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Light on equipment, heavy on results

Jun. 22, 2008 - 11:14AM   |   Last Updated: Jun. 22, 2008 - 11:14AM  |  
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The beauty of the CrossFit system is that it can be done just about anywhere.

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The beauty of the CrossFit system is that it can be done just about anywhere.

All participants need is some basic equipment and room to run.

The basics include:

* Weightlifting: The Olympic-style version of the sport, including exercises such as the jerk, clean and squat.

* Cardio: Sprints are favored over longer runs. And expect elements from track and field, such as the broad jump and standing jump.

* Gymnastics: Rings and bars are used to increase flexibility and strength. Unorthodox to the traditionalist, but useful to sculpt parts of the body often ignored.

The three basic elements are merged to create a seemingly never-ending flow of exercises, boiled down into a rotating mix of workouts known as the "Workout of the Day," available free on http://www.crossfit.com">http://www.crossfit.com. While participants can exercise alone, the CrossFit philosophy is also based on the camaraderie of shared suffering. The online communities are huge and supportive.

CrossFit workouts are unapologetically difficult, stressing the mind as much as the body. It's certainly not a requirement, but having an encouraging voice on hand can help participants through the grueling sessions.

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