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Sunday, August 15, 2010

First week of CrossFit

One week of CrossFit is officially down the hatch and I must say that I loved every moment of it. Even when I was in shock by how much work I was putting in, or when I felt like I was going to throw up because I was pushing myself so hard... I was still completely happy.

First I figured I should take some pictures of my first day so I have something to compare to down the road, right? So these pics are from August 5th which was the day I did my Baseline (which I will tell you more about in a minute):

(please ignore the mess lol) I am shocked just looking at these photos how different I am from when I started living primal 6 months ago. It makes me extraordinarily excited to see what may come in 6 months of CF and PL... I can't imagine.

So I attend a box here in Sioux Falls called: (Surprisingly enough) CrossFit Sioux Falls. They are extraordinary and push and pull so hard but have built an extremely reputable community of CFers and even Paleos (The sibling of primal). I might venture to say that CrossFit is most worth the money, time and energy needed due to the remarkable community that is there. That is, of course, coming from me: a person who thrives on the energy of others.

If I were to go to a gym and just have to motivate myself while looking at everyone else doing what they do then walking on a treadmill for 30 minutes might be the most horrifying way to spend a half hour of my day. And if you were to try and sell to me 30-60 minutes 3 times per week surrounded by ripped and sculpted bodies of a variety of backgrounds... doing remarkable things I can hardly fathom and enjoying myself... I may offer you a one way ticket to my personal hell. However, the simple additive of compassion and camaraderie which is available at CFSF... is all it takes to make it a paradise. A hot, humid, muggy, smelly, loud, energetic, motivating utopia.

I have always wanted to be a person who enjoys working out to some extent, and I think the wanton desire for this comes from the utter lack of athleticism I have experienced my entire life. Never once have I felt like I fit in at gym class or sporting events. I have always been content in being the non-athletic Leisten. The one who took the music path instead. I was raised to believe that genetically it just isn't a part of who I am, but I always WANTED it so badly. I wanted to be like my cousin Nicole who loves to work out and enjoys the energy of sports. I wanted to be like my brother Brett and run for miles without a second thought. We all want what we can't have. But I have never been one to accept can't as an option. I much more well known for my determination to break boundaries.

More on my past is to come in this blog, for now, I will focus back on the first week at CrossFit.


To find a baseline we did 500 meters rows, 40 squats 30 push ups 30 sit ups and 20 pull-ups (If I remember correctly) Some of these ambitious goals were adjusted for my lack of experience for the time being. For example: I did jumping pull ups and used my knees for my push ups. However, I did complete the task in 10:56 minutes... and celebrated and smiled just knowing that I did something physical and completed it. This baseline will be used and tested several times in my life with CrossFit, the next time will be in 90 days. I seriously cannot wait to see what progress I have made by then.

DAY 1:

I was in a beginners/intermediate WOD class with several other CFers this day. The work out was incredibly intense... we ran and then had to do a series of box jumps, sit ups, kettle bell swings and something else I can't remember... It was hard. However, I did get through two full rounds. In the end  I was proud and patted myself on the back. I was stoked too because everyone said it was hard, so it made me feel like less of a wuss. Also the coach for the day said he was shocked to see me smiling, they'll get used to it I'm sure. I remember feeling like I was going to die, right at the get go. I felt super sick to my stomach but I feel like I may have pushed my first run a bit harder than I could handle which had a ripple effect on the rest of the day. Either way, I did it. And i felt amazing! :)

Day 2:

Another day in the Beg/Int class and people are super supportive and encouraging. Without that I wouldn't ever come back. We did work on muscle ups today and then did rounds of double-unders, aspen rings, and something where we had to push ourselves up using muscles I haven't ever seen before. Really today was inspiring knowing that one day I will have some serious upper body strength. My entire life I resigned myself to the understanding that upper body strength was not an option for me... thanks CF for telling me I am wrong. :)

DAY 3:

Fight Gone Badd... that crap is hard! 15 minutes of 1 minute reps of rowing, box-jumps, push-pulls, sumos and wall balls... and then a min of rest-- three rounds with a partner to count reps. It was exhausting, I pushed hard and surely grunted several times... but point is, I did it. I really enjoyed partner work because there is constantly someone encouraging with me. I am not sure what it is like with other partners but AL and I worked well together and I really enjoyed that. Also knowing that even in a regular class I can be pushed the same way is great. I absolutely love this place! :)

This week has been excellent. I seriously can't wait to see where this place takes me I am certain the results will be great. Since staring primal living I have had an interesting experience and had to, several times, defend my choices to people I love (more on this later). It is really quite relieving to find a group of people who are willing to listen and sometimes even completely agree with the beliefs I have about health and fitness. Also, the owner of CFSF (Chris Mello) has been so encouraging. Every time he introduces me to someone he tells them I am primal/paleo and then tells them I am crazy about CrossFit and bring a great energy to the box. Which makes me feel like a million bucks and keeps me coming back for more! :) 

For now, this is it. I will leave you with my 3 main goals for CrossFit:

1. Gain enough upper body strength to do pull ups without a second thought.
2. Be able to do any physical activity I set my mind to without hesitation.
3. Build a network and community of people who understand and respect me for my beliefs on nutrition and physical health.


Hope you enjoyed my first week at CrossFit as much as I did!


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