10 Reasons Why CrossFit Makes You A Better Employee
As published on the Tabata Times
I was in a job interview the other day, talking through my skills and strengths, doing my best to sell myself as a hard worker who would fit into the team. After going through various questions, the interviewer suddenly says, “And I see you do CrossFit?” “Oh, yes!” I beam, with that unbridled enthusiasm common to most CrossFitters. I’d forgotten that I’d slipped in “CrossFit L1 instructor” at the top of my list of qualifications (obviously where it belongs). As it turned out, my interviewer also did CrossFit, and he proceeded to tell me (also with that unbridled enthusiasm) about how it had changed his life. Ten minutes later, I walked out with a job and having promised them that we’d all be doing lunges down the hallways by the end of my first week. Of course, I wasn’t hired just because my new boss also did CrossFit, but because he knows that CrossFitters make good employees. Here’s why:
1. Doing CrossFit makes you generally awesome.
Ok, that one’s a joke. Kind of.
2. It helps you make connections in the office.
We’ve all heard the joke: “How do you know if someone does CrossFit? They’ll tell you.” Well, let’s be honest, this is quite true – I even got it on my CV, for Pete’s sake! Discovering that you have a hobby in common with someone at work, especially one as widespread and popular as CrossFit, makes it much easier to start conversations and create connections with colleagues. You’ll be regarded as a better employee because you’ll quickly integrate yourself in to your new team.
3. You’ll take fewer sick days.*
The usual lifestyle habits of most dedicated CrossFitters make us a healthy and resilient bunch. A healthy diet, probably with a Paleo lean, increases immunity and energy levels. Regular exercise also strengthens our immune system, as well as our overall physical strength, making us less susceptible to workplace viruses and injuries. Ever noticed that everyone seems to get sick at least once during the winter but you just cruise on through? That’s thanks to your healthy choices. Your colleagues may snigger as you munch on kale chips, nut mixes and down yet another tuna salad, but you’ll know that they’ll be the next ones to take a sick day.
*This applies to anybody dedicated to regular exercise and a healthy diet.
4. You’re productive throughout the day.
Continuing on from point #3 – our healthy lifestyle means that there are no 3pm funks for us as we’re well-fueled throughout the day. We manage our energy levels well. Our regular meals provide us with good sources of energy, so instead of heading to the café for some chocolate at 3pm, we’ll just keep ploughing on through.
5. You’ve got mental strength.
Not just anybody has the mental strength to slog through session after session of killer workouts rotating through exercises like burpees, wall balls, thrusters and toes to bar. When faced with something challenging at work – a busy shift, a heated meeting or a complicated matter to resolve – a CrossFitter will know how to approach the issue. You’ll break it down into manageable chunks, getting through it bit by bit, knowing that you can do it; you just have to persevere.
6. You’ve got good time management.
It’s not easy getting to the gym 3-5 times a week, plus any extra-curricular activities. You’ve got to plan around work, kids, family and social commitments. Most CrossFitters will have planned their week around their CrossFit sessions. You’ll be very aware of everything else that you’ve got going on, but will know how to manage it. Anyone who call pull this off long-term can sort out their work calendar too. Sure, there might be extra water-cooler chat about chicks called Fran and Grace, and online CrossFit research might get a little out of hand at times, but any CrossFit-related downtime will be made up for by a generally more productive employee.
7. You’re no slacker.
Making progress as a CrossFit athlete – increasing strength, endurance, stamina and all the other points of physical performance – requires hard work and dedication. You know that you get out what you put in. You know that by doing a shallow air squat or by not getting your chest to the deck in a push up you’re only cheating yourself. And you take these values with you to work. At work, you give all your tasks 100%. You’re efficient and you’re organized because you display these qualities not only at CrossFit but in all aspects of your life.
8. You’re good in heated debates.
I would be surprised to learn of any CrossFitter and/or Paleo enthusiast who hasn’t had his or her lifestyle choices challenged.
“CrossFit is a cult! Keen to get an injury are you? It’s such a fad. There’s no science behind it. Bread is full of important nutrients. As if our bodies haven’t adapted over the last 10,000 years!”
Regular exercise raises endorphins, lowers cortisol and provides an outlet to relieve stress.Faced with such taken-from-a-glossy-mag-or-weak-news-source comments, most CrossFitters would take a deep breath and begin to methodically rebut the criticism with structured arguments. They’d also know to not go blue in the face trying to convince people of the benefits. CrossFitters will take these debating skills to the office with confidence, knowing that with the right information at hand they’re capable of constructing logical arguments to counter any demanding boss or difficult customer.
9. CrossFitters have lower stress levels.
Ok, we’re talking lower stress-levels generally, not necessarily around the Open when everyone anxiously awaits the announcement of the weekly WOD! CrossFitters will prioritize time in their day to get to the gym knowing that it won’t only make them healthier, but also happier. You’ll remember how much better you feel after a gym session, despite the crying kids/long day of meetings/miserable weather. Regular exercise raises endorphins, lowers cortisol and provides an outlet to relieve stress. This makes for a less-stressed employee, which is good for everyone. Especially the guy at the desk next to you!
10. CrossFitters are proactive.
How many lazy CrossFitters do you know? No, I don’t know many either. Lazy people don’t tend to last long in an environment that requires you to make your own decisions on how hard you’ll work. CrossFitters are doers. They set goals and work hard to attain them. If they need to do something, they’ll get up and do it. They won’t waste time because they know that time is precious and they’ve learnt how to manage it (see #6). In the office, the energetic CrossFitter will get up and put paper in the printer; if something needs tidying or organizing they’ll do it; if they’ve finished their tasks for the day they’ll see who needs help. They’re proactive, always looking to do that bit extra and look after their colleagues.
Does this sound like you? If not, stay tuned for 7 Reasons Why CrossFit (Sometimes) Makes You a Bad Employee…