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Crossfit Chatswood

Box Name: Crossfit Chatswood
Opened: 2011
Members: 70
Location: Australia, NSW Chatswood
Why Crossfit Chatswood? We're the family box.

What’s it like to be a co-owner of a Crossfit Gym?

Alex: It’s pretty awesome – its was a dream for a long time so its been great to see it become a reality. Like any job it can also be challenging/frustrating/stressful at times but all in all its great to be able to be involved with something that I truly believe in and helping people change their lives, reach their goals and improve in nearly all aspects of life.

Scotty: It is fantastic, I love every minute of it! I love seeing the look on people’s faces when they achieve something that they thought was impossible previous to CrossFit. To change people’s lives in such a positive way is an amazing feeling.

What were your fitness background and/or interest before Crossfit?

Alex: I've always been into competitive sports from a young age. Particularly rugby league/union, snowboarding, surfing, swimming and hiking. I have been lucky enough to travel the world doing the things I love. CrossFit is the closest thing I have found to being back into that competitive environment again.

Scotty: I played a lot of sport growing up, anything and everything. Mainly rugby but really anything outdoors.

How did you come across Crossfit and when and what was the “ah ha” moment in deciding to open a BOX together?

Alex: I had the ah ha moment after my first workout. Like all of us I thought I was fit and knew how to train until that moment. I did some research saw there were only 2 or 3 boxes in Sydney and then that became the goal! I spoke to Scotty and then things went from there…

Scotty: A friend of mine who was in the army was telling me about this great way to train. I looked it up on the internet and dabbled a bit in my garage. One day I bit the bullet and signed up to my local Box. I was hooked straight away. I had known Alex for years and he had already starting to prepare to open his own Box,  so I just jumped on the band wagon.

What has been the most challenging thing (ie. regarding managing a BOX)?

Alex: I guess like any business the first 2-3 yrs are the most challenging and we are still in that phase. We have put a lot of resources into it to get started so stress levels were high, I had to work two jobs, cash was low, bills to and set up costs were more than we anticipated. Now we are in a slightly better position and I find the hardest thing to be managing clients. That is making sure they are happy, getting the results they are after, keeping them motivated etc

Scotty: By far the Council at the start. It was a nightmare. Once we got into our Box it’s been great ever since.

Was it how you had imagined?

Alex: I thought I would be training a lot more than I do.  There is a lot more behind the scenes work that needs doing that I didn't know about. Other than that it’s pretty much what I thought.

Scotty: 100 times better. I love everybody that comes in here and they are a massive part of my life. The community that has developed here is amazing.

How do you constantly come up with varied programming?

Alex: A variety of sources but the WOD is depending on what we are looking to achieve that particular day.  With the base CrossFit movements we can vary rep schemes, load, duration of WODs exercises etc. There is a lot that goes into the programming but we loosely base ours around two parts - a strength component which works on a cycle and a conditioning component.

Scotty: Alex is responsible for most of the programming and who knows how he comes up with them. I normally focus on how our athletes are going and trying to work on both strengths and weaknesses.

In your opinion, can crossfit training be applied to endurance athletes like marathon runners or cyclist?

Alex: Yeah for sure. I've seen many endurance athletes improve their performances using CrossFit as their main training tool.

Scotty: Yes, there is no reason why it can’t. There are so many studies that have found that interval and CrossFit training can increase your VO2 max and your aerobic conditioning. Not only with myself but we have athletes here that there distance event times have decreased greatly since adapting the CrossFit method. One example of this is a 63 year old man that has decreased his times in the pool, on the bike and running by over 10%. He has been training in those disciplines for years and was achieving great results. CrossFit has brought it to a whole new level. His times are still coming down; he is training less, never felt stronger and is excited about competing again.

Crossfit sometimes gets knocked for people getting injuries, what are your thoughts on this and have you ever been injured while doing crossfit?

Alex: Yes I have been injured but CrossFit is a sport at the end of the day and all sports have an element of risk. The injury rate is actually very low in comparison to other sports. What I have seen the majority of time and injury arrives from bad movement pattern/weakness/poor posture but with corrective exercises and improved mobility the individual can eliminate that problem and then progress way further than they ever expected. I've seen CrossFit identify problems so that they can be fixed meaning the benefits far out weigh the risks.

Scotty: Other than torn hands, grazes on my shins and a funny mistake I made mucking around on the rings one day, I haven’t had any injuries at all. In fact all my injuries from rugby have gone since CrossFit. If form is paramount and you look after yourself you shouldn’t get injured

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to begin Crossfit?

Alex: Stick with it. Don't give up. Be patient. Work on technique. Work on mobility and leave your ego at the door. Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing and enjoy the ride!

Scotty: Just do it. It will change your life for the better. The biggest misconception is you have to be fit to start. It’s our job to get you fit. It is far less intimidating than the regular ‘globo gym’ I promise.

What’s your most memorable WOD?

Alex: I did a few WODs in the Rockies they were all pretty awesome.

Scotty: I have so many both good and bad WODs I couldn't single out just one.

What was your last meal?

Alex: Breakfast…fish and veggies.

Scotty: Meatballs with stir fried vegetables. It was last night’s leftovers.

What book are you currently reading?

Alex: Life of Pi and the Supple Leopard

Scotty: I'm not much of a book reader and I always have at least two going at the same time. At the moment it’s John Howard’s book, Becoming a Supple Leopard and Steve Job’s book.

Inside a Box: Crossfit Chatswood Box Family | Wodnut

Inside a Box: Crossfit Chatswood "The Family Box" | Wodnut

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