Why I don’t do CrossFit (and I still don’t know what it is)

CrossFit gym working out hard

CrossFit... I still don't know what it is

There is a CrossFit gym near my place in London. One day I was bicycling home late and thought it would be interesting to find out more about CrossFit. Maybe it would be a good self-experiment to try CrossFit. Maybe this was the thing that would complete me.

The place was closing but I asked the sole remaining employee if I could find out more about CrossFit. I told him I wanted to improve my handstands. He said I had to book an induction for any time between 6am and 12pm. I booked a 6am induction later in the week. I cannot remember his real name, but he said everyone called him “Gilesy”.

On the agreed day I showed up at 5:55am. Gilesy arrived at 6:10am and said we would start after he made himself a coffee. At 6:15am he returned and talked at me for 30 minutes on the following topics:

  • The corporate history of CrossFit
  • How many CrossFit franchises existed when this location opened (Answer: not many)
  • How many CrossFit franchises exist now (Answer: SO MANY!)
  • Why CrossFit is such a big deal
  • How Gilesy would be attending the CrossFit games somewhere far away
  • Why Gilesy attending the CrossFit games was a big deal
  • How Gilesy received a profit share on his clients at this particular CrossFit so I didn’t need to worry about that (Phew! What a relief!)

We did some leg stretches. He had me use a rowing machine for a while, then I had to do some push-ups, and pull-ups. He timed me while I did all this. He told me I did okay, but there was room for improvement.

Then he told me that I would need to do at least 6 personal sessions with him (maybe more) so I could learn the basic techniques required for the CrossFit classes.

I said I didn’t want personal sessions. He said I needed personal sessions because otherwise I would slow down the group classes. I said I did not want to take group classes, I just wanted to use the CrossFit gym stuff and get some advice on my handstand technique. Maybe have some handstand lessons or coaching?

This was amusing to Gilesy. His dimples showed as he chuckled, so cute. He said there’s only a single CrossFit workout class routine which everyone must do together. Classes start each hour. You do the class and then you leave.

I asked if I could do 2 classes a day, perhaps one in the morning and one in the evening? Gilesy said no, only one class per day. I asked about membership price. He said it was £180 per month, entrance fee waived if I paid 3 months in advance. And the personal training sessions were £50 each.

I calculated the first month and 6 (or more) personal training sessions would equal at least £480. I pointed out to Gilesy this was significantly more than the £25 per month I was paying to use a local gym which allowed me to use all their equipment at any time.

Gilesy pointed back that CrossFit had special CrossFit instructors who had completed complicated CrossFit courses and had pieces of paper from CrossFit, Inc. which provided this.

I told him that I needed time to consider this fantastic opportunity before I could commit to CrossFit. Gilesy seemed disappointed in my response, especially since he woke up so early to meet me. I know this because he told me so. After thanking him for his time, I left.

I never saw Gilesy again and I still don’t know what CrossFit is. Please help.