Occupation: IT Manager
Tell us about yourself? Originally from New England, I stopped in Milwaukee about 20 years ago on my way to Colorado. I spent all my money playing bar dice and had to hunker down for the winter. Then summer came and I had so much fun I decided to stick around. A few years later I got married and made some kids and enjoyed my life and got fat.
How did you find CrossFit? I first heard of CrossFit about 5-6 years ago as a component of some peoples’ health success stories. These people would talk about how much they enjoyed CrossFit as an exercise program to the point that they were ‘hooked’. I thought the term hooked was reserved for things like drugs and phonics. So I was interested to know more about it.
Anyhow, in 2014 my wife told me that Marcela had opened a CrossFit gym and I bought the package for the basic classes. 4 months later, I showed up for my first class.
How long have you been CrossFitting? About 18 months.
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year. Despite playing a lot of sports, I have never been particularly athletic. I tend to get by on guile more than strength or speed. What I really wasn’t aware of when I started was how limited my mobility is. I don’t think I had ever done a full squat and the front rack position was really challenging. Nothing was as tough as the overhead exercises, though. When Marcela taught me how to do the overhead squat, I put the PVC pipe over my head to give it a try. She said go. Nothing happened. I understood what I was supposed to do but I could barely get my knees to bend.
So, after basics I had a pretty good idea that I was started on a long journey. I had witnessed the end of a few CrossFit classes while learning what to do and I couldn’t believe some of the things I was seeing. People were doing movements with heavy weights, over and over, then they would grab a jump rope and start jumping but, for some reason, the rope was going around twice on every jump. I had never seen that before, never even thought of it as a possibility. I felt like I was watching a bunch of superheroes and I wasn’t sure how I was going to fit in with this group.
After about a week of attending regular classes and trying to keep up with everyone, I realized that metcons are the great equalizer; by the end of class everyone is a puddle on the floor. After that I was comfortable doing my scaled thing and focusing on progress.
I’d love to tell you that after 18 months I have turned into superhero myself but I still have a long way to go on this journey. That’s not to say I haven’t made improvements, I have definitely come a long way. Before CrossFit, I had the strength of a small kitten. Now I am like a big kitten! I can open most jars. I can start my lawnmower in half the pulls. I can tie my shoes and breathe at the same time. I can do most of the class movements and I want to improve those and achieve the rest. The overhead squat that I couldn’t even fathom when I started? I can do lots of them and sometimes they feel good!
Which class do you usually attend? I’m ready for bed after class so I go in the evening ☺
Favorite WOD: I love doing CrossFit but I don’t know how to answer this question. I can’t even name a WOD, except Murph, which I have never done. Will do my first one next year! I guess my favorite WOD is a completed WOD and then I hope I never see it again.
Favorite Lift: Now we’re talking. Hands down the snatch is my favorite lift. If you’re not coming to Barbell class to do some snatches, you are missing out. It’s one of the most complicated movements but when I nail one it feels great. It challenges my mobility and strength from head to toe.
What keeps you coming back? For me it starts with the coaches. When I first started coming to class, Douglas was usually my coach. He was very empathetic to where I was at and helped me to be OK with the challenges I was having in completing a lot of the movements. Marcela has always been really positive and clearly is personally invested in the success of everyone who comes through the door. Since then we have a lot of new people coaching classes and I really appreciate them all. Thanks everyone!
Beyond that, I just enjoy the community overall. Classes are filled with a diverse group of great people. I have made a lot of good friends here and seeing them regularly is just as important to me as what I am doing for my health.
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it? Thanks goodness that CrossFit is not a product on a shelf; can you imagine how hard it would be to get down? It would probably fall on top of me and pin me to the ground (that’s happened at least once in class).
There’s no doubting the value of my investment, though. There are a lot of cheaper approaches to fitness but I have never done anything else where the return is so clear.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life? I’ve been divorced for about a year now and, while I wouldn’t yet say I am thriving, CrossFit100 has been a big part of my development as I learn to live on my own for the first time since, well… forever basically. I have a completely different view of what a healthy me looks like. Thanks to nutritional programs I have joined through the gym, I have a better idea of how to feed myself and I have developed the habits to allow me to do it right consistently. I have a super supportive community around me that keeps me on the right path but never feels like a group obsessed with fitness. I owe you all some thanks for your positive influence on me since I joined! Hard to imagine what I would be doing if I wasn’t coming to the gym most days.
What motivates/inspires you?
- My kids motivate me to demonstrate success with my health so that they hopefully develop their own interest before they get to my age.
- I’m inspired by everyone who comes through the doors of the gym, from the people who can crush every exercise and make me reimagine my own limits to the newbies just getting started on their own journey (which I know they will succeed on!).
- Pretty much anyone who tackles something tough and makes it through to the other side.
