Inside The CrossFit Culture, Part II: The Overhaul

Briana Drost at the beginning of her CrossFit training. She would lose 30 pounds and become a competitive CrossFit athlete. Photo: T.J. Murphy

Briana Drost’s Start

Briana Drost at the beginning of her CrossFit training. She would lose 30 pounds and become a competitive CrossFit athlete. Photo: T.J. Murphy

Estrada recently talked to me about those who achieve the results that Briana has and those who drift away. At first, Estrada wasn’t sure how she would do, noting that Drost was in her 20s, and in Estrada’s experience maturity factors in. Younger newbies suffered a higher attrition rate.

“There are two simple steps you need to follow to succeed at CrossFit,” Estrada says. “Number one is show up. Number two is don’t quit. Briana was a hard worker, but I wasn’t sure she would make it. She had a hectic, crazy schedule.”

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Chang knew that Drost had a soccer background in her childhood, which indicated she would likely be coachable but there were still challenges. “She was definitely out-of-shape,” he says. “She probably was carrying 30 pounds of excess weight and had little muscle mass, so the ‘useless weight’—the fat—was probably even higher.”

“The first few months were tough,” Drost says. “I felt like I was going to throw up every time. I was shocked. I thought, ‘What did I get myself into?’ If it wasn’t for the community I never would have made it. I would have quit.”

“Usually when I try something new I feel uncomfortable and I’m weary of being judged,” Drost adds. “I never felt that at Elysium. The support was genuine. It feels like a team sport.”

Chang commented on this community dynamic. “I can’t think of a better environment to train in and learn something new.  Your fellow athletes literally will not let you fail if you put in the effort. True, the workouts can seem intimidating, and you’re going to have to bust your butt, but anything worth achieving is going to take effort.”

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