Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Crossfit: My First WOD!


The taster session team photo at Crossfit Swindon! 
So I finally got my first opportunity to try Crossfit! It's something I've been wanting to try for a while after hearing how much of a crazy workout it was, and luckily a new Crossfit gym has opened up in Swindon meaning I was able to have a trial run at one of their taster sessions.
In case you're a little unsure of what Crossfit is, it is essentially a strength and conditioning program where various functional movements like squats, box jumps and clean-and-jerks are performed at high intensity. These movements are formed into a WOD (workout of the day) which usually consists of three or four exercises which are either performed for a set amount of rounds (for example 10 rounds of 4 movements) or for as many rounds as possible under a set amount of time.

Harry and Luke were my instructors for the session and were so friendly and welcoming that they put me straight at ease and got us to warm up and do our own stretching whilst everyone else arrived for the session.
After we were suitably warmed up we were coached through the movements that we were going to be doing during the workout which for this session were squats and deadlifts.
There was probably about 10 of us at the session meaning that the amount of attention that Luke and Harry were able to give us was amazing. They were able to guide us through each part of the exercise and correct any issues with our form/technique - it was like having your own personal trainer guiding you through everything! I've done squats for a long time but it's always good to have others help you iron out any bad habits I may have developed, and to have proper coaching on deadlifts was amazing!

After practicing the movements we got into pairs and got stuck into our first ever WOD! This time its was as many rounds of possible of 7 body-weight squats, 7 deadlifts and 7 burpees, which because it was a taster we worked in pairs to do. Because it's weights-based, anything that involved them was completely customisable meaning that people of any fitness level can give it a go, and it was great being able to motivate each other whilst the other was completing their round before we swapped in - Harry and Luke were always on hand to correct any form issues and give us support if we were looking tired. :)

Me and my partner did pretty well for a first attempt managing 8 rounds in the 15 minute time limit and I despite being knackered I honestly don't think that I could ever enjoy another workout quite as much as I've enjoyed Crossfit - and I've done a lot of different workouts! The mixture of weights at a high intensity would be perfect for sculpting the lean, muscular physique that I'm desperate for!
There was such a lovely community that seemed to be developing too even though I had only been there for once session - there was such a sense of family and belonging which was so nice to have as you don't tend to get that in regular gyms!

Some are of the opinion that Crossfit is dangerous because of the timed aspect of it causing people to have bad form - but it my opinion this should never affect someone's decision on whether to try Crossfit or not. At the end of the day it's an individual's decision on whether to focus on form or not - everyone has the ability to make that decision for themselves and any sport can be dangerous if not executed correctly. Luke and Harry are great teachers so I don't think I would ever have the issue of incorrect form! :)

So my overall opinion? CROSSFIT IS AMAZING! If you have the money and have access to a Crossfit Gym I would 100% recommend joining, I absolutely loved every minute of it! The only drawback for me is cost - for myself it is just too expensive for me to be able to justify it unfortunately, and I honestly can't tell you how devastated I am that I won't be able to continue with it, as since I had to quit cheerleading I don't think I had ever found something that I have felt quite as at home with as when I was doing that WOD.
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