A few months ago I bought a LivingSocial deal for a month of unlimited classes at Crossfit Purgatory. This past month my favorite step teacher at the YMCA quit, and I decided to put my membership on hold and give Purgatory a try.
I’ve done a few crossfit-style workouts before. Typically they’re short, high intensity work outs that combine cardio and strength training. If you’re curious, here’s a list of common crossfit exercises. So I had a rough idea of what I’d gotten into.
I found that my difficulty with the WOD (workout of the day) would vary greatly depending on whether or not i’d done the activity before. For instance, I’d always been a bit intimidated by these:
But after a couple weeks at crossfit, we were good friends! I found myself using weights I’d have never picked up on my own and doing things with them I never thought possible (like 65 clean and jerks with 55lbs in 10 minutes). I always felt like such a wimp there compared with some of the weights the people around me were using, but I was proud of myself for using them at all! And for the record, one of the best new exercises I learned had to be the overhead squat. It works everything!
There were snags, of course. Like the damnable jump rope! I never jumped rope as a kid, and I just couldn’t seem to get the hang of it. So when it’d be a part of the WOD or the warmup, it was always a bit frustrating for me. I did improve by the end, though!
So, here’s my very last WOD:
For the deadlift, the goal was to use the max weight possible (since the repetition number was so low). I actually think I could have done more, but I felt good for doing 145lbs for my final set! My partner very kindly took a few shots of me throughout the sets. I look very determined!
Then it was on to the WOD. I thought this would be a relatively tame one for me since i’m pretty familiar with sit ups and push ups. Box jumps are just what you’d imagine– jumping onto a box. Here’s the one I used (I had to stack a weight on top to up the height since all the bigger boxes got snagged):
By the end I was panting on the ground, barely able to move! I said that I did 7 rounds, but I actually think I did 8. But when in doubt, I go for the lower number! When you finish with a workout, it gets written on a big white board for all to see. This is one of my favorite parts– it builds both a competitive and cooperative environment, where you get to cheer on friends, congratulate them on a workout, but still turn it into a sort of game where you want the best “score”.
All in all I REALLY enjoyed my month at Crossfit Purgatory! It had a really welcoming environment, and was a great way to make some new friends. The workouts were COMPLETELY kick ass, and I can tell I’m way more buff. The instructors were supportive and pushed me just the right amount. I also noticed my climbing improve from all the strength work! The only problem? The cost. It’s way more $$ than your average monthly gym, and I sadly can no longer afford it. But if you’ve got the money to spend, I completely recommend it!
This month I’m going to be training for my half marathon! Expect an mid-month update on my training!