Since high school, going to the gym and exercising has been a part of who I am. In fact, I was so passionate about fitness I became a fitness instructor within my first semester in college. That quickly led to personal training and obtaining two degrees in exercise. During my years as an undergrad, I spent my time exercising in the typical gym, overrun with more machines than actual free space. I did resistance training two to three times a week and taught various cardio classes. I honestly thought I was in the best shape of my life during those four years. That belief completely vanished the day I stepped into CrossFit Hilton Head, now known as Conviction Training Facility. Since the day I officialy joined this facility, I have never looked back or reconsidered joining a traditional gym…
1. A new meaning to working out
A great friend of mine once told me the magic happens outside of your comfort zone. When I trained in a traditional gym, I was always in my comfort zone. I knew my regular routine, machines and exercises. Each week operated like the next. I felt like I mastered my workouts each and every time.
At Conviction Training Facility, it’s the opposite. I am constantly pushed, challenged and asked to go outside my comfort zone in every workout. Whether it’s mentally or physically, I’m asked to go deeper and improve my skills. I believe this is why I’ve seen so many changes to my body. The exposure to new movements, equipment and workout variations has been enlightening. It has taught me that there is more to weight training. Working out is no longer a chore. It has purpose…it is my playtime.
2. People care
I’m not going to lie. I was so scared to walk into a non-traditional gym. Walking through the door was the hardest part. What I found is that strangers quickly became my close friends, and friends quickly became my family. I have met some of my dearest friends by deciding to join such an awesome and uplifting environment.
A big benefit of joining a non-traditional gym is that you have a “Coach” to guide you through the entire workout. Show up, listen, and you will succeed. The Coach is there to check form and ensure your safety. You will be encouraged and pushed outside your comfort zone. It way more fun than doing it by yourself. Get ready to hit your goals.
3. Positive energy can be infectious
A gym like Conviction Training Facility and many other non-traditional gyms are known for their contagious energy and supportive community. My ” I can’t” quickly became “I can.” My “won’t” became “I will.” My “hell no” soon became “I’ll try.” This positive thinking was fueled by the energy of the gym. The way people root you on in a workout is motivating. It has not only helped me in the gym, but it has also started to help me in my life. I take so many more chances now than I ever would have before.
4. How to be more open minded.
Training in a facility like CTF has helped me learn to not be so closed minded. It’s opened my eyes to so many other forms of training and fitness. In addition, I have become more open minded about other areas of health, such as mental wellness and spiritual wellness. It’s not just about the “workout” here. There is so much more..
5. I’m 10x stronger mentally and physically by making the transition.
I didn’t know it at the time, but joining a non-traditional gym is exactly what I needed to become stronger. Looking back, I was pretty weak. Stepping foot into CTF, I instantly became surrounded by so many strong females. I couldn’t imagine lifting the same weight as some of them.
I look back now and can see how much progress I’ve made in such a short time. The most suprising part is that my goals have transformed into completely new goals. For example, I used to always care about aesthetics, getting that “6 pack” and being “skinny and toned.” It turned into getting a real push-up, doing double unders and squating my own body weight. Focusing on these types of goals have been extremely beneficial for me physically, but more so mentally.
I’m not saying that training in a gym like CTF is the only way to go, that’s for you to decide. For me, stepping foot in a gym like CTF completely changed my life and the ideas I had about myself and my training. I’ve discovered that it’s awesome to be strong and fantastic to be surrounded by such supportive people.