Meta-Conversational Reply To Gawker’s CrossFit Article

Because this writing style is all the rage.

Look, this informal lead sentence will prepare you for a meta-conversational article which is persuasive because we’re just two buddies kiki-ing, here. Nothing scary about that, right?

With that out of the way: I’m not a huge CrossFit zealot. I’m a skeptic by nature, who CrossFits because it works for me. I wanted to be fit and look good, now I am and I do. I don’t eat paleo, I compete casually, and I only talk about CrossFit when people ask me how I got it like that.

But it seems to have become ok for people who don’t do it to hate on it, and I’m not sure I understand why that is, except maybe people who haven’t got it like that tend to resent people who do, and maybe they know a few douchebags who give the whole community a bad name, and maybe they’re too intimidated to try it themselves.

What works for me works for me, and I don’t really care if anyone approves of my methods, or of CrossFit’s. Or anyone else’s. However you come by your health and happiness is your own business.

While I suspect Gawker‘s aim is not to be accurate but to capitalize on CrossFit’s popularity with a click-bait article that will be shared countless times by athletes and haters alike, I will nevertheless endeavor to temper the gross misinformation they’re responsible for circulating, point-by-point.

“Group workouts suck because they suck, therefore circular logic, no evidence needed, because, am I right?!”


“CrossFit is generalized… Do you want to get good at X sport? Don’t do CrossFit”

Again, the rebuttal to this is so obvious it almost doesn’t bear explaining, but nevertheless: the reason so many people do CrossFit is because the majority of people don’t want to seek out a professional specialist coach so they can become elite at one particular sport. Most people just want to get generally fit and look good.

I don’t see how exposing so many average people to unusual skills is a negative. Crossfitters can do more things. It’s not about preparing for random catastrophes, it’s about having a huge range of awesome skills that make you feel like a super-person. Anyone can do a hammer curl. Nothing impressive about a fucking chest flye. Regular Joes and Janes who never before thought of themselves as athletic can now pull themselves from the ground into full extension above a pair of rings hanging seven feet high and that’s…uncool?

If you want to be a powerlifter or a runner, go be a powerlifter or runner, and have fun with that. In fact, go do anything you want to do that’s exercise related, please, and take a little pressure off our healthcare system. But if you don’t want a big bulky powerlifter body or a lean stringy runner’s body, if you don’t want to consume triple the calories you normally do or get blackout drunk from a single beer because your body is a delicate willow; if what you really want is to have sexy, strong muscles from head to toe and not heart failure, maybe a general workout is exactly what you need.

“It is too expensive, the gym is only $40 a month or whatever”

“Too expensive” is relative. Again, the majority of people doing CrossFit do it because the gym doesn’t get them results, whether that’s because they are a bit lazy when not pushed by the competitive group dynamic of CrossFit or because they don’t know how to program effective workouts for the physique and fitness level they want.

Hiring a personal trainer to help with those blockages is anywhere from $40-$100 or more, per hour session (and they have some incentive to keep you from reaching goals you’re satisfied with or showing you how to plan your own workouts so you don’t need them anymore). It’s not difficult to do the math and see that if you hire a personal trainer only once a week each month, you’re paying more than CrossFit costs. So what’s “too” expensive? Does the $40 gym work for you? If so, great, keep it up (and I hope you like waiting for equipment, or don’t mind being the asshole monopolizing the only lifting platform for an hour that everybody throws shade at when they walk by to see if your grunts are telegraphing a near-quitting-level of fatigue).

If everyone took Gawker’s advice and hired a coach in order get really good at one sport, they would be paying more. Many thousands more. And they’ll sacrifice hell of a lot more than most of their pay cheque to achieve proficiency in that sport.

I wish it didn’t cost as much as it does, of course. But it makes me happy so I prioritize my finances so I can afford to work out. And because of that, I save money on my drinks at the bar now. LOL!

“Kipping pullups aren’t real pullups so they won’t make you strong”

This argument assumes that someone who does kipping pullups a lot in their training can’t do as many strict pullups as someone who never kips, which simply doesn’t make sense. It’s like saying a marathon isn’t a sprint so it won’t make you faster. They’re different exercises. The ability to kip has no detrimental impact on the amount of strict pullups an athlete can rip off. However, if you never practice kipping pullups, you’re never going to beat a CrossFitter in a kipping pullups competition, but a Crossfitter who has trained with kipping pullups until their arms are as strong as yours will still beat you at strict pull-ups.

Your argument is invalid.

“You will get injured”

But not if you train to become a powerlifter or runner? PLEASE, why you bein’ cute.

Athletes get injured, period. People who work alone at the gym definitely get injured because nobody is helping them perform movements effectively and safely. The inherent risk of injury due to exercise, ANY exercise, is radically offset by the benefits of being fit and healthy for life.

“It’s like a church with lots of nice people and some creeps”

Because nobody has ever felt creeped on at the gym, which is why most gyms do not have separate ladies-only sections.

Oh wait. Wait, they do.

I get that this argument is referring to the douchey CrossFitters who talk nonstop about it and worship its founder like a demigod and push their nutrition plans and shit in everybody’s faces, but that’s life. Take a random selection of people and you’ll get a creep or two. Take a random selection of people and bestow upon them the program that changes their lives significantly for the better, and those regular creeps become even creepier acolytes. Is that the all-corrupting, dark-sided power of CrossFit dogma? No, that’s just a douche, bro.

CrossFit is so popular now that it’s basically got all types of people. You wouldn’t judge all swimmers or vegans or smokers by the actions of a few. You wouldn’t write an article called “THE PROBLEM(S) WITH TENPIN BOWLERS!?/?!?!”

“You can’t trademark working out”

You can trademark workout systems, like Insanity or P90X. You can trademark a seatbelt with a forked handle that hangs from your doorway. None of these schemes publish all their methods and workouts publicly like CrossFit does. By all means, help yourself to CrossFit.

“Wear some regular fucking socks”

We would, but we’re elite athletes and we need protective gear (for our deadlifts, snatches and double-unders. How many can you do, bee tee dubs?). I thought you said training diligently at one sport was a good thing…?

I guess if CrossFitters have banded together in communities that celebrate each other to the exclusion of everyone else, it makes a twisted kind of sense that a) some of the more insecure outsiders take that personally and b) find a juvenile solace in bitching with each other about those obnoxious fitness freaks.

I would suggest finding a healthy hobby instead, though. Tearing down your friends won’t do anything for your love handles.

Submitted By: Derek Bedry

Derek Bedry is like a dog with a bone and also a Level 1 CrossFit Trainer (but received no compensation for this article). Tweet him your love and flames @dbedry or see slutty selfies on Instagram (#thankscrossfit!) @bedryd.

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