Tuesday, July 17, 2012

"Crossfit just too expensive."

An actual quote from someone when I've brought up Crossfit as a means of getting into shape after hearing months of details about 'starting' to exercise, diet pills, and switching diets constantly - and drastically.

It is expensive. I can't sugar coat that for you - Crossfit is just expensive. But it's not unaffordable.
I go to Crossfit because I love it.

I have proven to myself over and over that I lack intrinsic motivation to get my butt in gear. I flat out won't work out at home because the couch is too comfortable, or the puppy wants to play instead, or I just really want to watch some Doctor Who instead. I don't like to run around my neighborhood alone because it would be at night when it's cooler, and it's never a good idea for anyone to run around in the dark, barefoot, with headphones. I don't like to run at my city's most popular running spot - Lake Hollingsworth, because I find myself comparing myself to those people who do it regularly, and I shame myself into crying and going home. I won't work out at the YMCA because it drives me batty to see women hogging treadmills so they can watch TV or read a magazine, or seeing some guy trying a dead lift in a squat rack.

I am also really lazy and not good at planning my own workouts. Left to my own devices, I might do some squats here and there, but I'd never think of putting together 250 squats and 50 push presses with a half mile run at the end and calling it a workout. Even if I took the WOD from my box's site, I'd never do it at home.

So, I found Crossfit. I go to Crossfit because my coaches PUSH me. If I set my weight down, it's not 10 seconds before I hear them telling me to pick it back up. If I'm hanging on a pull up bar struggling, they're there telling me to keep pushing, keep fighting. If I have a bad attitude, show up late, or quit - I have consequences.

I also have a support group. People of different sizes and skills - some of them are tanks, and some of them run marathons. And some are like me - just desperately trying to get into shape. (Round is a shape, damn it!) But never has anyone in that box made me feel unwelcome. I'm always greeted with smiles, and when I'm collapsed on the floor and barely breathing - I'm getting high fives and told what a great job I did.

My fellow athletes and my coaches care about my progress. If I don't show up in the gym for a few days, they ask about me. If I know ahead of time I can't make it, they provide workouts I can do at home and expect me to report to them with my results.

Crossfit just works for me. I still don't run a lot, but I can go about half a mile non-stop now with my slow, steady pace. I can dead lift 230 lbs, I can squat 145, I can shoulder press 75. I've run the Savage Race and the Tampa Mud Crusade, and I just signed up to run Savage Race again this year.
I really haven't lost that much weight, and I'm okay with that. I haven't lost the game just because progress has been slow. I only lose if I quit.

Crossfit is amazing, and it has a price. At my box, that price is $150 a month for unlimited sessions. Right now, I attend roughly 6 times a week, which breaks down to about $6.75 a session. Is that too expensive? I think that's cheaper than eating lunch at McDonald's.

What if we put it another way - how much do you pay for cable? My cable bill, when I had it, was about $50 a month. That's 1/3 of my Crossfit cost right there. If you cut cable, though, you save more than just the bill - chances are you'll watch less TV, which saves electricity too, though admittedly not a huge chunk of it.

What about eating out? Do you eat out at a nice restaurant once a month, even? That bill can usually come between $20-30 - why not skip it? That puts us at about $80 saved if we round up, which is now more than half of what you pay to go to Crossfit. Do you ever eat out for lunch at work - which can easily add up to $10 a meal? How about alcohol? Starbucks?

Have you ever tried making your own laundry soap? Dog biscuits? What about building a fort in your living room with your spouse or significant other and making smores over candles instead of going to the theatre and paying $20 for date night?

There are so many things that we have in our every day lives that we can cut out. I can't tell you what to do, because what you value in your life is different than what I value.

If you value TV, Starbucks, video games, movies, and junk food - then it's your choice and you're free to spend your money that way, and I'm not going to judge you for it.

Just don't ever complain that you can't be healthy because it's too expensive. Spend your money so that it aligns with your values.

My values right now are my health, and my dogs - and I spend my money accordingly. I've finally bought myself real workout clothes and better fitting sports bras. I may have to go to a 5:30 AM session, but I'm making it happen because it's important. I'm spending money to sign up for races that can cost upwards of $100-200 per person, but I'm also not eating out, not going to movies, I don't have cable, I don't clothing shop or visit Starbucks, and I don't go to bars.

Being healthy and strong is just too important to cop out of it because it's expensive. Crossfit is just my way. It doesn't have to be your way - just don't let money be your obstacle.

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