Friday, September 22, 2006

When the Facts Change

If it works, we use it. Evidently, so does everyone else. In the last few days, an epidemic of anecdotes has flooded my cell phone and my inbox:

“Jon! They’re doing Crossfit, but they’re not calling it Crossfit. It’s Captain Joe’s Superhero Bootcamp, except it’s not! It’s our stuff! What do we do?”

We do nothing. Not out of apathy, or lack of indignation. We do nothing because they’re doing everything that we’ve already done. Crossfit is a conglomeration of the best fitness systems known to man. We didn’t make up the clean, the 400-meter sprint, the back lever, the muscle-up, or the sledgehammer swing. We didn’t make up the high-intensity circuit either. We took other people’s stuff, and they took it from the folks who came before them. Somebody’s bound to take it from us.

Crossfit is a synthesis of hundreds of years of training experience. Guys were performing on rings and lifting weight above their heads before your Grandpa was born. Man has sprinted and deadlifted heavy objects since the dawn of time. The fittest athletes on earth have always exhibited competency across a wide variety of physical skills.

None of this stuff is new, ladies and gentlemen.

Moving heavy objects quickly builds speed, strength, and power. Diet is critical. Sugar is bad for you. Sleep is important. Stress will kill you. Ice reduces swelling. See anything earth-shattering in this list?

Greg Glassman is, by all accounts, a brilliant man. He has dedicated his life to collecting and espousing the most effective training methodologies on the planet, with the caveat that if he found something better, everything would change overnight.

The willingness to abandon and rebuild is the mark of a stoic and reasonable individual. For better or worse, many of our direct competitors have become reasonable individuals, and they’re encroaching on our market space. We are no longer the sole purveyors of effective, full-body, functional fitness.

Fortunately, we don’t have to be. We’ve got something they don’t—Community.

Patience, persistence, and indomitable will are the hallmarks of the Crossfitter. They also happen to be the hallmarks of a good person. Through this undeniable connection, we know that the people who make up Crossfit are good people, bound by hard work, sweat, and collective suffering. We embrace total strangers when they mention the word “Crossfit”, because they are us, and we are them.

The rest of the world is waking from the Nautilus-induced coma that has plagued fitness for the last two decades. Once again, people want to train hard and fast, using the techniques and methods of elite athletics.

We should wish them well, and continue the revolution with or without them. In the end, they can never have what we have, because we stand together.

Go faster!

Picture of John Maynard Keynes courtesy of Mr. Keynes famously quipped, "When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?"


Blogger Dawn Adam-Brown said...

Great post Jon. I agree that CrossFit is a great way to train and more and more people are seeing that(not a bad thing). I do feel sorry for the people who don't see beyond the training, who don't see the motivation, the continual learning and support we get from our community. That is what keeps me coming and pushing for the next level. That is what will stop them from growing and progressing. That is what makes us matter what name you put to it.

9/23/2006 04:59:00 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home