What is CrossFit?

“CrossFit is constantly varied functional movement done at high intensity across broad time and modal domains.”

Constantly varied: The basic premise behind CrossFit is that we want you to be good at everything, while not being bad at anything.  Our workouts differ every day.  This accomplishes two main things.  First, it prevents people from getting stuck in a monotonous routine which leads to boredom, burnout, plateauing, and eventually quitting.  Second, it forces people to work on areas with the most room for improvement which leads to a more complete and “fit” athlete.

Functional movement: Walk in the gym and one of the first things you will notice is that the only machines we have are rowers.  We train in a way that will benefit us in the real world.  You discover there is a car stuck top of somebody, it will not magically turn into a perfect machine to help you lift it up.  The real world is full of “free weights” in which you need to develop the athleticism and skill to maneuver the load in a safe and effective manner.  CrossFit focuses on things that will benefit individuals not only in the gym and in front of their mirror at home, but in a way that helps people be more useful to themselves in the world around them.

Done at high intensity: Watch a class workout and you will see that when the clock is on, athletes are not chit chatting or reading a magazine.  They are working.  We make a joke that if you can talk, you aren’t moving fast enough.  CrossFit works because of this high intensity.  In our class settings, you will push yourself harder and do things you did not think you could do simply because of the underlying pressure and motivation added when your friend is moving faster than you are.  This competitive, yet friendly atmosphere will deliver the results people are unable to obtain by themselves.

Across broad time: CrossFit workouts range from two minutes, all the way up to two hours.  We promise never to make you do a two-hour workout, but you will see variability in the length of the workouts.  If all you do are five minute workouts, what happens when you are thrown into a 20 minute workout? As previously stated, we want you to be good at everything and will program workouts that test your fitness level in short sprints, long grinders, and everything in between.

And modal domains: In our gym you will see movements ranging from gymnastics (e.g., pull-ups, muscle-ups, handstands, push-ups, burpees, etc), to Olympic weightlifting (e.g., snatch, clean & jerk), strength exercises (e.g., back squat, deadlift, push press, bench press, thruster, etc), cyclical movements (e.g., running, rowing, biking, swimming), and some odd object movements you may not have done before (e.g., prowlers, kettlebells, atlas stones, etc).  The more we can throw at you, the more fit you will become.

What is a normal class like?

A typical WOD (workout of the day) class is 60 minutes in length and involves four phases. The first fifteen minutes are spent warming-up – usually by jogging/rowing and stretching.  Immediately after, we spend 5 minutes doing specific mobility geared towards the remainder of the class. The next twenty-five or so minutes are spent working on strength development, skill refinement, and preparing the body for the final phase of the class. The final ten to twenty minutes is the “workout of the day (WOD).” The WOD is a high-intensity and high cardiovascular workout that involves a variety of movements in succession. Stretching and warming down concludes the class.

While a class does not involve having a personal coach, the size of each class is limited so the coach is able to observe and assist each participant in refining movements and providing encouragement.

After participating in CrossFit, you will never want to return to a “globo” gym ever again. The amount of workout you receive in an hour of CrossFit is far superior to a self-directed workout at any gym. CrossFit provides training like having a personal trainer but at far less cost.

How is the Olympic Weightlifting (Oly) class different and when can I attend?

An Oly class focuses solely on getting comfortable with the barbell.  During scheduled Oly classes, a coach will be overlooking the entire class giving immediate feedback.  Athletes who cannot make the scheduled Oly class are encouraged to come at any time a regular class is in session and may do the programming then.  Participating in the Oly classes will have a positive correlation with technique when it comes to barbell movements, as well as an increase in weight lifted.  Any athlete who has completed Elements is eligible to attend Oly classes.

Don’t I need to be in shape before I try CrossFit?

Absolutely not.  CrossFit is infinitely scalable for people of all ages and fitness levels.  Every workout can be done by every human on the planet, it will just look a little different for certain people.  CrossFit is where Navy Seals work out next to college students who work out next to a grandmother who simply wants to be able to take care of herself as long as possible.

“Scalable” means modifying the CrossFit movements and workout to one’s level of ability. The amount of weight lifted, the number of repetitions of each movement, and/or the level of workout intensity are modified to match the fitness level of each individual while providing a safe yet challenging workout. Scaling for each individual is taught during the Elements program and with on-going assistance from a coach. As fitness levels increase, the individual is involved in determining when and how to increase weights, intensity, and repetitions.

What if I am REALLY out of shape?

We promise, you will be fine.  It will be hard, but you can do it.  We have worked with somebody who is bigger, less flexible, older, and less coordinated than you are, and they were fine.  Drop the excuses, walk in the door for a free intro class, and begin your journey to health.

Many people have come to learn about CrossFit from ESPN2.  If that is you, just know that you are comparing yourself to the top .01% of CrossFitters.  CrossFit is not about competing and only a very small percentage of people around the World boast the physique and fitness of somebody you see on TV.  When you leave the gym after a miserable workout that scared you when you saw it, it is over.  You have done something you did not think possible for yourself, and you have not only increased your physical health, but also your mental health.

I have/had an injury. Can I still do CrossFit?

Absolutely. Much like workouts can be scaled for skill level, they can be scaled to work around an injury. Our coaches have seen every type of injury that is possible, and are very knowledgeable and skilled at making it so everybody can do a workout no matter what their past or present condition.  With that being said: we are not physicians and highly recommend you consult a physician prior to beginning any new exercise program.

I have never been a member of a CrossFit gym before, but I’m in really good shape. Can I just skip that whole Elements thing and jump right in to classes?

No. Our coaches need to be sure that you can safely and effectively perform the movements we will have in our workouts on a daily basis. In short, we don’t want to have to babysit one single individual that has no idea what they are doing. Those who attend a regular class without being taught how to safely and efficiently perform the movements are only going to end up injured. The Elements program allows a coach to work with each individual athlete on how to scale around their current physical capabilities.

I’m from out of town and would like to drop-in. What do I need to do?

As long as you are a member at another CrossFit affiliate all you have to do is show up 5-10 minutes prior to your class to fill our waiver.  Your first workout at our gym is always free as long as you are a member at another affiliate.

Can I just come and do my own thing?

No.  You will get better, safer, and faster results working with our coaches.  If you want to do alternate programming feel free to contact one of our coaches for individualized programming tailored to your own desires.

You are, however, allowed to come at any time during the day when we have a regularly scheduled class to do our Olympic Lifting programming.  We do recommend that you come during our Oly class times so our coaches can watch and give immediate feedback.

Do you offer personal training?

Yes.  Whether it be a 1-hour session to help with a specific skill, or if you want entirely different and unique programming, our coaches are more than happy to accommodate you.  Contact them directly to set up a time and schedule that works for both of you.

What do I need to bring?

Regular workout clothes, a towel if you sweat a lot, and a water bottle (we have a water purifier).  If you come straight from or go straight to work, we have separate male and female changing rooms and cubbies to keep your belongings.

I have my kids during all the work out times, how can I make it work?

We have a gated-off kids room just off to the side of our main workout room. You will be able to see them during your workout. The room has a padded floor, toys for kids of all ages, and a TV/DVD player with a bunch of movies. It even has a kid sized barbell so they can be like mom and dad while they workout.