweight back squat. A sub-4 minute Fran time. One strict pull-up. While losing weight, becoming stronger and feeling healthier overall is always at the back of your mind, you now want to push yourself as much as possible and truly test the limits of your physical (and mental) capabilities.
2. You’ll start watching CrossFit on YouTube.
What’s better than doing CrossFit? Watching people that are much better at it than you do it on YouTube! Honestly, I know for a FACT that there are tons of athletes that spend a good amount of time at work on YouTube watching highlights of the CrossFit Games or recapping the latest Open announcement. Then of course there are those people who take it a step further and start watching Olympic Weightlifting videos, gymnastics videos, rowing videos, etc. But don’t think of this as procrastinating—oh no. These are instructional videos; you’re getting smarter (and better…maybe) by watching them. So splurge away!
3. Your vocabulary starts to change.
Wait…what? The way I talk is going to change? For better or worse, it will. It definitely will when you’re at the box itself. You’ll be spitting out terms like ‘amraps’, ‘metcons’, ‘emoms’ and ‘thrusters’ as if you were the resident CrossFit MC. Your newly acquired WOD tongue won’t flow as freely when you’re with friends and family that don’t get your ‘obsession’ with CrossFit, because let’s be honest: The first time you start talking about ‘jerking’, ‘snatching’, ‘thrusters’ and ‘wall balls’, your pals will never look at you in the same way again.
4. Your social media feed starts to look completely different.
In a previous life you would patrol Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to alleviate your boredom and/or procrastinate your ass off. Now, instead of having your news feed get cluttered up with obnoxious selfies and updates from people you haven’t spoken to since high school, you get the latest news from the functional fitness community. Which means more videos and more offers on CrossFit clothing (see points 2 and 10). Once again, it’s not procrastination—it’s research.
5. Your diet does a 180.
If you were a healthy eater prior to starting CrossFit—kudos to you! The truth is, a lot of people may think they’re eating healthy, but when you start to figure out what foods you need to get into your body in order to be healthy AND kick ass in the WOD, your refrigerator is going to look a whole lot different. We’re talking sweet potatoes, avocados, chicken, beef, steak, fish, a whole bunch of fruit and all the damn bacon in the world. You might as well keep a pig in the backyard with all the bacon you’re going to be shoveling down for the rest of your CrossFitting career .
6. Your friends and family think you’ve gone over to the ‘dark side’/joined a cult/lost the plot.
According to them, you now have a filthy mouth, you’re always at the gym, you’re eating enough protein to enter a bodybuilding contest and you speak about CrossFit like you’re a member of a zealous cult—which, in some ways, you are. But that’s ok. Soon enough you’ll be dropping hints that they should give a free class a try. Eventually, you’ll get them into the box. Another sacrifice for the CrossFit gods.
7. Your body is going to reflect the hard work you put in.
Basically, you look better naked.
8. Your body will also reflect the ‘wounds’ of CrossFit/You’ll start to experience ‘Fight Club syndrome’.
You might look better naked, but you’ll also have some odd cuts and bruises all over your body that may take some explaining at work. Where’d you get those ripped hands? Why is your neck all bruised? Are those whip marks on your forearms? Of course, the first rule of Fight Club is to not talk about Fight Club—but who are we kidding. This is CrossFit.
9. Your wadrobe starts to change.
CrossFit clothing is definitely a thing. In fact, it’s getting to be quite a big business. All you need do is perform a Google search for CrossFit clothes/gear and you’ll see what I mean. Slowly but surely, the socks, shoes, pants, shorts, tops and beyond will start to take over your closet like an unstoppable virus of fitness fashion. But that’s not always a good thing. Your work and social attire will start to dwindle, and you may find yourself wearing the same outfits all too often. Oh, and you better keep track of your spending—that WOD gear ain’t cheap.
Photo courtesy of Janeen Chang Photography