Crossfit For Beginners – A General Overview
Training for strength and fitness can be daunting but satisfying.
In this blog post we will cover training for beginners and in particular CrossFit for beginners.
Strong is the new black and has been for the last 5 to 10 years.
CrossFit has changed the way we look at our “fitness” and our perceptions of body image have changed dramatically over this time, which is a dramatic change for the better.
This training method has been proven to build you a significant amount of strength and fitness if programmed and executed correctly.
If you are reading this article then chances are you have some similar goals, but depending on how specific your goals are, the micro should be to build strength and fitness and the macro would be to lose weight and look toned.
Oftentimes many are confused with what they want to achieve and get caught up in the trends which serve the macros.
Dialing into the real reason why you want to make a positive change in your life can really mean the difference in your training.
What do you start with as a Beginner CrossFit enthusiast?
As a beginner, start by knowing what you want. Set some goals before you start anything including a fitness program. And if the micro fits and is what you are after, you will need to find a CrossFit gym for beginners. Starting off with all the basics and fundamentals primes you for a great crossFit experience. Let’s just assume that you have not been exercising at all or for a long time, you will literally be starting back at the basics.
And that is fine.
Humility and knowing where you are now is always a great virtue to have. The awareness will keep you safe. Finding a suitable crossFit gym that actually delivers crossFit for beginners and specialises in it will get you to enjoy your journey in training.
Not every CrossFit gym is built the same or offers the same type of programming. Let me clarify this. The programming of all crossFit gyms will be different and can depend on factors such as the coach’s experience and the gym’s ultimate goal.
If the gym’s owner has a background in running, expect running wods, if a coach has a Pilates or Yoga background, expect more core-centric programs and if a coach has fighting experience, expect some boxercise-muay Thai sessions in there, you get the idea.
Ultimately you need to find a gym that you identify with, that has the same values you have, good caring coaches and sound programming.
Regardless of how the programs turn out, there should always be options within a program or capablable staff who are able to regress movements or skills to suit a beginner or someone who has just walked in the door. The programming should be inclusive to everyone.
There is a bit of skill required to modify the program exercises but still maintain the stimulus or goal of the workout. Our trainers at Fibre are skilled at that.
What to Look for in a Beginner CrossFit Gym
What makes a good beginner friendly Crossfit Gym (or Box)? When you are going to start out with your CrossFit journey, one thing to look out for is to find the class in their timetables that say “Beginners”, “CrossFit for Beginners”, “Fundamentals”, “On Ramp”.
You know you would be on the right track if you see these terms on their web pages. Expect a Fundamentals session to be at least a couple of hours that cover the basics of body awareness, mobility, core activation and of course barbell work. Sometimes this can be offered on a case by case assessment if you have done some prior weight lifting or gym work.
That is plenty to get you started and ahead of it all, so that you will enjoy your classes and you will not feel like you are thrown into the deep end.
Know the basics and then continue to work on them to perfect them. Be very patient, you will not get everything straight away, you will need to keep working at it every day, week, month to get it right.
In order to understand movement and get it right to unconscious competence, it requires numerous repetitions and some weight. Under a technical coach you will be able to sharpen the technique, which will then lead to quicker results. It will save us from having to un-train you to improve your technique.
Always remember, technique over the workout.
We have seen some fundamentals sessions that go for an hour a day for up to 6 weeks and some that go on for 1 session. Either way it all depends on the delivery of the content and also if the information is well received or the lessons are learned well.
Your learning time will depend on your ability to learn movements. It is challenging, but very fulfilling.
Everyone can learn how to move well. Immerse yourself into the flow of the body. Fine tuning it will take months to years for some of the other high level movements, but the key to your progress is patience. Focus on strong fundamentals, basic movements, do them well and you will start to see progress.
What is the most important exercise to master for a Beginner CrossFitter?
Learning how to engage your core will also take time by itself. Some may grasp the concept whereas others may not get it for years. I know this as I have taught Pilates in the studio setting and have seen this. The core is a subjective and sometimes elusive term that is not properly understood and often underestimated.
Knowing this is important to every single load that you move with your body. The weights you pick up will travel through your spine and if there is no ‘sense’ of knowing how to turn on the core muscles, your spine has no protection. Make sure your core training goes through a core test, core activation, core strength and core endurance sessions.
All of these will give you a good idea of if you are able to master your core and as you get stronger, you will be able to handle the heavier weights a lot better without the risk of injuries.
There is no requirement for any fitness level. You do not need to be “super fit” to join a CrossFit gym. The magic happens in the gym itself. Half the battle is to show up. The programs are already prepared and the coaches should be skilled enough to scale the session to suit your experiences. This is one of the main reasons why CrossFit is more expensive than your average gym. But in the long run, it actually is cheaper for a pre-programmed strength and conditioning class. The key is to be patient, work on your skills, enjoy the process.
Being a beginner at CrossFit is one of the best parts of your fitness training. There is just so much to take in and discover about you and what you can potentially do. It is an exciting and empowering experience.
What is the most important lesson for a Beginner CrossFitter?
Your mindset is almost always the most important thing when it comes to starting crossFit. Keep it filled with inspiration and never forget your goals and why you are training. If it is strong enough to keep you going for a long time and one where you will never tire from then you are winning. An abundance mindset one that continues to inspire you, fuel you and gives you a bit of joy everyday for the rest of your life is one that most definitely drives us to keep coming back to the gym.
Go back to your why and dial in on that. Knowing that will certainly get you back on track if you have a few off days or get derailed over the weekend. It happens. Life happens and it is ok. Get back on the bandwagon when you refer back to your goals.
CrossFit boxes generally program high-intensity strength training using functional movements.
The programming should suit the general demographic of the gym but also have a bit of flexibility to modify and scale.
Knowing that you are going to start a long, demanding yet rewarding journey will definitely set your mind at ease. There are a lot of ok-ish gyms out there, so choose wisely and make an informed decision now that you know what to look for.
Drop us a line if you would like to chat and we can organise something remotely as well.
Connecting is free and we would love to connect with you. Until then, we will see you in the gym.