I’m trying really hard to help all of you to feel like you were there, but contain myself and be articulate at the same time.
Yesterday, I was on an eight-hour train ride, the whole time trying to distract myself with blogging, blog reading, tweeting, e-mail responding, and found myself at the last hour and a half of the ride with WOD killaaa music in my ears and straight up staring out the window, trying not to get emotional. I’m not a super emotional person, but I like to think that I work hard, and when all of that hard work pays off, I get overwhelmed. I get jittery, happy, and slightly teary. I tried really hard to avoid that last part. As we pulled into Penn Station, I could feel everything coming together; a dream of mine finally coming to fruition.
As I walked up to Reebok’s 5th Avenue CrossFit Fit Hub, I felt myself coming home.
The Reebok team welcomed us like family. It felt natural to walk into this big, beautiful, green-accented Box, with the promise of champions, small victories and big ones. To be honest, I kind of expected to sh*t myself when I saw the champions. You will all be happy to know that I didn’t. It felt natural. Strong, talented, humble athletes, who not only love CrossFit, but love bringing it to others, and helping them to love it too.
After we got our gear and changed, we went upstairs to the store, which is on the ground level, above the Box.
Uli Becker, President of Reebok International Ltd., delivered an opening speech that left me in chills.
I love working with brands that have passion for what they do and have purpose. Any company can go about its business and decide to make an athletic shoe. Any brand can decide it’s going to make a moisture-wicking tank top, stamp the company logo on it, and sell it in retail stores. Anyone can do that.
You know what’s rare? A company that builds itself around a principle, a movement, and around straight up love. Reebok has soul. Reebok recognized the CrossFit movement early on and latched on to the passion, beauty, and excitement that surrounds it. Reebok employees do CrossFit together. They test out products, and you want to know why their products are so stinkin’ amazing? Because they test out every product on themselves, elite athletes, and take their advice because they understand that it’s not just about making a minimalist shoe or something that will beat out X brand. It’s about testing over and over again, listening to real athletes and what they need, and working day and night to bring the Sport of Fitness to the world.
Reebok views fitness as play. CrossFit, as Chris Spealler, Rich Froning, and Annie Thorisdottir believe very strongly, is not about elite athletes. It’s not about the Games, and it’s not about shattering world records. It’s about the person who goes to the gym every day with the goal of getting off their diabetes medications, who will never do a workout as Rx’d, and will never walk into the Arena at the Games. It’s about the small victories. Getting your first pull-up, realizing that you can. Sweating your butt off so you can lift up your kid, throw around a ball, carry boxes when you move into your first house.
I have tears in my eyes right now and I’m sitting on a train next to this awesome New York City couple, and they probably think I’m so strange because I’m blasting house music blasting in my ears, typing up a storm with misty eyes. Reebok has earned itself a soft spot in my heart, and it’s going to stay there.
One of the many reasons I love blogging so much is because it has brought me here. Right here, right now, where I get to witness such beautiful things as the President of a company not telling us about how much money they make or the newest, greatest product they’ve developed, but sharing their love for play, for making the everyday extraordinary, celebrating the small victories and the big ones. Making my own victories each day, deciding I’m going to get my first pull-up, and doing it. Reebok has worked hard to be where it is, and they want to bring fitness, love, motivation, and excitement to each of you. To the world.
Everyone, the sport of fitness has arrived.