While both can get you moving towards a healthier body, each have their positive and negative traits.
Your gym time is an appointment that you keep 95% of the time without fail. You’re a regular in class and you actively work to become better at the movements that you struggle with. If you have to work late or travel then you make arrangements to drop-in to another fitness facility or utilize your own home equipment. You may be following a nutrition plan or working towards improving your weekly meal prep on your own. If asked you would say that your focus is using nutrition to support your physical activity. Social activities may be sacrificed or altered due to your fatigue or strict nutritional needs.
Life gets in the way of your gym attendance at least twice a week. When you miss a class you don’t generally attempt to find a substitute means of exercise. However you do participate in fitness based social activities when they come up. You love the idea of fitness but wouldn’t say it’s something that you sacrifice in other areas of your life to make happen. Your goals are generally abstract in nature and you often find yourself repeating the same goals year after year. You don’t correlate a direct connection between how you eat and how you feel physically. Meals may be looked at simply as another thing on the daily to-do list.
There is room in CrossFit for both. And often someone that is a member at a CrossFit gym will go through a cycle of both approaches, including extremes, over the years. It is imperative that we see each side for what it is and recognize the benefits and downfalls of each. For example having a blinders-on approach while in a training mindset can lead to over training and injury. Your nearly perfect 100% attendance leaves very little room for deviation and flexibility on days where you may not feel so great. On the other hand simply working out doesn’t generally lead to long term gym membership or accomplishing fitness goals. However you’re far less likely to experience over training and you likely have more flexibility in your social life as a result of not being tied to a set gym schedule.
So is it possible to strike a balance between the two extremes? Absolutely! A thriving CrossFit gym depends on a community built on both approaches and supports communication with clients as they inevitably move between the two. As with all things it’s the balance that allows for the most personal growth and evolution of progress.
Feeling like you’re stuck in the extremes of one approach or the other? Talk to your coach! We can help you sort through why you may be lacking balance and how to ensure that you stay on a healthy pathway.