FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

We’re going to try to compile everything we’re ask constantly- Yay for organization! This will always be a work in progress so please bear with us. If it’s a question regarding the methodology of CrossFit you can start with CrossFit.com’s FAQ.

GENERAL

Is CrossFit right for me?

This depends on your goals. If you want the ability to do anything physical, then yes. We achieve work capacity: your ability to move specific loads specific distances as efficiently as possible. This could be you carrying a couch up some stairs, running a full marathon in less than 3 hours, or lifting heavy objects over your head.

Is CrossFit dangerous?

Like any other physical activity, there are inherent dangers in any type of exercise. Knowing your limits (both physically and mentally) will keep you progressing safely. We move our bodies, lift objects, test cardio and other physical outputs- if you have been sedentary it is recommended that you take it relatively easy until you’ve got at least a month of regular activity before doing anything intense.

Please read “CrossFit Induced Rhabdo” by Greg Glassman.

Don’t I need to be “in shape” to start CrossFitting?

Absolutely not! The awesome thing about our method of fitness is that anyone can get a great workout in the same class. We have ways to modify and scale exercises and workouts to your specific needs and abilities. It is also seen

Those workouts look too hard/intense for me!

They can be- in our form of exercise we ask you to look for a relative high intensity in some of our workouts. This essentially means finding what’s difficult, but doable, for you. It could be a 500lbs deadlift or 50lbs- the load isn’t as important as long as you’re moving and being challenged!

How does this CrossFit SLU operate any differently from any other gym?

Instead of just “working out”, we provide our community with the knowledge to become responsible for their own health and fitness. Our knowledgeable staff includes a variety of different people with different backgrounds and different specialties to create a broad and inclusive fitness program. We have a general population who want to be more active, as well as populations with more specific goals. We build a foundation of movement and understanding of said movement so that people may pursue other physical opportunities in the future. That means while we have high-level elite athletes who train for sanctioned competitions, we start by teaching everyone with the foundations of movement. First-time exercisers who work full-time desk jobs work out with Olympic contenders and everyone in between: gym rats who have frequented the gym for years (and have no made continual progress), weekend warriors, the obese who want to be healthier, teenagers, former competitive athletes looking something to do, previous or currently injured people who want to not just “get back to normal”, but actually improve, and the elderly who are on the cusp of functional changes.

Do you provide any discounts? Why are you so expensive?

We believe the services we provide are worth what we charge. We do not provide discounts because we value our training and believe our rates are fairly priced given the attention to quality we strive to give. The majority of our revenue go back to the facility and its athletes, and in continuing to provide a solid training program. You can think of it as a personal training co-op!

If pricing is your primary concern shop around for a CrossFit gym here!

Is it really possible to get a great workout in those short times (5 to 15 minutes)?

Yes, most definitely! When you come in for your free orientation we can tack on an optional workout about 10 minutes long and we will let that answer this question for you. Intensity and duration are connected: the higher the intensity, the shorter the workout (think of moving a car out of a ditch). The lighter the intensity, the longer the duration (think of a long run).

Isn’t squatting bad for the knees?

It can be, especially when you’re not doing them correctly. The pain people experience may come from lack of use, mobility issues, or previous injuries. There are many dangers in the kitchen like cutting yourself when using a knife but people learn how to use them safely. We want to provide an education in the gym that teaches and tests this movements pain-free.

Squatting should generally load the muscles of the hip and legs (in that order). This means that the feet stay completely flat, the hips and butt move back, and the back stays flat. Any forward deviation and you load the knees, which could result in pain- or even worse- injury.

So should I buy minimalist shoes and wear them all the time?

Not necessarily. Just like any other tool, you need to know how to use it properly. That, and it takes time to develop your body to prevent/avoid injury.

If you are transitioning we suggest only wearing them when you workout. After your body builds strength in the proper musculature then you can start using them for longer runs, etc.

Should I take supplements?

First, remember that supplements are in addition to, not in replacement of. Be more concerned about your nutrition, rest/recovery/sleep and your training.

Can people work out on their own? Do you have “open gym”?

No. Fitness instruction cannot occur when athletes are picking and choosing their own work. It can also disrupt the flow of the gym’s programming. The weekly agenda is shared at the beginning of every week.

Do you train others to be coaches?

