I wanted to take this week to shed some light on dropping in to other CrossFit boxes, and also welcoming out of towners to Conquest. It is a simple topic, but one that gets overlooked easily. Our member Emily is out of town for the month, and she has been sending me pictures of different boxes and different wods she has been doing, and it triggered some very cool memories for me.
My wife and I have been visiting CrossFit boxes for as long as I can remember. I remember the first time we "dropped in" to a box that wasn't ours. We were so nervous, waited outside the doors for them to open, just to find out their class was capped and we couldn't take the class. We tried contacting them prior to our visit but didn't have any luck. This was about 11 years ago. It was heart breaking to say the least, but also a good learning experience. After that mishap, we made sure to always contact the box we wanted to visit well in advance.
Throughout the years, we have dropped in to boxes all over the place. Probably my favorite being CrossFit Fenway in Boston, and also CrossFit Louvre in Paris (on our honeymoon). We have been to both multiple times, and I can't say enough about our visits.
As an owner and coach, it's cool to just go and take a class. I never tell them I'm an owner or a coach. We just do what they do, blend in, and try and crush the wod. Post wod, the conversations happen and I usually divulge what I do and whatnot, but never before. We are overly generous, always pay the drop in fee, and always buy swag. This goes a long way, and has garnered respect wherever we go and we are always urged to come back.
We have made lifelong friends at some of these boxes. People have come here and trained at Conquest because we trained at their gym. It's an amazing thing, this CrossFit community, how just the mere aspect of moving the same way, suffering the same way, understanding why we do what we do, that brings us all together, no matter where we are in the world.
You all know what I'm talking about. Walk through the airport and look around. You will spot a CrossFit t-shirt. Or better yet, you will see someone wearing Nanos. And it triggers something in your brain. It's like "hey, look at that, there's a member of the tribe". Such a cool thing.
So listen...DROP IN! Do it. It's an amazing experience. Go check out how different boxes run. How different owners program. How cool their t-shirts are. LOL. I love this aspect of CrossFit. It is huge and everywhere, but small and cool and you're part of the gang. People who don't CrossFit don't get it, they don't understand it. And maybe that's what keeps it so cool. First rule of fight club....and so on and so on. ;)
Dropping in to Conquest. We have had an abundance of drop ins over the years. And guess what, some of them are active members right now! They had visited at some point or another, and now that they moved here, they came right in and joined! Man, that pumps me up. Because moving away from your box is HARD! And for a veteran CrossFitter to pick our box over so many, well it makes us pretty proud.
I will end this with a cool story. Recently we had a girl come in from San Diego and tell us she would only be here for a month. She started coming and loving the classes. I coached and spoke with her frequently and she kept telling me how great her gym back home was and how she missed it. About three weeks into her visit she started telling me that she would miss Conquest. And that she thought she loved her gym back home, but recently she started loving Conquest and was going to miss it very much. When a month came up, she told me she was going to stick around a couple more weeks because it wasn't urgent that she return to California, and that she wanted to train more with us. Guys, this is why we do what we do. Hearing that fires me and Paul up. But it is bigger than just him and me. It is because of the coaches and staff, and more importantly all of you. Conquest members are the most welcoming group of people I have ever seen. No ego. Pride is checked at the door. And it shows.
Thank you for who you are and what you do. It is appreciated and we hope our appreciation shows.
In closing, do as many drop ins as you can when you travel. See how it's done elsewhere. And always welcome the new faces you see next to you in class when drop ins visit Conquest. Covid has changed the world, but I am happy to say that it seems to have only made us CrossFitters closer. And that is damn cool.
Till next time, plan your next vacation, and see if there's a box in that town!