I collapse into a pool of my own sweat because I can’t do a single push-up. Everyone stands around snickering before chanting, “Fat-ty! Fat-ty!” Someone pulls a string knocking down a bucket that pours Slurpee all over me, just like in Carrie before she burns the gym down. Much like I want to.
OK, so this is not one of those things actually happened to me but when I started CrossFit last week, I expected that exact scenario to play out, even though I know I’m in good shape.
I’ve lost a bunch of weight and found some of it as I turned the corner onto 30 years old. Either way, I was fat enough for long enough that there’s probably always going to be that part of me that’s physically insecure. I had this vision of the CrossFit gym being full of Olympic athletes who love schadenfreude. Also, I have a really wild imagination. It’s not like that at all, and I know that because CrossFit is the first activity in my “Group-On, Boredom Off” plan.
As it turns out, I really like CrossFit. Every one of the four classes I’ve been to have been really different so it’s definitely not boring- even if it is miserable for me at times. The people are too focused on what they’re doing to even bother paying attention to anyone else, just like at the regular gym.
Most of all, I dig the coaches. I generally find the people who teach fitness classes really irritating, all counting way too fast and wandering around saying, “You got this!” Being in fantastic shape doesn’t necessarily equate to being a good teacher, and I’ve definitely been to my share of classes taught by really fit aspiring actors. The CrossFit people, at least the three I’ve had so far, know their stuff and are legitimately helpful.
I approached CrossFit the same way I approached my first Spartan Race; I was convinced I’d be the person who everyone else was waiting on. Both involved a lot of trepidation and freaking out for, ultimately, no reason. CrossFit was like a monster in my closet that I had made up.
Dumbledore told Harry, “Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself.” I’m into challenging myself because I believe that, too.
Think about someone you know who has a fear of flying and as a result, won’t go anywhere. By constantly catering to that fear, I believe you’re only compounding the problem and making it worse, whereas the more you fly, the less of a big deal it is to get on a plane. Or, at least, that’s how it feels to me when I force myself out of my comfort zone and do things that deep down, I know there’s no reason to be afraid of.
I’m glad I started CrossFit for that reason, but also, I feel fantastic when I leave. Tonight I did the rowing machine, kettlebell swings, burpees, all kinds of stuff, and none of it made me keel over and die. I probably won’t even be sore tomorrow…
That last part was a lie.
I don’t see myself becoming “that” CrossFit person (you know, “that” one). But, I am going to be bummed when my trial ends and I have to find something new. Although, if Groupon serves me up a different CrossFit gym, I’m going to go for it.
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