Over the years I have been involved in a lot of athletic endeavors, from swimming in high-school to whitewater kayaking and mountain biking, as well as olympic weightlifting. I always found that I had the most fun when I had a strong group of motivated friends around me. When I moved from Eugene Oregon to Boulder, Colorado a number of years ago, I lost that community. It took a while, but my participation in sport also waned.
The final nail in the coffin for my personal fitness was being diagnosed with a non-rheumatoid arthritic condition. The disease had taken a toll on me for about 8 to 10 month prior to joining CrossFit Julia. I was as out of shape as I’d ever really been plus depressed and unmotivated, due to the pain I was in and the lack of physical activity. I knew I needed a community again, and that I needed a coach to help shore up my lack of motivation for a while. So, when my Doctor finally found a medication that kept me symptoms from interfering, I walked in to CrossFit Julia and signed up with for personal training with Shawn.
There are a lot of challenges we all overcome when we consistently show up. Daily pain due to my illness
was one of the early challenges that took a while to overcome. Shawn helped greatly with that by scaling movements and really paying attention to where I was at. Over the last 8 months or so, that pain has gradually lessened to the point were I don’t consider it a limitation very often.
My greatest current challenge is nutrition. At the beginning of my CrossFit training, I could really eat anything I wanted, get little sleep, and still show up and get better. Its taken a while, but I’m finally really putting two and two together when it comes to long-term sustainable healthy eating, and what it can do for my performance. Now I just have to execute consistently. When I eat well, and sleep, I see improvements across all of my life, less joint pain, more motivation at work, training, and in my relationships.
Well, I’ve been telling everyone lately, I finally worked out the bar muscle-up. It took three months of
concerted effort almost every time I came in to the gym, but it finally clicked. My double-unders are also becoming more consistent as I work on them. There have been many other challenges overcome over the last 12 months.
Chest-to-bar pull-ups, Kipping handstand pushups, rope climbs and many others. Mentally, and emotionally finding the motivation to come and work consistently has been a great success, though the community and coaches help my motivation as much as anything else. I’ve seen
lots of changes in my body over the last year, but the main thing I notice is the strength.
Snowboarding this season has been a breeze, I don’t come home from a long day on the slopes utterly exhausted like I used to.
Until CrossFit, I had not been consistent with any exercise routine other than Oly-lifting. I find its easier to get up and get out of bed than it used to be. I’m more consistently high energy and happier than I was; certainly more happy than I was leading up to starting at CrossFit Julia. I was depressed, really in a deep funk when I started working with Shawn in the personal training classes. My strength had really gone, and I had no cardio to speak of. It took a while for the mood to lift, but it did. CrossFit had a lot to do with those positive changes.
My wife Melissa had a lot to do with it too, and getting started with my CrossFit journey with here was great.
I had never really seen much body composition change in myself prior to starting CrossFit. The constantly varied workouts keep me interested, and frequently frustrate me enough that I want to get better at whatever challenging movement caused the frustration. There is no end of improvement possible in CrossFit. It’s similar in that respect to Olympic lifting, where no matter how much experience and time you spend there is still more to learn.
Stick with it, and practice, practice, practice. I’m not gifted at the gymnastic movements, and its taken a lot of time and repetition for improve. Also the coaches are there to help, don’t be afraid to ask questions and get help when you feel stuck. Keep coming back.
I’m continually thankful that I’ve found the community that I was missing in Boulder up until now, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.