ERIK LIBOUBAN-GUNDERSEN

Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.42.41 PM Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.43.37 PM

 

What was your life like prior to your CrossFit training and why did you want to start working with a coach?

 Before starting CrossFit I was having some health issues that were preventing me from really doing anything like going to school, hanging out with friends, and just generally going about my life. I had seen so many different doctors and tried so many different treatments and I was getting pretty tired of it all. It was a little less than 2 years into my whole situation and I just wanted something to make me feel better. I knew that exercising was supposed to make you feel better overall, and I remembered one of my friends had mentioned a while ago that he was doing CrossFit, so I figured what the hell, might as well try it, it couldn’t be worse than all of the pills that the doctors were drowning me in. I tried one CrossFit place before CrossFit Julia, and it was pretty horrible. After the first day, it felt like my head was going to implode and come out of my mouth, but for whatever reason I decided to try another place, and it turned out to be probably the best decision of my life. I sat down with Shawn and my mom and we just talked about what I wanted out of this and how I to get there. Everything he said really resonated with me, and I was excited to get started. As for why I wanted to work with a coach, it was never really planned that way. I was lucky enough to get Shawn to coach me from day 1 and every month since he’s asked me if I’ve wanted to keep working with him and the answer has always been yes. We sort of tried slowly getting me into the class environment once, and it didn’t work out too well, but it helped me appreciate how awesome Shawn is and the benefits of personal training. Having someone know your capabilities, limits, and challenges even better than you do, while giving you their experienced advice and encouragement is one of the coolest things to have.

What have been your greatest challenges since you began your CrossFit Training?

 I think my greatest challenges have been figuring out how CrossFit affected my body, and believing   that I could actually accomplish something. Learning how your body reacts to anything I think is an important part of life, but it can take a long time and it can be difficult to judge. Also believing in myself was difficult when I couldn’t accomplish anything before CrossFit, but I just did my best and suddenly I was doing things that I never saw myself doing.

Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.42.32 PM

What have been your greatest successes since you began? How does your body feel now compared to when you started and WHY?

My greatest success has definitely been my mental and physical well-being. I feel physically better and more capable of doing various things like schooling, hanging out with friends, and generally going about my life, and I have the mental desire to do all of these things, instead of being consumed by my health issues. That was what surprised me the most, that instead of my health issues fading, I actually rose above it and didn’t let it affect me nearly as much as it did, which is something I would never have expected.

How has your life changed since starting CrossFit training? Has CrossFit transferred over into any other areas of your life?

CrossFit has definitely been life changing for me in all areas of my life. I remember before starting CrossFit my life consisted of laying in bed, staring at a computer screen, visiting doctor’s offices, and a very inconsistent sleep schedule. Now I work out 4 times a week, get things done around the house, I’m in the process of getting my GED, I sleep at normal hours of the day, I see my friends, I run errands, and I’m even helping out with CrossFit kid’s summer camp, which a year ago, none of this would have been remotely possible. And it’s all thanks to CrossFit.

Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.59.11 PM Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.39.49 PM Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.39.35 PM

What are the advantages of CrossFit style training compared to your previous workout styles?

 CrossFit has so much more to it than the conventional local rec-center gym. I did that for a couple months before ever going to CrossFit or having health issues or whatnot. It was pretty boring… Go in, scan your card, do some movements and lifts that require little to no skill or thought because of all the machines and contraptions that make it super easy, maybe get your heart rate up if you’re feeling motivated, and leave. Repeat until bored (which doesn’t take very long if you’Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.43.08 PMre like me). There’s so much that goes into CrossFit! Strength, skill, coordination, stamina, endurance, precision, timing, judgement, etc… It feels like there’s always something to learn and it always feels like you make progress and accomplish something when you put the work in. It’s a rewarding and fu
n challenge. There’s such a strong sense of community and everyone encourages each other no matter where anyone is. And the best part is that anyone can do it no matter your age or any challenges you may have.

What advice can you give to others?

 I guess I would just say you can do anything if you put your mind to it. As cliche as that is, I’ve come to believe that’s true. Stay consistent and do what you can honestly do, no more, no less. You will have good days and you will have bad days, and that’s okay; it proves that you’re human. Stay positive 🙂

Any other details you would like to share about your experience?

I guess I just want to thank Shawn for being the best coach on the entire planet. I honestly wouldn’t be where I am now without him. I’m grateful to have such an awesome person in my life. And thank you to everyone at CrossFit Julia for being such amazing people!

Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.59.49 PM