One of the biggest “turn-offs” I hear about CrossFit is that it’s too expensive. Having started CrossFit as a poor college student, and now as a graduate with too many student loans, I truly understand the sentiment, but I’m here to break it down and explain how INEXPENSIVE CrossFit truly is.
First off, many people are wrongly associating a CrossFit membership with a Gym membership. Sure, paying over $100 a month for CrossFit is more expensive than your typical $30-$50 YMCA or 24-Hour Fitness memberships. But CrossFit is so much more than a gym membership. How many gyms give you programming, personal coaching, and education every single day that you come in? None that I know of. All you have to bring to CrossFit is your Nanos, and we’ve got the rest handled. No worrying about what workout to do today, or which machines will already be taken. Plus, your CF coaches constantly introduce you to new movements and workouts and TEACH you how to do them, no more awkwardly side-eyeing the guy at the new machine to see how it works.
As I mentioned above, you get programming and personal coaching as part of the deal in CrossFit. Have you looked up how expensive it is to get a personal trainer? I know people paying $100-$200 per SESSION to get personal training! Then once you’ve met with your trainer for the week, there’s nobody holding you accountable until the next session. Jeez Louise, that can rack up a big bill in no time! With a CrossFit membership, you get programming AND individualized coaching, even in a class setting, ANY day you walk in.
That brings me to the next point: community. When you join CrossFit you get the chance to work out with people you might never have met otherwise, forging friendships amidst wall-balls, thrusters, and burpees. You start holding YOURSELF accountable to come in, because you don’t want to miss hanging out with your friends. Rather than just one trainer telling you what to do for an hour, you’ve got a whole class of people encouraging you, cheering you on, and putting the work in alongside you. The community aspect is something money CAN’T buy, and it’s worth so incredibly much.
I've talked to multiple people who’ve gained so many mental health benefits from attending CrossFit classes that they even refer to it as therapy. (This is not to say that you should stop going to therapy or taking meds if needed, but CrossFit can be a great boon to mental and emotional health.)
I believe a lot of this is due to making friendships and connections with real people in our ever-isolating world. In addition, you’re giving yourself a kick of endorphins after every visit, as well as a growing sense of empowerment from the positive, strengths-based nature of CrossFit. Again, this is a priceless benefit of CrossFit.
Lastly, and more scientifically, the long-term health benefits of CrossFit are immense. As Greg Glassman, founder and CEO of CrossFit, explains, chronic disease is the cause of seventy percent of all deaths in the US, and it eats up around $4 trillion a year in medical expenses. However, chronic disease is something that a CrossFit lifestyle can largely eradicate. By following CrossFit methodology in training and diet, you are in essence building a “hedge against sickness,” meaning you have a bigger buffer between you and the hospital. You will not have to go to the doctor nearly as often, and will be investing in your health for the long term. Obviously there are still accidents, genetic disorders, and viruses like the common cold, but that’s what doctors are truly meant for, not handing out meds for blood pressure and cholesterol. By joining a CrossFit membership you will learn how rewarding it is to take care of your health in the here-and-now, which also saves you tons of money down the road.
In summary, CrossFit is truly an investment of the best kind. Sure, you might need to budget it into your life for now, but the payoff is SO worth it. CrossFit may just be the best financial decision you ever make.
- Coach Sonja Rootvik
More from Greg Glassman here: http://journal.crossfit.com/2016/08/fitness-luck-and-health.tpl