14 October 2008

The Butter-Cutter On CrossFit Training

I entered the virtual Mess Hall looking forward to speaking to The Butter-Cutter changed by last week's demonstrated sensitivity to “Sam.” As soon as I got within sight of the Chow Line, he shouted out, “Hey! Diddja hear that CrossFit shit the Corps' been pushin' on us is f***in' up them that does it?” Evidently, The Butter-Cutter has a separate private and public persona. (1)

“Whoa! Hold on there! Let me get up to where you are before you launch your tirade!” I shouted back while walking up to him. “OK. Now that I'm here; what is this about CrossFit causing harm to those who practice it?”


“This former Squid got all screwed up doin' this CrossFit shit 'n' a court agreed with him 'n' is makin' the people who did it pay him $300,000.” (2)

“First of all, he is NOT a former Squid. He is a former sailor and what do you mean, 'got all screwed up?' What were his injuries from CrossFit?” I asked.

“Squid! Deck Ape! Sailor! It's all the same freakin' shit. Anyhow, accordin' ta this article in the Marine Corps Times, he said the CrossFit program  'left him permanently disabled' 'n' the workout . . . let me get this right . . . Yeah, here it is, 'caused him to urinate blood and his legs to swell.' Waddaya got ta say about that?” (2)

'Just . . . Just . . .Just a minute. You're telling me some guy won a law suit by saying that because he urinated blood and his legs swelled he became permanently disabled?” I asked the Butter-Cutter in disbelief.

“There ya go again. I ain't the one that's tellin' it! This article in the Marine Corps Times is tellin' that the workout caused the blood 'n' swellin' not me. I'm just reportin' this shit . . . reportin', like them reporters on TV get paid big bucks ta do!” The Butter-Cutter then laughed aloud.

“Something doesn't sound right.” I answered. “Just passing urine from a workout, such as running, isn't necessarily an indication of permanent physical damage. When I was running long distances in training for the Marine Corps Marathon, I passed blood and the doctors at Bethesda told me it was a somewhat common occurrence among long-distance runners.” 

“What did ya do after the doctors told ya that?” The Butter-Cutter asked.

“Well, I stopped running long-distances-10 miles and more-and gave up my aspiration to run in the Marathon. It seemed to me that my body was telling me that this was not good. But, . . .”

“There ya go!” The Butter-Cutter gleefully interjected. “Not good for the body like what happened ta that former Swab Jockey! He was permanently disabled! Why don't ya understand that?”

'STOP IT! Stop calling that sailor ugly names. And, before being so rudely interrupted, I was going to tell you that I later learned my blood passing symptom could have been the result of a low level of liquid in my bladder and nothing more serious than that. My point is: The symptoms you give for this sailor don't necessarily indicate a permanent disability!” (3)

“Well, hoop de do 'n' great blazin' balls o' camel dung! It 'don't necessarily!' Is that what yer sayin'? Well, officer-type-ONE MORE TIME-a court o' law said: CrossFit, YOU BE GUILTY! Pay this former . . . SAILOR $300,000! That trumps the shit outta yer 'don't necessarily!'  ”  

“I know what you're trying to do! You're trying to indict the Marine Corps on some charge of endangering its Marines by advocating CrossFit training. Why don't you remember that the Corps is in a high-risk business and this is just one of those things it does to prepare for combat,” I shot back at The Butter-Cutter.

“FORMER intelligence officer, I'm gonna strike a match 'n' bring some light inta that dark hole where yer brain is supposed ta be. Now, I want ya ta walk with me real slowly so this match don't get blown out on the way. HERE WE GO: I know it's a high-risk business when I'm in places like Iraq 'n' Afghanistan because EVERYBODY has told me that it's DANGEROUS in them places! The crunch point here is: NOBODY has told me like this Marine Corps Times article tells me: 'The CrossFit program . . . has been criticized as dangerous.' Now, YOU tell me why is the Corps havin' us do somethin' ta make us PHYSICALLY FIT that's DANGEROUS ta us. Ain't that somethin' you officer-types call an ‘ox-eye-moron?' ” (2) 


"The word is oxymoron and, although there appears to be a contradiction here, I'm sure the Corps has thought this through to the point of determining that the danger is minimal and acceptable," saying that, I left The Butter-Cutter before he could respond.



Semper . . . 

Anthony F. Milavic

Major USMC (Ret.)

(1) http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2008/06/marine_crossfit_062208w/

(2) http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2008/10/ap_crossfitlawsuit_100908/

(3) http://www.time-to-run.com/doctor/bloodyurine.htm


The 20 OCT 2008 hard-copy issue of the Marine Corps Times carries an expanded article entitled, "CrossFit in Court," on the former sailor cited above. That article also closes with the chilling statement: "Eugene Allen, a Washington state law enforcement officer who runs a CrossFit blog, posted an even less ambiguous warning in May 2005 titled 'Killer Workouts.' 'It can disable, maim and even kill,' he wrote."

Waddaya think?

(3 Thinks)

James Naugle said:   October 14th, 2008 8:40 am

I am a big fan of crossfit, almost all of my friends in every branch of service who are serious about working out do some form of crossfit. Like any work out regimen, you are supposed to consult with your doc first and exercise a little common sense. Semper Getting In Shape, Capt. Naugle, USAF

Mike said:   October 14th, 2008 9:06 am

check out my article in the March 08 Gazette to see what I think ...

Sully said:   October 14th, 2008 3:22 pm

What I think is that the author should publish the collected wisdom of The Butter Cutter. Each one is a gem of its own, and I'd love to see them gathered in one place with a proper binding. My respects to the author of these essays which have given me untold pleasure to read. Semper Fidelis, Sully