I first started CrossFit Classes in late November 2012 when a friend Jason of mine opened CrossFit North Devon. We had always done a decent amount of functional training. However, it was always very traditional in style and based around rugby performance.
Jason programmed for the classes and we did whatever he had set that day. At first it was brilliant, loads of new challenges and movements to achieve along with an ever changing routine to keep us interested and engaged. Unfortunately, a few issues began to surface and my training became scattered. I tended to have strong periods, immediately followed by poor ones. This may have been down to commitment, motivation or lifestyle factors. I kept going this way for 2 years (Jason will argue it was more like 3…. Probably 4).
Issues I Encountered
- I get beaten up really easily. I have always been a power athlete, fast twitch muscle fibres, short sharp movements, low time frame with a high output. As a result, my Central Nervous System tends to take a hammering and recover slowly. Yes, I could most likely have done a number of things to aid my recovery, but I didn’t.
- I was playing Rugby, regularly. Playing for college and club meant that in one week I could have 5 training sessions and 2 matches.
- I am super competitive. Not that this is necessarily a bad thing, though in this case I believe it was. I didn’t know when to take it easy, I would go to the gym planning on having a slower day of active recovery then end up going full throttle because I wanted to beat someone else in the class.
My View Now
I believe CrossFit classes are a great thing and most certainly have their place. However, for me it just wasn’t working. I wasn’t someone who was finishing work and turning up 3-5 days a week to complete the set workout that was balanced for them. Working from a whiteboard set to be all inclusive meant I could end up doing a Rugby session of high intensity intervals, followed by a session of high intensity lifting. Ultimately, I was overtraining and not paying attention to my bodies individual needs.
I Am Still Doing CrossFit… Probably More!
I now follow a strength programme 3/4 days a week, while programming my own conditioning and everything else based around my personal performance and lifestyle, this ensures I get the stimulus and recovery I need.
Obviously it helps that I have an understand of it all which enables me to create a balanced training plan. However, all my programming is done in conjunction with one of Twickenham’s Expert Personal Trainers, Nathan Kelly. This way we can ensure neither of us are cherry picking or being lazy. I am now training more consistently than ever before, I am doing all the little things I was missing out on.
I still think CrossFit classes are great. For me, not so much.