Europe Summer 2015: CrossFit

I was really excited to try different CrossFit boxes during my travels. I wasn’t too concerned about “working out” as I think walking around new places is the best way to “work out” while travelling – I also did a bunch of hikes!

BUT doing a WOD here and there was really fun and a great way to meet people too! It was cool to see that a CrossFit class is really the same (or super similar) all over the world.

I was definitely intimidated walking into a brand new box, knowing no-one and sometimes not even knowing the language. I’m no pro-CrossFit-er and quite average to below-average strength wise so I set out to be confident and own my strengths and weaknesses.

Overall, it was a great experience and I am super glad I was able to get to try a few boxes. Here’s a quick recap from each:

London: CrossFit Central London

CrossFit Central London: I was always a bit nervous finding the boxes (directions are not my strength) but CrossFit Central London was literally an 8 minute straight walk from my sister’s flat! It was quite small (located in a railway arch type thing) but I found it and an adorable coach (Duncan) warmly welcomed me. The members kind of kept to themselves/each-other but I was chatting with another visitor from Vancouver.

When I saw the workout on the board I was super nervous: I had no idea what Turkish get-ups were and then we were working on the snatch and the WOD was Isabel (30 snatches for time). Snatches are my worst and least favourite movement… just my luck.

Time to get started… we warmed up with a 600m run around the block then had 3 rounds of Turkish get-ups, lunges and broad jumps. I just practiced the Turkish get-up form while everyone else was doing the actual warm-up. I was a bit embarrassed but tried to shrug it off and rock it.

The coach led us through the snatch work with the barbell then lightly weighted. He used different cues than I am used to, which was interesting and helpful.

For the WOD (Isabel = 30 snatches for time) I used 20kg, which is about 45lbs and finished in 5:27. I had trouble converting my weigh into kilograms…

Cost was 6£ for the class. It was also unbearably hot (thus sports bra below).

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Brussels, Belgium: CrossFit Power Factory

CrossFit Power Factory: I was the first one to arrive to the morning class, which was kinda awkward but I just foam rolled and stretched and smiled when people arrived. Again, everyone seemed to keep to themselves but when the class begun people were more friendly.

The coach had everyone introduce themselves and he explained the workout in both French and English. The workout was kinda complicated (3 parts) and intimidating and of course we were working on the snatch again. Obvs.

We warmed up with a run around block and then got to our snatch practice with the PVC pipe.

This was the confusing, long and ultimately fun 3-part WOD:

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A bit hard to read but basically it was:

A) 3 minutes alternating hang power snatch with a partner (I used 25kg = 55lbs and got 34 reps)

B) 8 minute AMRAP: 10 reps each of wall ball push-ups, floor press, wall balls

C) 12 minute EMOM with group of 4; 30 secs of work: squat hold, plank, bar hang and air dyne

I teamed up with Jo (a girl visiting from England) and then we merged with another team to complete the last part of the WOD.

It was so hot and sweaty but the workout incorporated a ton of movements…

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I don’t even remember our result but it was fun.

Cost was complimentary. Thank you CrossFit Power Factory!

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Prague, Czech Republic: CrossFit Committed

CrossFit Committed: I found CrossFit Committed super quickly and was super early but everyone was super friendly. SUPER!

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It was a nice space with a lot of equipment. The owner was actually American and the coach of my class (Dora) was such a sweetheart!

We warmed up with 4 rounds of: 200m run, 10 wall balls (I used 6kg) – which felt like a workout in and of itself.

Then we worked on strict press (yay no snatches!).

The WOD was a fun chipper:

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One of my favorite things about the programming at CrossFit Committed was that they had 3 options for the workout: fitness, performance and competition – basically different ways to scale the movements.

I did “fitness” but scaled the shoulder to overhead further to 30kg (66ish lbs).

For time: 400m run, 50 box jumps, 40 KB swings (12kg), 30 lego squats, 20 shoulder to overhead (30kg), 10 ring rows.

That was a sweaty one! Finished in 13:43.

Class was complimentary – thanks everyone at CrossFit Committed!

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Zagreb, Croatia: Basic Gym One

Basic Gym One: So kind of an awkward/funny story about CrossFit in Zagreb. I was in touch with a different gym (I don’t want to bad talk them) but did not end up staying there for the class. Long story short, when I was looking for the gym I was in touch with I came across Basic Gym One (two CrossFit boxes right beside eachother) and everyone there was so welcoming but I felt badly ditching the other place that I was in touch with. So I went there. Literally stayed 5 minutes and felt so uncomfortable and un-welcomed that I went back to Basic Gym One. Best decision.

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The staff (Marino and Mya especially) were amazing and so were the members. I ended up being there for a CrossFit cardio class – it is a “bootcamp” style class – so no barbell.

The workout in the Zagreb heat was a bit gruelling…

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I finished in 26:26 (tied for the fastest time woohoo)

Not sure if I’ve ever sweat that much in my life!

Big thank you for the warm welcome (and complimentary class) to Marino and everyone at Basic Gym One!

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Zagreb, Croatia: Honey Bee Workout

I think I was motivated after such a good workout at Basic Gym One to do my own workout in Zagreb the next morning. (Or just stupid because it was so friggin hot!)

There was a steep set of stairs by my hostel so decided to make a little workout…

3 rounds of: 1 stair “sprint” (um sprinting the whole way up 138 STEPS is hard), 10 hand stand push-ups, 10 tricep dips.

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And that did it for my “official” workouts for the month!

I certainly walked and hiked a ton (even kayaked) and with the heat I was constantly sweating! But as I said, I really did not concern myself with regimented “workouts”.

 

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