Yes. If you are interested in eventually becoming an instructor please talk with Andrew and Tony in person! It all starts with being an athlete in the gym yourself!

Does CrossFit HQ determine what you teach? How you run your gym?

No, CrossFit HQ does not determine how we do anything. Fortunately they have set us up as affiliates- not a franchise. This means that every CF facility you come across with independantly-owned and comes up with their own business practices and training methodologies. The size of the facility, the style of training, the preference of exercises, hours, prices, etc. are determined by themselves. Each of the 5000+ CrossFit gyms are unique in their own way.

CLASSES

Have a question? Email us: info@crossfitslu.com

How long are classes?

Approximately one hour and we do our best to start and end on time.

How are classes structured?

Our usual program involves a warm-up, skill session, a workout and a cool down, usually including some mobility work like stretching or SMR (self-myofascial release). Some people will also work on skills, or “grease the groove”, before and after class.

An example:

0:00-0:15 greeting, warmup and introductions.
0:15-0:25 skill work or strength work.
0:25-0:30 workout (WOD) explanation and preparation
0:30-0:50 conditioning workout
0:50-1:00 cool down and mobility

Can I drop in?

Yes and no. Yes, if you have been CrossFitting regularly (3 month+) at another affiliate or at home. No if you’ve never participated in one of our classes before. We offer free orientations to those who coordinate a time to meet. $20 for one visit. $35 for two visits. $55 for a week of unlimited- 7-days expiration.

It wouldn’t be fair to our current athletes in class if we have to spend time working and teaching the basics to someone completely new, and that’s why we have an introductory program to fill in that prerequisite knowledge.

I cannot work out on my own?

You can spend time mobilizing your tight tissues quietly on the side, but there is no free use of equipment for exercise. The exception goes for our athletes in our specialty programs such as Strength, CompEx, and Endurance.

What are these Specialty Programs?

We have a handful that we offer: Strength, Endurance, Mobility, Yoga, and Comp Ex. These generally include extra work in place, or more likely, on top of your normal CrossFit classes. The focus is to give you individualized programming to hit your particular goals in these particular activities.

Any other specialty classes?

We offer Mobility and Yoga as well. These are free to all of our members as long as they RSVP for the class using the ZenPlanner system. We also have HellaFit classes coming soon. If you keep your eye on the calendar then sometimes we host special Skill Intensive classes. During these hours we focus on either one skill or skills surrounding one piece of apparatus.

I’m injured. Can I still attend class?

Absolutely! The CrossFit methodology prides itself on it’s ability to scale and modify as needed. First, you must understand your injury, why it occured, how to avoid causing further damage, and what you can do to continue exercise. While your new modified workout might not look the same, the importance of movement will assist in the healing process.

I’d like to request a special celebratory workout!

Great! We are happy to provide special WODs to commemorate special occasions, but with the huge influx of requests we sometimes find ourselves unable to stick to our intended programming. So here’s the one-for-one exchange: Send Andrew the request at least a month out from the requested date and we would love to have a testimonial written that we can use on our blog, about your experience with CrossFit and our business. That way, when we do post up a workout, we’ll be able to spotlight you in our social outlets. If you’d like to use a different outlet like Yelp! or facebook reviews, etc. that would be fantastic.

BILLING

Billing Policies
  • With 7 days notice, we will place an account hold for a minium of 2+ weeks for travel or illness. Requests must be emailed to info@crossfitslu.com.
  • Membership cancellations require 14 days notice. There will be no refunds issued once transactions have been processed. We cannot retroactively credit your accound for “missed” classes. Think of it like internet service – you use it for the month or you don’t.
  • Our domestic partner discount must be entirely under the “Primary’s” account and will be charged for the multiple memberships.
  • Discounts will only be issued with proper proof of employment directly with our management.
When does the autopay run?

Our autopays run on the 1st of every month.

What types of payment do you accept?

Cash, check, ACH, debit, and credit (Visa, Mastercard, Discover). We do not take American Express.

What about changing my membership frequency?

You can upgrade and downgrade membership (6x/week, 3x/week, 2x/week) whenever you please, and as often as you like.

Do you provide discounts?

Only to military, law enforcement, first responders. Must provide proof. We only have a family discount rate. Email us for more details.

How do I cancel?

