Normally when we meet someone who has been doing CrossFit or comes to us for the first time we ask them why or how did you find CrossFit? We all have different reasons for starting CrossFit; it’s something different, weight loss, better overall health, improving athletic performance, a friend or loved one wouldn’t shut up about it etc… Like a lot of people I was talked into trying a WOD for the first time, and like many peoples first experience it was horrible. Not horrible in the way that I hated it, but horrible because it showed me that I had huge “weaknesses” in my fitness. This introduction to CrossFit changed my world.
I bring this topic up, because around this time of year “The Games Season,” I think we all can have a tendency to lose sight as to why we first started CrossFit. The CrossFit Games have become amazingly popular and have brought a ton of publicity to this great sport of ours. However, The CrossFit Games or the competition side of CrossFit is an extremely SMALL side of CrossFit. Yes this side of CrossFit appeals to athletes and bring new exposure to the sport, in my opinion and experience this isn’t the reason most CrossFitters begin doing CrossFit.
As athletes progress and start to realize that they have ability in this sport, the aspect of wanting to compete usually comes up. I personally think this is a fantastic goal and is a great thing for all athletes to try at least once. We compete on a daily basis inside the gym, whether that competition is with our fellow athletes participating in the WOD or competing with ourselves. Don’t get me wrong there is definitely a right time and place for every athlete to compete for the first time. Just like a first time endurance athlete, it probably wouldn’t be the best situation to sign up for a full Iron Man race for their first competition experience. The goal of competition at times can lead athletes away from the true reason why they found and fell in love with CrossFit. The pressures of wanting to perform at a particular level can be overwhelming especially if it’s the athletes first competition.
Personally when CrossFit first found me, the Games were extremely small and honestly weren’t even a glimpse in the big picture of CrossFit. The mission of CrossFit has always been to elicit a program that would challenge elite level athletes but would also improve the fitness of novice individuals because it allowed for universal scalability. In my opinion CrossFit didn’t start with the intention of becoming an international sport, it’s amazing that it has grown that much but the “Sport” of CrossFit is nothing more than a SMALL, SMALL, segment to what CrossFit is.
I know this has been a bit long winded but I guess the point I’m trying to make is, we as athletes are on a life long journey that never ends. This journey has brought CrossFit into our lives through a variety of reasons, that you can only answer yourself. Our journey with fitness is the same as life; it will have it’s ups and downs, perhaps some set backs along the way, and we may not enjoy it all the time. However it is ALWAYS important to look back and remind ourselves as to why you first started CrossFit!
Please post to comment as to why you first started CrossFit and if any of this sounds familiar.