Last week, I was reading this article on Huffington Post about one of Crossfit’s dirty secrets: rhabdomyolysis — when muscle fiber breaks down and is released into the bloodstream, poisoning the kidneys. Note that Rhabdomyolysis is not exclusive to Crossfit, as it is seen in triatheletes, marathon runners and even football players. If you’ve tried Crossfit, you know how crazy and intense it is but if you were educated, you would know to progress into it, listen to your coaches and train smart. Rhabdomyolysis is rare and entirely preventable.
So what is rhabdomyolysis exactly? Under extreme conditions your muscles cells explode. They die.
I took Crossfit for a bit but I don’t anymore only because it’s ridiculously expensive and I am a huge fan of being cheap and working out for free a.k.a. coming up with my own WODs (which is part of the fun)! Of course, that doesn’t work for everyone because some people really need to be in a group environment to get motivated to actually work out and push themselves. It really doesn’t matter how you workout as long as you workout. Anyway, here are some random thoughts on Crossfit, training and rhabdomyloysis:
- The real danger is over-training. If you are smart, you would know not to overtrain.
- …and doing too much before your body can handle it.
- Just because you are already “fit” does not mean you should dive right into Crossfit. There are many ways to define fit and your body may need to adjust to new movements and exercises.
- Progression is important.
- Rest is even more important.
- If you don’t understand the concepts of progression and recovery, you shouldn’t be doing Crossfit (or any intense fitness program) at all.
- I agree that some Crossfitters need to put more effort into form than getting a good time (not generalizing).
- One of my pet peeves is attending a fitness class with advanced movements and coaches do not teach proper form. I’ve seen so many bad kettlebell swings and half-assed squats yet it’s not my place to correct anyone. It’s dangerous and irresponsible.
- I don’t think there is anything wrong with Crossfit as long as you attend a box with good coaches.
- All forms of sports could be dangerous. Crossfit is dangerous. But so is marathon training.
- Any form of exercise is better than no exercise at all.