When you think of CrossFit, most people do not think of how it can make you a better hiker. But when you break down a WOD (workout of the day) that we did at CrossFit Bellator recently, it has adventure outdoor written all over it! CrossFit focuses on the conditioning of your body along with flexibility, balance and power.
One recent workout had us doing burpee to box jumps, where you quickly drop to a push up then jump onto a box. That might sound simple—but if it does, you probably haven’t done a lot of burpees (which earned their name from what you do after you’ve don a lot of them). A burbee can be pushing from a high area and lifting you body up. Combined with jumping up to a box jump, this is an amazing exercise for bouldering or hiking. The box jump is an exaggerated step up, which emulates you stepping up onto a higher surface as you would when climbing and hiking up steep terrain.
The next portion of the workout was pull ups, which are self explanatory. That helps the mountain climber and the extreme hiker pull your body weight up to a high branch or a rock to get yourself to the next area. Back squat jumps came next, where you have a barbell on your back do a squat…and then jump. That is the best training movement for running and helping your body move up steep terrain with a backpack on.
CrossFit Bellator is not chock full of elite athletes, although you can see great athletes there—mostly they are every-day people who want to better their lives and make their adventures better. Workouts like today show why CrossFit is so great for functionally training to do nearly any of your favorite sports or activities.
An update on the footwear we’ve been testing: So Far the New Balance Minimus have held up great to the running and the jumping. They should be great minimalist trail shoes, and I am looking forward to testing them on our CrossFit Turkey Mountain runs soon, not just in the gym!
Brent has his BS in Exercise Physiology from UCF. He was a fitness manager for four years and served as a strength and conditioning coach for Ripon Collage. A Crossfitter since 2007, Brent has also managed for Gold’s and Anytime Fitness.