Thanks again everyone! See you at the gym…
I never thought I’d achieve the results that I have, especially not in four months. I followed Marcela’s recommended nutrition plan and participated in 3 one hour workouts per week losing more than twice the weight I expected to in just four months. I have more strength and flexibility than I’ve ever had. I knew I had to make some major changes toward a healthier lifestyle, but I was skeptical as to how much change was possible. Now that most of my excess weight is gone, I’m starting to notice definition in my arms, legs and abs. I’m thankful to have found Crossfit 100 when I did and look forward to being part of this healthy community for years to come!
Our May 2016 Athlete of the Month - Elena
Occupation: Radiologic Technologist at Children’s Hospital
Tell us about yourself? I am married to a wonderful man and have two very spoiled beautiful dogs:). I have a niece and nephew who I love and adore. I have two sisters and we are a very close family so my free time if I am not at CrossFit or work I try to spend with them as much as I can. As most of you know I love to work out:) I have always been what they call a “gym rat”. First, I was a competitive figure skater from the age of 6 to 13. I got to triple jumps. That taught me a lot of discipline. My older sister and I both did it and we traveled a lot for competitions and would practice before and after school. Very fun time for both of us. Unfortunately my Mom, sisters and I had our world turned upside down when we lost my Dad January 1999 from Leukemia. That year I stopped figure skating and hate to say it I have not done it since. High school I did play volleyball and ran track but only the first couple years and then decided to start working and have not stopped since. Went to college and lived by UWM and met my husband there at the gym of course. My husband and I do want to start a “human” family in the future until then we are enjoying each other and traveling as much as we can.
How did you find CrossFit? Anne Coleman introduced it to me and haven’t stopped since. She also works at Children’s.
How long have you been CrossFitting? 4yrs
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year. I know I could not do a pull up when I first started and did not realize how hard they really were to do and how much strength it takes to do them. Now I can do them in three different ways strict, kipping and butterfly. And I continue to work on them. That is what I do love most about CrossFit, that it is always a challenge for me and I am always working on getting better not only strength wise but also on my technique.
Which class do you usually attend? Early mornings and nights depending on when I start work…I like to change it up.
Favorite WOD: Fran
Favorite Lift: Thrusters and snatches.
What keeps you coming back? The challenge, the people, and the variety of the workouts. I love how they are always different. Also, I love the soreness I get each weekJ
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it? I would buy it because it will change your life and body. I always wanted to be that woman you look at and say “Yeah she works out!” I was always a fan of definition and that is why I was always in the gym trying to get that “look”. Until I started CrossFit and changed my diet then I saw changes. Even though my mom will feel my arms and say “Mija (daughter in Spanish) what are you doing and how much weight are you lifting?” She makes me laugh but I always let her know that I am careful.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life? I love the way I feel when I am done each day after CrossFit. It really is a great way to either start or end my day. Each class I take as my “Me” time and go into my own world for an hour and it feels great. It also is a great stress reliever to the crazy days that my job can bring sometimes.
What motivates/inspires you? My husband Trentin is my biggest fan and supports my addiction to CrossFit. Even though he looks at my hands and bruises from cleans sometimes and shakes his head, he also helps me with my technique and has taught me it’s all about your core like Marcela always tells usJ He ran track at UWM so he has done a lot of squats, deadlifts, etc. My goal still after 4 years is to get him to a class but our gym at home is enough for him as he tells me. No matter how much I snatch over my head or deadlift my Mom is the strongest person I know and has inspired me to be a very independent hardworking person. Lastly, the children at Children’s Hospital are so inspirational to me and to see some of the amazing things that happen there makes me very proud to be part of that team.
Meet Our April 2016 Athletes of the Month, Joe & Stephanie Patek
Joe and Stephanie Patek
Joe: Associate Principal at Shorewood High School,
Steph: Physical Therapy Doctoral student at Marquette University
Tell us about yourself? How did you find CrossFit? Steph found Crossfit through Groupon, believe it or not, over three years ago. She attended her first class and was hooked immediately by the camaraderie and “intenseness” of the workouts. Steph had always been very, very active running, lifting, and completing triathlons but Crossfit provided something more of a challenge for her. Joe was a bit slower to buy-in to Crossfit. He attended his first class about a year after Steph did, at her encouragement or insistence depending on whom you ask. Joe began attending one class a week for the next year (typically Saturday mornings) and slowly progressed from there to two days a week. Then, last June, he “drank the full glass of Kool-Aid” and started coming full time, four to five days a week like Steph.
How long have you been CrossFitting? Steph has been CrossFitting for almost three years. Joe has been CrossFitting regularly for almost a year and, intermittently, for about two and a half years.
