CrossFit: In the Name of Pride

Everyone who has done CrossFit has heard this joke probably a dozen times:

 

“How can you tell if someone does CrossFit?”

“Don’t worry, they’ll tell you.”

 

Damn straight we will. If you back squatted twice your body weight or did 10 strict pull ups WITHOUT ASSISTANCE, wouldn’t you talk about it? #respect

 

Yogis talk about yoga. Cyclists talk about their killer rides. Runners talk about the half marathons they just crushed. And CrossFitters talk about CrossFit. When it comes to us CrossFitters though, there is a perception that we talk about it so much because we like to brag. Which truth be told, I cannot deny there is some validity to that. Really though, no matter what our sport is, we all talk about it so much because we have immense pride for our accomplishments.

 

I would say most people who join CrossFit are average people, meaning we aren’t former elite athletes and we may have not even been in the best shape of our lives the first time we walked into a box. In fact, a lot of us who start CrossFitting are there because we have big goals and dreams. And often we also come from a place of insecurity.

 

As I have been networking a lot with CrossFitters around the country, I am hearing more and more of the most inspiring stories. Women and men are starting their CrossFit journey knowing they have 50, 60, 100 pounds even that they need to lose to be healthy. Many are coming off tragedy like losing a loved one or even a divorce. Many are starting after recovering from devastating injuries and years of rehab. My point is that people are coming in when they are not their best (and that is putting it mildly), yet they dig deep to find the courage and motivation to go. They not only show up, they work their asses off. They do things they did not dream they would ever do. They start doing push-ups. They start being able to run. They start squatting to full depth. They start losing weight. They start seeing muscle. They start feeling good about themselves. They find happiness.

 

So yes, CrossFitters are going to talk a lot about CrossFit because they are turning their insecurities and their challenges into their redemption. CrossFitters are finding inspiration again. They get so much respect from others and are setting great examples. I posted a few videos on Facebook of myself doing some different lifts, and I had a woman reach out to tell me that I inspired her to go back to CrossFit. I know I got far more gratitude knowing I influenced someone to make a big change more than the 100 likes I got. CrossFitters help each other. It’s just in our nature.

 

I truly believe that CrossFit athletes are contributing to changing outdated ideals. We are showing and telling the world it is ok to admire and respect different body types. It is ok treat our bodies like the temples that they are. It is ok to sacrifice and compromise to make fitness and health a priority. It is ok to be part of a “cult” when said cult is providing a community like no other.

 

Personally, I absolutely 100% love talking about CrossFit so much because it connects me to other people. It supports the idea of women boosting women (instead of women tearing women down). It shows strong is sexy. And, as someone who is obviously short, and who easily feels intimidated in most situations by other people’s heights and proportions, it helps me build my self-esteem. I find great power in pushing my body to lift things that are beyond expectations for someone of my own size. And so yes, I want to talk about this. A lot. Because other people need to hear it.

 

Maybe it’s not tragedy or severe weight loss that is drawing people into CrossFit. No matter how they came to be there, they likely are defying what they believed their own bodies can do. I love hearing about people’s triumphs no matter if they are 20 or 40 or 60. No matter if they are trying to lose some extra baby weight or train for a tough mudder. I love hearing about it, and I do not want CrossFitters to ever stop talking about it. Our accomplishments are all relative and every one of them is deserving to be screamed from the rooftops.

 

So please understand that not every CrossFitter who is posting on Facebook about their workouts or talking about it at the water cooler are just meatheads. Many of us, like myself, are just damn proud. It is that simple.

 

A Chat With an Allergist: Perfect Example Of Thinking Beyond Black and White

A few months back, I wrote about Bioenergetic Intolerance Elimination (BIE). I was a few sessions in and feeling optimistic (that post here). In a quick word to explain, it’s a natural approach to healing allergies. Well, I am now a few months from my last session ever and I have to say, that crazy shit works! I have not had allergy shots since June. Can I get a HALLELUJAH?

