So "a friend of mine" was considering doing Cross-fit. A question. (Read 398 times)

    So "a friend of mine"  was considering doing Cross-fit and was wondering what the level of fitness should be to

    1. not totally embarrass herself or
    2. Waste her money.  

    What level of fitness would be best in order to get the most bank-for-the-buck and be fit and ready for the challenge.



      I dunno... seems to me that if she wants to improve her fitness, she shouldn't worry about what her current fitness is, or embarassing herself. I've been in classes at work where we've had people that played D1 football (QB), and people that could barely do a few jumping jacks. Most people won't make fun of someone that's trying to better themselves.

      pedaling fool

        I don't really understand the question. All I can say is that total fitness in my mind requires more than one activity, too much of anything is bad for you. I personally incorporate some crossfit/weightlifing in my fitness regimen, because to me one important part of fitness is maintaining the skeletal system, i.e. connective tissue, joints and bone. Everyone seems focused on cardio when the word fitness is mentioned, but that's just one part; I don't want to deal with a broken hip or torn rotator cuff when I age or a weak sore back.

          I run 25-30 miles a week but my arm strength is not that great.  I am just wondering what is usually required for cross-fit and what I maybe should be able to do in order to complete the typical workout sessions.  i guess I just don't know what is exactly done in a cross-fit session.

            I think it depends on whether you are taking a "real" Crossfit training class or a Crossfit like training class. From what I understand the real Crossfit is very intense and requires you to be in pretty good shape. The lesser type should allow you to progress from a starter to more accomplished in reasonable steps.






            rather be sprinting

              I've never done Crossfit, but from what I understand, the different Crossfit gyms ("boxes"?) differ. I know some can be taught only by people with a Level One certification, which is obtainable via a weekend seminar--not ideal for someone new to lifting who needs to learn advanced technical lifts as practiced in Crossfit. I also know that they scale their workouts. I.e., if you come in unable to do a pushup or pullup, they modify (knee pushups, assisted pullups). But do check out the credentials of this PARTICULAR Crossfit and ask what their experience is working with people who are newer to lifting?

              PRs: 5k 19:25, mile 5:38, HM 1:30:56

              Lifting PRs: back squat 176 lb

              running metalhead

                Cross-fit is a nice option if you are already reasonably fit and if your trainers are good.


                The theory behind it, about "muscle confusion" has no scientific backing but for an already trained person it helps in keeping your whole body fit. The same effect is of course accomplished by careful planning, but Cross-fit adds an element of fun and variation to your workouts that keeps you motivated for longer.


                Regarding the trainers; there are a lot of non-certified trainers out there and from what I have seen and heard even some of the certified aren't too good. And this can be dangerous or counter-productive: I have seen guys tossing an Olympic bar (with weights) to the ground after lifting it to their chest: this is a good example as tossing a weight is dangerous for you and others (and it's a NO-NO in any decent gym) and on the other side just for the sake of doing more lifts in less time you are wasting half of the training effect; as the effect of a set is measured in the time your muscles are under tension, not in how many reps you make. Thus. if you toss the bar when it's at it's highest point it would to all effect count as only half rep (!).


                Another critic made to Crossfit is that, exactly for the same reason stated above, is that it encourages bad form, and bad form in lifting can lead not only to injuries but also to accidents.


                However: If you are reasonably fit, maybe a runner wanting to improve upper body strength (like me) AND you can find a good gym or you yourself are good at it, go head: With all these premises Crossfit is a very good choice.

                When I run I feel like a swallow

                Because you are free like a bird?

                Nope, because of all the flies I eat.


                  I've been doing Crossfit for a little over 2 years now and love it. The whole, "I need to be in shape before Is start Crossfit" thing is a complete load of crap. Sure on TV you see the pros who have been doing it for years, but at a regular gym (or box as Crossfitters call them) you'll see everyone from teenagers, to overweight adults, to grandparents. Seriously, my 54 year old mother has been doing it for about a year and a half now. In Crossfit, everything is scalable. Can't do regular pushups? They'll have you start on your knees. Can't do pullups? They have resistance bands to help you work up to it. Crossfit gets a bad rep online sometimes, but it's a great group and people are insanely supportive. Even in the Games, you'll always see the top finishers cheering on those finishing behind them.


                  At the last place I lived, I remember a girl who started Crossfit and was pretty out of shape. It was my first day coaching and I remember the workout was something like 6 x 400m runs. She couldn't run a single lap around the track without stopping. However she kept at it and to this day has made enormous strides. She can now finish a 5k and I couldn't be more proud of her. You say you've been running 25-30 miles a week? Cardio-wise you're in great shape, and probably further ahead than a lot of new people.


