When I first started CrossFit I was looking for something to replace my favorite sport tackle football. I had played for 8 years and my body was a little banged up. I loved being on a team and training with a team. Going to a globo gym was getting boring, spending 45 minutes on the elliptical and doing squats alone was very lonely.
My first exposure was at Golden State CrossFit which is no longer around. I fell in love after the first fundamental class where Kate kicked my ass. We ran 400 m to warmup past the valet at Equinox. And then we preceded to do squats, med ball cleans, pushups and jump rope for 40 minutes. It was great and I loved being in a group getting my ass handed to me. As I laid on the ground gasping for air I asked Kate when the next class would be!
CrossFit is great tool for strength and conditioning because it challenges you to ramp your intensity using basic functional movements. So an experienced Crossfitter and a beginner can do the same WOD but at different levels and still get their ass handed to them. For instance take Fran the fittest on earth last year did 19.5 which is a harder version of Fran (33-27-21-15-9 of thrusters and chest to bar pull-ups in 7 minutes) and when I started CrossFit I did scaled Fran (21-15-9 of thrusters and ring rows) in about 8 minutes. The great thing about CrossFit WODS is that if you remember to use apps like Sugar WOD you can map out your progress.