This winter I spent a few weeks back in the UK, for longer than I have done in a while, and so one of the things I needed to find was a gym. Through the years whenever I have been home for a week/month/summer I have always tried a place to go, and usual plan was a standard gym, to have some leisure suited kid who has just done his grade 1 trainer certification give me the “well you can’t use the gym until you complete the introduction. Then join up for 3 months. Then sign up for 2 classes with me” at which point I have ALWAYS just said, you know what, sod this, I’m off for a run. You can keep your attitude, and I’ll figure it out.
Now since working in the Training world, and seemingly trying to learn as much as I can the one thing which is blatantly obvious is the amount of crossfit gyms around the world. Now there are a lot of conflicting reviews as to the positives or negatives of it. People say its like a cult or a fad, and that injuries occur, but well, any sport injuries occur i suppose is my reply, and well a cult or a fad, well damn, I specialize in those after giving my life to Snowboarding for near on 20 years and thats served me well so sign me up.
The other thing, well if its getting people moving, I’m all for it. We have never had more opportunities to be fit, and be the healthiest generation the world has ever seen but Obesity is out of control and the number of people who do zero exercise is unreal.
So in I go. And like quite often didn’t mention where I work, just said I have tried a few things in the gym but don’t really know how to lift. I was greeted by Connor above, probably one of the nicest, most humble folks I’ve met in a while, who talked me through the philosophy at the gym, what they do, how they do it, his own beliefs in regard to training.
A very eye opening and warm experience. I’m sure a lot of folks see the gym and think its not that advanced as it doesn’t have fancy towels and a spa and some elliptical machines, but that way of thinking is dying out by the day. This boutique style, 1 to 1 contact with a well trained professional is where things are headed.
So from there, I spent two hour lessons in what are probably some of the most enlightening, helpful things I’ve ever learnt. Connor focused on my movement and lack there of. I’m well aware of that, but so to spend near on 40 minutes using a plastic pipe emphasized the fact i had work to do. If you don’t do any work like this and your laughing about 40 mins with a plastic bar, go try doing squats with one and see how quick your done for.
After the introduction, I came back for an actual class, honestly with some trepidation around what lay ahead, but it couldn’t have been better. Connor laid it out clearly for everyone, and what the scaled version was and we got after it. Within minutes you could see the bond the people at the box have, and that their session here was probably one of the under pinning values in their life now. Its become the centre of their community for many I would imagine.
Will in this shot finishing up the WOD in one of his 14 pairs of metcons. Best thing with Crossfit is that if its something like this, and your the last one, you know everyone else will push you onwards. The other amazing thing is that each and every gym has different ways of setting out rules, beliefs and goals. I love this one….”no ego”
Goals is a huge part of what everyone does, and so putting it on the wall is always an amazing way to keep everyone focused. As they get to regionals time, I’m sure this was all about 16.2 etc…
Sweated metcons. I actually left these in the gym for a bit of a pass it on karma. I wanted the next person who takes up crossfit with them, who walks in with running shoes on to be given these to be educated around the reasons of why they need appropriate footwear.
Thing I love with this, its probably 6.30am in this shot, outside everyone is shuffling their way to work, and one of the guys is getting set to start his day in the best way possible. If everyone could commit to this, or running, or swimming, or anything, to get moving, I think the world would genuinely be a better place.
I was there for a Friday night session 8-9… I was wondering how many folks would show up. Packed out. And an unbelievable atmosphere too. Its like a pub without alcohol. Same banter, same friends, but way better for you.
In general, if you want to start working out and havent done anything in years, I can’t recommend this place enough. You won’t find fancy dans. you won’t find any snobbery, just people of all shapes, sizes and abilities who want to be better athletes and want to cheer you on too. If you already workout but struggle to get anywhere with it, again, I can’t suggest highly enough to go visit Connor and his Dad Spencer. Two of the best trainers and also genuinely good guys around. You’ll get stronger, fitter, be better at life in general and before you know end with this amazing community. The community element is something crossfit and crossfit maidstone have dialed 100%.http://www.invictusfitness.co.uk/#!crossfit/c10ka