“Toughness knows not Gender”
Says Crossfit organisation in efforts to promote equality in the strength and capability of women and men.
For centuries we have been told that men are physically stronger than women, tougher than women and have more potential in exercise and weight training than women. This constant message of gender stereotyping is drilled into us from a young age. Women are undermined and lack faith and belief in themselves to be strong and do what men do in gyms around the world. I want to change the perception in my community that men are stronger than women, and that women do not have the same physical capabilities of men. Crossfit is a global organisation and exercise program that has taken the world by storm over the last 10 years, and is heavily focused on ensuring the equality of genders. The below video posted by the Crossfit organisation, portrays their views on gender and how toughness cannot be depicted by this.
Strength shouldn’t be determined by gender, how can it be when there are stronger women then men around the world. Crossfit fights against gender perceptions and allows women to feel the confidence to be themselves and train to their fullest potential. From personal experience, whilst it might sound cliche, crossfit truly changed my life for the better. A friend recommended it to me, I went to one class and I was sold. My local Crossfit gym isn’t your standard gym with a mens and women’s weight section. It is a community of friends who come together to all do what they love and what has changed their lifestyle completely. 7 days a week, you can go and train in mixed classes with males and females, where women beat men in the scheduled work outs everyday. This empowerment is something I cannot describe, but it truly makes you feel on top of the world. You are valuable, you are strong and you are worth more than you think. Crossfit hasn’t just changed my body it has changed my mind. I walk in to train at the 6:30pm class, I am full of confidence and completely believe that I have the potential to do what all the men can, and I succeed with this mindset alone.
I want to raise awareness to women in my community and network that crossfit isn’t just exercise, it is a place where you can feel comfortable to be yourself and be the best version of yourself.
So here’s what you can do to change your life, like I have changed mine, and crush the stereotype that men are stronger than women.
1. Be Confident! Be you! Be the best version of yourself!
Believe in yourself. Believe that you can do whatever you set your mind to. If you want to lose weight, tone your body or just feel better about yourself, Crossfit can and will get you there. Crossfit will change your complete mindset. Once you start seeing the change in your body and how you feel it becomes an addiction. You feel better, you look better, you sleep better. Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself and become a little sweaty in the process, because it’s a beautiful process and you can achieve it.
2. Who cares what they say? Lift the weights!
Crush the assumption that if women lift weights they will become all muscle and this is unattractive. This is so far from the truth I can’t even begin to explain. “If women were no longer a fragile timid group in need of protection, men could not be assured of their own role as powerful protectors, & consequently relations between the sexes would have to be reconsidered” (Susan Chen, ‘Coming on Strong’). Don’t be scared of your own strength, train to your full potential and do everything you can to be amazing. “While playing sports our bodies are used to do with as we please. If in that process our bodies look unfeminine — if they become bruised or bloody or simply unattractive — that seems irrelevant. Our bodies are ours. We own them” (Mariah Nelson, ‘Are we Winning Yet?’). It’s going to hurt, your going to wake up aching and be in pain, your hands will callus, but it is all worth it to believe that you are strong, and who cares what they say! Do what you want, crush assumptions, be strong, be beautiful.
3. Why can’t you do that?
Don’t let your mind hold you back. Just because the boys in the gym are lifting heavy weights and have great form, doesn’t mean you can’t too. Just because their fast runners, doesn’t mean you can’t be too! Don’t compare yourself to others, train to your fullest potential and you will see the results. You can do anything you set your mind to, you can be physically and mentally strong and you can beat the boys!
4. Crossfit will change your life, it changed mine!
Since starting crossfit I have a completely different outlook on life. I feel physically and mentally stronger than I ever have, and I have no shame in doing weight training and beating the boys at the gym. Below is a video of both myself and friends training at our local gym. I hope this inspires you to believe in yourself, understand how strong you can be and exactly how much potential you truly have.
I believe that Crossfit has the potential to change the perceptions of gender and strength, and we can all contribute to this change. Toughness knows not gender, women can be strong and can be anything they want to be!