Back To Square One

I must admit that I have been off-tracked with my fitness goals for the last few months. It’s ironic that I started slacking off with my workouts a month before my wedding. Things got crazier and I became busier, tossing my time and energy between my day job and final wedding preparations. I reported to work until a week before our Big Day, and I decided not to go to the gym anymore because I needed to get as much rest (read: sleep) as I can; otherwise, exhaustion will reflect in our wedding photos and video. My husband, however, was able to continue with his weight training by signing up at a nearby local gym, along with my youngest brother. Had my husband agreed to signing up with Gold’s Gym, I wouldn’t have a problem at all; however, he prefers their “bronze” gym (a pun he and my brother made up) over my “fancy” one. Whatever.

The other day, my friend tagged a photo of me from Sweet and Edong’s wedding on Instagram. Suddenly, it hit me. I have gained. See, that was what motivated me to do something about my unwanted weight some three years and 35 lbs ago. Seeing photos of myself—face as big as the moon, flabby arms and thick thighs—was what triggered me to change my lifestyle. I knew I had to act on this personal issue sooner, not later. Scale-wise, I was not overweight. In fact, my weight still fell on the normal BMI for my height, but I did not feel good. All the wrong choices put me in this position, and I’m the one to blame. This, my friends, is a gut-punching realization.

Incidentally, a friend from grade school/college invited me to try out her current workout routine, CrossFit training.¹ I see that she’s lost a lot of weight since I last saw her a little over a year ago, so I thought I’d give it a shot. She goes to a nearby local gym (“box” in CrossFit vocabulary) which is only a stone’s throw away from her house. Today I promised to go with her for my first CrossFit training, and I did. I psyched myself since yesterday that I will commit to this no matter how anxious I get about this new thing.

The box is not like any commercial gyms I’ve been to. There were no fancy equipment (i.e., treadmill, elliptical machines, etc.); instead, there were sets of free movement weights such as kettlebells, dumbbells, weight plates, weight discs and medicine balls. I jumped right into the routines when we arrived at the box. My dynamic warm-up included rolling up using PVC tubes and different kinds of quick cardio exercises. It was immediately showed me a rundown of the following routines:

  1. Medicine Ball Squat Press x 20
  2. Single Leg Dead Lift x 10 on each side
  3. Big Circles x 10 (clockwise, then counter-clockwise)
  4. Toe Touches x 20
  5. Medicine Ball Russian Twist x 10 on each side
  6. Rolling Push-up x 20
  7. Medicine Ball V-Up x 20
  8. Side-to-Side Slam x 10 on each side

Here’s where the fun part goes. I had to complete four sets of all eight routines! Since I was new to this, they did not record my time. I was dying on the second set, but I had to man up to at least finish three sets of my exercises. Boy was I overwhelmed! I was sweating buckets, and it didn’t even involve running on a treadmill nor joining a group exercise. That’s coming from a semi-gym rat that is myself who used to spend two hours at gym, five to six times a week.

CrossFit is indeed designed for strength and conditioning training, and with proper form, I believe it will be an effective form of exercise. As most professional trainers say, CrossFit can be done by anyone, but it is not for everyone. I’m beginning to feel the aftermath of my workout today as I write this, and I can help to think: what did I get myself into?

Here’s to hoping I sustain this new habit to a healthier and fitter lifestyle!

Have you tried CrossFit Training? If so, do you find it fun?
If not, what type of exercise do you enjoy the most? Share your experience below.

¹This is a pretty comprehensive guide to beginners in CrossFit training.

Update [12 April 2014]: I did this entire routine again for three sets at home today using a basketball instead of a medicine ball. (I had to improvise!) My body is sore, but it’s a good kind of soreness, that I sort of missed. I might go again tomorrow morning or sometime next week before the place closes in observance of the Holy Week.

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