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Barbara Clough

CrossFit in unfamiliar places

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I've been going to a different box for my WODs this week, as I'm at my brother's place watching the cats and dogs and teenager. Finding a box where you feel at home is like finding a community. 

The first place I started CrossFit, I was one of the first people to join as I'd been getting personal coaching sessions from the owner. When she said she was opening a box, I wasn't sure it was something I wanted to do, but she basically said if you want me to keep coaching you, you need to come. So I did. And I didn't know enough to be intimidated by all the 20-somethings who were young and beautiful. I was just trying to hold my own in middle age.

I attended there for I don't know how long, and then I moved to another box that was just easier to get to because it was on my commute home. I literally drove right past it. The box had a completely different feel. Much smaller. Very queer friendly and diverse because it was bang in the middle of the city. There was an urban garden on the roof, bees, and chickens in a corner of the lot. Totally community focused with discounted memberships and lots of outreach.

My box now is reminiscent of my first box - in a gritty, urban area - basically a warehouse with minimal equipment but everything you need to have a great workout. The dust blows in from the unpaved parking lot but after months of going there, it feels like my home.

These last few days, I've been going to the box I always go to when at my brother's. It's immaculately clean, all the equipment is shiny and new, but again, a bare warehouse and the 200 meter sprints are across a parking lot that runs parallel to MetroNorth. All the weights are in different places, the bars in scattered racks, and I still haven't found the resistance bands. That said, it too feels like home because we're all there for the same thing. A good WOD in a supportive environment.

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