How/when did you get involved in CrossFit?
When I first met Cole, he was a CFB (a crossfit bro), not a coach, and I was only familiar with the stereotypes that surrounded CrossFit, so I watched from a distance and smiled and nodded and rolled my eyes. But then Cole asked me to do a fundraiser workout with him, and it was surprisingly really fun. Most of what I had heard about CrossFit was true, and it was fun for me to get to apply my athletic training to something new that was still vaguely familiar. Once Cole got his L1 and became a coach at Primary, I was there from time to time, but more of a shadowy confusing figure lurking in the background at the holiday party. January 1, 2019 was my first Primary CrossFit workout, and how here we are- i’ve become the crossfit bro.
Do you remember your first workout? How was it?
Cole played to my strengths and gave me an easy rowing workout for my first workout, which was deceptive in making it seem like CrossFit was just interval training. I have absolutely no idea what was my first workout was. I think I blocked it out so I would be able to keep going to class. Also it was probably in the morning and I retain absolutely nothing before coffee.
How have you grown in that time — health, body, mind, etc.?
I’m not the same person I was when I first started. I used to only run and do some light lifting on my own using my workouts from college, and I thought that was the only way I liked working out- as a lone wolf, so to speak, and I thought my interest in being coached was over after doing it so rigorously. But, I also struggled a lot over the years with injuries due to some anatomical abnormalities, a gnarly high jumping accident during college, and degenerative disc disease, so running at volume stopped being a healthy option for me. Starting CrossFit has allowed me to get back to being a lot more stable since it works a lot of different muscle groups and functionalities. Taking time to work out is my way of dealing with stress, so I’m not only physically healthier, I’m calmer and mentally healthier. – which is terrifying because I am still at a 10 when most of you guys are at a 4 so imagine what you’d have on your hands without CrossFit.
Favorite lift and WOD?
Power or hang Cleans (not squat cleans unless I am watching Becki struggle under one for 5 minutes), Deadlifts, and benchpress are my favorite lifts. my favorite WODs are ones where either we have a huge sense of community, like Murph, or ones that really throw us for a loop and you walk in and think “what the hell am I looking at here?” There is no room for pretension or theatrics in those workouts because they are so confusing all your physical and mental energy has to go into figuring out what you are doing so you don’t kill yourself or whack someone. The big tall burpee box mountain whatever Cole and Luz came up with that one day where we all ended up with shin bruises was my favorite movement of all time.
What about your least favorite?
I don’t have a least favorite, but I do have weaknesses. I struggle a lot with anything overhead, particularly snatches or squat cleans.
What are your fitness/health goals?
To have fun while staying fit and staying injury free. Try new things, push the limit, see how much rose I can drink before going to partner WOD on Saturday. Fitness should be fun. Its a privileged and a choice, not a punishment.
Is there a specific diet or nutritional habit that helps you with your goals?
I have some family history with heart disease, so I adjusted my diet in my 20s to reduce things that are unhealthy. That was a process to go from collegiate athlete who ate and drank like a football player to someone who generally eats lean and healthy, but I truly do enjoy it. Every weekend I plan out meals for the week, go grocery shopping, and rely on my food saver to always have a freezer stocked with proteins like fish and chicken so I can easily throw together a brown rice bowl when its a long day. I also enjoy pizza a lot and I have no intention of ever giving that up to be 5 lbs lighter, or not going to Half Acre with my absolute favorite people and having some beers on the patio in the summer. Its not about a number on a scale, its about balance, and I think that is the most important thing to strive for. Do the workout, eat the pizza, drink the wine, get a light lecture from Cole on the benefits of the Zone Diet, repeat.
What motivates you?
My son Sawyer. I want him to see that fitness is important and fun, and that women can be strong. He loves Primary and I love that about Primary- I can bring him there and he can see so many different kinds of people, all being strong and healthy and focused and driven and most importantly, happy to be doing it.
Do you have any advice for new members?
Don’t get caught up in comparing yourself to others or the Benchmark wall. If you really think about it, Primary is just a small drop in terms of the other crossfitters out there, so if you get upset at where you are in the community at Primary, you’re going to REALLY feel bad when you think about where you are in general compared to everyone in the CrossFit world. Real athletes aren’t just physically fit, they are mentally fit too- good sportsmanship and honestly supporting each other makes everyone better. Keep your head down and do the work and you will get stronger/faster/better. CrossFit really is about the community, and the community makes you better, if you open yourself up to being part of the team- which means supporting each other as much as you expect others to support you. Come say hi to me so I can invite you to drinks and we can slap your cute booty. This is supposed to be fun.
What’s it like being involved with our head coach Cole? You guys compliment each other fitness wise – you being a collegiate athlete – is there extra incentive / pressure that you guys feel from one another?
I knew Cole before Primary or CrossFit coaching, so I don’t feel pressure being with him at the Box because I know who he is and he knows me. I like to think I keep him focused on his own fitness goals when he gets swept up in everyone elses- he genuinely cares so much about every single athlete at Primary- and I think we keep each other balanced. I’m incredibly proud of his pure and earnest interest in making people healthy and happy, and I get the extra benefit of experiencing it everyday while also yelling at him to get up, go faster and quit laying on the floor. I will, sadly, never be a Tia Clare to his Shane Orr but at least I know those names so SEE COLE I LISTENED. Lets ask him this question too 🙂
What do you hope to achieve in the coming year?
Id love to keep building strength and see my lift numbers go up, but nothing specific. Maybe figure out some wacky gymnastics work like a handstand walk after seeing Alex Cline bring down the entire house doing his at the South Loop Games. I’m still figuring it out 🙂
Anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you, Cole. If there was no Cole, I’d never have gone to Primary, and then there would be no triplets, no Ass Pounder; I would not have an inappropriate sun catcher to hang in my window, or a shirt with chalk hand prints on my chest- the list goes on and on, and those memories and relationships are just as valuable as the health and fitness I’ve gained.