by Joe Lawrence | January 20th, 2014 | 15 Minutes or Less, Strength Training

weight (449x449) (2)Unless you have been under a rock in the desert, you have heard about CrossFit. This is the fitness craze that is sweeping the nation and globe. It is the best regimen out there aside from martial arts training.

First, I say martial arts training is the best because as you aim to master an art, you are building your mind and body. You are constantly challenging yourself and pushing yourself to new limits, while building upon ancient philosophies.

CrossFit achieves very similar results. What I love about this sport is that there is constant variation. In fact, there is pride in that their specialty is not to specialize. I love it! Almost all of my fitness posts preach on muscle memory, CrossFit destroys this. They also pride themselves on taking bits from every sport and fitness modality to create the ultimate workouts. Everyday the workout varies.

What is another great aspect of this is that most workouts happen in less than 20 minutes. This is very appealing to those like me who have little time to dedicate.

I will throw out the disclaimer right now, that I have not done CrossFit much. I have only completed a few workouts while I was deployed. Some of the guys were big into it and I finally caved in for a few workouts. I thought it was fundamentally sound in every way. The only reason, I did not keep with them is that I was trying to rebuild my martial art foundation after years of inactivity.

I am not sure if it is the fact that I am a generalist by nature, but cross training is the smartest fitness strategy there is. Doing the same things wears your body down quickly. Doing long sessions on weight machines wears your body out. All good things in moderation; however, we all do well with these strategies for a few months until we hit that wall. Cross training has always been my vehicle to get over the hurdle…always.

Those I am close to who have taken to CrossFit say they do not experience this plateau (or sensation of hitting the wall) anymore. They say it is all about the pushing of your body and mind to hit new limits.

I asked about the best way to get started and all gave the same advice. Find a club or local group of people who are doing these workouts. You can find endless sources of exercises online and could do it by yourself, but when you have the peer pressure of those around you cheering you on, you refuse to give anything less than your all.

As soon as I finish this phase of fitness I am currently in, CrossFit will be on the top of my list and I urge you to look too.

(Photo courtesy of Elvis Santana)

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