So at the beginning of the year I joined Planet Fitness with the idea that I would mostly do cardio and then take some of the classes they offer to their members. One thing that I liked about Planet Fitness was its no intimidation attitude and zero tolerance policy as such. Many places have ridiculed and called Planet Fitness “not a real gym” because it lacks some of the equipment many more serious gym goers look for.
Personally, I felt like I fit right in. As a “fluffy” dude running on a treadmill it was nice not to have a ton of people looking at me judging me. Granted – I’m sure I still had that but it wasn’t as obvious. Also I didn’t have personal trainers lurking around and continually harassing me. I was able to go in, do my thing, and bolt. It was nice. Plus the few times the lunk alarm went off – it made me laugh.
So as I was finishing up Couch to 5k – I started thinking about doing some resistance training but wanted to do something efficient and challenging. I originally thought about doing the classes and forming a routine but my Twitter followers talked me into something else.
My long time friend @ThisDaddys_Blog (Scott) and somewhat newer friend @DamonGocheaur (Damon) talked me into trying CrossFit. Now, just so I make this fair, Scott has been trying for about as long as I’ve known him to get me to try CrossFit. I guess Damon just helped push me to make that final decision finally.
I researched and found Friendship CrossFit in Dublin, OH not too far from where I live these days. I e-mailed the owner a few times and got setup for a “beginners” class on Saturday. Early March I went in and found myself terrified. I got there early and watched the class before me finish up.
What in the heck was I thinking?
I watched these people and all I could think was, “I’ll NEVER be able to do this.” Part of me thought about just turning around and running out the door. I am not a quitter by nature though so I told myself that I was going to do this.
After one of my classmates helped me though the warm up (which was 100x harder than any WORKOUT I’ve done – let alone a warm up) we got into the workout. I don’t even remember what my first day was – all I remember is after the workout I collapsed on the floor and wasn’t sure I was going to be able to walk to my car. You know what was funny though – I was hooked.
As the weeks have gone on CrossFit has shown me that I’m capable of doing much more than I ever thought I could. So many people (professional and non-professional) for so many years have told me I needed to start smaller or do less or not workout so hard. CrossFit had me lifting weight I never thought I could and doing movements that I only dreamed of one day doing. It pushes me to try harder and I always look forward to what the next class holds.
Fast forward a few weeks and I returned to Planet Fitness to do a run and I noticed a sign at the door that said, “Leave your attitude here.”
It hit me right then and there:
I workout at the two most controversial “gyms” at two extreme ends of the spectrum yet they share one big philosophy:
Chuck the attitude at the door.
You see – CrossFit, though it looks like it’s intimidating as all get out from the outside, wasn’t intimidating after I took the first step into the box. Everyone in my class – though MUCH more fit than I – is encouraging and accepting of me. They cheer me on as I struggle to finish a WOD (Workout of the Day) or they offer to show me movements I’ve never done before. The words “you can’t” is never used and no one acts like they’re better than me (even when we are working out against the clock or for time and I’m always last). The coaches are super awesome as well and are always helping me modify movements/workouts and helping me become a better athlete.
Plus, I’ll admit it – Doing a clean and jerk with some heavy weight (or heavy for me at least) and approaching the bar aggressively, making whatever noises one makes while trying to throw around weight and then literally throwing the weight to they ground – does feel good. I guess there’s a “lunk” lurking deep inside of me somewhere.
What else have I been doing since my last post?
- I’ve run a few more training 5ks – it’s my new “go to” mileage when going for a run
- I ran my first 10k in 1:23 (thanks for pushing me Amy S!)
- I’ve been on the bicycle more and as the weather improves will be out more. I’ve already exceeded my Pelotonia 2013 physical fitness.
- I’m down about 30 pounds from December
That’s about it! More to come! Watch out world – John’s accomplishing his goals slowly but surely!