CrossFit is a great workout for a bootcamp junkie or marathon runner. It's used as training for police academies, martial artists and possibly you.
Rather than being fabulous in one area of fitness (flexibility, cardio, strength, power or balance) CrossFit requires that you dig deep and try to be a well-rounded athlete. Get ready for serious sweating and a generous slice of humble pie – sometimes in less than 20 minutes. Here are our preparatory notes:
1. Gyms vary with their CrossFit programs. Some focus on body weight exercises, others on weight lifting and others still on cardio endurance. Find out what floats your instructor's boat and see if that is the boat you want to be on. In other words, even though Crossfit is specialized, it has many variants so you may need to shop around before you get dedicated.
2. This is a social scene. Get ready to encourage and be encouraged. If you like to mentally unplug from your workout and zone out to some tunes, this may not be the place for you.
3. There is a standard format of exercises, but listen to your body. There's often a whiteboard of daily exercises, which you can review before the class. If the suggestion is a squat with a weighted bar of 65 pounds and you haven't done much weightlifting before, make sure to bring the weight way down. Injured people might want to consider lifting no weight at all.
4. CrossFit is not only hard physically, but also emotionally. Some people are former athletes in the class and you may detect animal like grunting during the exercises. It's meant to be efficient more than fun – get in, work hard, get out.
5. Your first time will probably be free. Most gyms have a try it special so don't feel pressured to sign up or pay big bucks unless you feel absolutely addicted to the endorphin rush.
Sprint, jump rope and kettle bell your way through this high intensity workout and you'll see big results – fast.