CrossFit’s intangible benefits

By Julian Reichman-Israelsohn, owner and head trainer at CrossFit Platinum

Think back to the person who was confidently nudged out of their comfort zone and is now making great progress in their local box.

Well, the person they have been training next to at that box for the last couple of weeks or months is also making headway, and is also seeing changes in their body structure and performance. These people have undoubtedly become CrossFit buddies – they aren’t just nameless faces who simply share equipment in the gym.

There is social interaction between these two CrossFit buddies, and they’re constantly comparing results and achievements; not to see who beat who, but because they genuinely care about each other’s achievements, and are happy to share in their successes.

Group dynamic

There is something to be said about people training in group environments – beyond having a partner to meet at the gym, a partner to sweat next to, and a friendly competitor for your daily workout. CrossFitters form special bonds and friendships, which carry on outside the box. These bonds are very strong because these people share an interest and passion in CrossFit, and the collective suffering endured during a WOD builds bonds.

Along with the results and changes in your body, and the great friendships formed in the CrossFit box, comes another magical benefit of CrossFit: improved confidence and self-esteem. Some people start CrossFit to complement their activities outside of the gym, such as a sport. Then there are the people who start CrossFit to get fit.

Functional strength, increased confidence

However, they are soon willing to try new things, like attempting a five, 10 or 21km running race, or riding the 94.7 Cycle Challenge. Soccer-moms want to carry bags of dog food by themselves – because they can. Those with back pain no longer suffer, where surgery used to be the only option. They now run their dogs, and the dogs are the ones that collapse afterwards from exhaustion. They now have the energy to play with their kids on the weekends too, and to last longer than them.

That is CrossFit: empowering people to live life to the max. It gives them the ability to try new things, and makes life better outside of the gym.

Author: Pedro van Gaalen

When he’s not writing about sport or health and fitness, Pedro is probably out training for his next marathon or ultra-marathon. He’s worked as a fitness professional and as a marketing and comms expert. He now combines his passions in his role as managing editor at Fitness magazine.

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