After four weeks of certifications and trainings, the time had finally arrived.

The Crossfit American Football Certification was my time to shine. I had read a lot about the course before I arrived, and as such knew it was based on the areas of exercise in which I consider myself to be most proficient, namely strength and power.

I believe the technical term for what happened to me over the course of the weekend is ‘getting schooled.’

John Welbourn, a ten year NFL veteran offensive lineman, hosted the seminar. John isn’t a soft guy. He’s not that weak either. As it turns out, he also has the ability to make you lift heavier weights and run faster then you ever have before. Every time I thought I couldn’t sprint any quicker, or any heavier, John would suddenly appear next to me shouting the words, ‘nobody ever died from being to awesome.’ The man has a point.

The most interesting part of the certification for me was how they were willing to deviate from the principles associated with Crossfit in its traditional form. John promotes strength training combined with metabolic conditioning (basically the exercises that get your heart rate up). I personally agree far more with this training method, as the strength element allows an athlete to form a strong base before partaking in the more complex and high intensity movements involved the metabolic conditioning.

I’ve heard too many guys who wanted to make strength and muscle gains complain that Crossfit didn’t provide them with this. That’s why in every programme designed by Roark Gyms our athletes – ‘if you have a body, you’re an athlete’ – will squat, shoulder press, bench press, power clean and dead lift. Without these exercises you’re about as stable as an inverted pyramid. They also help you to get in great shape.

The most beneficial part of the cert was how the designing of a programme was taught. They advocate a different programme for athletes at amateur, collegiate and professional levels. These levels are merely guidelines, and indicative primarily of the regularity an athlete currently uses the base strength exercises mentioned above. John in the interview I did with him after the course stated that if you don’t squat at least twice a week, you’re an amateur. After following the programme for five weeks now, I completely agree with him.

Whether you’re a Mens Health cover model, a rugby player or a desk athlete, these principles apply to you. If you doubt what I’m saying, don’t, because I’ve proved it. I’ve taken a guy from each of these areas and put them on this programme. The gains in strength, muscle mass, definition and speed have been remarkable. One athlete is clocking a personal best in an exercise every week of his life.

Come to Roark Gyms, meet with us, and let’s talk about what fitness means to you. Not anyone else, just you. Once we get to what’s important, we’ll design a programme specifically for you. We guarantee the results will be remarkable. Until then, remember…

…nobody ever died from being too awesome.