CrossFit workouts offer a unique, effective approach to getting in shape. In this blog, we discuss why CrossFit workouts are beneficial as well as what to expect when getting started. We then explain how certain healthy habits can enhance your CrossFit performance and help you achieve your overall health and fitness goals. Let’s get into it so you can get started!

How Does CrossFit Work?

The Substance – CrossFit is a fitness program that combines weightlifting, cardio, and body weight exercises into high intensity, constantly varied workouts. It features different functional movements, such as squatting, running, and lifting, that condition you to move better in everyday life. This promotes a holistic approach to improving total body strength, endurance, balance, and flexibilty. See our blog on benefits of CrossFit for more details!

The Structure – Classes at CrossFit LPF begin with a group warm-up lead by the coach. This will include mild cardio, dynamic stretches, and light weights to raise your heart rate and prepare your joints and muscles for the workout. The coach will then explain the WOD and demonstrate how to properly complete each movement. Once the workout begins, the coach supervises each athlete and offers tips and encouragement as needed. The class is 1 hour long, which includes the warm-up, transition periods, and 1-2 workouts. Workouts are typically anywhere from 10 to 35 minutes long.

What to Expect as a CrossFit Beginner

Foundations – At CrossFit LPF, we have all new members participate in our “Foundations” program before beginning traditional group classes. This consists of four 45-minute sessions in which a coach teaches you the basic, fundamental movements done in CrossFit. This gives you the chance to learn how to do the exercises safely and correctly in a setting with more one-on-one attention than seen in regular classes. Read more about Foundations here!

First CrossFit Class – After completing the Foundations program you can partake in your first CrossFit class! These sessions run as described in the “How Does CrossFit Work” section above. Sign up in advance on the “Push Press” app to reserve your spot. If you want to know what the workout will be, you can find it in the SugarWod app or on our website’s homepage here. Click the WOD button in the corner.

Modifying – Each exercise in CrossFit workouts can be modified (or “scaled”) to make it appropriate for your current skill level. This means that you are not expected to lift massive weights or perform advanced gymnastics on your first day (or ever, if those are not your goals). A good workout routine is one that challenges you without pushing you beyond what you are ready for. Our coaches can help you find this “sweet spot.” And don’t worry – all members modify at some point! Everybody is encouraged to listen to their body and adjust as needed, no matter what the reason is.

Physical Changes – Expect for your body to start to feel a little different after you begin doing CrossFit regularly. First, your muscles will most likely be sore after working out. This is normal! Sometimes, this can take 1-2 days to kick in, which is also normal. This phenomenon is referred to as delayed onset muscle soreness (“DOMS”) and will go away after several days. Next, you might be hungrier and thirstier than you were before CrossFit. This is not something you should ignore! Your body is probably burning more calories than it previously was. Therefore, you might need to eat and hydrate more to ensure that your body is adequately fueled. Lastly, you may start feeling super proud of yourself for being such a rockstar. We highly encourage you to embrace it.

How to Get the Best Results from CrossFit

Fuel for Every Workout – A car can’t drive without gas, and a body can’t exercise without food and water. Timing, portions, and types of food and hydration are all important factors to consider when preparing for a CrossFit workout. Try to eat full sized meals at least 3-4 hours before exercising. Switch to smaller meals or snacks within 1-2 hours of exercise. Foods high in easily digestible carbs, like fruit, oatmeal, and toast, are great pre-workout options. Furthermore, the American Council on Exercise recommends drinking about 20 ounces of water 2-3 hours before your workout. Then, have an additional 8 ounces 20-30 minutes before starting. When combined, these habits can provide the nutrients and fluids needed to power your muscles and organs to work hard in every workout!

Improve Overall Nutrition – Incorporating healthy, sustainable nutrition habits is just as important as incorporating gym time. Supplying your body with appropriate food is crucial to building muscles, losing fat, and feeling and performing optimally. However, we know this can be challenging, and it takes more than a recommendation about pre-workout nutrition to get started. If you need assistance learning how to structure your meals in a healthy and tasty way, try our nutrition program! Our knowledgeable staff can help you reach your nutrition and physique goals through comprehensive 6-week challenges. Learn how to feed your body to be its best!

Be Consistent – Throughout our entire lives, we have been told that practice makes perfect. However, we can’t practice if we don’t show up. If we want to chase perfection, we must keep showing up to practice. This does not mean you have to train every single day, but you do have to train regularly. It is not something we quit once we lose 10 pounds or have washboard abs. It must be part of your lifestyle for it to create sustainable changes that positively impact your health and wellness.

Work on Your Weaknesses – Let’s face it, the exercises that we hate the most are often the ones we need to do the most. We usually dread seeing them in workouts because they are hard and we aren’t good at them. However, you’ll be amazed to see how addressing just one weakness can result in positive changes for your entire body. Take advantage of CrossFit LPF’s open gym times to turn these weaknesses into strengths! Alternatively, if you need guidance on how to do this, try a personal training session instead. A coach will work with you to identify areas for improvement and teach you drills to refine your technique. Check out our blog for more info about personal training!

Recover– Our bodies need time to rest and recover in between our workouts. Recovery can be passive, in which we do no activity, or active, in which we do light, nonstrenuous activities. Examples of passive recovery include sleeping and sitting, whereas examples of active recovery include walking, yoga, and swimming. Both are beneficial and should be included in your weekly workout routine. Remember that life is about balance, so be sure to swap your heavy, sweaty WOD for a bike ride or a nap every now and then!

How to Start Doing CrossFit

Find a Box – If you want to start doing CrossFit, it is important to find an excellent gym to do it at. Consulting the CrossFit Affiliate Map can be a great place to begin! Once you locate boxes near you, go to their websites to get a feel for their facility, staff, and programs. Next, check out their social media if they have any. This can provide a sense of a gym’s community, as they often feature more candid insights than websites do. Additionally, read Google reviews from current or former members for honest feedback about the box. Lastly, if you have any friends or family members who do CrossFit, ask for their recommendations! The CrossFit community is very well connected, so they might have solid suggestions even if you live in different places.

Book a Free Consult – Once you find a gym (or several gyms) that you are interested in, ask about doing a free CrossFit consultation. This allows you to experience everything that the box has to offer before committing to a membership. Most affiliates offer these and will have directions on their website for how to sign up. They are typically also happy to schedule one for you over the phone. Click here to book one at CrossFit LPF!

Get in Shape with CrossFit Today

CrossFit offers you the opportunity to take control of your health and fitness through engaging and effective workout classes. CrossFit LPF offers you the opportunity to take this even further with nutrition coaching, personal training, a supportive community, and so much more. Stop by or give us a call to get started today!