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year. Steph has always been into fitness (and a female gym rat). She’s worked out almost her entire life, or at least as long as she can remember. She played sports in high school and, post high school, became an avid runner and triathlete. After realizing she needed to bulk up a bit to achieve her triathlon goals, Steph set out to try Crossfit. Since then she has added quite a bit of healthy muscle and is at the fittest level of her life (even being 9 months pregnant). She would like to continue CrossFitting until the birth of her and Joe’s baby then transition back to working out as soon as possible after the birth with hopes of making her future daughter proud by beating Joe in every event of the 2017 CrossFit Open.
Joe played college football for five years, which included year-round training and practicing many of the lifting techniques that are used in CrossFit. Like many college athletes, once his playing career was over he abandoned working out only to rediscover its importance a few years later. He spent several years as a normal gym going guy who lifted and did some cardio by himself. Joe has worked out for years; however, one of the many things that drove him during his football career was the community of athletes that worked together towards a common goal. Through Crossfit, he rediscovered his favorite part of college football. Joe continues to struggle with gymnastics movements and burpees, but he hopes to continue to get acclimated and progress with many of these movements. In addition, he hopes to continue to be consistent with his attendance while finding a balance between work, family, and working out.
Which class do you usually attend? We both attend the 5:45 AM (shout out to the other early morning regulars!) class during the week and, usually, the 8:30 AM class on Saturday, although once our baby, Camille Annie Sara Josephsdottir as named by Jessie, Tina, and Katie C., is born one of us will likely be attending a different class at times depending on the day.
Favorite WOD: Steph loves the filthy fifty. Joe, if he had to pick a WOD, likes any combination of movements that doesn’t involve doing 50 or more consecutive reps of a single movement. He despises 100 burpees for time.
Favorite Lift: If it were her choice, Steph would backsquat for days straight. Joe is all about the hang clean.
What keeps you coming back? Honestly, for both of us it is all about people. For one, having each other to keep each of us accountable, make smart eating choices (usually), and to push each other is awesome. Additionally, the Crossfit 100 community is absolutely remarkable, and it is a privilege for both Joe and Steph to continue to be a part of such an awesome group of people!
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it? Take it from a true female gym rat that has tried just about every type of physical activity known and a former college athlete: there is nothing like CrossFit. It is a community, it is work that is going to push you further than you’ve ever thought possible, it is chance to connect with like minded people, it is a social life, and it is an opportunity to better yourself.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life? Almost four years ago Steph decided she needed a career change. Previously, she had been a middle school math teacher; however, her entire life she has always been into fitness and healthy living. It seemed to only make sense for her to transition to a career that would allow her to live her passion daily. With Joe in full support of her decision and wanting to see his wife happy, Steph quit her teaching job and hasn’t looked back since. Steph was admitted to Marquette University’s Doctoral of Physical Therapy Program three years ago, and she will be entering her final semester of school this fall and soon be able to help everyone with their injuries, rehab, and preventative work! Interestingly, Crossfit has been with Steph every step of this journey. She started Crossfit shortly before going back to school. Crossfit has provided an excellent stress reliever, a chance to practically apply the knowledge Steph has learned, and it has encouraged her to think outside the box when considering treatment options. It is not uncommon to see Steph trying to study flashcards occasionally during the 5:45 AM class!
What motivates/inspires you? Steph is motivated by the progress of her peers every single day. When someone hits a PR it is the overwhelming feeling that everyone has hit a PR! Joe is inspired by his wife, Steph. At 9 months pregnant she still kicks his ass on several workouts every week. She is also the first person to remind him that any PR he’s set is still not good enough!
Meet Our March Athlete of the Month, Steph!
Tell us about yourself? I’m married to my super crazy best friend, Dominic, and we have two kids, Adler (13) and Izzy (10)
How did you find CrossFit? A friend, Marcela Lagos, asked me to try it with her… I drank the kool-aid and have been doing it ever since.
How long have you been CrossFitting? I think maybe 4 years now? (Time flies!)
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year? When I first started training with Marcela, I walked into a class one day only to discover that no one else had showed up. I did what everyone else would do and panicked. Suddenly I was doing one on one with Marcela? Oh No! That day, she took me out to run. I had thought I was in relatively okay shape. I was working out at the JCC and going to Zumba classes and thought I was eating right. When Marcela got a hold of me, she took me out to run. You guys, I could NOT EVEN RUN A WHOLE BLOCK! It hurt and I couldn’t catch my breath. Not only does Marcela provide us with amazing workouts but she helps out a lot with nutrition. Last year, much to my own surprise, I ran my first half marathon. (I was slow as a turtle but I still did it- oh and did I mention that I HATE running?!? It helped that many of you showed up to cheer for me and my daughter was holding a sign that said “Don’t Shit Yourself” Ha!)