This past week, I had a check in appointment with my allergy doctor. I went in with some trepidation and uncertainty as to how to tell him that I essentially cheated on Western medicine? A friend of mine who was going to a Western doctor as well as an Eastern healer for a chronic autoimmune disease had a very unpleasant, discouraging experience telling her Western doctor. (That doctor was insulted and expressed that if she was going to try some alternative medicine, there was no reason for her to see her then. Pretty crappy right?)

When I met with my doctor, he asked how I have been and how my allergies have been.  A bit shyly, I said, “Well actually I’ve been trying this other thing. It’s called BIE.  Bioenergetic Intolerance Elimination.”  He had no clue what that was and promptly googled it on his computer. I explained the concept of it that essentially when we have allergies, it’s an imbalance in our body. So BIE is like acupuncture minus the needles and works to rebalance.  He was both skeptical and intrigued and so the conversation continued. Unlike my friend’s experience with her doctor, mine was as close to the polar opposite as possible, for which I am very grateful.

I was very impressed by him and his reaction. I feel it speaks volumes to how we SHOULD respond in situations where we are presented with something less conventional to what we might be used to.

 

  1. He did not right off the bat give me his professional medical opinion nor  did he denounce me for finding something else that works. He instead asked me a lot of questions. He sought to understand what this “other thing” is and why I turned to that.

 

  1. When I told him of my friend’s experience with her own doctor, he said this (I paraphrase): “It is not a doctor’s job to berate a patient for researching and trying something different. It is a doctor’s job to inform and educate someone so they can make an informed decision.” Amen to that. We have a right to make decisions for ourselves. Our bodies. Our minds. Our choices.

 

  1. My doctor was born to Chinese parents and raised in the US. He’s of course a Western trained doctor so he’s a science guy, yet he has had much exposure to Eastern ways.  He was admittedly conflicted and said, “There is absolutely no science behind BIE, but as an Eastern practice, there is 2000 years of history behind it.” I think this was such a remarkable comment because it shows that he is willing to accept, or at least learn more before criticizing something, even if it is against his fundamental beliefs.

 

  1.      He also acknowledged that I sought a different approach to healing allergies because essentially Western medicine failed me. I would need shots every 3 to 4 weeks which means that every 3 to 4 weeks, I felt shitty. I was like a runny faucet with eyes that itched like crazy. A real treat basically. He acknowledged also that as a doctor, it is frustrating to not be able to find a system that works for a patient. So he completely understood why I would try something different.

 

  1. We joked before I left that I completely caught him off guard and that I rocked his world a little bit. He gave me his card and said he is interested in learning more.  He wants me to send him articles on BIE. His interest may stop at just satisfying the void he has in a lack of knowledge. Or it might be something that he recognizes as another way to treat patients. Who knows.  My point though is we live in a world now where there are many different schools of thought and many different methods. We cannot always keep doing what we were doing because what worked yesterday may not work tomorrow.

 

It takes humility to be able to accept that there are other ways besides your ways that might actually work. It takes a certain maturity to not jump to a conclusion without even investigating and learning. For many of us, we go right to a decision often or right to dismissing something because it is different from what we know or think.

Think of the times that someone comes to you with a pretty big decision or discovery they have made. Think about how intimidating and scary that can be. So think about how unpleasant of an experience that can be if the other person judges right away without even trying to understand.  Not to mention it does nothing for feeling supported or loved and likely, that will be the end of ever discussing that. Why should that matter to you? Here is why (and I know, I will digress a lot).

It is a cycle. When people believe in something or are passionate about something, they WANT to be able to share that and be open about it. Whether it is a new Eastern healing practice or a new business venture or a new hobby. Whatever it is, if there is passion behind it, then that absolutely and completely is a big part of who someone is. To not be able to talk about it out of fear of being judged not only diminishes them as a person, but it can negatively affects relationships.  (Do you know the range of reactions I have gotten when I have told people my ghost stories or how I believe in angels? Think I am going to talk about that again to someone that gives me the she-crazy-look? Hell to the no).

We should all encourage each other to listen and understand our passions, thoughts, methodologies. We do not have to necessarily be a believer in what they believe, but at least for heaven’s sake believe in them. Believe in their character. Believe in their integrity. Believe in their happiness. Believe in wanting to be part of their success.