For the past ten years or so, one of the fastest-growing workout programs to hit the fitness industry has been a fitness program founded in California that puts emphasis on weightlifting, gymnastics, and high intensity interval-based training (“HIIT”). It is quickly becoming one of the most effective ways to get fit, stay fit, and lead a happy and healthy life. To further explain how beneficial CrossFit can be, here are the top 5 health benefits of CrossFit.
When you attend a CrossFit class, you aren’t stepping into a globo-gym to sit on the elliptical for an hour with limited results. CrossFit is all about combining the most effective weightlifting, gymnastics, and cardiovascular movements to elicit the biggest bang for your buck.
One of the pillars of CrossFit movement is constant variation. A CrossFit workout varies not only day-to-day, but over the course of several months. In that long period of time, you will be exposed to a host of different movements and styles of workouts. You are always experiencing new movements and new challenges. This will push your body to its maximum potential all while keeping you engaged, not bored.
Oftentimes, the gym is a place where random people are performing a variety of random exercises. In a CrossFit gym, you are completely surrounded by people who are going to encourage you and push you towards your goals and beyond your self-determined boundaries. The actual workouts are never “random” though; every workout and movement within a workout is specifically chosen to achieve results over time. Every member within a CrossFit “box” (slang for “gym” in the CrossFit community) has a similar overall goal in mind; achieve the healthiest body possible, build more confidence, get toned, gain more muscle, and/or a variety of other common goals.
In order to increase your endurance, your heart rate remains elevated during a conditioning workout in a CrossFit gym. In fact, the resting heart rates of those people who are engaged in this kind of exercise are known to have a healthier heart than a sedentary person. That is the reason why so many people who really want to enhance their heart health are choosing CrossFit over any other group fitness class.
One of the results of the functional movements included in CrossFit is increased joint mobility. CrossFit exercises are examining primal and essential human movement patterns that we do on a daily basis and challenging our bodies to be stronger in those positions.
Take a simple squat for example. Every time you sit down – on a chair, on a bench, on the toilet – you have to essentially do a squat. In some countries you literally have to squat fully to the ground to go to the bathroom. So training a safe and effective squat, then adding some weighted resistance with a bar, kettle bells, dumbbells, etc., are all great ways to ensure your squat will always remain healthy over time.
I can’t imagine something more functional than that. Working your joints safely in three dimensions is essential for ensuring long-term (think decades) mobility, health and longevity. Often times we get sucked into the short-term mindset of “getting a six pack in six weeks” or some other TV gimmick. But let’s remember why exercise is important – we may have a temporary goal of getting into our wedding dress, bathing suit, you name it, but in the long term we want to not only live a long and healthy life, but thrive as we age. When we shift our mindset and think more about longevity and injury prevention over time, CrossFit workouts are a clear winner.
Every athlete who works out at a CrossFit gym shares in something deeper than just a workout with bars, dumbbells, bikes and rowers. The entire group of people you meet at the box surround you with positive energy and reassurance that you can and will meet your specific goals. Having a support system to lean on in hard times is especially useful for people that struggle to stay consistent with a new lifestyle program.
Every week, more and more people are choosing to better their lives with CrossFit. The number of CrossFit boxes across the US and worldwide has exploded over the last 10 years. The list of benefits is not limited to those mentioned above as there are countless other reasons why CrossFit is the best form of exercise out there.
If you want to improve your health, longevity and quality of life, try a class soon and get your fitness journey started!
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