Which class do you usually attend? 8:30
Favorite WOD: I don’t have a favorite but I like WODs with DUs, being on the bars and being upside down
Favorite Lift: Probably deadlifts
What keeps you coming back? The amazing coaches and everyone I work out with. You are all so inspiring and encouraging- and you are seriously like family to me. I had shoulder surgery a couple years ago and got super depressed thinking I would have to quit CrossFit. Marcela wrote me personal workouts and I would come in each day with my arm in a sling and work out in a corner of the gym and watch all of you do your WODs. You all kept me coming back. You all amaze me! I am usually almost last in the WODs and I really never go crazy heavy – I even sometimes end up doing my own thing but it doesn’t keep you all from cheering for me anyway. There is nothing like it- you all make me smile!
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it? I would buy it because it’s hot and spicy and makes you sweat…and it won’t kill you!
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life? CrossFit is like my therapy. I get SUPER crabby if I don’t come in enough. I try to schedule my work meetings around CrossFit and get all mad when my CrossFit schedule gets interrupted- lol! CrossFit helps you realize that you can accomplish things that you never thought you would. It makes you braver and more confident in everyday situations. It gives you that one hour where you don’t have to worry about anything else that’s going on in your life. You leave that all at the door when you walk into the gym.
What motivates/inspires you? All of the other crossfitters inspire and motivate me. Since I have been there such a long time, I have seen so many changes in people. I have seen you get your first muscle up, your first double under, your first pull up, your first rope climb. I have seen body compositions change. I have seen you laugh and sometimes cry. But, we are all in it together and no matter what your goals are, we are all there for each other.
Meet February's Athlete of the Month,Peter Wiegers
Meet January's Athlete of the Month, Katie Corcoran
Athletes Spot Light: Katie Corcoran
Occupation: Real Estate Agent at Powers Realty Group
Tell us about yourself? I grew up in WFB and live in Fox Point with my husband Dan, sons Sam (8) and Charlie (3). My life consists of Real Estate, CrossFit, and Family, Running…REPEAT! (I also enjoy playing ultimate Frisbee)
How did you find CrossFit? My brother bought me a gift certificate as a “congrats on the baby” gift after I had Charlie.
How long have you been CrossFitting? Habitually…2.5 years
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year. When I started CrossFit I had a lot of extra baby weight left, but I had a few years of running marathons and half marathons under my belt. I had this crazy dream of qualifying for the Boston Marathon…but there was “NO WAY” it could happen because you need to be super in shape and fast to do that. I had never done a pull up in my life…and never fathomed I would ever do one! As of 2015…I missed qualifying for Boston by 1 minute and 13 seconds at Lakefront Marathon. I have officially taken over 35 minutes off my “pre-crossfit marathon PR” and earlier this year I did 100 pull-ups with a 20lb vest on. I can say, without a doubt that I am in the best shape of my life. Mark my words, I WILL QUALIFY FOR BOSTON IN 2016…I am hungry as f*ck for it!
Which class do you usually attend? 5:45am
Favorite WOD: Gallant was my favorite. It was a rainy day…which made it feel so much more badass!
Favorite Lift: Overhead Squats
What keeps you coming back? The results & the people…or shall I say “MY people”
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it? Because I am addicted and if I go too long without it I get “the shakes”.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit?
Not only am I in the best shape of my life physically, but I am mentally as well. Once I gained control of my health I started to chip away at other aspects of my life that needed a makeover. Most recently I just changed real estate brokerages and left the team of agents I was on to work as an individual agent; moving my business was difficult, but I kept my focus on the end results and kept moving forward. I know my mental toughness from CrossFit helped keep me grounded during this time.
How has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life? CrossFit (and running marathons) teaches you to just suck it up and keep going…no matter what. Once you do it long enough you start to realize that nothing is impossible. Yes, often times it sucks and it’s painful…but I always find my way through it.
What motivates/inspires you? My mom died 5 years ago after battling breast cancer for over 18 years, she was only 60 years old. Life is a precious gift; I know that because of her. So every day I chose to kick ass and suck the marrow out of life…and there is no better way to do that then starting my day with my CrossFit 100 family!.
Meet December's Athlete of the Month: Mark Mendelson
Occupation: Personal Trainer and Fitness Instructor
Tell us about yourself?
I’m semi-retired but somehow seem to be as busy now as I was when pursuing a bonifide career. I was born and raised in Alexandria, Va and arrived in WI in 1973 to go to graduate school at Marquette University to pursue a master’s degree in experimental psychology. After leaving Marquette I never spent a minute as a practicing psychologist. They use to say that an individual might expect to have at least 7 different careers in their life time, I’ve had multiples of that , from community service, to politics, an entrepreneurial pursuit, sales rep, and business consultant, trade association executive and the list goes on. I’m married with 2 step children and 5 grandchildren and a 4 year old mixed breed dog named Sammi. We live in Shorewood and have for the last 20 years. I presently work at the Jewish Community Center as a fitness instructor teaching Spinning classes and TRX suspension training. I also do personal training.
How did you find CrossFit?
