In July, I decided to give CrossFit a try, something I had always been interested in, but had always allowed FEAR (False Evidence Appearing Real) to hold me back. Would I be strong enough? Would people laugh at me? Would I be able to even do such a program as CrossFit?
Despite my reservations, I decided to contact Triumph and go with it! I remember showing up for my first class not really knowing what to expect. Let’s face it, I was terrified! I walked away different! During that class, I witnessed everyone cheering one another on, encouraging one another, celebrating someone hitting a PR, and picking up others who were falling a bit short on that day.
I loved the camaraderie that existed in that BOX and still do! The coaches are not only knowledgeable but passionate athletes that are dedicated to each person’s success, and they push you every day to be your personal best!! A big thanks to the coaches for all their support and the examples they set for us all. Your coaching, inspiration, and guidance make a difference in the lives of so many, and you have made an irreversible difference in mine!
That day I walked into Triumph has changed my life in more ways than I could’ve imagined in such a short period of time. CrossFit has given me so much more than fitness. I always have a sense of accomplishment after class, and I carry that with me throughout the day. I have the courage to take risks without fear. It has taught me that I can push myself beyond what I ever believed possible. CrossFit has totally redefined my definition of fitness. It’s fun, exciting, challenging, and humbling. I’ve set goals and priorities for myself and there is no stopping me! I’m looking forward to seeing where this CrossFit journey takes me!
My main goal is to retire in 10 years and do a lot of the things I have missed out on or put off while pursuing the American Dream. It wasn’t until my last doctor’s appointment for a checkup that the proverbial light went on. Isn’t that always the way?
He explained that the constant stress of my job combined with a crappy diet and no exercise are going to end up killing me. He wasn’t talking about ten or fifteen years, he was talking between one and three. Combine that with the news I received six months ago, a diagnoses of a chronic and incurable disease, and I walked out of his office with a whole new outlook on my life. I actually Googled P90X when I got to my office. While surfing around on the net, I stumbled upon this thing called CrossFit. For some reason, that looked a hell of a lot more exciting than anything else so I told my wife I was going to try that.
You guys have been a Godsend to me. I sincerely mean that. The other places threw me right into the fray. I had no idea what I was doing at all. The only thing I did know was I sucked really, really bad. You were the first Box that had a mandatory introductory class. It was great.
The Coaches at Triumph are what make the place special. I came through those overhead garage doors about four or five months ago with no idea what I was getting into. You guys took great care in guiding me through the CrossFit experience right from the very beginning. The beginner’s classes are a great way to get acclimated to this experience.
A big thing that I like is you guys push me. Especially Chris. He’s the one I’m most familiar with since he does the majority of the morning classes. When I utter something evenly remotely along the lines of “I’m not sure I can do that,” he makes me do it. I’m glad he does, too. I’m doing things I never thought I would do at this age. Not to beat the proverbial dead horse but I’ll be 52 in September, and I’m trying to do Toes to Bar! Who would have thunk it?
I’ve lost weight, which is something I have wanted to do for years. I’m stronger in numerous ways than I was when I first showed up. I eat much better thanks to Keith’s suggestions. I’m not gasping for air during the warmups anymore, either. Another really noticeable improvement is my ability to do my job better. Part of my job requires that I be present on job sites for projects. This usually involves a lot of climbing and lifting various items. I am not nearly as worn out and I can climb and move around much, much better.
By and large, every person that comes in to train is there to give it their all. Each and every person just impresses the hell out of me. I’m still at the stage where I can watch anyone there and be inspired. I guess it might be easier to put it this way. When you are doing burpees or wall-balls as part of a METCON (and I am terrible at burpees), it would be easy to stop at 18 instead of 21, however, you can’t. All of those other people are doing the METCON properly, and if I were to cheat on some reps, I would feel like I was cheating on the whole group. That is a powerful motivator.
My favorite thing is the fist-bump and the WODIFY. Being a newcomer to Triumph is really like any other group type activity. When you show up, everyone is nice and polite and helpful but you know intuitively that you are not yet part of “the group.” For me, I felt like part of “the group” as it were, when one of those big young guys, I’m not sure which one, gave me a fist bump after we were finished and said “good job.” That was progress! Then when we were told we must sign in on WODIFY, I did and I started logging my results. One day, out of the blue, I get this notification that Becca and Vicky “liked” something or other on my results. I thought, wow, if those two think I’m doing ok, I must be doing something right. That was like a first fist bump all over again.
