Recently, it has come to my attention that I have exactly the right amount of upper body strength to hold a pen and perhaps occasionally staple a slim pile of papers. So what better way to make my arms more functional than with a good blast in a Crossfit gym?
Yes, I know, I used the g-word. But this isn’t a ‘stare at MTV from a treadmill’ type gym. This is the sort with camaraderie, challenge and variation. This is what the word ‘gym’ used to mean before the big chains ruined it.
Crossfit Evolving is a friendly little haven to fitness tucked away next to Holloway Road tube. From 6am each day, you will find the keen and eager doing all manner of things, from deadlifts to ropes.
Classes are coached closely and adjusted so that everyone is progressing as they need to. The Crossfit process is designed to be broad and inclusive, to be tailored to anyone who wants to do it – from cage fighter to gymnast to sofa slob – and to give you the kind of whole-body attention that leaves you with a very balanced kind of fitness. There are none of those men that look like Bananaman in here.
I buy all that. It’s too easy to get stuck in a rut, repeating the same routines whilst little bits of you atrophy; my arms being the perfect example of this. I can’t do a single press up anymore. True story. I could probably donkey kick the front end off a truck but ask me to do 10 press ups EVEN ON MY KNEES and you will hear whining.
But that’s what’s great about Crossfit. You start small, repeat, keep going, add variation, and soon you have an all-round fitness level that should work as a great base for any sport.
Aside from its sheer effectiveness, once you stumble across a little alcove of London that has a great trainer and is as welcoming and friendly as this, it’s quite a find. The friend who introduced me goes pretty much every day at 6am and loves it. She looks pretty good on it too.
So if you’re doing too much of the same thing, if you see yourself as runner or cyclist or boxer and nothing else, this is a great way to mix things up and make sure you’re not specialising too much. Or if you’re starting from scratch and need an excellent trainer to send you in the right direction, this has to be a great place to begin.
Henceforth I shall be judging all exercise thus: if you don’t have to ask a stranger to do your bra up for you afterwards, you’ve not been working hard enough.