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  • CrossFit Lanista

Can You Do CrossFit If You Are Overweight?

As a CrossFit gym owner, I talk to people about fitness and CrossFit all the time. While talking to people I hear a lot of reasons why people don't get started with a workout program. It doesn't matter what program biking, running, weight lifting, zumba or CrossFit one of the most common reasons is a variation on the theme of "I need to lose weight before I get started on something like that".

My response to that is, no you don't. I know you don't because I started doing CrossFit when I was about 290 pounds and completely out of shape. I had a bad back, sore knees, and bad shoulders. I knew I needed to do something. I knew I needed help and that no amount of research or preparation was going to work. After all, it hadn't worked so far.

I made the decision with the support of my wife, Silvia, to try CrossFit. I had seen the CrossFit games on TV and it looked interesting. I took the (scary) step to sign up for an introductory CrossFit training session and got started. They worked me out using a piece of plastic pipe instead of a barbell for about an hour going over the movements I would see in class. I was sore for days afterward. I wasn't sure I could do it. But I had taken that step so why not try the next step?

A few days later, I went to my first CrossFit class. I don't remember the exact workout, but I remember my coach helping me with my form in the squats so that I didn't go too heavy or strain my knees or back too much. I also remember looking at the workout on the whiteboard and seeing the conditioning, a combination of wall balls, pull-ups and running. None of which I could do well (or at all). The workout was For Time. I came in last place. I was embarrassed. I was exhausted and I never wanted to work out again.

Then one of the other members of the class came over a gave me a high five and told me I did great and 'see you tomorrow!' Everyone was happy and supportive of each other. More people came and gave me high fives. I started to feel better.

So I came back the next day. Then I had to take a couple of days off because I was SORE! But I started coming 3 days a week. Then 4. Then 5.

It took me a couple of years of consistency and nutrition, but I got down to 226 lbs. I've been off and on the nutrition wagon a few times and my weight shows it. But I still do CrossFit. My shoulders, knees and back feel better. I'm still in good shape and I know that my only limitations are the ones I set for myself.

So can you do CrossFit if you are overweight?


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