                  Seriously, have your "friend" go give it a try. A lot of boxes offer free trial classes to see if it's right for you. Most will then have a sort of "on-ramp" course that is required for ALL new members, regardless of experience, where they will teach you the basic movements over a period of a couple of weeks or so. Shop around, odds are, there are a dozen or so boxes near where you live. Prices will vary at every box. Some offer 2 or 3 day a week monthly packages, and some sell them in sets of like 10 or 15 classes. Most will offer an "unlimited" option which will probably average about $125 a month. And like was mentioned before, some trainers are definitely better than others. Our coach was a physical therapist and was an absolute stickler on form. Sure, there are trainers out there that just got their certification and aren't that great, but those people are pretty obvious. If someone's members keep getting hurt due to lack of coaching, they're going to stop coming. Again, check out a couple of gyms. Observe a class. If you see coaches encouraging obviously bad form or ignoring their students, then definitely leave and try another one. There are more good ones than bad ones though. The bad ones are just the ones that get all the press.


                  As I'm sure you can tell, I love Crossfit  If you have any specific questions, I'd be happy to answer them!

                  pedaling fool

                    Here's a good sample of what crossfitters do; more videos on youtube  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ur7QGmZ6KY

                    Kat Dougherty



                      I've been a runner for about 12 years and have been doing crossfit along with running for the past year. I absolutely love it. Like the poster above me said, almost every exercise in crossfit is scalable. I wasn't very strong before starting crossfit - I had to scale back most of my exercises - and many of my lifts aren't super heavy yet either. Look around at a couple boxes - you'll want to find a good coach. A good coach will be a huge stickler on form and, especially if you don't have a lot of experience, ensuring you have good form is crucial for avoiding injury.


                      Crossfit is hard, but it is so much fun. I love it. The gym is an awesome community comprised of people of all ages and skill levels. I have so much fun there - and I'm definitely getting stronger.


                      And - even better - I've been experiencing the best, healthiest running in years! i don't know if it's correlation or causation, but I do wonder if the high intensity interval training and the strength building are playing key roles in this.


                      So give it a try! I think you'll really dig it. It's a super supportive and encouraging community. But if you are concerned about physical strength, focus on doing some body weight exercises on your own. Pull ups, push ups, air squats, burpees...etc. These come up a lot in workouts and they're really easy to do at home.


                        I have been doing Crossfit for a little more than a year now,   the video shown "a good example of Crossfit"  is way more than I have even done in a Crossfit workout.   Those people shown in that video are the Best of the Best at Crossfit and had to qualify for that workout.     That is in the Crossfit Games which is like the Super Bowl or World Series of that Sport.    You can gain all you want from Crossfit or go in to it looking to fail.   Most injuries and bad form issues in Crossfit are caused by people trying to do something that they are not yet trained or capable of doing.   If you know you cant lift 200lbs why in the Hell are you trying 250?   Like any thing else you have to use some sense and listen to your body.   Would you run a marathon on 5k training?   Crossfit is a great Sport and or training method,  if you go into it elbows out thinking your the best,  some 130lb little gal just might show you otherwise.

                          I do a Cross fit type class 4-5 times a week. It is at a boxing based gym (but not a Title Boxing). My trainer is a 40 year old boxer who is also a personal trainer. in addition to hitting the bag, every day has a different focus......arms, core, legs, shoulders and agility. I feel like I am working all these aspects every day, but each day has a focus. I have been running for 30 years, typically 50-60 miles a week I am addicted ion to these classes. Over the past year I have done it, I have become MuCH stronger and my running is very consistent. I have not gotten injured.


                          Before this, I hated all cross training. This is a muscle confusion hour every day and I love it. i have not tried a traditional Cross Fit as they seem to use weights. We use very little weights, usually only light dumbells if any at all. we basically use our own boDy weight.....which is plenty for me!


                          My classes include middle age endurance runners like me, young skiinny people, folks who are 100 pounds overweight and everyone in between. The key to everyone's success is we have a trainer who learns our strengths and weaknesses and encourages us to do each exercise to our ability. i believe that is the most important factor. Good luck!


                            I started CrossFit last year and saw enormous improvements in my running and overall strength. Previous to that I was only running, maybe 25-30 miles a week and had no upper body strength at all. My coaches were great at scaling workouts for me, helping me work on moves I wasn't comfortable with (UGH medicine ball cleans) and offering advice on how much weight to use. I think the key thing is asking people local to you about their experiences and trying out a class (most offer a free trial class) until you find one that you like.