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Now, imagine this was all a dream. All of CrossFit. And we had to start back where we were before we all found each other. Read “The Land Before CrossFit” . . .

Imagine we had to go back. Back to the Land Before CrossFit. Before wall-ball and thrusters and burning lung metcons like Fran and Helen. Back to a place without our friend Pukie or Uncle Rhabdo or the legendary Nasty Girls. To a time when the only language spoken was “Is it Legs or Chest day?” Back before we realized there was a madman in the tower, dreaming up workouts that combined both, and, in the ultimate piece of twisted depravity, adding a stopwatch to the whole mix. Back before we knew the madman’s name was Greg Glassman.

Can you still remember those times? Can you recall accepting inane garbage fed to us by supposed “experts” who said that if we squatted deeper than parallel, our knees would explode, our reproductive organs would fail, and the breweries would stop making beer? (Oh, all right, they never said all of that but you get the point.)

It was all so sterile, so boring, and so futile. On those upper-body and lower-body and separate cardio days, we built some pretty muscles but we never really used them. Or, when we did, like when we toted a heavy bag of sand at Home Depot, or lifted an overloaded suitcase off the airport luggage carousel, we often injured ourselves, because pampered pretty muscles are like the Ice Queen at the Prom: she looks great but you can’t really take her home and **** her. Better you should have some real muscles to do real work. Power units that will, quite simply, help you to lift heavy stuff off the ground. Functional muscles for a functional life. Like what you earn in CrossFit.

But also realize, unless you’re very lucky, that your friends and loved ones still live in the Land Before CrossFit. They still toil away on ellipticals and “butt-blasters” and horrible weight machines because they have been told, “This is the way.” And they still believe it, even though it takes them nowhere. They are like newborn baby birds, sitting in the nest, their beaks open but their eyes still covered, waiting and crying for someone to feed them. But they still don’t see. They hear the rumblings of CrossFit in the distance, but they don’t understand yet. The noise, to them, is perhaps the shifting of some seismic plates. They do not understand that those are the footsteps of thousands of CrossFitters, pounding across the arid desert of bullsh** “fitness”, sprinting past the lies and the half-truths, coming to throw open the gates and set them free.

So, what to do? Tell the baby birds. Better yet, show them. Live the CrossFit life. Be a walking testament to the power of the properly executed below-parallel squat, Olympic lifting, and metcon. Shock them by doing heavy deadlifts with good form, without breaking your back or having your uterus drop out on the floor. Become a living, breathing example of the results the naysayers only promise to deliver. And then wait . . .

There is a line in the Tao Te Ching that reads, “Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.”

So, do your work: CrossFit. Then step back. Eyes will open and the baby birds will see. Let’s just hope they don’t fall out of the nest and break their necks before they even get to wall-ball.

(Text by Lisbeth Darsh. Special thanks to Allison Bojarskion of CF NYC for the inspiration behind The Land Before CrossFit.)


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