Hello everyone,

This weekend sure has been rough and hopefully multiple bottles of water have been drank (#hydrateordiedrate) and many pools/lakes have been swam in. Even though there has been much complaint about this humidity, I would 100% take this over feeling my nostrils are freezing shut walking between my car and a building. However, I also wouldn’t mind if the beautiful mild season of Fall came quicker. 

For Mainers, cooped up in apartments/houses for multiple months of winter, summer is a season commonly of enjoying the outdoors. There is so much to do in the summer including hiking (I will always suggest Mt.Katahdin…but I’m a bit bias), going to the beach or exploring the ports, sprucing up the yard, traipsing through the woods in search of the perfect bear, deer, or moose, or (for the crazy folk who actually enjoy running) heading out for a trail or road run. With all these activities available isn’t it amazing to be able to enjoy them due to being stronger, healthier, and overall more capable because of CrossFit. 

Being “gym fit” and being able to perform an endless amount of pull-ups and crunches working up to deadlifting 500lbs, or being an avid user of the lat pulldown, abductor/adductor, and leg press machines takes commitment and an accomplishment in its own sense. However, can the muscles isolated in these movements actually be used to accomplish life tasks. This is why CrossFit is defined as functional fitness: the exercises done in workouts involve training the body for daily life. These exercises teach all the muscles to work together rather than isolating them to work independently due to rarely daily life situations calling for muscles to be used in isolation. An example would be shoveling snow from a driveway or dirt into a wheelbarrow: biceps and triceps are being used to hold and lift, quads are pushing the shovel and helping lift, lats and upper back are also recruited for lifting, and abs are used to brace the core when moving the loaded shovel to its destination. More examples would be carrying a heavy box at work, moving a couch, lifting a toddler out of a car seat, or trying to lug ALL the groceries from the car in one trip (One trip or bust!). 

Working in emergency medicine, I encounter many individuals who do not maintain their fitness or overall health who can’t enjoy the outdoor adventures mentioned above, with even walking from the bedroom to the bathroom involving multiple breaks to catch their breath. Many calls are for assisting someone who has fallen, who is uninjured but don’t have the capacity to get up on their own. Even though there are many a groan and moan when a WOD involves burpees, what is burpee when broken down? Burpees are being able to get oneself up off the ground from a lying position. Even though it seems like a simple movement, squats are one of the most functional exercises that can be done. How often do you squat to get into a car? To get on and off the toilet? To sit down and stand up from a chair? Lunges are being able to transfer weight to a single leg and push off it…doesn’t that sound similar to climbing stairs?

Why is it important for you to personally to stay fit? What activities do you enjoy doing outside of CrossFit? When you see me around the gym, let me know how you have been using your fitness! Like the quote on the new CrossFit Bangor shirts says, CrossFit Bangor is “building better humans for the battlefield of life”. You’ve armored up and now it is time to charge life head on.

Until next time,

Courtney 

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