CrossFit is for smart people. Successful people worldwide, including CEOs, top lawyers, entrepreneurs, and high level students are choosing CrossFit, for a few specific reasons. Here’s why, and why you should as well.
1. Exercise that Evolves
The first time I heard about CrossFit, it was from CEO Greg Glassman, who teaches that CrossFit works because it is results driven. Glassman encourages coaches to treat their programming like the scientific method. We must constantly test our students to ensure our methods are working, and if something isn’t working, we must change our approach or learn how. This means owners and coaches have to treat their work with humility, question their work often, and commit to learning. This is the epitome of the growth mindset. This also means that CrossFit, as an exercise regimen, isn’t stagnant. It evolves as we find out the best possible ways to exercise and attain the best results. CrossFit today is different than what it was in 2010, largely due to the fact that those involved are continuing to learn and grow- not just teaching the same mindless 45 minute HIIT routine they were 10 years ago. This growth mindset mimics the journey of most successful people in their fields.
2. Gyms that evolve
Greg also favors the affiliate model for his CrossFit gyms, meaning each owner has complete control over what he or she teaches. He doesn’t care if there are 10 gyms within a mile of each other; instead, he states that the “cream will rise to the top.” We believe competition makes us better; we have to constantly have a better product. Gyms must constantly improve, hone their craft, study harder, offer better services and run a better business.
This kind of business is going to attract quicker, smarter, more competitive people to run successful affiliates and coach within them. In Synapse alone, we have 3 masters degrees, an engineer, and a PHD on the way on the coaching staff, most of whom is part-time. These are smart coaches looking to become experts in their field, an abnormality in the fitness industry. If the affiliate and its owners/coaches don’t continue to evolve, they’re going to be left behind by gyms that value growth and learning more, and aren’t afraid to continue competing.
This is a great environment for smart, successful people; this is the environment you want to surround yourself in. We are all pushing each other to be better, in the gym and out.
3. Skill Instruction
Successful people know that success, in anything, takes sustained effort over long periods of time. CrossFit embodies this mentality. Students work for years on complicated movements that aren’t going to be perfect on the first day, or the 50th day, or even the 1000th day. These movements require constant work in a variety of different modalities, and often require significant brain power to accomplish. Learning to snatch requires the patience, attention, and coordination of someone who understands the value of learning. To perform a great snatch, you have to understand how and why the snatch works, encompassing principles of physics and physiology. Anyone can shut off their brain and go for a run; it takes someone who values the brain to train the snatch. CrossFit is not interested in appealing to the lowest common denominator. Not everyone wants to put in the time to understand the snatch. CrossFit, by nature, appeals more to the above-average thinker.
4. Flow State
The idea of being in “flow” or as many athletes call being “in the zone,” is an intrinsic part of CrossFit. Successful people know the benefits of being in flow. Being in flow has been claimed to increase productivity 500%, boost creativity, and decrease stress. Flow allows individuals to block out the rest of the world and focus on the present, and experiencing the feeling of flow can help people push the limits of what they’re doing further, and actively seek flow experiences in other areas of their life. Flow states elevate the quality of the human existence, and CrossFit is a natural flow conductor.
The hard part about flow, however, is that it requires the involvement of challenge. Those who want to be in flow have to be ready for, and actively seek out, challenge. This attracts a higher caliber mindset- and CrossFit is a breeding ground.
While there are smart people doing all sorts of exercise regimens, CrossFit seems to attract high level individuals for the lessons CrossFit teaches intrinsically- humility, growth, and grit.