I had been reading about CrossFit for several years but it wasn’t until a couple clients of mine began splitting their training between me and CrossFit that I figured I’d better find out firsthand what it was all about. I went online and found a Groupon, did the 5 basics classes and never looked back.
How long have you been CrossFitting?
It will be 2 years the end of Feb 2016
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year.
When I started CrossFit I was in what I considered pretty good shape. I was a fitness instructor and a fairly decent competitive cyclist with a focus on time trialing and cyclocross. I had been training for about 8 years with nationally recognized elite cycling coaches. The problem was that I was getting bored and loosing focus primarily because I had to train alone. Hours in my basement or in my garage on a stationary trainer were taking its toll. I needed a change. CrossFit was just the change I needed and it was giving me a competitive edge over some of the guys I had been racing with but could never beat. But as my time at the box gradually started to increase my time on the bike was decreasing. I did not race my bikes at all this year. Maybe I just needed a break but truth be told I haven’t missed bike racing for a minute. What I found was, what I thought I didn’t like, which is an exercise class, I actually do enjoy in the case of CrossFit. The class feeds my competitiveness and at the same times helps me improve my physical and mental wellbeing in ways that the solitary bike training could not do. Years of biking has left me with some significant mobility restrictions that I may never completely overcome but I like to think I’m just a work in progress. So where would I like to be in another year? I think that may be uncertain at this point. I can see myself getting back to some limited cyclocross bike racing and trying some local and possibly regional CrossFit competitions.
Which class do you usually attend?
11:30 am and if I can’t get there I’ll shot for Douglas’ 5 pm.
I really don’t have a favorite but I do enjoy those that have a good mix of aerobic and muscular endurance.
Cleans and more recently squat cleans. Although things like deadlifts, front and back squat are much easier me, I really like the synchronization of movements necessary to move the bar from the ground to the front rack.
What keeps you coming back?
First and foremost is Marcela, Douglas, Tina and Laura and the entire community at CrossFit 100. We have exceptional coaches that are attuned to everything and everyone in the box at any given time. And on a personal level, I keep coming back because of that great sense of accomplishment I get whether from a new PR, the feeling of finally accomplishing a lift I’ve been working on for a while or the internal reward you give yourself knowing that you did an amazing job that day and that you might just do it again tomorrow, or the next week.
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it?
CrossFit is the elusive Fountain of Youth. I know of no other exercise program that will help you get into the best shape of your life both mentally and physically. Once you gain confidence in yourself you will be amazed at how many mountains/truck tires you can really move.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life?
CrossFit snuck up on me. I really didn’t want to like it. In fact coming from a globo gym background I really wanted to pile-on with the haters and all the reasons why CrossFit would cause unnecessary and irreparable harm. It didn’t turn out that way. CrossFit has allowed me to continue to grow as an athlete and it has taught me that if I am truly in tune with my body, my nutrition and my ability to manage stress, the future is endless.
What motivates/inspires you?
What inspires me is what is possible, not what was and can never be again. I’ll share a short personal story. When I was a freshman in high school I wanted to row on the crew team. Where I went to school we had a fall and spring season. I reported to the fall tryouts and the coach looked at me and said, “Son you’re just too damn fat”. You’ll put a whole in my boat. Don’t come back until you’ve ripped off at least 20 lbs. Granted that was a long time ago when coaches could get away with stuff like that, but I was committed to show up in spring considerably lighter, and I was, 30 lbs lighter. Sometimes I feel CrossFit can be the same way particularly when I’m struggling with mobility issues like the flexibility necessary for an overhead lift. I hear my high school coach saying you’ll never get there, and then I start figuring out how I will get there. And then I amaze myself at what happens after spending weeks if not months working on certain techniques, but once there it’s time to tackle another lift or technique.
Meet Novembers Athlete of the Month, Jessica!
Age: Claims 37, Probably 22
Occupation: Full time Supermom moonlighting as a substitute teacher
Tell us about yourself?
“I am a mom of two pretty awesome kids (Gus, 9 and Ruby, 6). I’m married to the best guy ever, John, who graciously indulges my CrossFit addiction. I used to be a media buyer for an advertising agency, but I scrapped that plan to get my Master Degree in Education and then decided to stay home with my kids. Through my recent substitute teaching gig, I discovered I really like being the PE teacher and teaching fitness (Why couldn’t I have figured that out at 18?). I’ve loved coaching the Ninja Kids Club at CrossFit 100. My favorite hobby is CrossFit, but I also really like to be wrapped up in a blanket, wearing pajamas, reading Hemingway, and drinking coffee. I think about food A LOT, so I cook A LOT and bake paleo stuff that I hide from my family because it takes so much work and it’s mine!”
How did you find CrossFit?
“CrossFit found me! I have always had fitness in my life – classical ballet training as a kid, track and dance in high school, spinning and yoga in college – but nothing that was really motivating me after having kids. Never something I loved this much.
How long have you been WOD crushing?
