I had originally weighed about 240 pounds before I got into running in 2014, and was able to get down to about 175 when I took my first CrossFit class in 2019. My mom and Taylor’s mom, Lynn, worked together for several years and were very close. As I got to know Lynn from 2017 on, she would always tell me, “you have to try Crossfit…my daughter and her boyfriend do it-they coach it and have met so many great people over the years through CrossFit.” I always kept it in the back of my mind and said I’d get around to checking it out eventually. I’d begun the process of decluttering and remodeling my house shortly after my mom had passed away in late 2018 and came to realize that, even though I could run and felt like I had a good level of cardio, I had no upper body strength at all. I wanted to improve upon that, as well as begin to build muscle and meet some new people along the way. When I found out that Itamar was opening his own gym, I knew I’d be joining because I’d already met some great people and was very comfortable and happy with the attention to detail and coaching provided by Itamar and Taylor. I felt so happy for them and knew that they would be successful. Now, almost three years later, I’d say that I was definitely 100 percent correct in thinking that.
My personal first impression before I started CrossFit was intimidation…finding some of the workouts challenging and intimidating. I found that there was a very close-knit community of people who all push each other to be their best. There’s no need to be intimidated when we all encourage and root for each other. If there’s a movement or workout that’s not in my wheelhouse, I know that it can be scaled to something that I can do, whether that involves different movements and/or a weight that allows me to work on conditioning as opposed to strength or vice versa, depending on the day. I’ve met some truly incredible people through Masá and I think that speaks volumes to the community and environment that’s been fostered here over the past two and half years.
My first bright spot was probably getting to the point where I could do push-ups from the ground without the assistance of a box after the first few months of personal training, as that was one of the first skills that we worked on to help build upper body strength and stability.
Inside of the gym, I’ve set two personal goals for 2022-to achieve RX Box Jumps and to specifically focus on core exercises/work to help me to build up the coordination and strength to be able to do more overhead movements (i.e. lunges and squats) under heavy weight. Outside of the gym, I’ve gone back to school to become a Web Developer-something I’d long debated, but finally decided to do this past year. Under the coaching of Itamar and AJ, I’ve become a stronger and more well-rounded athlete, but I also believe that the coaching and investment they’ve made in personally training me has helped to make me a better person and I attribute a lot of my personal and professional gains over these past few years to a community and group of coaches who have taught me that I can achieve great things if I set my mind on and continue to chip away at goals every day.
The two biggest self-doubts I had about CrossFit were my ability to be able to successfully complete the workouts and wondering what people would think when they saw what an uncoordinated mess I was. I feel that it was wasted energy to worry about both of these things, as I’ve learned that I can scale workouts to a level that I’m comfortable with and that CrossFit is truly accessible to anyone and everyone. Our community feels like a family and that speaks to the amount of hours and hard work that Itamar, Taylor, AJ, Jess, Rachel and Tom have put into making this gym a second home for all of us. While I’m still an uncoordinated mess much more often than not, I don’t worry about that because I have no fear of being judged and I know that it will usually result in something absolutely hilarious happening that we can all get a good laugh out of.