What Is This, Is It Like CrossFit?

I was shopping at Dick’s Sports the other day, buying some gym clothes of course. The girl at the counter ringing me up looked at my sweats and leggings and asked “Are you a runner?”

I said “No, I own a gym so I’m in this gear pretty much 24/7.”

She proceeded to ask me where my gym was and what kind of stuff we do there. She mentioned her cousin owned an Anytime Fitness. We chatted for a minute as I explained that we train everyone in groups and do a mix of strength and a lot of different things to help people get in shape and get strong.

Is that kind of like CrossFit?”

“Kind of, we do a lot of the same types of exercises but its usually set up a lot different.”

Cool. End of conversation. I give her an A+ for customer service too, BTW. It drives me absolutely insane when I go into a store and the person at the register doesn’t even talk to you or at least tell you the price. Yes I know I’m only buying a bottle of water and I can see it on the screen, but it wouldn’t kill you to just say it. Pet peeve rant over.

Back to my story though. I used to get kind of annoyed that people would ask me if my gym was like CrossFit. I found myself having to explain that no, we do different stuff and we’re not really as hard-core, and on and on.

Like I was trying to defend myself to this person that I don’t even know.

Here’s the thing. I’ve never really had a problem with CrossFit. Being in the industry as long as I have, I’ve seen a ton of bad coaches and programs in all types of gyms. There are a lot of awesome CrossFit gyms and I believe they have done tremendous things in getting women to feel like it’s cool and okay to be strong and to lift weights.

I have lots of friends who do CrossFit. They are ex-college athletes that want to really get after it and crush some workouts. Cool. Some of our workouts at DPT are even CrossFit-ish.

The reason so many people ask “Is your gym like CrossFit?” is because CrossFit has done an insane job of marketing and becoming a phenomenon. Good on them.

I find a lot of fitness professionals bash CrossFit gyms. You may have seen some of the “epic fails” or “exercise fails” floating around on Facebook. Most of those that are getting posted, reposted and commented on are from other fitness professionals and trainers saying “hey look at what that idiot over at Crossfit wherever just did with their clients.”

Enter the barrage of negative comments, blasting that coach or those clients. I’ve never been one to repost or comment on these things. Not because I think I’m better than anyone involved, but because I don’t think it helps anyone when we constantly bash.

Look at our society. The highest level athletes are getting faster, stronger and more elite but America is getting fatter, sicker and more depressed. There’s something wrong with that picture. If you are the person reposting that epic Power Clean fail, shame on you.

Does that Facebook post make the average person, who is sick of being overweight, sick of struggling and completely terrified to go into a gym, want to get started in any program?

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CrossFit, Boot Camp, Group Training, Personal Training, I don’t care if you do freakin’ water aerobics- you are scaring the shit out of them.

You are not the holy grail of fitness, no matter what you teach and preach. There is a place for everyone but there needs to be A PLACE for everyone.

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Fitness is scary. Trainers are scary people, based on the images they portray on the internet.

People don’t care WHAT it is. They want to get results, feel appreciated, feel safe, feel supported, feel like a part of something and leave that place feeling better than when they left.

If you walked by two gyms down the street from one another and one was a CrossFit and one was a Group Training facility, you will probably see some similar stuff. People are pushing a sled, using some Kettlebells and maybe doing Squats or using the Battle Ropes.

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The average person who is looking to lose weight is going to look at those places and say “okay, they look pretty similar.”

From there what it comes down to is the stuff I listed above:

-results

-safety

-community

-fun

-appreciation

They are going to look at the place that gets THEM. Not the place that tries to sell them on fancy equipment or that you’ll do this many exercises during your workout. They do not care. Do you care ABOUT them? That’s the bottom line.

When I started my business, one of my absolute non-negotiable cornerstones was to become a place that I could say, would I send my mom, best friend or aunt here? Would they be treated like a million bucks?

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So to the coaches that portray the scary, drill sergeant persona online, stop it.

To the people bashing CrossFit, stop it.

To the people shaming the beginner who’s at the gym on their first day just trying to walk on the treadmill, stop it.

To the gyms and trainers who repost the epic fails, stop it.

You’re scaring people when you should be welcoming them and giving them the support and guidance they need to make a change. You’re not too good for that.

And to the girl at Dick’s Sports and everyone that’s asked me if we’re like CrossFit, no we’re not. We’re the best damn version of Durbrow Performance Training that you’ll ever see. We’re Callie, Emily, Erin, Justine, Liz and we’re the crazy fun, energetic, inspiring, strong, brave and truly amazing members in Manchester. If you want that, we’re the place for you.

Stay tuned to our Facebook page for exactly how you can win a FREE spot in our upcoming Fall Fit Moms’ Challenge.

Callie Durbrow