How to: CrossFit Shop Talk
Published September 5, 2019
CrossFit comes up in conversation often. Surprise.
I'm sure many of heard the jokes of how frequently CrossFitters bring up their hobby, lifestyle... cult.
I could care less if people refer to CrossFit as a cult. It just so happens that yes, us CrossFitters exercise the adequate amount to show that we care about our health and wellness. Usually if people have anything negative to say about the "cultish" mindset we have, it's not overally presumptious to say that finess isn't as high on the list of priorities. And that is okay... until it is not.
Those of us who talk about CrossFit to the extent that some would consider annoying probably means that CrossFit has had a generous impact on your life. And that is good too... until it is actually annoying to listen to you.
But if you're annoying enough to get another person to ante up for their fitness and health and go to the gym with you, it's a win. Hopefully they'll eventually thank you for not shutting up about CrossFit.
After that brief introduction, what originally prompted this subject is not through conversations with what I refer to plainly as "Group 1" (people who don't regularly exercise), but instead with "Group 2" or those who do, or at least those who know the great importance of exercise, i.e, people who coach or exercise in other arenas of fitness or sport.
When the conversation gets rolling, it can be difficult to sort out fact from fallacy, or at the very least very difficult to organize the many things that CrossFit is.
Have two things in the back of your mind at all times.
- The continuum
- The pyramid
If you're train of thought and your assertions come first from the beliefs that stem from these CrossFit foundational principles, conversation is driven effectively and confidently.
Firstly, Health and Fitness ought to be treated as one. It is no coincidence that those who can complete high level tasks along ALL, modalities and disciplines are very healthy and resiliant individuals.
But again, I said ALL modalities and disciplines.
The importance here is that it changes one's daily motivation and benchmarks. Create daily goals that keep you moving, and the big important numbers improve over time (bodyweight, blood pressure, etc.) This is extremely important when talking to those who do not regularly exercise. Focusing on fitness to promote good health is a fantastic way to get someone to want to join the gym. Joining a group that uses accountability, like ours, is another.
The pyramid = think about what matters most.
If you aren't handling these essential categories of health, it does not matter what you are doing for exercise. If someone is not seeing results in or out of the box, this is usually the missing link. Refer to a coach. Ask for help. But if it is someone who you are speaking to outside of the gym, talk about this first. It is THE most important thing. Tell them there is help here.
2. METABOLIC CONDITIONING
"You guys do so much cardio."
Probably one of THE most forgotten about pieces of fitness in the sports specific driven program, i.e., powerlifting, football, bodybuilding regiments. Cardiovascular health is extremely important. General physical preparedness (mixed modal conditioning) will not only prove very worthy in daily life, but your workouts within other disciplines will be more effective because you will last longer and your heart rate and respiratory system won't be your limiting factor.
Quite simply the control of your body. I've seen very, very strong individuals walk into the gym (people with double bodyweight back squats) unable to do a pull-up. Strength to bodyweight ratio is important. And will help with the long-term risidual effects of CrossFit (bloodwork, joint health, etc.). Our focus on gymnastics speaks to our the importance of improving those markers. It's a great place for anyone looking to exercise to start.
Side note: as a overweight kid - 20+ years old, I used to imagine how cool it would be to be able to pull my chin over a bar. Thank you to CrossFit (AND THE CROSSFIT NUTRITION PROTOCOL) for helping find this possibility.
"But you guys don't even lift..."
We lift. And we can lift heavily. Quickly. Powerfullly.
But only when the things above (1-3) are properly aligned. Only when you're moving well.
"It's too intense for me."
"It's too competitive."
"I don't need to keep score."
SCORING matters if it drives your performance in a positive manner. It matters for goal setting. Again, this does not matter until we have reached proficiency in the above points (1-4). No one is forcing you to move beyond your abilities. Coaches slow you down when you're moving too quickly or too poorly. We're here for you.
Scores can be put on a public or private setting in zenplanner.
We promote #communityovercompetition.
Hopefully these are some points to remember when you find yourself in the heat of these conversations. Some are fun. Some of them are difficult. It boils down to remembering that CrossFit isn't specialization. It's everything fitness enthusiasts have been doing for hundreds of years. Whatever protocol your buddy, coworker, acquaintence is following, it's likely that CrossFit covers some characteristics of that routine.
Sort it out for yourself. Remember why you love this. What has it done for you? Why? Keep the tools in your tool pouch so they're handy when needed.