• Rob Olson

COVID Update - 1 Month In

^ Murph 2019.

We officially closed the doors to CrossFit Simsbury 1 month ago. On one hand, it seems like that was just yesterday, while the other hand it feels like years ago. So much has happened, and at the same time, not much has happened at all. Strange times indeed.

In no specific order, here is an update on pretty much everything I could think of relating to CFS and the COVID closure.


- We have about 80% of our members doing TrueCoach workouts, delivered by 9 coaches. These workouts are customized versions of our daily wod, with specific goals and actions for the member based on their goals and equipment available. These are traditional CrossFit style workouts.

At Home WODs

- While harder to measure exactly how many are completing these, when I communicate with members, many say they are doing these, and some are even including spouses and kids! They are typically all bodyweight workouts, with no equipment needed, and multiple modifying/scaling levels are provided. The Coaches also produce daily "whiteboard videos" to talk about the workout, the movements, and any announcements and those are posted in our FB group.


- All, well, 90% of all the equipment at the gym was loaned out. Barbells, rowers, assault bikes, kettlebells, dumbbells, boxes, rings, you name it, everything portable left. We're glad its in good hands and being used! What's left? I believe the 100lb KBs are left (shocker, lol)

Zoom Classes

- One way we pivoted after closing was to do virtual classes. While some technically difficulties were presented initially, most have been overcome. We still find they lack the pizzazz that is present in class, and members are looking for more interaction. We will still do a few Zoom classes per week, to include the Soul Crusher and Sunday Mobility. Team 6am gets the award for most dedicated, as they continue to do a Zoom Workout Mon-Friday. The link to join is posted in the Facebook group.

Nutrition Challenge

- A NY Times article the other day talked about the rise of consumption of processed and comfort foods. Makes sense considering the worldwide pandemic and people being stuck at home. However, these short term decisions will lead to long term regret. Nobody wants to put weight on during Coronavirus. So in May we will be hosting a 28 day Nutrition Challenge to bring the focus back to healthy, sustainable, eating. Aside from the weight loss, healthy eating promotes a healthy immune system! Signup is open for members and non-members HERE

Fitness Challenge

- Just keeping a pulse on the community, it seems one month in many are starting to have a hard time with the social isolation, and its becoming harder to get motivated to workout. So starting today (4/17) we will begin a new fitness challenge. Pick a movement you want to get better at, and you will add reps to it EVERY DAY. For example, if I want to get better at pushups, I may start at 10, and add 5 every day. You have the entire day to accomplish your goal. The point here is to create a habit of working out every day again. Once you get a week under your belt, you wont want to break the chain so to speak. Plus, its a great opportunity to work on something you want to get better at. The possibilities are endless: pushups, situps, planks, pullups, double unders, KB swings, bicep curls, running ... get as creative as you like, start at whatever rep scheme you like, and add however many reps you like. More details will be posted about keeping accountability!

Financial Hardships

- The longer this pandemic goes on, the more people are encountering financial hardships. Members have lost their job, had hours reduced, or spouses have lost jobs or had hours reduced. The list is growing significantly - much higher than I thought it would. Living is Simsbury is not isolating us from the economic ramifications. If a member reaches out and says they can not longer pay for a membership, we keep their membership on free of charge. Fitness is not only a physical release, but provides a mental release as well, and I would never take that from someone when they are already down.


- On the plus side, CrossFit Simsbury has been the recipient of several donations. These are being used to help cover the members who can no longer pay and keep the business and staff payroll afloat. These have been instrumental and are very much appreciated with much gratitude from the owners, staff, and members alike.

Federal Aid

- It's all over the news. Payroll Protection Program and Economic Disaster Loan. We've applied for both, received confirmations of application, but have not heard a single update as to the status of the programs in weeks. Try to get in touch with somebody - forget about it. I heard one report say they've had more applications in a month than the previous two years combined. Nobody can say if we will receive it before the funds run out, and if we do, how much it will be. They keep updating the program daily and implementing more restrictions. Not holding my breath on these. *Update - Payroll program ran out of funds before the bank got to our paperwork. We'll see if Congress authorizes more money.

CrossFit Support Your Local Box Fundraiser

- With 90% of CrossFit boxes worldwide closed down, CrossFit is holding an online fundraiser/competition, similar to the CrossFit Open. With the suggested donation of $20, it should result in a decent donation with the number of participants we had, but again, nobody can say when the funds will be sent.

Remote Coaching

- We have no idea how long we will be closed for. With a lot of members unable to pay and our revenue significantly reduced, we created a new way to bring new members in. It is 100% Online Remote Coaching. Best way to think of it is virtual personal training, and I'm happy to report we have our first new 100% online remote coaching member! Whether someone wants to workout at their home when they want, or to workout in their gym with our guidance, we can help them accomplish their goals of general fitness, weight loss, or specific performance goals. This is not just online programming. It is more about accountability, coaching, and guidance, and we are thrilled to be able to provide this new service to help more people. If you know someone that may want this, they can schedule a virtual No Sweat Intro on our website!

Dumbbells & Diapers Online

- We were planning on having a May Session of Dumbbells & Diapers at CrossFit Simsbury. Since those plans are off, we also shifted this online, and quite frankly, we think its going to be a fantastic option for so many moms! Check out dumbbellsanddiapersfitness.com to learn more!

The future

- Nobody knows when COVID social isolation will end. They say we may be near the apex now, so hopefully after a few weeks of downtrending they start to relax restrictions on businesses. Where will gyms be on the list of priorities to reopen? What kind of restrictions will they put on us? Will they mandate to only have a certain number of people in a class? Will it be a fixed number, or based on our square footage? Does the fact that we can workout outside help? If they mandate only 10 people per class, how do we handle that? What if we re-open and then there is another surge of the virus in the fall? There are a lot of questions that need answering, and unfortunately there is no guidance coming from the powers at be. One thing is for certain, things will be different when we go back. While I'm confident in our survival, I fear many other gyms will close. The business models will just not sustain it. Even think about places like Golds Gym or Planet Fitness, they'll have months with no revenue (they could not pivot to online training) and when things re-open, there will be restrictions and still, some people will not want to go to large gathering places. Only the very dedicated will go back and they'll have to re-sell their entire membership base. The same goes for any CrossFit box that did not pivot to online training.

In the meantime, all we can do is focus on the here and now. Get your daily workout in. Eat healthy. Zoom with your fellow CFS members. Support and encourage each other as much as possible. You know what they say ... The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday. If you need help, the coaches are one click away. Email. Zoom. Message. Let us know how we can assist you!

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