My friend, Katie Barry, planned to try Marcela’s MPower bootcamps in 2010 and I joined her to jump start my fitness routine when my Ruby was almost a year old. We signed up and never signed off! A faithful bunch of us followed Marcela, like gypsies, all over the place, until we finally landed at CrossFit 100 and she gave us barbells. Best. Day. Ever. ”
From an athletic standpoint, where were you when you started CrossFit, how far have you come as of today, and where would you like to be in another year?
“I was active, but not terribly fit. I was paying for a gym membership, but too tired and lazy to go, mostly going on walks with the baby in a stroller. My big goal was to fix the “smooshy” feeling I had after two kids. My goals are different now. Bigger. It’s no longer weight loss, but muscle gain, muscle ups, pistols, handstand walks. All the good stuff! I am always working toward building my strength, agility, flexibility – it’s all about the performance and the rest follows. In another year, I just want more – more skills, more weights, more movement. More!”
Which class do you usually attend?
“5x/week 5:45am and Sunday’s open gym. It’s the ritual around which the rest of my life happens!”
“Annie! Clovis was awful, but ended in glory and Murph was incredibly humbling. I’ll do both again.”
“Hang Cleans, overhead squats, dead lifts, all of the lifts!”
What keeps you coming back?
“I love to learn. I am happiest as a student. I like to be taught, to research, to be in class. CrossFit satisfies so many of those things for me. Every morning, I walk into a classroom of sorts, to learn something new, to challenge myself, to be tested and graded and to leave feeling accomplished. Sometimes I just get schooled and that’s good too. I keep coming back because I have a lifetime of CrossFit left to learn.”
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, why would you buy it?
“It matches my Metcons and Nanos”
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life?
Being a mom is great. It is rewarding in it’s own special ways, but as many of us know, there are no trophies, no pats on the back, no promotions. I was really missing having something that was my own special thing. When I started CrossFit, I got that back. I love competition, love having the chance to be an athlete again instead of just reminiscing about the glory days of youth! The bonus of it all is that our family thrives through CrossFit too. My kids and husband are at the box and we all support and encourage each other’s goals and PRs. We share foam rollers, protein bars and knock stuff down doing handstands in the living room. I feel confident that my kids are surrounded by the and lifestyles (and dead lift #s) I value and wish for them as adults. I am so fortunate to be a part of this crazy, fun family of athletes.”
What motivates and inspires you?
1. Gus’ training. He’s trying to catch me
2. Ruby’s training. She’s trying to catch Gus.
3. My badass morning crew.
4. My squat partner, Steph, who always gets me to add ten more pounds.
8. Ribs in the slow cooker
9. Marcela, Doug, Tina
10. Tequila at Happy Hour!
Meet our Athlete of the Month, Igor!
Occupation: Dentist, Doctor of Dental Surgery
Tell us about yourself: I am recently divorced( yay!!!), have 3 children…Amazing boys…Adrian(9), Adam(11), Igor Jr(23). They keep very occupied since they are very active, witty, smart. Between them and my work I barely have anytime left for myself but always find time to come to Crossfit 100 at least 2-3 times a week.
How did you find CrossFit 100? I have been crosfitting since April 2013(2.5 years). I accidentally discovered Marcela’s ad since I was for something more challenging , capturing my attention( and who wouldn’t since she posted that overhead squat picture). I have been relatively active by having personal trainer for couple years, then I got involved with spinning for about a year but all of it didn’t make me interested any longer.
Tell us from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come, and where you would like to come in another year. Even though I thought I was pretty decent as an athlete Marcela’s newbies class proved it otherwise. I am definitely much fitter and capable of doing something like I couldn’t do before.
Which class do you usually attend? I usually attend “chirping” class at 8:30 am or 9:30 am since it is most convenient for me. I also do 7 pm class on occasion and 5 pm on Fridays when I feel like I need “happy hour” after.
Favorite WOD? I don’t have a favorite WOD but like anything that involves a great challenge.
Favorite Lift? My favorite lift is a deadlift which is 365lbs and I like to brag about it.
What keeps you coming back? What makes me coming back?…a responsibility for my own physical and mental well-being. Also Marcela, Douglas, Tina and Laura…Thank you all.
If CrossFit was a product you could buff off the shelf, tell the readers why would you buy it? If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf…I wouldn’t put on the shelf , I would make it FDA regulated since it is addicting, pain/euphoria causing and with many side effects such as getting yourself in the best shape of your life and obtaining life-long friendships.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit? How has CrossFit helped if at all, you to handle the challenges of life? CrossFit is absolutely inspiring and pulls the best out of you by rude awakening tactic. You don’t realize what you are capable of until you push your limits and guess what…sky is a limit( disclaimer: it varies by individual).
What motivates/inspires you? I am a better person myself now, I am a better father, I am a better leader and I am a better friend thank to Crossfit influence and most talented coaches like Marcela, Douglas and also Tina and Laura.
