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3 Reasons We Moved On From ‘CrossFit’

By January 6, 2020No Comments

Most people come see us at RoxFire because they want to feel strong, stay healthy and look good naked. That’s exactly what I want out of my fitness too: I want to be able to live a full & wild life while simultaneously looking diesel in a tank top. Simple goals, bro.

When I originally opened my location, I decided to affiliate as a CrossFit gym because of the built-in brand identity and training style that I had grown accustomed to in my career in fitness. But as I continued to serve clients & grow, I realized that I needed to shift my thinking and style of doing fitness to something that felt more authentic to me personally.

What’s always excited me about fitness is the cross section between performance AND aesthetics. Meaning, you should be able to train, feel and look like a superhero. I always wanted to create fun, exciting and powerful workouts that result in you looking like Thor or Wonder Woman. While it’s a solid training program and I base a lot of my workouts off of its principles, CrossFit primarily cares about how your movement and the net health benefits. RoxFire, my brand of Fitness, cares about how you move, how you feel AND how you look.

To expand further, I compiled a list of three reasons why RoxFire has moved on from the CrossFit way of thinking as we’ve evolved into our own style of fitness that I’d like to share with you.


I’ll start by saying that barbells are awesome and if you’re looking to maximize your strength gains and your muscle mass, you should have barbells as a part of your program. Barbells and specifically the Olympic style lifts are a defining feature of CrossFit. However, without proper work on mobility and flexibility, most can’t execute the movements properly and consistently enough to reap the benefits. That’s not to limit anyone out there, but most folks like you who come to micro-gyms are full-time professionals who have an hour a day to get and stay in shape. There is a steep learning curve with barbells, especially with the Olympic lifts, and they are not easy to master. Worst of all, they are also not very forgiving from an injury and over-use standpoint and I’ve seen way too many clients have to put a hold on their fitness because of a barbell-related injuries.

This idea of meeting folks where they are, as opposed to where we’d like them to be, inspired us to move towards programming primarily built around kettlebells and dumbbells. These two implements adjust to your anatomy and mobility limitations, not the other way around – so they can be scalable and malleable to anyone regardless of where they are on their journey. Kettlebells specifically are great for your shoulders (which is the muscle group many clients have limited flexibility & mobility within) and essentially train your total body strength and cardio all from one implement. It’s a win-win and with a some light coaching on proper form, you can come into any class and get a solid workout.


While compound movements like the deadlift, squat & press build maximum body strength, hypertrophy (muscle mass growth) is a completely different beast and often times not looked at as “functional.” I disagree and call what we do “functional hypertrophy.”

Functional Hypertrophy is essentially targeted muscle mass growth to get the aesthetic appearance you want with the side benefits of stronger and bigger muscles that improve your athletic performance as well as curbing your chronic pain & preventing injury. We do this specifically during our Build class style at RoxFire Fitness.

Bodybuilding is a serious sport – it is creating your body as a work of art – but all too often, many in the world of functional training can be snobby about bodybuilding with an elitist attitude not realizing the other benefits listed above. You will also see Cardio-Heads, who love places like Orange Theory, trash the notion of being strong and pumped and instead want to simply chase the cardio high.

Yet, we aren’t advocating a display-model only approach either. The best program that is going to make you both strong, fast and looking like an Alpha King (or Queen) is one that combines a variety of training styles. We lift heavy weights and do some heavy sprinting. We’ve created RoxFire to be the perfect balance of everything you need to look, feel and perform the way you want.

It’s how I’ve been training personally for the last five years. When I lived in Virginia, I used to hit the globo-gym in the morning to do all my targeted bodybuilding – and then do my functional fitness style training in the afternoon. I looked like this and was a top athlete at my affiliate. I always wanted an environment that welcomed and advocated both styles of training.

Super LJ circa 2017

I’m not a genetic freak. I take care of my diet and I train exactly how I want to to get the results that I want.

In short, we don’t have a limiting mindset or prescribe to a certain dogmatic way of thinking at RoxFire Fitness. This allows us the space to use a variety of training styles, methodologies and other tools to get you exactly what you want. For me, and my clients, training like a superhero to look like one is where it’s at.


CrossFit & Orange Theory have their brand identity down – they know what they are and are successful because of it. However, we didn’t start RoxFire to hitch our wagon to someone else’s brainchild. What I encourage my clients and I’d encourage you to do if we met is to do simply this: be your own hero. Do things your way. Create from a place that is real and authentic to you. I love CrossFit and borrow many of its principles, but felt that I could deliver a better product, my own way. That’s RoxFire Fitness.

Most people think they come see us to simply improve their fitness and while that is true, the secret sauce is that we are about empowering you to have a mindset and goals that go above and beyond what you thought possible. RoxFire is living that authentically, so we stand behind our vision for our clients. When we created our three styles of classes, Rev, Build & Fuse, our goal was to create a product that felt unique to us, pushed limits and yet felt instantly recognizable to our clients.

In closing, we want to show you that there is power in striking out on your own – and the results will speak for themselves. One of our clients, Chuck, already lost 15 lbs of fat in the past three months and has toned up. He’s loving our shift and so are we.

We’d love to show you RoxFire for yourself, click here to get a free week on our hero team.

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