Before he became the owner and head trainer at CrossFit Prestige, Arthur Santos played professional minor-league baseball for the Red Sox, Braves, Royals, and Mets. Arthur, who is also a tae kwon do black belt, saw his life change dramatically when he tried his first CrossFit workout. Fast-forward to the present, and now Arthur and his team of CrossFit-certified coaches introduce new athletes to the CrossFit community and help them achieve their fitness goals.
In their gym—which looks like an industrialized fitness warehouse—a pull-up rig occupies an entire wall as droves of students cling to it during the Workout of the Day. Gymnastics rings dangle from the rig’s suspended bars, and bumper plates stack up on the wall and entice students to perform moves such as overhead squats, cleans, and deadlifts. Because CrossFit stresses varied fitness, WODs rotate every day, just like the moon’s sleep playlist. Today students might be performing dips on gymnastics rings, and tomorrow they might face challenges such as push-ups, kettlebell exercises, rowing, or medicine-ball throws.
Athlete Ego Crossfit's team of instructors could mount a convincing mission to colonize a hostile planet. The staff comes from backgrounds that include the military, organized sports, martial arts, exercise science, nutrition, and firefighting. Together, they blend their varied experience into a hard-hitting Marine Corps–style boot camp and freestyle cross-training program designed to kick-start the performance of amateur, high-school, or professional athletes. Lessons take place in a no nonsense 14,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor facility stocked with Olympic weights, kettlebells, climbing ropes, sandbags, rings, and weight sleds. To fine-tune athletes, the crew supplements sports performance training with nutritional advice.
At Animus CrossFit/Corporal CrossFit, students of every skill level, age, and body type can take control of their health with the help of encouraging coaches. The team of qualified trainers draw on intense training experiences in their own lives, such as strength coach and author Carlos Arias's service in the USMC special forces, his wife Jenny's background as a gymnast, or coach Dayron Castaneda's career in collegiate football. The team prides itself on providing one-on-one training and keeping classes small: staff lead premium CrossFit with 1:8 teacher/student ratios, avoiding the overcrowded classes, lack of equipment, and gym-clothes sharing seen in traditional programs. And indoor-outdoor bootcamp classes take advantage of sunny Miami days while avoiding wet ones by training indoors on grass turf or rubber flooring. The small, 16-person classes tailor exercise individually according to skill level and keep things interesting with a combination of gymnastics and running using balls and ropes.
Students shed pounds and tone muscles in programs that are built on proper nutrition and individual, scalable workout routines. Whether pupils are burning fat and building endurance with cardio routines and kettlebells, boosting strength with weightlifting, or refining their running techniques with pose running, coaches work closely with students to help them push past obstacles and reach health goals.
CrossFit 305 traces its lineage back to a modest, 300-square-foot studio that opened in 2008. Shortly after the staff began reading about CrossFit and testing out the workouts themselves, they decided to dedicate their business entirely to the functional fitness program. Even as they restructured their workouts, their studio continued to grow. Today, they hold their group classes in a 3,500-square foot facility equipped with gymnastics rings, kettlebells, and barbells for Olympic lifting.
Co-owner Dominic Sirianni says that many clients are hesitant to begin training at CrossFit 305, due to CrossFit’s reputation as a brutal, challenging workout. He assures them that they shouldn't be worried. "We scale the workout's intensity to their ability," he explains. "We have people as young as 10 years old and old as 77." In fact, it’s this inclusive atmosphere that keeps members coming back for more.
When they aren’t pushing clients to run faster or throw their boulders further, CrossFit 305's certified trainers encourage them to stay mindful of nutrition. They have even partnered with the Florida Heart Research Institute to help them give accurate body-composition readings and determine ideal body-fat percentages.
CrossFit is an intense fitness program designed for overall athletic excellence, not specialization. The program, comprised of 45- to 60-minute classes, accommodates all skill levels by adapting load and intensity without the need for changing workouts or bicep-boosting intravenous spinach injections. Among the defining features of this program is the unpredictable, shifting workout of the day, which pinpoints daily exercises scalable for all fitness levels and generalizes for progressive improvement. The CrossFit program starts strong and ramps up in intensity every class, so missing workouts is not recommended.
At Crossfit Grounds, owner Dominic Maurici and his staff lead clients toward their desired fitness goals with CrossFit’s principles of varied, functional fitness. Beneath the studio’s mural of the American flag and a demonic kettlebell with fangs, athletes perform a different Workout of the Day (WOD) each day. Though the workout is never the same, WODs may include exercises that range from rowing and running to weight lifting, body-weight exercises, and gymnastics-inspired moves such as dips on suspended rings.