Category Archives: My CrossFit Journey

Guest writer, Hayli, wanted to share her unfiltered experience in her first month with us at CrossFit Regeneration.

My CrossFit Journey – Day 10

My CrossFit Journey Series

Have you been hesitant to come give CrossFit a try?  Back in 2015, our guest writer, Hayli, wanted to share her unfiltered experience and was kind enough to document her first month with us at CrossFit Regeneration. What follows are her words. You can read all of her posts here. Originally posted on her website.

Today was truly inspiring.

First of all, I cannot believe this is our last week of Foundations. I’m a little heartbroken about it, since I’ve gotten to know everyone well. But also conflicted because I’ve enjoyed this workout program so much, yet the membership is more than I would typically pay for a pair of fair trade shoes. Or TOMS.

Before we met in the gym, Charlie talked with us about how challenging ourselves in the Box could permeate into challenging ourselves in our everyday lives, day-to-day tasks.

Being now over a month into my job at Box Pro Magazine, I’ve heard many Affiliates explain they are typically granted one hour of a member’s life throughout the course of a 24-hour day. And while that member may choose to be healthy in that one hour, the Affiliate or Coach cannot control how they spend the other 23 hours.

Charlie was encouraging us to continuously push ourselves outside of the Box. It was a message I truly needed to hear, especially moving to a new area and outside my comfort zone.

Into the Box, we practiced ring dips and learned kettlebell swings.


I’ve watched my mom workout with kettlebells for years, but I’ve never really became friends with them. In order to properly use the kettlebells, it involves a lot of control. You don’t want to toss them too high over your head to where you’re overextending your arms or dropping the kettlebell.

Kettlebells are a great workout. I felt it stretching my back and using my lower back muscles and also in my abs. I was surprised that I was also using my legs and arms to swing the kettlebell between my legs to above my head. It really was a full-body workout.

And I had to remind myself of Charlie’s talk for the ring dips.

Todays WOD:
10 Minute AMRAP
5 Ring Dips
10 Overhead Squats
15 Hollow Body Rockers

It was a full body workout. And it was great! My arms hurt from ring dips, my legs and arms hurt from overhead squats (again, I never thought I would be doing overhead squats in my life) and my abs hurt from hollow body rockers.

Oh, do my abs hurt.

It was great to start this class knowing exactly what the movements in the WOD were and how to properly do them and where to do them. We hadn’t quite been there a month, but we knew what to do. And the Coaches expected us to know what to do.

So as the first day of the final week is closed, I’m checking my budget excel sheet to see if this I can make this work.

My CrossFit Journey – Day 9

My CrossFit Journey Series

Have you been hesitant to come give CrossFit a try?  Back in 2015, our guest writer, Hayli, wanted to share her unfiltered experience and was kind enough to document her first month with us at CrossFit Regeneration. What follows are her words. You can read all of her posts here. Originally posted on her website.

It’s becoming more difficult to wake up on Saturday mornings. The saving grace is the bagel I have waiting for me as soon as I finish front squatting, back squatting and learning rack safety.

OK, but actually, rack safety is very important. There is a right way, and unfortunately a wrong way, to put a bar back on its rack without harming itself or yourself.

Did you know that a 35 lbs. barbell costs a ton of money? That is why only experienced athletes with many weights on their bars will drop the bar like a boss. The weights protect the bar, whereas a weightless bar will slowly be ruined. Something about the sand or heavy, magic fairies inside. I’m not quite sure, but don’t drop it unless you have weights on the bar.

Additionally, covering how to get out of a squat – either front of back – without injuring yourself is important.

Today we learned there may come a time where we lift more, or do to many reps with a heavy bar, and are unable to stand back up correctly. So we have to know how to safely throw the bar away from us so as not to injure ourselves.

In a front squat, you simply throw it forward and step back, quickly. Get out of the way of the bar so your toes don’t break.

In a back squat, let the bar roll off your back and step forward quickly. It will feel weird, but you’re also not supposed to drop it without finished the squat so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

As stated earlier, there is a correct way and an incorrect way to place a bar on a rack before lifting.

front squat

The metal L-shaped racks that hold the bar need to be even across the rig, obviously, and the height is important. You want it to be just below your shoulders so you have to slightly bend your knees to put the bar back.

We partnered up to practice front squats and back squats and putting the bar back. Apparently the cleaning practice was enough for me to do a front squat and not freak out about the possibility of the bar touching my collarbone.

