A Postcard From Italy
Updated: Nov 6
CrossFit Three Fingers
Having enjoyed the rain of Scandinavia I was, you know, non plussed by the warmth and clear skies of Italy...
Sure...I am a total sun lizard and made the most of it!!!
I had been to Italy before, to ski. Really enjoyed it then too, but being further south was a delight! Immediately I snarfed pizza and some of the creamiest prosecco I've had.
And yes, of course - where is the nearest box ;)
Italy have emerged from their intense lock down and are beginning to bloom again. The culture is still very aware of covid and the regulation social distancing and mask wearing, however, there is a fresh energy and verve in the air as I pootle about Varese.
One of the boxes was open to me attending a drop in.
Public transport was not as smooth as the Nordics, so I grabbed a taxi and arrived at the standard industrial estate set up... Except this was NOT your standard set up.
Three Fingers Cross Fit backs onto stunning views of farmland and forest. The gym is on 2 floors and the windows are wide open to enjoy a (non existent) breeze...and for me, the sunsets and views of nature. Super clean and very organised, Three Fingers made me feel welcome and fired up to take part in a well organised, thoroughly coached class.
We each had a little boxed area to work from, we had our own area on the rig and the warm up was thorough and fun.
The guys in the class were super smiley, really keen to try and chat with me despite the mild language barrier, also their encouragement was nice to have. Training solo a lot takes the spirit off me sometimes. There were good scaling options and still a sense of 'ok, well, scale it to 5 muscle ups not the 10, and do them really well and really snappy' rather than being a slave to the whiteboard and having to not give a hard skill a try in a wod.
I liked that. Pragmatism with hints of don't shy away from the tough things. There was respect to the athlete from the coach, and vice versa from the athlete. Not gna lie, I was a little nervy when I had to show my ring muscle up in front of the class with no chalk and shoulders like cold chewing gum, luckily one was good enough!
After the WOD, one of the lovely chatty ladies in the class asked me if I competed and I said yes I try to. She nudged me towards another coach, who was running a comp Class the next evening.
Holy guacamole. It was SO MUCH FUN.
Understated group - everyone just grinding away at the session. Sweaty, long and really really satisfying. The box itself was clean, really modern looking - lovely changing rooms.*
*Something I have noticed on my travels is the standard of decor and design of boxes. Much of my experience has been of slightly down trodden spaces with not great toilet and showering or chill zone facilities.
I have enjoyed a LOT, the sleek and tidy gym spaces I have visited. Don't know why, but somehow it makes me feel more at ease. Easier to navigate the space, less awkward finding the loo and also a zone where I can spy drinks or stash is a bit of a treat. I am trying to put my finger on it, I think it made me feel like I could fit in. Sometimes in less well-presented spaces it can feel awks.
Also, signage! the owner of the box in Varese (oh yes, he has only 3 fingers on one of his hands...that's where the name came from, knew you'd be wondering!) had done SUPER signage.
There were little '3 fingers' logos sprayed on the tarmac all the way from the main industrial area entrance all the way round and round to the box entrance. Again, easy, welcoming, reassuring :)
I had wanted to stay longer and train more in Italy, but my plans changed last minute and I left for Germany.
What I am so grateful for was the energising and challenging sessions I was able to take part in, the gorgeous setting, the encouragement and the coaching - despite not being a new person to CrossFit, it doesn't mean I know it all or don't want feedback.
Left Italy feeling like I was an athlete again.