What brought me to CrossFit? Such a simple yet complicated question, at least for me!
My wife Michelle had just finished bootcamp at My Town in August of 2015 when she said to me, “We should start going together!” I don’t recall my exact response, although I’m sure it was something to the effect of, “Oookaaay.” Little did I know, at the time, how much I would fall in love with the sport, the community and the pain!
What I DID know at the time was that I needed something. Something that would provide me bonding time with my wife. Something that would challenge me physically. Something that would allow me to lead by example for my kids. Something that would provide me with the opportunity to develop positive friendships. Something that would keep my mind busy in a healthy way.
I just didn’t realize that I would find all of these things in one place.
You see, my story is a bit unique (though with time and age I learn that everyone is complicated). I’ve never been into fitness or working out. Mostly because I’ve always felt inadequate, especially when considering all the fit people that would surely be amused watching me fumble around with equipment that was foreign to me. Of course that was only if I could find the courage to even approach the equipment.
I’ve always enjoyed playing basketball, although that had been the extent of me “staying in shape” during my adult life.
That was until I checked in to an inpatient treatment facility in Florida in January of 2015. Yep, in many ways my life was spiraling out of control and I needed a timeout (mainly from myself). Fortunately, this great facility allowed for a lot of reflection about what’s truly important in life. It also provided time for fitness. I discovered a passion for running I had never known existed. In addition, 3 times a week we participated in workouts with movements somewhat similar to CrossFit. By the end of my 3 month stay I was more than ready to rejoin my family in Minnesota and was also ready for a new running route! The same 4 blocks I had been running over and over (even in sunny Florida) had grown old.
That time spent in treatment laid a foundation for me to find new ways in life in many respects. Specific to CrossFit, it meant that I would now accept my neighbor John’s invitations to try weird things in our backyard and his basement, things that had funny names like snatches and burpees. And then, of course, it meant saying yes to Michelle when she proposed that we should join My Town!
One of the first times I realized that I would love CrossFit was shortly after I returned home from treatment. It was a sunny Sunday morning and John put an impromptu neighborhood workout together for he and I and a couple neighbors. We completed 4 rounds of sprints up a hill along with many push-ups and air squats mixed in (John sold these as the punishment AND the reward). After the 4th round I literally crawled home from down the block while the other 3 completed a 5th round! I couldn’t believe how miserable I was, yet how much fun I had!
Every day I’m thankful for CrossFit, as it consistently wrecks me while keeping me hungry for more, all which has been a great therapy for me. I’m also thankful for the community of people that are extremely encouraging, funny and competitive (especially the ones that say they aren’t)! I truly enjoy all the members at My Town, but my 4:30 PM (now 4:45) gang holds a special place in my heart!
Going forward, I work to develop a healthy balance in my life, even in this fun new world that CrossFit has brought me to. In the meantime, I can’t say enough about how instrumental My Town and the people who attend & coach classes there have been in my journey of recovery!