Updated: Jul 17, 2021
The last couple of years of my life have been a period of serious change and growth. I went through a divorce, quit my job to travel the world... then the world shut down. I stayed at my job through the shutdown and finally left a few months later under very serious and stressful circumstances. Having a close support system of friends and family to lean on has played a big part in me getting through these last few years, and for that I am forever grateful. I was in a pretty bad place last summer and two very close friends of mine wanted to try CrossFit. Little did I know how much this would impact my life. That I would meet this whole new community of people I would grow to love and that would become part of my support system.
When the pandemic had subsided a bit and businesses were starting to reopen with
very strict guidelines, by random Google Search we found Masa CrossFit. It was the only listing that read that they were open and so that's where we ended up. I remember that first phone call with the owner, Itamar, me being completely clueless about what CrossFit even was or if I would be able to do it, and now it has been a year since I walked through the doors of Masa and found my second home. I showed up that first day, still clueless. Taylor gave us the tour and made us feel so welcomed. The patience and attentiveness they have shown is just unbelievable. I literally had to stop half way through the workout because I thought I was going to pass out and/or throw up. Obviously I was super embarrassed, but they did everything they could to make sure I was okay. Itamar got me my little packet of applesauce, I took a few minutes and got right back to it. It felt as if any workout I had ever done before this day was an absolute joke in comparison. I had to come back and try it again. So I did. And then I never stopped coming back.
So for those of you who might be clueless as to what CrossFit is, just like I was, let me explain. It's a shit show. No, no I'm kidding lol it is definitely difficult. But it is a workout that anyone can do. ANYONE. It's high intensity functional training, meaning that the movements mimic actions that we perform in our everyday lives such as squatting, pulling, pushing. It's a well rounded mixture of conditioning, strength and resistance training. There are scales and modifications for ANY fitness level. I was definitely intimidated by the barbell at first. I had never picked one up in my entire life, nor did I think that I ever would. And now deadlifts are one of my favorite workouts.
What's great is that CrossFit is performed in a class setting with an experienced, knowledgeable coach to explain the workouts, demonstrate the movements and assist/correct and motivate you throughout the entire class. They are dedicated to helping you succeed, get stronger and move correctly so that you do not get injured. Being in a class atmosphere is what motivates me and has kept me committed this long. Working out on my own has never given me results like I have gotten from CrossFit. Motivating myself to get up and go to the gym was always a struggle. What I love is that each day is something different. It's always a variety of movements and you're always being challenged, both physically and mentally. I had actually become one of those "crazy" people who wakes up to workout at 6am before work! Pff! Who was I? That's how much I fell in love with it. Okay, and maybe the fact that Coach AJ runs the 6am had a little something to do with it too. But seriously, getting to workout alongside other amazing humans is so motivating and fun. It makes it that much easier to get up and do it.
I have said this so many times over this past year, CrossFit has changed my life. Showing up time and again, on good days and bad, has helped me tremendously with my physical and mental health. There have been workouts that have tested me and brought me to tears. Those were the days that mattered most. I still got up and pushed through it. To be able to show up to a place everyday that I feel safe and comfortable knowing that they truly care about my wellbeing is something special. If this isn't the CrossFit experience you're having, you need to switch gyms. I hope that I have inspired someone who has been on the fence about trying it, or any new activity for that matter, to get out there and do it. It might just change your life.