Eight years ago, John Schneider enlisted in the Marine Corps. His workouts, he says, were traditional: 3 sets of 10 in the bench press were standard as he trained for judo competitions.
“I thought I knew how to deadlift. I thought I knew how to squat,” says Schneider, who is the faculty adviser to Pitt student organization Panther CrossFit.
As he searched for a strength-and-conditioning program, a friend told him about CrossFit.com.
“Did my first workout, was wiped out and knew I was onto something that was totally different, and (I) went on to have the best competitive year I had in judo in my career at that point.”
Everything got better, Schneider says.
“I got 20 pull-ups for the first time after doing CrossFit.”
He shaved a minute off his 3-mile time and felt better prepared for new challenges faced in the Physical Screening Test—known as the PST—he endured as a member of the military.
“When I started I didn’t know anyone else was CrossFitting,” Schneider says. “I did it in the gym and everyone looked at me like I did something crazy, and I thought I discovered this new magical thing that nobody else knew about.”
Additional reading: Toward Better Military PT Tests by 1st Lt. Matthew Hoff, published June 24, 2009.