Wednesday, August 7, 2013

CrossFit - A Beautiful Thing

The CrossFit Games -- (

Since 2011, Lisa Long and her daughter were hoping to both qualify for the CrossFit Games and experience the competition together. But life got in the way and Long went alone, finishing ninth in the 50-54 Masters division that year.

This year, however, was different.

Both mother and daughter competed at the Games.

"It's heaven, a little slice of heaven," Long says. "It is a beautiful thing to be here with her."

Mom went home with a silver medal in the 55-59 Masters division and daughter, Rory Zambard, finished 14th overall among the individual women.

It's been a long time coming as 55-year-old Long found CrossFit in 2005, bringing 14-year-old Rory along. CrossFit Rainier has been a great place to cultivate friendships, Long says, and was an ideal place for her teenager. Now Zambard is a member of CrossFit's Level 1 Seminar Staff.

"That is one of the things that does make me cheerful is to have your child bloom into a beautiful, powerful woman," Long says. "It makes me want to be like her and then she says she wants to be more like me, ya know. It's a symmetry that's unlike anything else."

Video by Michael McCoy and Jeremy Podlog.

CrossFit can change how a woman both defines beauty and feels about her body, as Rita Benavidez, Jackie Perez, Erin Cianciolo and Andrea Ager discuss in this video.

Once thinking beauty was a picture of a waify woman on a magazine, Benavidez feels differently now. "My perception of beauty has changed over the past few years," Benavidez says. "True beauty ... is strength and fitness, and confidence in yourself."

Perez was originally motivated by trying to be skinny. "That wasn't getting me anywhere," she says. "With CrossFit, I set goals. I want to deadlift 225, I'm going to hit that faster than I'm going to look in the mirror and like what I see."

Ager says putting in the work is key to getting what you want. "I think that hard work and the way that your body looks go so hand-in-hand," she says. "Once you do get a body that you want, you're very proud of it ... you're proud of what your body can do."

Through CrossFit, these women are confident, stronger and fitter. They are mothers, tomboys, coaches. They are CrossFit athletes.

Four top UK athletes take on a challenging CrossFit session. Redman, Hugo, Matt and Leon are four guys with a passion for fitness whose usual training is based on lifting weights in the gym. Here, they take on one of the most exciting and challenging forms of training to emerge in the last few years.

Crossfit is a tough workout for the whole body, heard and lungs, with a variety of exercises which are designed constantly to challenge the body. The guys are Hugo Barcelos, Redman Neale, Leon Williams and Matt Sallis. Check them out on Facebook.

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