Beginners guide to CrossFit, by Carmen Bosmans

Stepping in a CrossFit gym can be stressful and maybe even intimidating for some people. When you see the local gym members smashing themselves in a workout. Sweating everywhere, showing pain faces and some of them are making weird noises. And when the workout is done most of them are crawling over the floor; you  hear them talking about CrossFit having a language of  their own. So what is CrossFit? Crossfit is a fitness program created by Greg Glassman. CrossFit is constantly varied functional movements performed at relatively high intensity. All CrossFit workouts are based on functional movements, and these movements reflect the best aspects of gymnastics, weightlifting, running, rowing and more. To better integrate you here's everything you need to know to start your CrossFit life: 1.The language First thing all the members do when arriving in the gym is checking what is written on the whiteboard. The so called "WOD" stands for "workout of the day" so basically  this is the set of modalities that your coach uses to put you through hell on any given day. It will be "constantly varied, high intensity, functional movements.  2. The girls CrossFit created a series of  benchmark workouts  to test fitness  that are universally known among the CF community. As the  CrossFit founder Greg Glassman said: “Any workout that leaves you flat on your back, staring up at the sky, wondering what the hell happened deserves a girl’s name.” 3. Paleo or Caveman diet The most common diet within crossfitters based on the way our ancestors ate 10000 years ago. This requires that we eat lean meats, nuts and seeds, vegetables and some fruit, little starch, and NO sugar. 4. Kipping A way to make gymnastics movements such as  pull ups or  muscle ups easier is by using a powerful hip movement to get more momentum in so you won't just use strength to get up on the bar.  5. AMRAP When there is a set time in a workout and you have to do "as many reps as possible" in that time domain.  6. Rx'd When the workout is done using the prescribed weight and reps. 7. Scaled If you need to change a movement or weight so you can perform the workout at a high intensity. 8. Mobility Training to improve the movement of the joints. Enabling the body to reach full range of motion in all exercises  9. Performing at a high intensity The intensity level in a CrossFit class is high. Many workouts are performed against a running clock and members like to challenge themselves or each other in a workout. Therefore you will be pushed to go hard and get out of that comfort zone. This is how you get fitter. If you don't like to suffer then Pilates will be a better option. However, working under high intensity doesn't mean that you have to take the same weights like the person next to you. Scale a workout as much as needed to keep the intensity high. The coach will help you with that so you'll get the max out of that workout.  10. Muscle soreness When you wake up the next morning after your first CrossFit class and find it hard just to get out of bed because every muscle in your body is sore. You are even feeling muscles that you didn't know existed. No worries it happened to everybody! During the first few weeks,  it's normal that you'll feel sore the day or days after your training sessions. Your body needs to adept to all these new movements and it's important that you listen to your body. Start easy and build up the volume of your training session. I recommend to start with 3 training days per week. Alternate a training day with a rest day. 11. Beginners class Every CrossFit gym has its own way of introducing new people to CrossFit. At InnerFight we have our "Base Fitness" program. And this is literally for everybody no matter what your fitness level is. The group is smaller than a normal class and the coach will spend more time on explaining the movements step by step so it's performed safely. Ultimately, be smart about your training! Like any other sport you can get injured when training 3-6 days a week. To limit the  chance of injuring yourself and not being able to come to the gym for a few weeks. Remember the following three points.
  1. Scale your workout if needed, the coaches will advise you a weight they think is best for you. Just listen to them they know best!
  2. Listen to your body, if a movement is causing physically pain then don't push through and make it worse. Sometimes it's better to relax and let it heal. I'm not saying that you can stop during a workout because it hurts. Make sure you understand the difference between the pain you go through in a workout because you are pushing to get out of your comfort zone and the pain of an injury.
  3. Mobility drills, spend 10 minutes a day on some form of mobility.
  Now you are ready to attend your first class.   Smash it like a champion!   By: Carmen Bosmans, InnerFight Performance Coach