What’s more, the Coach, who was different from Thursday, already knew about my phobia and was more than willing to help. I’m choosing to think of this as a gesture that the Coaches care about our injuries/fears to talk it out with each other to best help us in the gym instead of thinking the former Coach thought it was so weird, he had to tell all his friends.

Thankfully, despite all the front squats I did, I walked out of the Box un-collarbone touched. Unfortunately, the squats really felt terrible on my knee.

front squat


Me again, from the future. Since this day, I have done many front squats where this Coach approached me to fix my movement. I finally admitted to him that I was leaning a certain way and going down into the squat quickly because my knee hurt. He asked me to widen my knees on my squat and literally it was like there was no pain at all, ever. Tell your Coaches if something hurts or feels weird. It’s not needy, as I thought, and it’s likely to be something they are willing to help.

 Because we finished our squat practice early, our Coach decided to leave us with a little “nugget.”

He broke us off into teams and made up a relay for us involving sprints, burpeees, push-ups and encouragement. When you were running, the Box wasn’t filled with music but with your teammates cheering you on and counting your push-ups and burpees for you. Because honestly, you can’t count when you’re asked to sprint then do what feels like a bajillion push-ups.

And my bagel was so worth all of this. There was an egg also involved.

My CrossFit Journey – Day 8

My CrossFit Journey Series

Have you been hesitant to come give CrossFit a try?  Back in 2015, our guest writer, Hayli, wanted to share her unfiltered experience and was kind enough to document her first month with us at CrossFit Regeneration. What follows are her words. You can read all of her posts here. Originally posted on her website.

Today was the only day that I was dreading.

Ever since I can remember, I have had this thing about anything touching my collarbone. I don’t like it.

And I would like to take a second to point out that this is a perfectly rational phobia. A person’s collarbone is super exposed. There is just a thin layer of skin between the bone and the outside world. And if you break it, every breath hurts. I haven’t personally broken my collarbone, but I’ve heard that from friends who have broken their collarbone. It’s a dangerous part of the body to mess with, let alone allow heavy bars to touch.

When I saw, via Wodify, that today our Foundations class was going to be learning hang cleans, simplified as cleans, I felt my stomach drop into my toes.

I’d been talking with my editors, one of which who has been doing CrossFit for two years and the other approaching her one year anniversary, about my fear. Both agreed cleans were their favorite movement and were of no help. But encouraged me to tell my Coaches before today because cleans are one of the more popular CrossFit movements.

I didn’t, of course. Mostly because I didn’t want to seem weird or needy. And also because I was hoping I could miraculously avoid the conversation altogether.


I told my classmates in the 3rd Place, before we entered the Box. And they were supportive, but didn’t really know how to avoid bruising my collarbone.

So after our Coach explained what we were going to be doing and we entered the gym area, I got him a little by himself and told him of my phobia.

It was actually anticlimactic. He didn’t judge me. He barely even hesitated. Instead, he just explained how to put my elbows up higher so the bar rests on my shoulders, avoiding my collarbone completely. And that’s actually how you’re supposed to hold a bar! I wasn’t modifying or scaling the clean, this was the correct form.

Additionally, it was great to learn that you don’t just use all your might to pull that heavy bar up to your shoulders. Instead, there’s a shrugging motion involved and you actually catch it as you’re squatting down. There’s a minute where the bar feels weightless between you shrugging and tossing it up to it resting on your shoulders. And for that minute, you can’t help but feel like you’re the strongest you ever have been.

In addition to cleans, we also went over box jumps. Which reminded me of soccer. Which made me love them. This is what I mean about CrossFit programming. It’s so magically assembled with something you fear/don’t like with something you love. At least, for me.

Todays WOD:
8-minute AMRAP
5 Hang Cleans
7 Box Jumps
9 Situps

I had some scary, close moments during the WOD, I left the Box unscathed and my collarbone untouched. It was magical.

Something I’ve appreciated about the Coaches is their ultimate acceptance. Granted, my situation was weird (but, again, rational) but when Affiliates and Coaches preach that CrossFit is for everyone, it truly is for everyone. From those who have had knee surgeries (a man in my class has had at least two) to those who have recently had children to those who are afraid of heavy weighted bars touching exposed bones in her body.

When they hear of your injuries or fears, you’re not shunned or looked down upon. Instead, you’re encouraged and pushed to do a motion correctly, so it feels smooth, natural and painless. Not only that, but they remember your history. They’ll ask how your knee is feeling or how your squat is improving. And they’ll never stop helping. It’s so great.