Before starting my journey with C2, I was a triathlete. Well, even that may be a stretch. I “did” triathlons, and I finished/survived many races, including a 70.3 Half-Ironman (1.2 mile ocean swim, 56 mile bike ride, 13.1 mile run). I was never truly competitive in any race (usually finishing in the bottom 5% of my age group), and always pursued the training and racing as a personal challenge, just trying to push myself and see what I could do. I enjoyed it, and I always felt that I was in decent shape, despite what the scale and body-fat percentage said.
But one day, in late 2011 I competed with a friend in a “Muddy Buddy” obstacle race, and realized something about the years of triathlon and endurance training; it sapped me of overall strength. After being truly embarrassed by my flailing struggles to complete the obstacles, and hanging on for dear life to a muddy rope 40ft in the air, praying I didn’t pee myself, I realized that I wanted more from what my body could do. I needed not only endurance, but power and functional strength.
I restarted my Globo-Gym membership and started hitting the weights again like I had in years past. I was familiar with the routine.. “Monday: Biceps/Back, Tuesday: Legs, Wednesday: Chest/Tri’s, etc..” but was lifting weights for show, and not function. I continued triathlon training, and competed in a few more races with the same results. I taught spin classes, and helped coach a beginners running group. I was staying in shape, but wasn’t getting the results I really wanted. Luckily, in April of 2012, my friend Nick Tomlinson (owner of CrossFit Temecula) hired my band to play his box’s party. When I saw how fit everyone seemed, and how strong their sense of community was, the seed was planted. “Hmm… maybe I could do THIS instead?”
Still continuing my normal 5:30am run routine, I noticed a small sign on my route that said “Carlsbad CrossFit: No More Excuses.” I saw that sign every day for months before it sank in; “No more excuses.” I had made all the excuses in the world why I couldn’t/shouldn’t/can’t/won’t pick up the phone and call to get started. I finally decided to go for it, and send an email to C2 about rates, etc.
I received a friendly email back from Britt, and walked into C2 for my first time on 10/5/2012. I was immediately made to feel welcome by Chris and all the fine people at 6:00am. My first WOD was a disaster, as I was halfway through the deadlift/burpee ladder when Chris started the clock. “Oh wait, I’m halfway done… we’re supposed to start together? This is timed!? Is it a race? Why is Amy rolling her eyes at me!?” Chris very patiently explained how things worked, and took mercy on me, letting me off with good behavior and burpees-served. I walked out the box that day feeling wrecked… and I couldn’t wait to come back and try it again.
Since that day, I look forward to each workout, and have been incredibly surprised and grateful for the gains I’ve made in my strength, speed, endurance, and confidence. I could have never reached this point without the support of the best coaches around. Chris, Rick, Britt, Kip, Catina, Lindsey, and all the rest have made this journey smooth, fun, challenging, and meaningful. I’ll never forget the sinking feeling I had when I showed up one morning, and was the only person there at 6:00am with Rick. Nothing like a Marine barking at you to get fired up and keep moving (“LAND!”). I’ve been blessed to have been able to share my milestones with coaches who truly care and are excited about even the smallest PR. Knowledge, experience, and ability are the core factors of these great coaches, but being able to motivate, and connect on a personal level with each athlete, regardless of ability level, body-type, motivation, or Fran-time is a distinguishing factor that sets C2 apart. You coaches are the best. ‘Nuf said…
On top of all the PRs, 1RM, and WODs, I’ve also been stoked to have found such a friendly, supportive, and fun-loving community at C2. The social events, the meet-ups, the often hilarious Facebook posts, make the sense of connection to these athletes even stronger. I have NEVER felt judged, excluded, or ignored at C2, and have been pleasantly surprised to have made so many new friends that continue to motivate me to come back, work hard, and get better. There is no better feeling that having your fellow athletes cheer you on to push through those last brutal reps, even though you’re the slowest guy that day. Quality human beings; my second family…
My one-year CrossFit anniversary is coming up, and when I look at my picture on the board, and am very grateful for how far I’ve come, how different I look, and how and excited I am to see what the next year brings. THANK YOU Carlsbad CrossFit!