There is a stereotype when it comes to CrossFit, no doubt. And, I have to admit, many stereotypes exist because someone somewhere acted in that way, and it became a common trend. For example, let’s take a millennial favorite, the “basic chick.” This article is truly hilarious, partially because it is hilariously true.
Anyway, there is a stereotype around CrossFit that everyone who does it is insanely fit, loves nothing but growing beards, getting huge muscles, and smashing iron all day, bro! *Tears shirt off even though its 30 degrees outside* Look, I totally get that perception. Heck, I’ve met people like that. I remember being at a competition with a guy who was wearing no shirt even though it was 45 degrees, maybe, that day. Everyone else found a way to keep their clothes on. Possibly because it wasn’t warm.
But you know what? 99% of the people I have met in CrossFit boxes have been incredibly kind, hardworking, busy people, just like you and me. When I was in Barcelona studying abroad and wanted to meet local people, and get a real experience rather than the contrived one available via school and tourist hotspots, I went out on a limb and joined a CrossFit box (shoutout CrossFit Eixample). The people there welcomed me with open arms, broken Spanish and all. They became my friends and my family while I was alone in Europe, and I definitely would not have the fond memories of the Catalonian Capital without them.
Then I moved to Tampa, Florida, and thought to myself, “Well, that worked out really well in Barcelona, let’s see if the same thing happens here.” It was a totally different box from the outside. 9,000 square feet of fitness nirvana. Grungy enough to just feel like hard work, but obviously clean. That box, CrossFit 813, probably had roughly 300-400 people in it. Still, I felt like I was included right from the start. Only one week in I had a coach/athlete asking if I wanted to hang late on a Friday and do some extra work with just him and one other athlete. There was no machoism, no sense of entitlement there. Just more hardworking, great people who were authentically there for connection, trying to juggle all that life throws at all of us.
People at CrossFit Boxes are just like You
I give you that whole talk to drive home a point: people who do CrossFit are completely normal humans. We come in all shapes and sizes, levels of fitness, eating habits, family backgrounds, and professions. We’re just united by the idea that we want to live long, healthy lives and have energy to be there for our families and friends. We want to be able to play with our kids and grandkids. We want to be able to travel and not miss out on the Mayan ruins because we’re too tired from the hike (or snorkeling, or whatever you’re doing on your trip).
“But Joe, I’m really busy.”
Ahh, the age old reason for not working out. “I’m just really busy…” There’s always this pause right after that is said. It’s almost like you know it is all about prioritizing, but can’t quite figure out how to do so.
One thing. You are, and everyone else is, actually really busy. This isn’t an excuse! It is legitimate. Handling a full time job, a family, and who knows what else is a lot to juggle. But you can do it. What you have to do is cut the crap out of your life.
What is “the crap”?
When I say cut the crap out, I mean to go through your life and think, “Where am I wasting time doing things I don’t even enjoy?” Here is a short list of things that can fall under this tab:
- Scrolling Instagram for the 1,000th time (same goes for Facebook or Twitter)
- Watching that 30 minute sitcom you’ve already seen twice
- Mindlessly checking your email even though you’re off the clock and your work place even tells you to disconnect because it increases productivity
- Reading another stupid Donald Trump Tweet and the equally crazy replies
Here is what doesn’t count as a waste of time:
- Your kid’s soccer game
- Going to dinner with your family
- Taking a trip to see an old friend
- Job requirements
- Your favorite show you always watch with that one person and is important to your relationship
There are other things that fall into both of those categories, of course. But here is the common theme between the two: the crap cuts people you care about out of your life. The good stuff builds relationships and connections. No one wants to hang out with you when you’re ignoring them for your phone. How many hours per day do you do that? How many nights out have you spent on your phone following Twitter? Do you never get away from work because you’re always on email since that’s what “good employees” do? Believe me. We can find you time somewhere in your day.