Friday Rant!

The photo that started it all!

A few weeks ago a member posted a photo to facebook of Scott using the slosh pipe which spawned some pretty amusing banter in the comments section.  Below is a stripped down version of the back and forth. 

 Non Crossfitter…“does this stuff really work?”

 Non Crossfitter…  “why not just got to a normal gym and do exercises that are proven winners?”

 CFCA Member …“This is way more fun and normal gyms are boring”

 Non Crossfitter… “are gyms supposed to be fun?”

   I’ll admit that slosh pipes are not incredibly functional and are borderline gimmicky…kind like bosu balls. Do they work? Have you ever tried it? They are ridiculously hard to hold overhead and they make the barbell overhead squat seem easy to stabilize. Granted we use the slosh pipe primarily for a fun challenge after class so it’s not like I’m trading out the barbells for them.

That leads me to the second quote…“why not just go to a normal gym and do exercises that are proven winners?” 

Uh…yeah that’s pretty much what we do. Crossfit has picked out movements that we feel are the best bang for the buck so to speak.  We have written off bodybuilding isolation movements because as they may be effective in “building” one part of your body at a time, what do they do for your coordination and your body’s ability to work as one unit? Do body building isolation movements have a real world application? Do you do the chest fly movement outside of the gym? Leg extension? Not really… You run, you jump, you lift heavy things and put them over your head. So in our effort to train you for real world application we use real world applicable movements. 

We are a performance based gym in that goals are set on what you do not what you want to look like.  Body composition changes occur as a result of hard work and good nutrition. You can do all the crunches you want, but that 6 pack wont show till you get your body fat % to sub 12.  As they always say abs are built in the kitchen. Unfortunately most people don’t believe this and so they slug away for hours in the globo gym because more is always better in there mind. Consequently more work with little to no gains turns into a really frustrating slug fest for most and how fun is that? 

  This leads me to the third statement. “are gyms supposed to be fun?”

Uh….is your job supposed to be fun? is life supposed to be fun? I don’t know that anything is “supposed to be fun” but, shouldn’t we hope that that would be the case?  Would people be healthier if their gym was fun and they enjoyed going?…And therefore went more frequently. Probably.  Wouldn’t everything be better if it was fun. This is a really sad commentary on many levels. Period.  Granted I know when you guys are halfway through a 20 min AMRAP, “fun” might not be the best way to describe it.  But on the whole, I bet if I asked you if CFCA was fun, you would say yes.  Hopefully none of you see CFCA as a frustrating slug fest.  As bad as some of these workouts look prior to completing them, they never are as bad as you thought.

See without sounding offensive or naughty…the gym should be “adult playtime”.  This is our time to cut loose, to reset our brains, to learn new skills/tasks, to put those skills to the test..etc.. it is recess for adults especially with crossfit because the stimulus or workout is constantly changing. We need exercise to function normally… does it matter if the exercise is fun quick and stimulating or should it be boring, slow and long.  The former works better as it turns out but to each its own. If you want to do what you think works best go for it!  In closing I’m including a great quote from Mark Rippetoe.

“Humans are not physically normal in the absence of hard physical effort. Exercise is not a thing we do to fix a problem – it is a thing we must do anyway, a thing without which there will always be problems.  Exercise is the thing we must do to replicate the conditions under which our physiology was adapted, the conditions under which we are physically normal. In other words, exercise is substitute cave-man activity – the thing we need to make our bodies and in fact our minds normal in the 21st century.”

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