As the Pacific Northwest’s largest Inov-8 retailer, we get a lot of crossfit customers coming in to try on our selection of crossfit footwear. Some of them are religious crossfitters looking to buy their second (or third, or fourth) pair to add some variety to their routines, while others are brand new to the sport and looking for the perfect pair of shoes to help get them started. After speaking with the customers who are just beginning crossfit, it was clear that they have a lot of questions about the sport. While we are glad to offer up advice on how the F-Lite 195′s are different from the F-Lite 230′s, or how the Bare-XF 210′s will help them tear up their next rope climb, we wanted to get some more tips and advice, so we turned to the crossfit professionals. There is a strong and rapidly growing crossfit community here in the Seattle area, and we are happy to have become connected with some of Seattle’s best crossfit gyms. We were able to get some inspiring tips and advice from a couple seasoned crossfit coaches from Mercer Island Crossfit and Stoneway Crossfit:
You don’t need to get in “shape” before you start CrossFit
“The reason why this is such a ridiculous answer is because what you were doing before CrossFit was not CrossFit nor was it close to CrossFit. You can not get prepared for something you have never done, doing something completely opposite to what you will do in a new CrossFit gym or with your new CrossFit coach. Instead of getting in “shape” before you start CrossFit walk yourself in a local CrossFit gym or call them and set up your 1st appointment.
ALL legit CrossFit gym offers a FREE class or a FREE consultation
The first thing you want to know when it comes to starting CrossFit is that the coaches genuinely care about you and that you are not just a number. If your local CrossFit gym does not offer you a FREE class or a FREE consultation then that is not a place you want to spend your time or money at. In your FREE class or FREE consultation you will be able to see how that specific CrossFit gym runs their program and how they approach each individual. During this process you will be able to see if this specific location is a good fit for you or not. Before even checking out this gym be sure to write out a list of things you are looking for in a new gym. After you have met with your new coach or joined a class you will know right away if you want to start CrossFit or not. Bring a friend also because when you have a friend it’s easier to say “yes” or “no” with support.
Stop trying to control the scene and trust your coach
After you have passed the first 2 tips just let go of any control you want to have and allow your new coach or coaches to lead you. Once you decide to give this a legitimate trial make sure you do everything your coach tells you. The thing to remember is that you are not a professional in this field and your coach is. He/She works with clients 5-7 days a week for 3-8 hours a day and have national certifications, they know what they are talking about. When you give resistance this prohibits you from getting the full experience. Now I’m not saying don’t ask questions but I am saying trust your coach that they do have their best interest for you.”
“One of the best things about CrossFit is the perception that it is 100% hardcore guys and gals and that each workout rivals the Navy Seal Hell week. And of course, one of the biggest obstacles for you to take that first step into a CrossFit gym is that you are not a Navy Seal. When my mom, who is in her 60’s, decided to add something to her everyway walking routine I suggested CrossFit was the answer. She was highly skeptical, but I started her just like I do any other client, “this is how to squat”, I explained. It took some work to get the form down and full range of motion wasn’t quite there yet but she was squatting correctly after 60+ years.
Slow and Steady
What people see when they look in disbelief through the window at my CrossFit class is not day 1, or even month 1. They are seeing athletes that have been coached for a long time, with a light weight and lots of slow controlled reps. It is important to understand the we focus on fundamentals first. We teach technique, then consistency, and finally we add the intensity.
After we developed a quality squat, my mom learned few more movements, a press with a broom handle and a deadlift with an old cinder block. We added in few classic moves like the push up, lunges and sit ups and she spent time working her form at each one. As she got better, we introduced the clock, so that we could time the workout and actually measure improvement.
Not only do we teach you how to move correctly the CrossFit programming, especially Mercer Island CrossFit, is based on the idea of universal scalability. That’s a fancy way to say we can scale the workout to make it as hard or as easy as we need to work with all populations and ability levels. Everyone, from college athletes to grandpa fit into the program. We have a lot of endurance athlete come in that have very little strength and extremely poor flexibility. For those people we start with lots of mobility work and coaching on how work with a light weight barbell. It doesn’t take long for those same athletes to tell us faster they are getting at their specific sports.
“Just DO CrossFit”
When it comes down to it, if you want to get in better shape for CrossFit, just DO CrossFit! You don’t have to be in “CrossFit shape” to get started, you just have to be as fit as a 60 year old woman… or at the very least, as willing.”
Mercer Island CrossFit was founded in 2009 and is located just east of Seattle. For more info visit www.mercerislandcrossfit.com
Mountains Plus is a proud sponsor of the upcoming CrossFit 5K WOD Challenge at Mercer Island Crossfit. This is a 5K challenge like no other and we are extremely excited to be a part of this event! We will be awarding the winners with a NEW pair of Inov-8s and raffling off an additional pair. If you’re located in the Seattle area, you don’t want to miss this event on Saturday, June 30th!