I started doing Crossfit 19 months ago because a) strength training is good for runners and b) strength training is essential as we age. I had no idea about weights so I knew that I needed a place where I’d just be told what to do and how to do it. For over a year I went just twice a week and took it really easy with weights because I had the mindset of “I’m a runner. I’m here just to do a bit of strength training to help my running.”
I have run three marathons now, all without injuries and in good time. I have enjoyed most of them. But I don’t think I’m a runner anymore.
That is – I don’t think I’m JUST a runner anymore.
I’m a Crossfitter too.
It almost sounds weird to say that but after all the years of thinking that long distance running was The Thing for me, over the past year and a half I have come to love sprinting, intervals, quick workouts and heavy weights so much more than running for hours at a time.
Running still feels good and I’ll still keep doing it 2-3 times a week, but it won’t be anything over 10-15km. I just get the same amount of enjoyment out of 10km as I do from 20 or 30 or more, and running for more than 15km is just so time consuming (and when you have a family and a job, TIME is not something I have a lot of).
Also, I have only experienced the “runner’s high” once or twice following some really long and tough runs during the training for my first marathon. With Crossfit the endorphins flood in massively after ever session. Boom. The best high there is.
I actually looked into this a bit and look what I found:
Researchers have found that light-to-moderate weight training or cardiovascular exercise doesn’t produce endorphins, only heavy weights or training that incorporates sprinting or other anaerobic exertion. When your body crosses over from an aerobic state to an anaerobic state, it’s suddenly operating without enough oxygen to satisfy the muscles and cells screaming out for it. This is when the “runner’s high” occurs.
Anaerobic exercise, in case you don’t know, comprises short, strength-based activities and high-intensity movements, such as sprinting or bodybuilding (aerobic exercise is endurance activities, like marathon running or long-distance cycling).
I’m so freaking happy every time I’ve been to the box.
I know that Crossfit is not for everyone but if you’re curious about it and want to try, here’s a great website where you can find out where the Crossfit boxes are near you – it includes them all – from every country in the world!
Are you NOT tempted to check out for yourself what this Crossfit hype is all about? :)