Have you ever been mindlessly scrolling through your Facebook feed when you noticed a picture of one of your “friends” working out and through dozens of hashtags you pick out words like “CrossFit”, “WOD” and “macros”?
They’re participating in the current fitness trend called CrossFit. For those of you who have little interest in fitness, but are curious about what all the fuss is about here is a very quick guide.
CrossFit started in the 70s in the garage of former gymnast Greg Glassman. Eventually his fitness regime spread to multiple locations. In 2012 it had over 5,000 different affiliate gyms.
CrossFit is described as a combination of “various calisthenics, free weights, gymnastic rings, kettle balls, and pull up bars.” The goal is to create the “Quintessential Athlete”.
Participants compete informally against each other or they attend CrossFit games where they are able to win cash prizes.
Many people criticize the supposed cult-like culture of CrossFit because many of the athletes follow the same diet, become close with the people who attend the same Crossfit gym as they do, and use enough slang terms that those with anything less than a causal interest in fitness may feel as though they were speaking a different language.
Many CrossFit athletes follow what is called a Paleo diet. This diet restricts participants to foods that would only have been eaten by people in the Paleolithic era (think cavemen).
Here’s a super quick glossary of the more commonly used CrossFit terms:
WOD: workout of the day
PB: Personal Best
PR: Personal Record
AMRAP: As Many Repetitions As Possible
This condition can occur in athletes who over exert their bodies causing their muscle tissues to break down and release harmful things into their blood stream that can cause kidney failure. Participants in CrossFit gyms are not shy about how intense the workouts are, sometimes even causing athletes to vomit or wet themselves. This “push yourself harder” mentality is what many say earns a lot of CrossFit athletes a visit from Uncle Rhabdo.
Obviously CrossFit is still around because people are getting results from it. Getting workout buddies is probably a bigger pro than con, especially if it helps you achieve your health goals. With any fitness regime you take up, if you push yourself too hard you will injure yourself. CrossFit isn’t inherently bad, and anything considered a revolutionary fitness routine would face criticism. If you’re a part of anything that inspires as much satire as CrossFit does, hopefully you have the ability to laugh at yourself.
Written by: Emily Gadd