Meet Tracy our September Athlete of the Month!
Occupation: business owner / web developer / designer / photographer / creative
Tell us about yourself? I’m a designer, web developer, creative, photographer who owns her own company, loves to travel, lives in brown deer with my girlfriend and our two “furry children” (moe the cat and canim the dog), who enjoys gardening, is a drummer, a whovian, apple (the computer) and technology fanatic, cat person, ENFP, bowtie aficionado, owner of (probably) too many domain names, adopted, only-child, oldest sibling (ask me to tell you about my adoption story sometime), who you will find in various levels of scatterbrained at any given time. it’s nice to meet you.
How did you find CrossFit? Years ago my attempt number 73873297832478234 (or so) of me getting back in shape had resulted in a torn MCL in my right knee. after months of physical therapy, i was introduced to marcela’s bootcamp class. i’ve just stayed with marcela through the years as she transition to a CrossFit box. four locations and four years later, i’m still here 🙂
How long have you been CrossFitting? Around 3 years
Tell us, from an athletic standpoint, where you were when you started CrossFit, how far you have come as of today, and where you would like to be in another year. I’m LIGHTYEARS ahead of where i was when i started. my squat mobility was nearly non-existant when i started training with marcela. and those 20″ boxes were incredibly hard for me to STEP on to. now my squat looks like a real squat, and i regularly use a 24″ box to JUMP on to. in addition my strength has increased dramatically all around, just being in better shape has made my everyday life just easier. In another year i’d like to just improve on everything, all around. and in a year or three, to achieve muscle ups and double unders 🙂
Which class do you usually attend? Usually evenings. an occasional late morning class when schedule conflits occur.
Favorite WOD: Anything with heavy weights. and no burpees.
Favorite Lift: Well i do love me some deadlifts for sure. but i’m also really loving clean and jerks a lot lately, and enjoying snatches more and more. (insert snatch joke here)
What keeps you coming back? The community at cf100 is by far the best. it really has become my closest “social circle” lately.
If CrossFit was a product you could buy off the shelf, tell the readers why you would buy it? Because all the cool kids are doing it.
How have you developed/thrived as an individual since embracing CrossFit and how has CrossFit helped if at all you to handle the challenges of life? I was in san francisco several years ago… and i remember loving the city, but only to a certain point. climbing and walking all the hills throughout the city really took everything out of me and i couldn’t enjoy my trip to the fullest. now in my recent visit to san francisco i realized that walking, jogging or even running up those steep hills was not a problem at all. it’s made me realize that *all* my travels in past years were always dampened by the fact that i was too out of shape to walk to something i wanted to see.
What motivates/inspires you? Other people around me, both famous and local… friends and strangers… all improving, growing and getting stronger.
Occupation: General Manager at Johnson Controls
Which class do you usually attend? 5:45AM
Favorite WOD: Any WOD without Burpees
Favorite Lift: Back Squats
How long have you been CrossFitting? Almost a year
What keeps you coming back? There are a few things; The class is so challenging every single time, never the same, and it never gets easy. The people, it is such a supportive community, I remember struggling through a WOD when I first started, I felt like quitting, everyone was done and I still had a long way to go. I heard this voice behind me go “ Come on, Corrie you can do it” That encouragement from someone who just met me helped me get through and finish. It is like that every day in the Box, someone is struggling and someone else finds some words of encouragement.
How did you find CrossFit? It was recommended to me by a colleague out west, it had really changed his life and health.
How did you end up at CrossFit 100? Crossfit was just a block away from where I work. It was convenient! Now I am working in a new location, but I will keep coming to Crossfit 100.
What is your athletic background? In my 30’s I did several sprint and Olympic Distance Triathlons, I ran sub 8 Min miles for long distance runs. Work and life got in the way after I stopped training I put on a lot of weight, and only occasionally exercised.
How has CrossFit changed your life, lifestyle and level of fitness? I am the strongest I have ever been I am not back to the weight I was yet, nor can I run an 8 min mile yet. But I have a lot more muscle and a lot less fat on my body, I was able to drop one of my Blood Pressure Meds after only a few months. I eat a much more balanced diet and I just feel much better all the way around. I am mentally stronger and have more confidence than I had.
What is the One Thing you have done here that you never thought you could do? Really doing any work out with a barbell was new to me. And I never thought I would be able to lift any more than the bar over my head.
What motivates/inspires you? Just getting better every day, accomplishing those little goals along the way.
Can you tell us the story how you guys met and how did you guys get engaged? Dave and I started dating when we found each other on Match. However, we had met each other a year before when our daughters were in dance class together, so it made the first date a little less scary. We got engaged about 2 years later, all of us were at the house and Dave knocked on the door and he asked me to marry him in front of all 4 kids. They were all jumping up and down telling me to say yes.