Please email us. We require 7 days notice for any account changes or cancellations.

Why did you charge me when I already asked for an adjustment!!?

Things don’t always go as planned since we are using an out-of-the-box billing system. We’ll do our best to fix it. It’s a good idea to keep an eye on your bank statements and email confirmations to make sure everything was properly charged. We can make adjustments on the first day of the month (our automatic billing date).

Can I keep a tab at the gym for other purchases like apparel, athletic tape, mobility tools, jumprope, etc?

Yes. Look for the signing sheet.

WAITLIST

There’s a waitlist?

Unfortunately yes. We can only fit so many people in the gym per hour, per day. With our current setup we want to keep everyone safe and satisfied as much as we can.

Have any other options?

We have a second location, Foundation CrossFit, on Capitol Hill. Otherwise check out our referrals down below!

ORIENTATIONS

“I’m pretty active”, “I’ve been CrossFitting elsewhere”, etc… Do I still have to do an orientation?

Yes. We want to know each person who participates at the gym. We also want to outline the Why, What and How to our program. All CrossFit facilities are not created equally. Some bias gymnastics, some weightlifting (Olympic lifting and/or powerlifting). Others will focus on the endurance sports and a handful work on being equally rounded. We want to ensure that our athletes understand what we focus on and how we accomplish tasks.

Although you may be moderately active on your own, your body may not be acclimated to the type of work  and exercise we do here.

How do I prepare for my orientation?

First all, make sure you are hydrated. Most people today are chronically dehydrated. We believe that sedentary people need to be drinking 64 ounces daily at minimum!

Also we want everyone to have eaten well sometime prior to working out. You can’t drive Mercedes Benz to it’s potential on an empty tank.

What do I need to bring for my orientation?

Clothes to workout in. We have a bathroom and changing rooms for you to change in and cubbies for you to store your personal items. Bringing water and a towel would be helpful too.

RSVP

What’s my “Athlete ID”?

Your Athlete ID works in our RSVP System and will be assigned when you are cleared for class. It will be the first letter of your first name, the first four letters of your last name and the day of your birth. Example: If your name was Luke Skywalker and your birthday was May 4th your ID would be LSkyw04.

What happens if I don’t RSVP for class?

If you a member of the gym you will be subject to an exercise penalty, and will not have priority on the equipment/workout. We are limited in our square footage and we’d like to keep our trainer-to-athlete ratio very small. It’s one of few responsibilities we ask. It’s also respectful to those who RSVP every time.

FACILITY

How big is the facility?

Foundation Athletics (what we named the building) is about 10,000SF: 2000SF office space, the rest is training floor.

Do you have bathrooms?

Yes. Two.

Do you have showers?

No, but we offer free moist towelettes! (;

Do you have changing rooms?

Yes, we have multiple changing rooms.

Where can I store my belongings?

We have a large cubby system along one of the walls that’s very visible.

Is there parking available?

We own two spots in the alley. Otherwise there’s plenty of metered street parking around the immediate block, as well as a pay parking lot right jumping distance from the garage door. Weekend deal for said parking lot: $2 all day.

Can I park my bike somewhere safely?

Feel free to park your bike inside the facility in our designed area. We have plenty of hooks attached to the mezzanine the back:

What kind of equipment do you have?

The list is always growing, but expect CrossFit staples, DIY equipment, and random toys: Rogue Fitness barbells, a Rogue Fitness Infinity System rack/pullup cage system (with “Dirty South” bars, flying pullup bars, and fat bars), York squat/press racks, an assortment of gymnastics rings, Dynamax medicine balls, MDUSA slammer balls, an assortment of kettlebells ranging from 8kg to 32kg, parallel bars, stall bars, pommels, plyo boxes ranging from 8″ to 30″, jerk boxes, ab-mats, yoga blocks, Rogue Fitness Glute-Ham Developers, Schwinn AirDynes, Concept 2 Indoor Rowing Ergometers, a plethora of bands, chains, foam/hard/Rumble rollers, lacrosse balls, weight sleds/tires, tractor tires, sledgehammers, evil wheels, crash mats, and plenty more.

PROGRAMMING

When is the workout posted?

We schedule the workout to show up at 7pm the night prior.

Is there any rhyme/reason to the gym’s programming?

