Sunday, May 25, 2008

A physical and mental journey

Dear CrossFit Ladies-

I have been exercising off and on for many years, and when I joined Fitness Advantage my intention was to continue that trend. I noticed a sign up sheet for CrossFit Thoroughbreds there- it read, ‘Extreme Fitness for Extreme People’ which sounded much like myself…I can get extreme at times! I decided to give it a try. That was a year ago. What ensued was, and still is, a physical and mental journey that has changed my life.

Kettlebells, dead lifts, pull ups, push ups…. all of these things, and much more- quickly became a normal part of my mornings. Let me be clear here- I was excited but scared, nervous, apprehensive, and adventurous all at the same time. It took four weeks just for my body to quit hurting everyday! But then, right around that same time, I started to see changes…. changes that I really liked. My hips and behind became smaller and tighter; my shoulders looked a little nicer- and from that point, by body has been changing in some area. Trust me- there were mornings when I said, ‘What was I thinking?’ or ‘No way am I doing that!’. A few explicative choices even slipped out (still do) when my body was being asked to do things I never thought possible. I have lost sleep over Murph. I have prayed over the 5K race. But I have also felt a sense of satisfaction that is second to none. I have bragged (only slightly) to my fiancĂ© about dead lifts, squats, and thrusters and loved every minute of it. He’s used to it now. Finally, I am in the absolute best shape I have ever been in my life. Enough said. I’m pretty cool with that!

There are days when I am not pleased, when I feel ‘thick’ or ‘heavy’… I am the hardest on myself! For more than a year now, CrossFit has always been able to pull me out of that place. It is usually a diet issue, not exercise. I admit: I occasionally double train in a day, adding more cardio- I can get a little freakish. At the end of the day, however, CrossFit alone continues to be the best fitness program I have ever experienced.

It took me a while to realize how important nutrition’s role is in this scene-and my diet has been ever evolving for a year now. I finally see that my hard work in the gym can only be recognized with as much attention to diet. Sugar and simple carbohydrates are a bare minimum- girls, this also means cocktails. A few drinks occasionally? Sure. A few every night and weekend? Nope. Protein, vegetables, and complex carbohydrates are my new best friends. And, by the way, I simply love to eat. It is a joy to eat healthy, whole foods. Never before have I understood the principles and properties of clean eating and what it can do for one’s body. Never before did I know that eating clean can, and does, taste good. I would encourage anyone to try it at whatever level you can muster.

I say all of these things to close with this: you will get out of CrossFit what you put into it. Only you can take it to whatever level it needs to be for you to accomplish what you need as an individual. Take a stand for yourself and enjoy it…it is so worthy!

Sara Hatton

CrossFit Thoroughbreds "Xtreme Fitness 4 Xtreme People"

Jeremy Barnett, ISSA-CFT, Founder

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