This article has been in the works for quite some time—exactly nine years, to be more precise. My life would never be the same after the 9th of February, 2014, thanks to CrossFit and, more specifically, CrossFit Chiangmai. I know you’re thinking that’s exaggerated, but guess what: it really is! Today, I’m getting personal and sharing something that changed my body and my entire life. Yup, I’m talking about the world of CrossFit. You see, CrossFit isn’t just a workout routine for me; it’s a lifestyle, a community, and honestly, a personal revolution. So, buckle up because we’re about to take a journey into how this incredible fitness phenomenon turned my life upside down—in the best way possible.
Part I: The Before
Before CrossFit, I was your average gym-goer. You know, a bit of treadmill here, some weights there, but nothing too crazy. I was in decent shape but never felt strong or empowered. My routine was just that—a routine—and I was stuck in a rut. After going through enough years of my life doing random exercises, I realized I needed to change.
I needed something new, something challenging, and something that would push me out of my comfort zone. I had to find something that would stick with me. That’s when I discovered CrossFit.
Part II: The Discovery
My then-boyfriend Mark, who is now my husband, had already begun his journey with CrossFit when I decided to give it a shot. A LOT of encouragement from him played a role in my decision. Walking into a CrossFit box for the first time was both terrifying and exhilarating. The weights were heavier, the exercises were more complex, and the people were, well, they were regular, well-rounded people who accomplished extraordinary and seemingly impossible tasks. Women are performing what appears to be an endless amount of repetitions of pull-ups, deadlifting more than 100 kg, walking on their hands, and performing crazy things with jump ropes. I was both intimidated and inspired. I didn’t even know how to stack weights on a barbell. I can’t do handstands, pull-ups Um hello, “what’s a snatch?”. It took me some time to overcome my anxiety, but once I did, I was more motivated than ever to make this work. I began by taking an introductory class in which a coach worked with me one-on-one to teach me all the moves that I needed to know to do well in the following classes. After four sessions lasting an hour each, I felt confident enough to enroll in a group class.
I remember my first WOD (Workout of the Day). It was hard, really hard. To tell you the truth, I felt I was going to absolutely destroy the workout. I couldn’t have been more wrong but guess what? I survived, and I was hooked.
Part III: The Transformation
For the first time, I wanted to start a regular exercise regimen, but it quickly evolved into so much more than that for me. CrossFit is a lifestyle, not a cult, and they reinforce my belief that I can accomplish challenging tasks. CrossFit was a game-changer for me in so many ways. Let’s break it down:
1. Strength: Not just muscle strength, but real functional strength. I started lifting heavy, realizing that I wasn’t just building muscles but building confidence.
2. Endurance: The high-intensity workouts improved my cardiovascular health, stamina, and overall endurance. Running a mile wasn’t a chore anymore; it was a warm-up!
3. Flexibility: Those Olympic lifts and gymnastic movements? They improved my flexibility in ways I never thought possible.
1. Resilience: CrossFit taught me to push through barriers, and to keep going even when I thought I couldn’t. That resilience translated into other areas of my life, making me stronger mentally.
2. Confidence: My confidence soared as I got stronger and accomplished things I never thought I could. I realized that I was capable of so much more than I had given myself credit for.
1. Support: The CrossFit community is like no other. I found friends, cheerleaders, coaches, and mentors who pushed me to be my best.
2. Empowerment: I wasn’t just transforming myself; I was part of a community that uplifted and empowered each other. There’s a unique bond between sweating and growing stronger together. I have developed close relationships with many of the individuals who go to our gym, and if you ever need assistance, advice, or even a good kick in the butt, there is always someone there willing to provide it.
Part IV: Beyond the Gym
CrossFit wasn’t just about working out. It became a lifestyle. It affected how I ate, how I approached challenges, and how I connected with people. I became more aware of my nutrition, making healthier choices to fuel my body. I started setting goals and smashing them, not just in the gym but in life. CrossFit made me a better person, a stronger woman, and a more determined individual. My overall health has improved dramatically over the last nine years.
Part V: Sharing the Love
My journey led me to this blog, where I can share my passion, my struggles, and my triumphs with all of you. My transformation could inspire others to make positive changes in their lives. We can all be strong, confident, and empowered, one deadlift, one pull-up, one healthy meal at a time.
Conclusion: Forever Changed
CrossFit has been more than just a fitness regimen; it’s been a life-changing experience. I’ve grown physically, mentally, and emotionally. I’ve found a community that supports and encourages me, and I’ve discovered a strength I didn’t know I had. My life has been transformed with so many wonderful things thanks to CrossFit. It has allowed me to develop friendships that will last a lifetime, bring me closer to my husband, and realize my ambition of having the ideal job. When I first started doing CrossFit, I also launched my fitness-related business, Barbell Beauties. An old proverb goes, “If you find a job that you love, you will never work a day in your life.” And for me, that is what CrossFit is: a place and a community where the words “work” and “working out” are interchangeable.
If you’ve ever considered trying CrossFit or positively changing your life, I hope my story inspires you. Take that leap, challenge yourself, and embrace the journey. You never know how it might change your life forever.
Stay strong, my friends, and remember: You’ve got this, and I’m cheering you on every step of the way! 🏋️♀️💕
March is the founder and owner of The Barbell Beauties which she started in 2015. She is from the Philippines and currently lives in beautiful Thailand with her American husband and daughter. She is an avid Crossfitter and has just started her journey into Muay Thai (kickboxing).