This is the quick and dirty version of what we strive to provide, but we do believe in a more focused training protocol. We’re not going to throw random-ass workouts at you because you’ll burn out if you’re not dying of boredom first.

Programming is based off of four-week cycles:

Week 1

Acquisition Week: our focus is on developing skills and introducing new ones. Expect time to play and the instructors to hound you on correct technique execution.

Week 2

Volume Week: increased reps and intensity with the skills you’ve been introduced to from the week prior, along with the mainstays of our CrossFit program. Expect to get sweaty, sore, and generally fatigued.

Week 3

Deload Week: a recovery/preparation week designed with a medium level of intensity. Our goal is to really focus on form, strategy, and preparation for next week.

Week 4

Max Week: we will throw you through a battery of tests (some new, some old) as well as put you through weightlifting, cardiovascular, and skill trials to see if you’ve improved upon previous performances.

Though everything is subject to change…

ATHLETES

Can you tell me what the workout will be tomorrow?

It will be posted, but CrossFit is about being able to do the known, unknown and unknowable.

What are my responsibilities as an athlete?
  1. Work hard! Have fun!
  2. RSVP for class.
  3. Stay safe- listen to your body, NOT your ego

Other than that, we’re pretty relaxed about things.

Ahh! My hands hurt.

I’m a lady and I don’t want to be big and bulky lifting weights.

Unless you produce/supplement with the hormones that men do, you won’t have to worry. Stronger does not mean bigger. See: http://journal.crossfit.com/2012/02/fashiontofitness.tpl

BLOG

Who’s responsible for the content?

Most of the time Andrew does the daily posts, but most of the staff contributes some way. Paolo is the media man and moves out most of the photography and videography, with the occasional helping of Andrew and Tony’s work.

What are all of these acronyms and abbreviations?
  • WOD = Workout of the Day
  • AMRAP = ‘as many rounds as possible’ or ‘as many reps as possible’
  • BW = body weight
  • C2 = Concept 2 Rowing Ergometer
  • C2B = chest-to-bar
  • C2W = chest-to-wall
  • K2E = knees-to-elbows
  • KB = kettlebell
  • kg / # = kilograms/pounds
  • PR = personal record
  • Rx = “as prescribed”, meaning you performed the work exactly as it was intended
  • subbed = “substituted”, meaning you needed to change something to fit your needs.
  • SupeRx = beyond what is prescribed.
  • T2B = toes-to-bar
  • T2R = toes-thru-rings/toes-to-rings
  • TGU = Turkish get-up
  • 5RM/3RM/1RM = your 5, 3, or 1-repetition maximum
  • HBD = Happy Birthday

AFFILIATES

I love the idea of CrossFit, but your facility isn’t convenient for me. Any recommendations?

The following is a list of CrossFit affiliates in the surrounding area. Check out map.crossfit.com for a cool googlemap of all the affiliates worldwide.

The affiliates that we know and trust with programming are

Seattle

Level 4 CrossFit Seattle (Ballard)
Urban CrossFit (South Lake Union/Dexter)
Xplore CrossFit (Downtown)
Morgan Junction CrossFit (West Seattle)
CrossFit Loft (West Seattle)
CrossFit Belltown (Belltown)
Elliot Bay CrossFit (Belltown)
CrossFit 206 (Leschi)
Rocket CrossFit (Hillman City)

North End

Local’s Gym / Lynnwood CrossFit (Lynnwood)
CrossFit Advantage (Lynnwood)
CrossFit Industrious (Lynnwood)
CrossFit Paramount (Shoreline/Mountlake Terrace)

Eastside

CrossFit Bellevue
Lake Hills CrossFit
Eastside Strength & Conditioning (Redmond/Bellevue)
Western Pacific CrossFit (Kirkland)
Cascade CrossFit (Issaquah)
SnoRidge CrossFit (Snoqualmie)

Westside

Kitsap CrossFit (Poulsbo)
CrossFit Outcome (Bainbridge Island)

South End

Rainier CrossFit (Puyallup)
Tacoma Strength & Conditioning / CrossFit Tacoma
Trident Athletics / CrossFit South Tacoma

HOME GYM

I want to start building a home gym- any ideas?

Of course! We believe you should start with a relatively heavy kettlebell, then a pair of rings, then finally a barbell (in that order).

Other great resources: