Karin U.

What were you doing before CrossFit?


I’ve worked out at least four times a week for about 25 years so I’ve come to need a good workout as much mentally as physically. Before CrossFit, I was running and doing the standard Lifetime classes and machines but I was really bored and unchallenged.


Additionally, I have a somewhat uncommon autoimmune disorder. Food sensitivities play into it which makes it difficult to treat since there is no diagnostic testing to determine which foods cause problems. By western medicine standards, my best course of treatment was Prednisone which is a pretty nasty drug. As a result, I was gaining and losing the same 10 pounds on a regular basis regardless of what I ate or how I worked out which was really frustrating. I knew there had to be a better way to deal with this.


Why did you start doing CrossFit?


Simply put, I wanted to be healthy, strong and toned again. I thought CrossFit might be the right way to get there.



What apprehensions did you have before starting?


Since I didn’t really know much about CrossFit I had no real idea of what to expect. All my apprehensions came after I started when I realized how unlike any other workout CrossFit really is.


I knew I really wasn’t strong at all so I worried about being able to make it through the workouts. Plus, I’m not really the power lifting type so I wasn’t sure CrossFit was going to be for me since I couldn’t even get the basics of a lot of the exercises at first. But everyone at CrossFit Sisu is so supportive and encouraging and that helped me feel more confident that I’d eventually get it.


I’ve had a few friends say they want to try CrossFit but are waiting until they are in better shape. Here’s the thing: even if you think  you are in decent shape, you find out you really aren’t when you start CrossFit. But you’ll get in better condition faster if you just start with CrossFit in the first place!



What made you decide to come CrossFit SISU?


I had tried some of Lifetime’s Bootcamps & Personal Training, which did get me some results on and off. But my schedule didn’t allow me to be there at the same days and times so I’d miss sessions. That became frustrating and expensive.


So I stopped going and thought some in-home videos might be a good solution. I did the entire Insanity series and got no results. I actually gained weight—and not from added muscle–because my clothes were tighter at the end. Talk about de-motivating.


I didn’t really know what Crossfit was when I found Sisu online last fall. I was interested but never got around to trying it out. Then in February I saw a Living Social deal and figured it was time to try.


It took me a few months before I was certain I wanted to keep going because I felt so out of place. But now, I’m somewhat addicted. While I’ll never be the strongest one there, I feel great after the WODs and I find that it’s easier to stick to the right eating plan. Because I know if I eat junk instead of whole food I will struggle to make it through the WOD.



What’s the greatest benefit you see so far since starting CrossFit and SISU?


The results are amazing and immediate, no matter what age you are, if you follow through on the program, which means plenty of focus on mobility and clean eating in addition to the WODs. I have four kids ranging in age from nine to 21. I think I’m in better condition than any of them which is sad on the one hand but really awesome from another perspective.


I am stronger than I’ve been in 15 years. At first, I couldn’t do even one unassisted pull-up and only 4 “real” push ups at a time. Now I can do 2 or 3 unassisted pull-ups and 25 “real” push ups in a row. It sounds kind of funny, I think, to be excited about that but CrossFitters get it. It’s motivating to feel that sense of accomplishment and everyone at Sisu celebrates those milestones with you.


After learning about the Paleo lifestyle after starting CrossFit, I realized it could answer many of the autoimmune problems I was trying to solve. I went on a strict “Whole 30” Paleo diet and lost nearly 10 pounds in less than a month—along with all the puffiness that went with it. These were better results than I’d gotten on any eating plan ever. My immunologist agreed with the results and I’ve been able to discontinue all medication except an over the counter allergy pill.


The coaches at Sisu are really knowledgable and motivating. They always check in to see how things are going and have really helpful ideas as to how to get to that next step. Never do I feel like I’m being sold to—they really want everyone to enjoy and benefit from CrossFit.