I started doing CrossFit to stay skinny, and maybe get skinnier: I didn’t want to lose too much weight (been there, done that) but I lacked the definition I wanted.

My workouts were mind-numbingly boring at the time. Since high school, I had performed the typical MWF 3 sets of 12-15 reps, alternating upper and lower body with longer cardio days in between. More than a decade later, it was time for some variation.

Enter the “constantly varied” CrossFit. I could have spiced workouts up in other ways, joined a recreational sporting team, for example. I chose CrossFit because an acquaintance—who may have been a guy and may have been gorgeous and may have been the object of my crushing—suggested it after I pressed him for advice.

“I use it to vary up my own workouts. You can do the daily workout posted on the website by yourself or you can join an actual gym,” this Adonis told me.

A flew solo for a few months attempting to push myself in my apartment complex’s gym, until I got a car, moved and ended up near what would become one of the largest boxes in the region.

I walked in terrified. I was the girl who never entered the globo gym’s free-weight area. I was the girl who tried to not make noise on the treadmill, lest my footfall be considered the pounding of a heifer. I was the girl who would never dream of grunting while lifting, lest the groan be misconstrued for lack of capability.

I walked in for my first class on a Thursday morning. I wish I had journaled my first day, week, year; I’ve logged my workouts but not journaled my mental and emotional progress. I know it was a Thursday at 6am, thought, because Chad was the coach. Chad, this dude from Beantown, likely sporting tall socks and sweatband around his head.

Click for Part Two