Are you looking for a way to get in a great workout in less time? Crossfit is a great solution. The powerful moves strengthen your muscles, tone, and give you a great cardiovascular workout at the same time. This sport is growing, and there are gyms in most every city. But before you get started with Crossfit, there are a few things you need to know.

1. Clothing Matters

Because Crossfit includes so many unique moves, what you wear for the exercise is very important. Your average t-shirt and shorts that you might wear out on a run is not sufficient. Look specifically for Crossfit shirts. They are made to stretch in all directions, so they do not tear when you jump up suddenly or lift a weight above your head. They're also made to be better ventilated, so you don't get sweat building throughout your grueling workout. Longer Crossfit shirts are also a more modest choice, since they will keep you covered when you're doing moves on your feet and on the ground.

In addition to a good shirt, you also want shorts made from a flexible, stretchy material. Breathable spandex shorts work well for many people. If you are uncomfortable with someone seeing the outline of your body so closely, there are Crossfit shorts that consist of a supportive spandex underlayer and a looser top layer.

Check out retailers like WODshop to find out what clothing you need before starting Crossfit.

2. You Must Ease Your Way Into It

Even if you are used to working out, you must ease your way into Crossfit workouts because they challenge your body in different ways than other workout routines. Don't jump straight into an intermediate or advanced class, even if you are fit overall. Try the beginner class, and then see how you feel. If you are newer to working out in general, you may not even be able to complete all of the moves in the beginner class at first -- and that is okay. Do what you can, and don't push yourself so hard that you become injured.

3. Some Soreness Is Normal

Especially the first few times you do Crossfit, it is completely normal to feel stiff and like you don't want to get out of bed the next day. Take a rest day if you are feeling overly sore, but do not let this soreness drive you to quit! It is a sign that you're not in as good of shape as you thought you were, and that you need to keep working out to improve. After a few weeks, you won't feel nearly as sore after workouts. 

4. It's Most Effective When Paired With a Healthy Diet

If you keep eating burgers and donuts, your Crossfit workouts won't help you lose so much weight. You need to pair your Crossfit routine with a healthy diet in order for it to be effective. Eat more fruits and veggies and less fatty meat and carbohydrates. Consider working with a dietitian if you are not sure what healthy choices to make or how to stick to a healthier diet.

5. You Will Become Obsessed

Prepare to become obsessed with Crossfit, but in a good way! The workouts are so high-energy and so fulfilling that most people who start quickly become addicted. You'll love trying new moves and improving your scores each time. Crossfit is something you will look forward to, which makes it much easier to stick with your workouts and stay in shape.

To learn more about Crossfit, contact a Crossfit gym in your area. If you show up with the right clothing and a positive attitude, your first few sessions will be enjoyable and informative.