“I welcome you to a community of people who have decided that easy will no longer suffice.” This quote is the first thing I see when I walk into Crossfit Beloit for my “intro to Crossfit” class on a snowy March day. And the first thing I hear is barking. Very VERY loud barking. Needless to say, I was a little taken aback. There is a large brown dog (who doesn’t seem to like me) running directly at me and it smells like rubber. I’m in a HUGE space equipped with barbells and a yellow jungle gym type thing and words on the wall talking about a community that I am still trying to decide if I want to be a part of. And then I thought to myself: “Don’t be silly, Christa, you joined that community a long time ago.” So, to say the very least: that was that. I found a new home where all of my roommates had accepted as their way of life that Good was simply not good enough anymore. And I liked it. Now, how to handle this barking dog situation…

Technically, I began my Crossfit life in September of 2011 while I was a senior in college. I did it for a gym credit and I literally hated every single second of it (which is crazy to think about now). I wasn’t eating enough or sleeping enough or drinking enough water to make strenuous exercise any type of option for me but I did it anyway. It was my senior fall, I was in a major production with the theatre department and I was subsisting on Lean Cuisines and Crystal Light. Those weeks forced me to recognize how neglectful I was being to my body. I never played sports (unless basketball in the fourth grade counts? No?), so I was not used to training nor did I have even an inkling of what proper nutrition was. I would get migraines after my WODs and although I never threw up, the minutes I spent working out were the cause of dread and panic every other minute of the TWO days a week I spent at Crossfit. I would complain NON STOP and my coach had to all but chase me around to finish my workouts. Many a time I considered just taking an F for my gym credit and losing the money I had spent just so I didn’t have to go anymore. So why did I stay? Despite my body being miserable, my coaches and fellow Crossfitters were some of the most amazing people I had ever met with such high standards for themselves (are we seeing a trend here?). I made so many friends because of Crossfit in college and got a taste of a fitness program that I knew was reserved for people who were the best. However I wasn’t ready yet to accept such a challenge.

I let Crossfit go for a while. It took me until the summer after college to get back into a real fitness routine. I started lifting at a local gym, which I loved, but it got to the point where I wasn’t pushing myself hard enough. So I started to consider Crossfit again. I heard we had one in Beloit but I literally knew nothing about it save for what I saw on the website so I was a little intimidated even just thinking about it; until one night I was at work bartending and Scott and Zach came in to hang out and have a few drinks. I started talking to them and found out Scott was THE Crossfit guy. And then I just started babbling. Like. A lot. “Oh my gosh I have been stalking your website I’ve really been meaning to start again I just remember what a good program it is oh my gosh do you have to eat paleo all the time what do I need to do sorry do you need another drink I just keep talking is it expensive can I fit it into my budget I drove by the other day its so close to my house excitement happiness more wordsssss… ” On and on and on. But they answered all of my questions (which I'm surprised they could follow; I get a little overexcited sometimes.) and told me to email in order to set up my free class.

So I emailed Scott the next day. And I showed up that week. And I was barked at. A lot. I did my baseline workout and I was pretty happy! I didn’t want to throw up or die (too much) afterwards. I decided I was going to stick with it.  I knew I was at a point in my life where I was ready to push myself and become the best I could be. It was time for me to take care of my body and treat it the way it should be treated.  I also decided that I was going to make this loud brown dog like me (loud brown dog has a name, which I learned, was Oscar. I affectionately refer to him as “Oskie”).

Last week he licked my mouth while I was doing push ups so I think we are good now.  Aww.

Joining Crossfit Beloit has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I knew it from my second elements class. Since I began in March, I have become a happier and fitter person. I walk into the box and I begin to feel pride and a drive inside of me because I know I am about to murder my workout. I never leave Crossfit feeling unaccomplished or like I just went through the motions of a workout. That pride and feeling of accomplishment has a lot to do with the community of people, as well as my own strength steadily increasing and my constant visible progress. I am one of those people that when I like something, everyone and their mom needs to know I love it and experience it. So I started telling my friends about Crossfit. They knew I had changed my workout routine because I had been receiving a lot of compliments, my body was changing, I had more energy, plus I just would not (and have not) shut up about it. So far, three of my beautiful friends have joined and although I get a lot of post-WOD death threat text messages, I know they are genuinely happy to be there and happy that I brought them to this community. Because when it comes to your health and body, easy will no longer suffice.