Honestly, my goals in life are simple. I always wanted to be a good wife, good mother and a good example to all of those around me. In doing all of that, I need to be able to be strong mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally.
Being a part of Triumph is, well, totally awesome. First, it definitely helps me be the best me I can be for my family. It has increased my mental toughness by leaps and bounds. I’ve learned day in and day out by walking into Triumph that it’s up to me to decide what I can and can’t do. Sometimes it doesn’t happen that day, but it’s no reason to give up.
I can remember in my early CrossFit days seeing the things that people would do and I thought to myself “Holy crap! I’ll never be able to do that.” But, little by little, I’ve seen myself inch closer and closer to those goals and in some cases pass them. In some cases, I just needed a coach to tell me to pick up the bar one more time and try again. I needed someone else to show me they had confidence in me when I wasn’t quite sure. Sometimes it was staying after class to work on that first pull-up or try that failed clean and jerk for a new PR AFTER time expired during the first open workout this year.
Second, Triumph helps me be a good example to my family. A little over seven years ago the only time you would have heard my name and exercise in the same sentence was to hear “Heather doesn’t exercise.” I got to a point where I needed to make some changes. Some changes are still being made but my kids see the difference in me physically and mentally, and they actually ask me to work out with them. Both of them have participated in the CrossFit Kids classes as well. My husband, despite being a farmer all his life and being physically active in that aspect, also realizes it’s sometimes necessary to make changes as you get older. Together, we all try to be a little more active and better eaters to become a better US. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!!
So yes, Triumph has helped me achieve my goals and create new ones as I go. Ironically, I’ve had to modify some of my goals due to some minor physical setbacks, and the coaches have helped me see and understand that the ultimate goal is to stay healthy and safe and have helped me modify my workouts when needed.
One of my biggest improvements has been mental. Instead of telling myself I can’t do something, I ask myself “Why not? Why can’t I do a muscle-up? Why should I let numbers on weights tell me I can or can’t. They are just numbers, but I’m boss of my destiny in that gym.” It’s made me realize that at any given time, I am where I never thought I would be several years ago when I started CrossFit, but I’m also where somebody else thinks they can’t be today.
Almost three years ago I was invited to a free Saturday class (thanks Whitney Rich) when Triumph (UMPH at the time) was just getting started. That day was all it took. I was hooked. I was diligent for 3-4 months but then the busy season of my work got in my way. Then, out of the blue, I started to connect with more and more people. For me, it became the unofficial buddy system. People would ask where I was or reach out to make sure everything was ok. It made me feel like people cared. It’s been a snowball effect ever since.
I feel like the community is a just that: a community. There are so many different types of people from so many different walks of life that I never would have met otherwise. I can’t imagine not being associated with and knowing these people who are such a huge part of my life right now. Honestly, it’s sometimes the thought of just walking in there to see all the people that gives me the motivation to go.
In case, you can’t already tell, I kind of like this place … a little. Who am I kidding? I LOVE this place … A LOT. Other than the community vibe and helping make me a better person, my favorite thing about Triumph is the coaches. It is amazing to watch each of the coaches work out, sometimes multiple times a day. I’m amazed at all they are capable of, which really shouldn’t be a surprise. What stands out in my mind is, on more occasions than I can count, watching them not only tell us the workout but doing it right alongside the very athletes they train.
To prove my point, I was looking for a partner for a competition last fall. I just threw it out there on Facebook. The first person to agree to be my partner was none other than one of our fabulous coaches, Chris Lemmel. I often asked myself if he knew what he was getting himself into, and then I started to wonder about what I had gotten myself into. Here’s what I found out: Chris only wanted me to be the best that I could be that day. He didn’t ask me to be the best that HE could be that day. He also didn’t “trump” my thoughts on how to tackle something or tell me I needed to do something that I wasn’t comfortable doing (those darn box jumps). We made decisions as a team. At that point in time, him believing in me enough to stand beside me as my partner was what I needed at that time.
Lastly, one of my favorite things about the coaches is their desire and willingness to create bonds with the members and keep the future bright. They are always looking for ways to keep members engaged (whether it’s socially, from a goal perspective or from a personal perspective). They are constantly looking to make things better for all members (present and future). I feel like they often know if I’m having a bad day before I do. They like me for me and just want me to be the best me I can be and want to help me get there safely.