Wednesday, July 20, 2011


The other day after my workout, I was feeling nostalgic and for some reason, I remembered that I had written a post at the end of my first year of CrossFitting. In that post I made a list of ten things I had learned over the year. This morning I dug into the archives to re-read it and see if that list still rang true. It does, even though I wrote it almost two years ago. Though I have a little different perspective on some of it now.

The whole post can be found here, but for a quick recap:
  1. Intense exercise is the most effective exercise.
  2. Pull-ups are not impossible. They just take a lot of practice.
  3. (Dietary) fat is good for you.
  4. Grains and starches are bad for you.
  5. Body shape can change.
  6. Fear is surmountable.
  7. Coordination can be learned.
  8. Strength breeds confidence.
  9. Social support is key (even for introverts).
  10. It takes a special kind of person to be a CrossFitter.
My reaction today:
  1. Yes, still a big fan of intensity. I'm more aware of the role of rest and recuperation now. But I've really missed intensity in my programming and I hope after the baby comes, I can bring that back into my life.
  2. Pull-ups were one of my proudest accomplishments. I had to work very hard to get them and it took a long time. They were sort of symbolic for me, overcoming an impossibility. I got so I loved workouts with lots of pull-ups and even saw them as a strength in the CF competitions I did. I'm not doing them now, but I hope they come back quickly.
  3. Along with #4, the "fat is good, grains are bad" nutrition information has been even more valuable to my health than I could have imagined. Absolutely life changing.
  4. (See above)
  5. My body shape changed even more after that. I really looked like an athlete. It was a good feeling to carry with me all day, every day.
  6. I used my experiences overcoming fears at CF to face some fears outside the gym. I learned how to snowboard. That was a big one. I got back on the climbing wall. And I think I'm ready to face the mountain bike again.
  7. I continued to work very hard on my coordination, especially on the Olympic lifts, and I got pretty good at them. I even competed in a few meets. To actually get to the level where I could compete at a sport was immensely rewarding and not something I thought I'd ever accomplish as an adult.
  8. I grew to value strength even more over the last two years. It helped me jump right in to climbing. It helped me avoid injury. And I've seen how valuable strength has been to me as I reach late pregnancy with good flexibility and energy and no back or joint pain.
  9. With the loss of my social support network, I realize just how right on this one was. Losing my workout buddies has been like grieving a death. Except it's worse because I can't blame anyone but myself. When you work hard to build a community for yourself, it is not something that is easily replaced.
  10. Even if I can't work out with them, I do get to see people from the gym because Mike is still there. To witness them continuing to succeed and make progress makes me really proud. Watching the Saturday morning group workouts and seeing how hard people are willing to go brings tears to my eyes sometimes. I am extremely proud of Mike and how his dedication has paid off in performance - he is one of the leaders at the gym now. The world is full of excuse makers, and this is a little corner of the world where people push themselves and do not make excuses, and that gives me some hope for the next generation.

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