I was a martial artist when I was introduced to CrossFit. After only one workout (my trainer friend didn't call it CrossFit when he was initiating me) and I recognized the symptoms of hard work immediately. The kind of mental and physical stamina needed to get through that workout was similar to how I dug into myself to get through a particularly grueling judo match or long capoeira roda. I was sold immediately.
It was through CrossFit that I was introduced to the full Olympic lifts. Previously, I had only seen and done a power clean, and did it really really poorly I might add. Being one who gets strong easily, it was eye opening to marry strength and speed and technique into these movements.
Despite having gone from a high level of general fitness to a high competitive level of specific fitness, I know that when I make that career change over to personal training and / or coaching, I'll be using the CrossFit methodology for most people I work with. Most people go to a gym to look and feel better. This is one way where you can get both as a side effect of being better.
I'll still make fun of CrossFit, because like any organization, you have your zealots and frat boys. But I'm glad to now have a deeper understanding of the methodology and I'm excited about using it.