Why Gold‘s has mirrors on the walls… and why we don’t

Written by Erin Sanzero

People often ask why we don’t have mirrors in CrossFit and the answer is profoundly simple. We face each other. We are a community that encourages and builds each other up. We share suffering and purpose and we connect with each other in ways that strengthen and fortify us beyond the barbell and whiteboard.

Arguably my  most profound experience CrossFittin’ came moons ago now but it is as fresh as can be. I had become fast friends with a young woman who had lost her husband wildly young to cancer. That’s her story to share, but she was widowed by 25. We met and became fast friends. When the anniversary of her husband’s death came around some months later we resolved to do the barbell mile to mark the occasion with the reps matching the years of his too brief  life.  She was a hard girl, #armystrong, and contrary to tears. Those walls came crashing down as suffering, fatigue, memories, and years she’d never have with him overwhelmed her. We walked and wept the final quarter mile together and a feeling of awe set in. When you can share such radical kinship with someone, why would you want to stare at a mirror?

That CrossFit is the most effective way to improve fitness isn’t why CrossFit has been so revolutionary. It is certainly significant, but I would argue that CrossFit’s ability to make better people is the secret sauce. That we are a like minded community who seek to serve the collective good and value doing what’s right when no one is watching–that’s truly special. That something born to cure chronic disease can also create happier, kinder and more confident and connected humans? Sign me up and who cares about a mirror.

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