Students Push Themselves to be Crossfit

Most people don’t associate the words fun and working out together. The most common reaction to physical activity amongst people is that of dread. Mrs. Shanley, a gym teacher at Verona High School, had noticed this attitude towards working out amongst her students. In response to this, she decided to bring a CrossFit class to the high school, which could give students more of a chance to participate in an enjoyable work out. CrossFit is an intense fitness program that incorporates exercises to give people a stronger and healthier lifestyle.

“One of the biggest challenges with starting up the program at the school was misinformation. Students saw CrossFit videos on the internet and immediately thought it would be too intense,” Mrs. Shanley explained. People think you have to be a crazy athlete to be able to work out in these high-intense workout programs. However, these CrossFit programs are designed for people to do for as long as they can to give them a good quality of life. “I want to be able to hike and play with my kids until I’m 90 years old,” she shared. She knows CrossFit will help her get to that point in her life, and she’s hoping it will give students that opportunity as well.

These CrossFit classes consists of weightlifting, mobility, and high intensity interval training. Mrs. Shanley wanted the class to teach people what their bodies were capable of, and how they could get them to their full potential.

“In just the few weeks since we started the program, I can see a difference in students both physically and mentally,” she explained. 

However, CrossFit isn’t just about the work out for Mrs. Shanley. She admits that, “The idea of CrossFit is to a build a family of happy and healthy people, and to be a part of something you didn’t think you could be a part of.”  One of the most amazing things about CrossFit is that no one finishes alone.  Mrs. Shanley explains that, “students are afraid to participate in things that they believe they will fall behind in, and tend to turn away from things others may be better at than them.”  She explains that if you are the last person to finish a workout in CrossFit, instead of everyone waiting for you to finish, they are all surrounding you and cheering you on. Shanley wants the class to be somewhere people could feel confident about themselves, and can build more positive self esteem.

“I want football players to workout next to someone who doesn’t normally work out, so they can build a relationship with people they never thought they would have one with” says Mrs. Shanley. She feels two of the most important aspects of CrossFIt are the relationships you make, and the pride you feel at getting to be a part of something you didn’t think you ever could be part of before.

VHS senior Maeve McGinley explained that being told to “add weight” while working out during these CrossFit classes was one of the most terrifying and amazing feelings in the world. “Every time I was told to add weight I would get nervous because I didn’t believe I could do anything more than I was already doing. But I did it anyway and it was then that I realized my potential.” Maeve is one of the students who has gone to classes regularly, and says it has been truly life changing for her.

These CrossFit classes were offered at 3:05 PM and 4:15 PM on a biweekly schedule of Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Tuesday, Thursday. However, Mrs. Shanley shared her plans with us to start a CrossFit Club which would be held every day after school. “I want these classes to be open to not only students, but to adults and teachers as well. “

Mrs. Shanley is always encouraging students to get involved physically as often as they can. CrossFit is a truly amazing way of getting kids to put themselves out there, and create a stronger version of themselves. Shanley knows the potential of all of these students, and she wants them to realize it as well. Crossfit has had an amazing turnout since it has started, and is always looking for extra participants. If you are someone who’s looking for a way to work out in an atmosphere that is enjoyable and welcoming, Mrs. Shanley encourages you to join CrossFit and find out everything you are truly capable of.