My sweet friend, Ashley Leader, invited me to go to Crossfit with her in June, 2010. I had never heard of Crossfit, so I had no clue what I was getting myself into. I just threw on some gym shoes (a pair of Sketcher Shape-Ups, haha) and showed up.
***Note from Brandon – I remember asking her to never ever wear those shoes again***
My first impression was that it was FUN and it was very cool that everyone was cheering on the next. I joined immediately following that class, still not fully understanding what Crossfit truly was. I just knew I was in. This was back when there were no Fundamental Classes, and new members simply learned as we went. I thought I was going to die the next day; I was ridiculously sore from playing crab crawl soccer (which was VERY fun!) and doing push-ups, running, and medicine ball tosses.
The first accomplishment in which I felt the most immense pride was when I was able to do both body weight back squats and split jerks (more so the split jerks). Sure, you get super excited for a lot of other things, such as getting your first pull-up, double under, or finally being able to string your toes to bar; but I am not a lightweight, so body weight lifts with those two movements were the accomplishments that made me squeal.
I feel like Crossfitters go through a lot of changes as their time in the sport progresses. I do not mean the obvious physical and health changes, but I think our mental focus changes/evolves. When I began Crossfit, I came to class trying to learn all of the movements and to improve. I also came to class to enjoy a “mommy break”, as I was a stay-at-home mom at the time. I soon began to seek the competitive side Crossfit, so I started coming to class with a different mental focus geared more towards actual training. Now that I am into my 5th year at this wonderful place, my focus has shifted away from competing and to just coming to the gym simply for the love of the gym and the amazing people that also call it home. I still do come to the gym for the “brain break”, but now it has evolved into both a “mommy and teacher break”, as I now teach 1st grade. I still come in with intentions of pushing myself, but I do not stress over my numbers nearly as much as I once did.
My favorite memories of Crossfit always involve group WOD’s. Every year we do WOD’s such as Murph, Barbells for Boobs, 31 Heros, and Wade’s Army. These are times when we all come together to grind out some tough as hell workouts TOGETHER as a gym family. Annual anniversary parties are also great memories, as we have had them each year at different venues. It’s fun getting to know gym members outside of the gym setting. My favorite anniversary party to date is when we partied on the lower deck of the Oaken Bucket. 🙂