High-intensity CrossFit workouts growing in popularity | SteamboatToday.com

High-intensity CrossFit workouts growing in popularity

Josie Tolan performs box jumps during a CrossFit Steamboat workout at Fusion Fit.

— Don't let the name of the workout — Fight Gone Bad — intimidate you.

A 13-year-old boy completed it during a recent morning CrossFit Steamboat class, and a 60-year-old women breezed through it during the lunch hour. In 18 minutes, it will all be over. Three of those minutes you get to rest. The remaining time is spent doing a series of five exercises intensely for one minute each.

High intensity and relatively short periods of time are a few of the hallmarks of a CrossFit workout, which is practiced daily worldwide by police, firefighters, soldiers and professional fighters. Those same people practice CrossFit in Steamboat, in addition to elite athletes, professional skiers, weekend warriors and anyone who wants to look and feel great.

"There are a million people who do CrossFit each day in the world," said Steve Lowrie, who with his wife, Sue, brought CrossFit to Steamboat in September 2009. "We saw something totally different and unique in exercise."

The Lowries operate CrossFit out of their Fusion Fit space on Mid Valley Drive behind Staples. They and three other CrossFit instructors are certified personal trainers, which the Lowries think is essential to ensure people are executing the exercises with proper form to avoid injury.

"You have someone looking over you and making sure you do it right," said instructor Chad Feagler, who also is certified in Olympic lifting.

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Once a CrossFit skeptic, Feagler is now a strong believer in the method that utilizes full-body exercises with an emphasis on the core and cardio.

"I used to think I was working hard," Feagler said. "I had no idea what hard work was until I started doing CrossFit. There are quantifiable results in this place."

The CrossFit trainers at Fusion Fit emphasize the importance of the full-body workouts. Historically, training was specific to a certain sport. CrossFit will make you a better runner, for example, while also making you a better skier and biker. Everyday tasks such as keeping up with your kids or traversing snowbanks will become easier. Heck, your neighbors might even be envious of how quickly and efficiently you shovel snow from your driveway.

Some CrossFit students say the workouts are addictive, aided by a constant variety in exercises and routines.

"I look forward to going to CrossFit because the instructors are motivating, and they make a hard workout fun," Karen Walters said. "CrossFit pushes you to a higher fitness level, and it makes you stronger."

If you go

What: CrossFit Steamboat at Fusion Fit

Where: 1625 Mid Valley Drive (behind Staples)

Cost: Packages start at $95 a month for adults. Membership also gives access to classes such as yoga, Zumba and kick boxing.

Call: 970-870-1444 or visit http://www.steamboatcrossfit.com

Crunched for time? Try this workout at home.

10 squats

Keep feet shoulder width apart with toes turned out and thighs parallel to the floor. Weight should be on your heels.

10 push-ups

Keep body straight and tight. Abs and glutes also should be tight. Keep head and neck in line with spine.

10 sit-ups

Keep knees bent and fingertips behind ears.

10 lunges

Keep torso upright. Take a big step forward. Push hard off of front foot to return to standing position.

Complete as many sets as you can in 15 minutes.

— CrossFit Steamboat fitness coach Mike McCannon

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