“I’m not ready for this.”

“I haven’t worked out in a (week; month; year) – I’m going to get slaughtered!”

“What if I just can’t do some of the things they ask me to? Can I fail this program?!?”

Believe it or not, virtually everyone who enrolls in our On-Ramp Program for the first time asks at least one of these questions, or shares at least one (if not all) of these concerns. It’s perfectly normal to be a bit apprehensive about your first On-Ramp session. Although it may not seem like it, everyone who does CrossFit, or who trains with us has gone through what you’re going through. And by everyone, we mean EVERYONE. Everyone from that Froning guy you might have seen ESPN one night, to that amazing woman you saw on our Facebook timeline who was lifting an impossible amount of weight over her head, to the 72-year old you might have heard of who’s life has forever been changed by our program – they’ve all experienced what you’re going through. It’s normal to be a little nervous. You’re not alone; you’re not wrong for feeling the way that you do…and you’re going to do great.

Although it’s natural to be nervous before your first session, it’s also important that these feelings don’t distract you from the task at hand. Because information is often the best cure for anxiety, we’d like to share with you some insights in advance of your first session that stand to help reduce any apprehensions you might have about your first visit. We’ve polled dozens of our On-Ramp Graduates – folks just like you – and asked them to share some of the things that they remember about their experience with you. Here’s what some of them had to say:

It’s OK if you’re not good at something.

Says one member about their On-Ramp Experience: “I remember my coaches telling (my class) right up-front that we were all going to struggle with some concepts and movements that we’d be taught…and that that was totally ok. I also remember that I didn’t really appreciate how right they were until almost halfway through the program. I remember being SO nervous about whether I was going to be able to do 90% of the movements that were being taught. Each time I struggled with a movement or a cue, I took it really personally, and figured that I must be the only one who’s struggling, or for whom it just wasn’t connecting. It wasn’t until the 3rd night when we did kettle-bell swings that I really felt like I’d nailed a movement. When I looked around, I realized that I’d been missing the point. EVERYONE in attendance in my On-Ramp was going through struggles of their own, because everyone had their own relative strengths and weaknesses. The only person who cared at all about where I was relative with the rest of the group…was me!!!”

Bottom-line: You may very well find that you’re struggling with some movements and or concepts….and that’s OK. In On-Ramp, you’ll effectively learn how to move your body all over again as you learn each movement. Just as it’s virtually impossible to undo a lifetime of bad habits in 4-to-5 90 minute sessions, unrealistic to think that you won’t have any difficulties with any of the movements that are presented to you…and to think that the process won’t expose any of your individual weaknesses. Not only should you be ok with this process, but also you should celebrate it. After all, part of the objective of the program is to identify gross-motor patterns that you struggle with. And should you find that you’re having hard time adjusting to the fact that you do indeed have an athletic weaknesses remember – YOU’RE NOT ALONE. Someone else in the program is going through the same thing.

Will you be challenged? Yes. Is this course designed to be Hell-Week? Not at all.

“So many people had told me that CrossFit was SO hard, that when I registered for On-Ramp, I gave myself a month to get ready in a traditional gym before the class started,” recalls one CFTT member. “If I could have done anything differently, it would’ve been to skip the ‘get-in-shape before On-Ramp’ step. That was a TOTAL waste of time that would’ve been better spent learning the movements sooner.”

Again, CrossFit TT’s On-Ramp is designed to be instructional in nature. Our goal during On-Ramp is to prepare you for our group training classes. We do so by teaching you the principles behind the mechanics of each of the movements we employ, NOT by trying to whip you into shape over the course of 4 90 minute sessions. Accordingly, the sessions are difficult, but not because they’re chock-full of intense physical activity.”Was On-Ramp hard? Yes…and no. Yes, I’d often wake up sore the next day…but not because the workouts and/or movements were impossible, or because the coaches were sadists. I distinctly remember at one point coming to the realization that everyone there – from the coaches, to the other class members – really wanted to see me succeed, not fail! There’s no “no-pain, no-gain” philosophy in effect, or machismo thing that goes on. Instead, the emphasis is on instruction, pure and simple. Matt and Casey (my coaches) wanted to teach me the right way to move my body when performing specific movements, period, stop. Often, this was all I needed to get a GREAT workout! When the workouts that were planned were above my current ability level, they scaled them down so that I could continue to keep progressing. My only regret was not knowing all this sooner. If I had, I could’ve started my journey that much sooner!!”

You’re not going to be ‘that-guy’ or ‘that-girl’.

“I liken my On-Ramp experience to that of a character in coming-of-age John Hughes film like the Breakfast Club,” says one CrossFit TT movie buff. “We had folks from all different walks of life in our class…and as different as we all were, it was clear that we all had a place there, and that we were all going to do just fine. It didn’t really matter what you did during that first week, or how good of an athlete you are – everyone was accepting of who you are, and what your goals are.”

“Now there is (are?) some decorum that’s observed. For example – don’t wear muddy sneakers into the gym. EVER. Also, it’s best to arrive at class on-time, unless you’re a masochist, and like doing burpees. But even then, everyone’s really patient with you as you learn these “rules”, and really wants to help you along the way. So again, it’s just like the Breakfast Club, only instead of stuffing new, wet-behind-the-ears freshmen into lockers, (the community) helps show you where the lockers are, helps you get to class on time, helps you with your homework, and claps for you when you do a good job in class. (Sigh). I wish I’d had CrossFit in high school….”