The Joys of Functional Fitness

By: Caryn Fox

You probably know the feeling: You show up at the gym, look at the WOD, groan, and do it anyway. When it’s over, you probably loved it. ☺

Regardless – whether you loved the workout or simply pushed through – know that everything you do at the gym provides critical functional fitness we need in life, especially as we get older.

This past week was the perfect example.

First was the crazy snowstorm. My husband and I spent nearly all of Monday building a massive structure in our yard to cover as many vegetables and plants as possible. I’m talkin’ something that was maybe 10×20 complete with poles, stakes, tarps – the whole nine yards.

It was just the two of us. I’m about five feet tall; my husband is six feet. I had to go above and beyond to lift things to an even height, push crazy hard to get cross-beams in place, and keep going even when I was exhausted because the snow was coming whether or not I was too worn out to keep building.

We got it done and saved everything, even the tomatoes! I truly don’t think I could have kept up my half of the building if not for all the work we do at the gym every day. 

Pushing, pulling, lifting, stamina – functional fitness!

Then we went up to Crested Butte for a mini vacation. Saturday was a hike to views. Since it had snowed during the week, the trails were a crazy muddy mess.

For the hike up, most of our steps were sideways, like walking up between two walls, because the trail was so muddy; one step onto the trail and we were sure to slip and fall.

Back down? WAY harder. Every step required planning, and a laser focus on balance and stability. I successfully navigated Mud Trail almost the entire hike, then … lost my traction and fell into what was essentially a mud pit. 

BUT, thanks to all the training we do at Vantage, I was able to find solid footing, gain balance, stabilize, get back up, and complete the hike successfully, uninjured and unscathed.

Dexterity, balance, stability, stamina – functional fitness!

We all know, on some level, that working out at Vantage provides more than just a workout. As we get older, the “functional fitness light” that shines at the end of every workout shines even brighter when we’re not at the gym. 

So, next time you’re on the fence about coming to the gym, think beyond the workout; think beyond that one hour of your day to the next day or the next weekend when you’ll tap directly into that functional fitness to play with your kids, crush a challenging hike, accomplish a home project, or just be a dramatically more fit human. 

The functional fitness you gain during that hour will last for decades.

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