{Guest Post} A CrossFit Year

Welcome to another Fitness Friday post – Today we get to hear about the overall life improvements and health benefits of adding consistent weight training to your workout regime. This is also a great reminder that you get what you put into your workout regime – No pain no gain!

A few notes to get you started:

(1)     In CrossFit there are benchmark/progress testing workouts that are completed periodically – Hero workouts named after fallen heroes and workouts named after the badass ladies who coined them. Fran is one of these workouts, you can find a description here:

A workout consisting of two relatively simple movements, Fran is a decreasing pyramid of thrusters (barbell beginning in a full squat position and ending in a fully locked out overhead position) and pull-ups. The rep scheme is: 21/15/9 of alternating thrusters (at 95 lbs, ‘prescribed’) and pull-ups.

(2)    On Ramp is a series of introductory classes that anyone new to a CrossFit gym will be required to go through – They gauge your proficiency in various lifts so that you can learn all requisite movements, from Olympic lifting to gymnastics, before beginning your first CrossFit “WoD” (workout of the day).

(3)    Kyle’s current gym is Cap City Strength & Conditioning and while this is a barbell gym everyone is competing in the CrossFit Open – So far Kyle has done GREAT in the first two WODs and will be attempting 13.3 tomorrow!

If you’d like to learn more of the basics behind CrossFit check out my Do You… CrossFit? & My Personal CrossFit posts, and you can get more background the Paleo diet in Guest Post: The Paleo Lifestyle.

Though I suppose many (or perhaps just some, I’m really not that terribly famous) of you reading this may already know me – The Fauxhawk, the moniker “Asian Kyle,” the non-stop posts on Facebook and Instagram on anything and everything Paleo/CrossFit/denim/etc. – My name is Kyle Chin. A bit of history about fitness and me: In my youth, I ran 5Ks and 10Ks throughout middle school with my parents – Purely for the fun of it. Yes, I was strange even then. Then in high school I joined Cross Country and Track & Field to pursue more competitive running & racing. The thrill of racing and making the Varsity team was a great head rush, but the loneliness of trekking mile after mile – Often solo – Didn’t provide the ‘team’ or ‘family’ atmosphere that I craved and that would push me harder and farther. So I tapered off the running, started hitting the weight room for something different, but nothing really stuck. That was my junior year in high school, 2005, and I was 115 lbs.

Fast forward 6 years – And 35lbs – It was 2011 and I was nearing 150 lbs. College had been a whirlwind of fun, but revolved largely around the freedom to cook, eat, and of course drink – Whatever I wanted. I found a new passion in cooking during college – Roasted leg of lamb with gravy from the drippings served with homemade mashed potatoes loaded with butter and heavy cream along with maybe a veggie – And cooking for one meant either tons of leftovers and frozen portions for later or… Gorging myself so as not to waste any of that delectable goodness. So for four years I cooked and ate whatever I wanted, with no attention paid to portion sizes, calories, saturated fats or any of that nutritional mumbo-jumbo. I went from a size 28 fitting loosely to a size 32. I also lost all desire to work out, I tried to hit the gym or the trail but was either too self-conscious to stay out for long or too lazy to stay on track for any length of time – In short, I was a mess of self-loathing and depression that needed a ‘push’ in the right direction.

After graduating college I moved back to NorCal. Luckily, I landed an internship which turned into a job. Long story short – A co-worker of mine, Christina, asked me if I wanted to try to find something like CrossFit to try so that we could get fit. We both had been running and going to 24 Hour sporadically, but we were both looking for that ‘it’ factor to really motivate us. So we tried a free Saturday workout at a local CrossFit box – And that, as they say, was our first drink of the Kool-aid that is CrossFit.

CrossFitKyle

{2006 to 2008 to 2013}

That was March 2012.

As I write this it is March 2013 – A year after starting CrossFit – And my life has changed in so many (amazing) ways. I still remember it clearly – One of the first day after nine sessions of On Ramp – Fran. Anyone who’s heard of CrossFit has heard the whispers of the dreaded “Fran cough” and the other “CrossFit ladies,” so I was more than just a little worried. Our coach’s advice to not be scared to scale rang loudly in my head and I decided to drop 20 lbs off the ‘prescribed’ weight and do my pull-ups with the assistance of a band. Eight minutes later and I was done and I felt like a million bucks – Nothing hurt too badly and I wasn’t terribly out of breath – I thought to myself “CrossFit isn’t so bad!” And then I turned to my coach who looked at me and said nonchalantly “Kyle, you never get to use that band again.” (A few months later when I did Fran again, it took me around the same time – 7 min and change – But I assure you I’ve never been so exhausted as I was in the ensuing days. The Fran cough, the soreness, and my ego being taken down a few notches).  And since then I’ve fought through so many amazing (*cough* horrible) workouts – The “Filthy Fifty”, “The Seven,” “Murph,” to name a few, and after every one I swore I felt near death and thought I was going to die. But the next day – Or maybe two or three later – I was back in the box for more punishment.

And then several months ago I found my addiction, competition. The largest NorCal competition is the SacTown Throwdown and I was lucky enough to make the team for my box and had the opportunity to compete for the first time in January. Over the course of 8 hours, our four-person team competed in 5 separate workouts that tested our bodies, minds and resolve. At the end of the first day, I found myself exhausted, bruised and loving every (excruciating) minute of it – The competitive spirit within me knew that CrossFit provided a healthy, friendly outlet to compete with amazing athletes who loved pushing themselves as hard as I did. The adrenaline and team/family atmosphere around the competition was so amazing and I knew then that I had found my passion with people I truly loved.

To say that I’ve fallen in love with CrossFit and the Paleo lifestyle is an understatement. Ask anyone who knows me and they’ll tell you I probably overdo it a bit online and at any opportunity in a conversation, but my enthusiasm stems only from how wonderfully my life changed because of CrossFit and the amazing family I’ve come to know throughout the past year. So here I stand a year after starting CrossFit – Back to a 28 size waist, a lean 135 lbs, and in the best shape of my life.

Thank you Kyle for your interesting & thoughtful piece, it’s great to see how weight training & CrossFit have had such a positive influence on your life. As someone who has been able to witness part of your transformation I can really attest to both your dedication and enthusiasm!

Have you tried CrossFit or weightlifting? What’s your go-to workout for Spring?

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14 Responses to {Guest Post} A CrossFit Year

  1. Inspiring!Have a great weekend,babe!
    xx
    B.
    http://www.beeswonderland.com

  2. That’s awesome – I’ve wanted to try CrossFit for a long time, but I can’t afford to get a membership to any of the gyms that offer it. Failing that, I’m trying to do some at-home CrossFit routines so I can join the party from afar. 🙂 Have an awesome weekend!

  3. great pics )
    like your blog!!!
    kisses!

    Angela Donava

  4. I´ve heard great things about CrossFit 🙂

  5. Love the gym, could never do crossfit though…sounds too “in your face”..but ya, there are a lot of crossfit inspired classes I believe…great post!

    http://jezzdallasmakeup.blogspot.com/

    • I’m of a similar mentality Jezz – I like solo workout so I tend to do the “CF inspired” type of circuits on my own.

  6. Admiring the commitment you put into your wewbsite and in depth
    information you provide. It’s great to come acrross a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same old
    rehashed information. Wonderful read! I’ve bookmarked
    your site and I’m adding your RSS feeds to my Google account.

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