Throughout the past five years, CrossFit has become one of the most recognizable fitness programs in world, with new gyms popping up everywhere. If you’ve ever been to one of these gyms, you’ve likely noticed how diverse the members are. There are people of all ages and walks of life working out together. They may be at different fitness levels and working at various levels of intensity, but they are all attracted to this sport nonetheless.
What are all these different people getting out of it? How can a senior citizen benefit from working out with a 20 year old college kid? What can a mother of three possibly be getting out of CrossFit? What is it about this new gym culture that keeps such diverse people coming back? Well, I asked. Here are answers to “Why I CrossFit,” from a wide range of people.
Moms are taking care of others all day long. This time in the gym may be the only thing they do for themselves. If they work as well, it’s like having two jobs. This can get pretty stressful. There is no better way to relieve stress than to throw some weights around. This also gives them time to talk to other adults and be social outside of work. And let’s not forget to mention what child birth does to the body. Staying fit before and after birth is important. CrossFit can be scaled for anyone and is a great way to shed the pregnancy weight.
Even though “dad bod” is now a thing, many fathers are choosing fitness over fat. If you have kids, you probably like to play with them. CrossFit keeps their bodies conditioned for running, crawling, jumping, climbing and lifting children! And as the kids get older and start playing sports, dads can still school them athletically with what they have gained through CrossFit.
The college kid:
Everyone gains the freshman 15-30. Most CrossFit gyms provide a student discount, making it affordable to lose the party weight and provide a bit of balance to the crazy college life. CrossFit also provides the time and space for college kids to continue being athletic. For most Americans, high school is the last time they actually did something athletic. With CrossFit, you can keep all the active habits you picked up as a child throughout your biggest habit forming years.
The 50 plus:
How many times have you seen the old Life Alert commercial? You know the one with the elderly woman on the bathroom floor yelling: “Help! I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!” This is why 50 plus, or baby boomers, stay active. CrossFit at its core is functional fitness — movements that work your body through a full range of motion. Keeping the body conditioned to move is essential as we age. Doing this regularly keeps you from needing hip replacement or hurting your back. Some basic everyday things can be challenging as you get older, and CrossFit keeps the 50 plus crowd from ending up with a Life Alert around their neck!
CrossFit is a great way to consolidate your strength and conditioning into two to three hour sessions, giving you the rest of your time to focus on specialty training for your sport. CrossFit allows you to train 10 general physical skills and forces athletes to spend time on mobility as well. The high intensity, competitive nature of CrossFit is very appealing to athletes. They can apply everything they do at CrossFit to their individual sport making them a much better athlete.
This is the person who is at a desk on the computer most of the day. They are busy and time is of the essence. Years of this lifestyle creates bad posture and horrible eating habits. CrossFit provides a fast workout and coaches that can guide you in the right direction nutrition-wise. It also helps shake off stress from the busy day, release endorphins and correct mobility issues desk jobs tend to create. Plus it provides an alternative to happy hour. The gym is a great place to meet people, network and even find a significant other. Just sayin’!
The 20 something:
This person has a job they either love or are just collecting a paycheck. You are independent for the first time in your life. This also means you are paying for your own health care. A healthy lifestyle not only keeps you away from the doctors office, but it also keeps you looking good. You’re young! You’re never going to look this good and have this much energy again. Use it! There is no use in starting your life off out of shape and sick. More importantly, have you seen what CrossFit does to the body? The gym is filled with single, young, fit people! Get in there and have fun!