A Year Without CrossFit

A year + ago, anyone who knew me, met me briefly, or followed me on social media knew I was obsessed with all things CrossFit and paleo. I posted my PRs, paleo meals, ONLY ordered paleo food, checked in at the gym, and #’d the sh*t out of anything health related. #paleoprevails

Looking back, even I can’t believe how crazy I was.

And then I quit.

Starting and quitting CrossFit are two of the best things I ever did for myself. I used to hate working out and only did it because I thought I needed to burn fat or lose weight. I was always on some fad diet for the same reason. CrossFit taught me to love fitness. To work out because it’s good for my body and mind. To be the healthiest version of myself that I could be.

I’m not going tell you how awful I think CrossFit is because that’s not the case at all. It took a few years to face the fact that I just wasn’t cut out for olympic lifting. I’ve had issues with my knees (first surgery when I was in high school), (flat) feet, and back (minor scoliosis) for as long as I can remember. Even after all that PT and knee surgery, my doctors assured me I was fine (physically) to continue but I just didn’t feel the way everyone else did. I knew when I should avoid certain movements and when I was pushing myself too hard but did not care. My focus was on beating my last score, even if it meant getting hurt.

Then I developed shingles which is a sign of severe stress. My doctor suggested calming activities, and by “suggested” I mean she told me to change my life or keep getting sick. So I started to question whether or not something less intense would be better for me. I decided to put my membership on hold and take a short break to see how I’d feel. It wasn’t easy. I was really, really sad and missed CrossFit every single day.

I started Flywheel and Dailey Method, and over the past couple of months, have gotten really into CorePower Yoga. I still miss CrossFit from time to time but this routine has been so good for me. My back still bothers me but I’m not putting as much stress on it and the rest of my body, so I feel a lot better. And finishing a workout in shavasana instead of checking the board to see how I ranked is a really nice change for my don’t stop trying to do it all type-A brain.

I’m still paleo but don’t really view it the way I used to. It was just a matter of calming down, I suppose. I’m over halfway through Whole30 which is more intense than a paleo challenge, yet this has felt so much less intense because of how I’ve handled it. I’m just a lot less extreme than I used to be and no longer put a stigma on not eating something because it isn’t paleo. I follow a clean, healthy diet that happens to fall into that category, but don’t make a big deal about it. And sometimes, life calls for some pizza and halo top.

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  • I’m so happy to hear you have found a healthy balance! As someone who has always been ‘skinny fat’ I never enjoyed working out and went in spurts of eating super healthy and jumping into exercise as a way to lose weight- it wasn’t until I found climbing that I realized that eating healthy and doing a workout you truly enjoy will make you feel better and happier regardless of the scale! Its been so refreshing to read your whole journey, thanks for sharing!

    1. You’re welcome! I love climbing–have done it a few times. Such a great/fun workout.

  • Love this! I think there are so many blogs out there that are obsessed with Crossfit and ALL THINGS Paleo, and it’s easy to get wrapped up in it all. But this was down to earth and real, which I really appreciate.

    1. Well thanks! I was definitely one of those people. Fortunately, I’ve found that "balance" I was looking for.

  • Thanks for sharing. You inspired me to try crossfit a couple of years ago and now I am taking a break due to shoulder surgery and questioning whether I want to return when I recover. By the way, I made the chili you posted about and it was to die for – so good! Even my husband who is super picky loved it (I omitted the carrots and the onions and it was still awesome).

    1. Sorry to hear about your shoulder! I do really miss CF–not easy to walk away from but was best for me. If I could handle lifting it I’d do it 2x a week along w/ yoga.

      Glad you both liked the chili! It’s so good, isn’t it?!

  • I hate to say it, but EVERY person I know who does crossfit LOVES it… and then gets hurt. Literally every single one of them. I am glad that you have found something that works better for you!

  • My mom had shingles and it is no joke. Glad you found something to ease stress and stay healthy.