Friday, September 17, 2010

A New Workout.... Crossfit!

Yesterday we had a health fair at work (amazing, right?). They brought in some local restaurants to give samples of healthy food options as well as local gym/running/workout facilities to provide more information and to even take us on an hour sample workout if we wanted. Lauren from Stylized Existence was helping put on the event and pre-warned me about the cross fit class I had signed up for. She's been using the crossfit workout program/gym for a few weeks now. I had heard about how tough of a workout it was supposed to be and since I'm always looking for a tougher workout I thought I'd give it a whirl.

What is Crossfit...
So, if you've never heard of Crossfit let me try and explain it (if I get some details wrong here forgive me). Crossfit isn't just a gym you go to and workout at your own pace. They are facilities set up with specific programs their members are supposed to follow. Each day there is a new workout posted designed to make you a the best athlete you can be, working on strength, agility, speed, power, all of the above. This type of "gym" comes at a pretty high cost (we're talking $160/month) but it's sort of a hybrid between just having a gym membership and having a personal trainer... so the cost falls somewhere between that as well. You can find a Crossfit location in most major cities. Crossfit Nasti (a Cincinnati local) was the group that came and put on our program for the day.

This isn't exactly a gym set up to just "get in shape" or "drop a few lbs." It's more of a place to go if you want to become (or become a better) athlete. The types of exercises are pretty simplistic (kettle bell swings, air squats, deadlift) but put together and run at a pace to definitely bring your heart rate up and keep your muscles screaming. This is the type of strength workout and still has a conditioning component that I like! I'm definitely going to look more into the gym and think about becoming part of... maybe once I'm done paying for 3 flights a month to different states :) If you go to the front page of the crossfit nasti website you'll see a lovely pic of yours truly... but since I like to post pictures here I'm hoping they won't mind if I steal it...

The trainers are in the front and the chick to the left that looks like she can bench me. No, I'm not the only girl... there is one in the back that you can kind of see...

Crossfit Trainers and GE employees that try and keep up
 The workout...
The crossfit team took us through some of the basic "how to's" on some of the equipment. They showed us how to do things correctly so we didn't hurt ourselves then they took us through this team-style workout. This is how it goes...

Teams of 4 complete...
100 Push ups
100 Sit ups
100 Burpees
200 m run?

... in a relay type fashion. We had 1 person run down about 25 m then back. In the meantime the 2nd person in line starts doing push ups as fast as they can. When the runner gets back they get a break and the person doing the push ups takes off while the 3rd person starts doing push ups-- starting the count where the last person ended. This goes on with the push up/sit up/burpee slash running intervals (with rest when you get back from the run) until your team gets through the whole workout. It took all the teams roughly 10 minuets.

Overall? I thought it was a challenge-- it's not something your body is used to. There are no times at the gym where you take off running then throw yourself to the ground just to stand up, jump and clap your hands (that would be a burpee if you were wondering). It didn't feel super hard while we were doing it (probably b/c I'm too competitive and was more worried about losing). But afterward my arms and legs were a little jelly-ish. But that could also be b/c I did a boot camp class after crossfit. This was also not a real crossfit workout (more of a sample). I would definitely check out the gym and go through a real workout to see what it's like. Next day? The only thing that really hurts are my pecs and my lats a little... I'm not a big pushup or bench person and I'm not overly concerned about how big my chest muscles are so those are a little tender. Overall I would say it's a pretty good workout and definitely something to check out! Go online and see if there is a crossfit gym in your area and how they can help improve your running!

Happy Running (and Strength Training)
"Run to Win" -Meb


  1. Cross Fit is tough for me. It compromises my running if I do it the day before. I may revisit it in the 'off-season'. ;)

  2. I have been working out for a long time at "traditional" gyms. I was a Manager of a gym for 12 years. The crossfit workout is the best I have ever done And, (and this is the most important) the most unbelievably supportive community you will ever find!!

  3. my friend does crossfit and she is in kick ass shape. i want to try it but love my gym and don't want to give up membership. i am hoping they start some crossfit classes ....i am intimidated by it....

  4. Crossfit can be a blast but definitely hard