My husband and I have been trying something new this year and the vocabulary of our new endeavor includes words like thrust, snatch and jerk.
Okay – minds out of the gutter. It’s CrossFit! And we were fortunate enough to discover Ellisville’s newest CrossFit Gym, CrossFit GBT (Got Better Today) and its owner Karla Bennett.
I had been hearing a lot about CrossFit for a couple of years, but I chose to ignore the chatter. I understand the importance of strength training, but I don’t like it. At all.
Plus, some of what I heard or saw regarding CrossFit (CrossFit myths) didn’t look fun. At all.
- lifting huge weights over their head
- doing handstands
- doing push-ups
- doing squats with weights
- getting yelled at
- flipping over tires
- and worst of all, doing pull-ups!!
CrossFit Is for EveryBODY
Then a friend told he how much CrossFit changed her life. I only met her a few months ago, but she said she used to be in terrible shape and poor health. She said her husband had to drop her off at the entrance to malls and department stores and then go park the car because she was unable to walk. She said she couldn’t even do one sit-up. And she changed all that with CrossFit GBT!
She talked about how she and her husband and several of her friends have improved their bodies, but more importantly, improved their quality of life because CrossFit addresses functional movement. I couldn’t believe this woman had ever been anything but the vibrant, energetic, healthy, beautiful person who was standing before me.
Honestly, I didn’t know that someone who couldn’t do a sit-up could or should do CrossFit. I didn’t think of CrossFit as a beginner’s workout. I was intrigued. And I was looking for two things:
- A cross training program to compliment my marathon training.
- An exercise program that my husband would enjoy.
This sounded like it might do both. I still didn’t think I would like it, because I don’t like strength training. But I have promised myself about a hundred times that THIS time when I’m training for my marathon, I’m going to do it right. I’m going to cross-train and not just run seven days a week, and I’m going to stretch.
Crossfit GBT is Like Having a Personal Trainer
And Karla has been helping me do just that. She keeps her class size fairly small, and she scales the workouts for each individual. It is not unusual for three or four people in a class to be doing different things based on ability and experience. And she is always right there, watching carefully, making sure your form is perfect and helping you make adjustments if it’s not.
I thought I’d feel intimidated doing this kind of workout, but the environment at CrossFit GBT couldn’t be more welcoming. There have been a few times when I’ve been anxious to do exactly what everyone else is doing, but Karla’s main goal has been to ensure that you are ready and have perfect form before moving to heavier weights and more complicated moves so that YOU DON’T GET HURT. It’s like having a personal trainer right beside you.
For those more competitive types, Karla’s gym is a certified CrossFit gym, which means that members will be able to eventually compete in CrossFit Open events. Although, Karla stresses that the competition factor will not be the main focus of her box (that’s what CrossFitters call their gym).
“It’s all about being the best YOU can be, working as hard as YOU can. Regardless of previous athletic skill or ability, CrossFit GBT can help you out,” Karla says.
Another thing I love about CrossFit GBT is that Karla is a wealth of information on so many other fitness and health-related topics. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree with a Health and Wellness emphasis. She is a CrossFit certified Level I instructor as well as a US certified Weightlifting Coach. Because of her background, she can assist with understanding the value of sound nutritional eating habits and how to fuel before, during and after workouts.
CrossFit GBT offers group CrossFit classes, individual lessons and nutrition counseling.
“CrossFit GBT is devoted to educating people on how to live a healthy lifestyle,” Karla says. “We want nothing more than to see you succeed at your goals. We will work to help you with whatever we can. We believe fitness is an ongoing process.”
- 16176 Westwoods Business Park Ellisville, MO 63011
More about Karla:
Karla holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with a Health and Wellness emphasis. She is a CrossFit certified Level I instructor as well as a US certified Weightlifting Coach. She assists athletes to understand the value of sound nutritional eating habits and how to fuel before, during and after workouts. She consults with a variety of professional trainers as well as athletic trainers. Karla has worked with all levels of athletes from children to older adults.
She designs workouts based on personal fitness level, time of season for athletes and personal strength level. She has each participant undergo a Functional Movement Screen before beginning training to determine movement patterns that are key to normal function and identify areas of weakness to individualize each athletes goals and workouts.
Karla first started doing CrossFit in 2009, her favorite WOD’s are AMRAP’s and her least favorite WOD’s are those that involve any form of wall balls or Overhead Squats. However, she still programs them anyways because she knows that you will never be able to get better if you do not practice.