College student, Elliot Martin, had an internship in Kansas City for the summer of 2015. Elliot came into the box everyday with a smile on his face, and left post-workout with a larger smile. Before leaving for the fall semester, KCI sat down with Elliot to talk about his CrossFit training.
KCI: Tell the people a little bit about your experience at KCI CrossFit over the summer.
Elliot: I definitely got the full CrossFit experience of community, mastering of technical movements, and intense training. The first thing I noticed was the community. The encouragement and competition from fellow athletes made me want to be at the gym every day. The coaches at KCI stressed form and technique for all movements which paid major dividends especially on Olympic lifts. Time set aside each day for building strength and learning technique led me to great success in the WOD's! Since my time at KCI, I view CrossFit as the best way to get in shape, gain strength and size, and have good community while doing it!
KCI: So what was your perception of CrossFit before this?
Elliot: Before coming to KCI, I perceived CrossFit as a great method of training but not as an effective way of gaining strength and mass. Through some basic experience with CrossFit, I realized a few of the benefits; It got me in the best shape of my life and I was still gaining strength and size in spite of the added cardio. However, I never mastered any technical movements like muscle ups, clean and jerk, snatch, or hand stand pushups. I went back to basic strength training since its what all my friends were doing.
KCI: You definitely got stronger and more technical on the Olympic lifts, and many gymnastics movements. And you even tracked some of the results?
Elliot: I saw great improvements in strength and work capacity each week. I went from weighing 185-190 to 195-200 in no time while becoming much more toned. My Body Fat Percentage went from around 12% to 6.5% over a two month period. I was setting new PRs each week. I saw the same success in body growth in my past strength training as I did in CrossFit but my strength and overall work capacity went "through the roof" from CrossFit. I am in the best shape of my life and feel great!
KCI: That's fantastic! Our roots are set in the numbers; the math of the results, and it's been crazy to see you dedicating so much time in a few months and it paying off. What did you struggle with?
Elliot: My biggest challenges to overcome were handstand push ups and bar muscle ups. Both require a good deal of technique not just strength. I overcame these challenges through great coaching and practice. Practice is the key! All CrossFit movements take time to master.
KCI: We can testify to that! Every day you put in some extra work practicing one or both of those movements. So what would you say to someone your age that is hesitant to try CrossFit for the first time?
Elliot: Don't write CrossFit off because involves "cardio" and technical body weight movements. Most guys my age are looking to get BIG via body building and strength training. Thats all well and good but I would argue you can get the same results or better from CrossFit. Also, the community aspect is a bigger benefit than you would think. Having a whole group of people encouraging and pushing you instead of one "lifting buddy" is awesome and will get you AMPED to work hard! The CrossFit community is also here to help you out at whatever fitness level your at. Don't feel like you need to know the movements before trying CrossFit either. Overall, CrossFit is an awesome workout routine for young people, no matter what your goals are.
KCI: Haha, that's awesome! For an engineer, you are pretty good at marketing too!
Elliot: Ha! Thanks, I really enjoyed my time here this summer and will definitely stop in if I'm back in the area!