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Boxes and Bars by Hilary Achauer - CrossFit Journal

Boxes and Bars

By Hilary Achauer

In The CrossFit Life

December 01, 2011

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Hilary Achauer explores what happens when your CrossFit box is surrounded by bars, tattoo parlors and tanning salons.

Like most boxes, the warm-up at CrossFit Pacific Beach (CFPB) starts out with a 400-meter run. What you’ll encounter on that run is a bit unusual.

Smack dab in the middle of one of the highest concentrations of bars per capita in San Diego, CFPB opened in June 2010, replacing a defunct record store. After a few months, the owners installed sliding garage doors that open out onto the sidewalk. CFPB embraces the urban environment, rather than blocking it out. Passersby get a heavy dose of angry music, clanging weights and painful-sounding grunts on their afternoon stroll.

“The first time I did a warm-up lap, I was really skeptical,” said Quinn Myers, a member who has done CrossFit all over the world. “I didn’t think it would work. I thought I wouldn’t like it. I was used to doing CrossFit in a warehouse, with not much else around.”

What’s the most unusual CrossFit box you’ve seen? Post stories to comments!

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4 Comments on “Boxes and Bars ”


wrote …

I was fortunate enough to serve with Regimental Combat Team 7 in Afghanistan for a year deployment. It was there I was introduced to CrossFit. We started off pretty bare bones...a 54lb Kbell, parrallettes, a pullup bar and some ammo cans. After the year we had two oly bars, C2 rower, 350lbs of bumpers and kbells, med balls, abmats and a set of rings hung off of a forklift. There were two Crossfitters and all of us had done some type of crossfit. With this rag tag group we were dubbed FML CrossFit the official unoffical affiliate "where we puke on weak people". Today I am a level 1 CF trainer and if it weren't for FML CrossFit Camp Dwyer Helmand Province Afg, well...bring on bicep isolation curls!


wrote …

Through my job, which requires me to travel a little, I've been fortunate enough to hit almost 25 different boxes since 2007. From my first CF experience at HyperFit USA (MI) where I spoiled as its still the biggest and baddest box I've been to, to the now "old" CrossFit Hell's Kitchen (NYC) which was tucked into about 100 square feet inside a globo gym; I've seen many unique CF boxes. That's how I would describe each box, unique, probably not unusual. If I'm had to pick an unusual aspect of a CF box and since this article begins describing CFPB's 400m course, I would say Integrated Fitness's (PA) 400m course was unusual but very fitting to the CF philosophy. You first exited the building onto an uneven grassy yard, down a hill with a few ruts and divots (good agility test especially in the dark), onto a gravel drive which leads to a road where you bang a left and head uphill to a stop sign, then you turn around and make your way back to the box. Throw in the KB goblet squats and swings we did before/after the run and the course became pretty unique.

Other unique/unusual boxes might be one of the original locations for CrossFit Sydney, which was inside the gym portion of an aquatic center and the creative way Andrew Cattermole hung his pull-up bar. Also, the original location for CrossFit for CrossFit NYC: The Black Box, was on the second floor right in the middle of Manhattan, I think above a store or something similar.

All in all, each box I've been to has been pretty unique in its own way, but with their own unusual twist. I'm just glad I've been able to check a lot of them out.

Member at CrossFit Loudoun - Dulles, VA

BTW, the "new" CrossFit Hell's Kitchen, currently open under construction is looking like its gonna be pretty bad ass itself.


Well I think it's very fitting to have an URGENT CARE center right next to a Box! Awesome! Its a 1-2 stop - crossfit then urgent care - although in reality CF might put them out of business.
I've not been to many boxes, but the few I have been to have been unique as pointed out above, one box in New Jersey was a warehouse, or at least it was warehouse where you worked out, but then near the back they had hardwood floored area with a few leather couches and a HUGE flat screen playing a game. It was like home, a home away from home perhaps.


wrote …

My box is surrounded by marijuana dispensaries. So, on our runs around the building you pass by the smell of pot from the 3 different shops on your run.

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