Thursday, May 16, 2013

Crossfit, Ribs and Delicious Pain

Our friend Sandra is a fitness addict. She goes bored if she's not physically active. Her typical day consists of a 10km run in the morning around her village or an hour session of crossfit then end her day with one more crossfit session. On top of that she's on a paleo diet. 

Our lunch conversations are peppered with her crossfit experiences and the inevitable  invitations. We flaked on her so many times she just stopped inviting. After a business trip to Hong Kong she was bursting with enthusiasm for all of us to do crossfit together. 

In a spirit of solidarity, we said yes. Last night, I died. Off we went to the new box of Crossfit Manila along Legaspi Village. 

CrossFit begins with a belief in fitness. The aim of CrossFit is to forge a broad, general and inclusive fitness. We have sought to build a program that will best prepare trainees for any physical contingency — not only for the unknown, but for the unknowable. After looking at all sport and physical tasks collectively, we asked what physical skills and adaptations would most universally lend themselves to performance advantage. Capacity culled from the intersection of all sports demands would quite logically lend itself well to all sport. In sum, our specialty is not specializing.

CrossFit is many things. Primarily, it’s a fitness regimen developed by Coach Greg Glassman over several decades. He was the first person in history to define fitness in a meaningful, measurable way (increased work capacity across broad time and modal domains). CrossFit itself is defined as that which optimizes fitness (constantly varied functional movements performed at relatively high intensity). CrossFit is also the community that spontaneously arises when people do these workouts together. In fact, the communal aspect of CrossFit is a key component of why it’s so effective. 

The trial session started with a community warm up. In itself, it was already challenging for me. Five pushups in one go? I can't even begin to imagine myself dropping to the floor and do the push up. Awkwardly, I did the exercises with grunts here and there. Old and unfit hag!

And then the real thing began. Our coach Kirby clocked us to finish the WOD (Work Out of the Day) of five rounds of 200 meter running, 15 reps box jumps, and 15 reps wall balls.

I live a fairly sedentary life. So, when the clock was set my heart beat did an overdrive. The first round was relatively easy. But the running, jumping and squatting while throwing a 3kg ball made me pant. On my second round, my legs already felt like jelly. But I mustered enough courage to pull me through. It helps too that the people around were very encouraging, helpful even. 

One guy even run with me so I won't give up. Another crossfit guy is Rovilson Fernandez who never failed to shout out motivating words and would even high-five me as our path crosses during the run. And he doesn't even know me!

On my third round, I frantically looked for my friends. I tried to gauge their number of rounds completed. Naturally, Sandra made it seem like a walk in the park. When they say the spirit is willing but the body is weak -- is never truer in my case. I wanted to finish the rounds because I didn't feel like embarrassing myself. Although, the first thing the coach says before the session starts is to leave your ego at the door. 

At this stage, I was already feeling woozy. I can feel the bile rising from my belly to my throat. And then Rovilson saw me. Seeing that "am done" look on my face, he egged me to give it a little more push. He boxed jumped with me. He says things like stay with me, look at me, inhale, exhale. One more jump. Inhale. Exhale. Before I knew it we finished my 15 reps of box jumps. 

Then, we moved on to the wall balls. He did it as slowly as I did. Pushing me some more, one ball at a time. He kept on checking the clock trying to get me to do as many squats and throws as I can before the buzzer rings. 

No wonder people call him Mr Nice Guy. He truly is. No qualms about being nice to strangers. It helped too that he had the time to help some of us newbies. He finished in half the time!

To you, Mr Rovilson Fernandez thank you for pushing me to do more. And you really are not just fit but an awesome fellow. Keep on inspiring!

As the clock stopped, I found myself slumped on top of the box feeling dizzy. And I threw up. I puked not just once but thrice! Ew, I know. But.

I had time to recuperate as Sandra did her remaining crossfit activities. And we goofed around, too. 
Mara, Me-an, Me and Sandra

Row, row, row...

Live weights

We tried to walk our way to a big cup of chilled juice in Greenbelt. But alas, Big Chill was already closed. Ack. Very disappointing considering that I was already limping, my ankle hurt, my legs hurt. A lot of body parts hurt!

Sandra dropped off Me-an and I in the office. As we exited the parking,  I had this sudden inspiration to eat salad at Alexa's Deli. On our way though, we saw Rue Bourbon. We devoured its ribs and mashed potato. Hihihi. 

You would have thought that I'd sleep right away the moment I'd hit my pillow. But I didn't. I learned that Me-an didn't also. I think the adrenaline is still coursing through our body. I read to while away the time. 

When morning rolled in, I woke up to pain that increases with every tiny movement. Ah, the sleeping fats in my body were disturbed. But then a thought hit me -- this is delicious pain! It means we really did work out. And whatever muscles I have beneath the layers of fat are woken up. 

At lunch, we talked about going back when the pain has subsided. We even plan of doing our version of workout shopping to find our perfect fit. Right now though, am concentrating on finding a happy place as my thighs and arms are killing me. 
DNF (Did Not Finish). Whoa.

But as I've said, it's a good kind of pain. Have you tried crossfit? Tell me about it. 

If you want to know more, here's a link.  



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