I was taught a lesson. I started cocky. Not just confident, but full-on, Mayweather-like cocky. I was a real smartypants who thought he was reasonably fit and had seen all the fitness trends. I have a mixed bag of training experience which included boxing, kettlebells, triathlons, trail running, mountain biking and am religious about good old heavy metal weights sessions in the gym. I also have a personal training degree under my weight belt, so I felt that I could ease into Crossfit training like a fat kid gets through dessert. Easy, right? I was wrong. Not misinformed. Not mislead. I was wrong in epic, neon-letters-of-FAIL proportions. I started my Basics course with Jobst, Chris, Rika, Lynda and the other trainers at Cape Crossfit last week, and was politely, and expertly, shown just how wrong I was. My first realisation? Fitness isn’t just about how much you bench or what your 10km time is. Crossfit measures your fitness across ten criteria that cover everything from explosive power to flexibility (or what they call mobility). After just a few minutes of training, I was sweating and lying on the gym floor. This is the most hectic kind of training I have ever tried. If you want a little taste of what Crossfit is about, check out this video on the 2011 Crossfit Champions. The real reason for my Crossfit curriculum? I’m putting together a special report on Crossfit for Men’s Health, and it’s going into our August issue. I’m spending three months with the Cape Crossfit guys to see what this kind of training will do to my body and my mind. But that’s not all, I’m also a back-up. An understudy (sort-of). I’m the 11th guy in this MHTeamfit Challenge . If any of these 10 guys you see on the right have to pull out of the Challenge for any reason (injury, sickness or anything like that), I’m in. My goal? I want to put on 5kg of solid, lean muscle in three months. Also, a drop in body fat would be good too. So, just like Jason and his trainer James at Roark Gyms, I’m using Crossfit as my weapon of choice. And boy, what a weapon it is. I might be an absolute rookie at Crossfit at this stage, but I was lucky enough to catch the best Crossfit athletes in Cape Town (and all over SA) battle it out at the 2012 Fittest in Cape Town, a competition held at Camps Bay on Saturday. I’ve posted some pics from the competition below. Consider it a taste of what Crossfit is about and what it can do for you. I’m definitely entering it next year. Give it some proper respect because I learnt the hard way – this is the hardest training I’ve ever done. Have you got a challenge? if you haven’t yet, sign up for our Belly Off Challenge now.