Occupation: Estate Planning Attorney
Which class do you usually attend? 5pm weekdays & occasional Sat mornings
Favorite WOD: Fran, Grace, and chippers that burn me out
Favorite Lift: Clean & Jerk
How long have you been CrossFitting? Just over two years
What keeps you coming back?
(1) The constant support from the coaches and gym community.
(2) How inspiring it is to see what others around me have accomplished and continue to strive for (e.g. significant life changes or working past injuries).
(3) The chance to challenge and improve myself in ways I don’t believe I could do as effectively and while having as much fun anywhere else.
How did you find CrossFit? / How did you end up at CrossFit 100?
I knew of Crossfit generally, I had friends who enjoyed it, and I had a combination of connections to Marcela and Douglas. I needed something more comprehensive to meet my health and fitness goals, and my sister and I decided to start CrossFit together.
What is your athletic background? How has CrossFit changed your life, lifestyle and level of fitness?
I grew up playing competitive sports through high school and remained mostly active thereafter. Through college and most of my workdays, however, I was in daily pain. Consistent knee issues and constant back pain kept my fitness levels choppy and my physical progress limited.
After some positive changes through chiropractic and massage treatments that allowed me to train a little more consistently, the rest of the work was up to me. CrossFit 100 uniquely provided me the chance for smarter, more complete, and more functional strength and fitness training. I have been able to combat my physical issues in a collegial atmosphere conducive to progress and friendly competition.
The results for me are simple: I feel great. Progress wasn’t always fast, but it was consistent when I put in the work. Training with intelligent coaches who care about my overall well-being, while also sweating alongside so many others pushing toward similar goals, has kept me accountable, motivated, and making continual progress, both in the gym and in my daily lifestyle choices. I’m incredibly thankful to everyone around me at CrossFit 100 for that. And I’ll gladly complain during and after a tough WOD when the payoff is feeling healthier and stronger than I did the month before, even if my squat may not always get as low as it should…. 🙂
CrossFit has enhanced relationships for me as well. I have been fortunate to share my CrossFit experience with my younger sister and our teenage brother. It has improved all of our lives and lifestyles. In particular, it’s amazing and motivating to see how the foundation of CrossFit for my then 15-year-old brother resulted in a progression of significant weight loss, a drastically positive change in fitness priorities, and the confidence to join his high school cross-country team and explore many new health and fitness opportunities. I couldn’t be a more proud or excited big bro!
I also have been lucky enough to work out with good friends and many at CrossFit 100 who have now become good friends. Along the way, I even met my own CrossFit “chica,” and I’m incredibly happy to be the taller and worse-looking half of one of those annoying CrossFit couples…
What is the One Thing you have done here that you never thought you could do?
Be pain free. Especially with my long history of back issues, I never expected to reach a point of being pain-free throughout my workdays AND my workouts. I still focus carefully on technique and smart choices in the gym, as well as proper maintenance and lifestyle choices outside the gym, but I’ve never felt better in my life.
What motivates/inspires you?
The hard work of those around me, keeping up with my better half, and an unwillingness to revert back to the physical pain and limitations I tolerated and thought I was stuck with.
Anything else you want share?
Marcela and Douglas — thank you! Writing this made me reflect on my last two years and recognize how much has changed in my life for the better. I’m not sure many of those changes happen without you and the whole CF 100 community. My experiences at 100 and the relationships I’ve been fortunate enough to build have been game-changing for me.
Thank you for all you have done for me and everyone else that has benefited from the culture you’ve created at 100. I’ll keep coming back for more … “WOD” else would you expect?!
Matt & Annie
Age: Annie, 26, Matt, 33
Occupation: Annie – Marketing & Communications; Matt – Campaign Manager
Which class do you usually attend? weeknights 7pm & Saturday mornings.
Favorite WOD: Annie likes anything with kettle bells & Matt likes metcons that involve running or rowing
Favorite Lift: Annie likes deadlifts, Matt likes cleans and we both like jerks.
How long have you been CrossFitting? 1 year
What keeps you coming back? The results we’ve seen, the fun we’re having, the increase in strength and the welcoming atmosphere.
How did you find CrossFit? First, through social media, then saw our friends from college and high school had gotten into it.
How did you end up at CrossFit 100? It’s the closest box to me, We had to drive past it every day on our way home from work. We would see people lifting and running and wanted to be a part of it. We saw a groupon for basics classes and went!
What is your athletic background? Annie: I was an Irish dancer for 8 years and rowed crew in college.Matt: I was a former high school athlete – soccer, basketball & baseball. I turned to running in college, completed a marathon about 10 years ago.
How has CrossFit changed your life, lifestyle and level of fitness? Annie: CrossFit has changed the way I look at fitness and how I look at my own abilities. I don’t really like being told that I can’t do something, or to stand aside and let the guys handle something that’s heavy. CrossFit has made it possible for me to show that may have doubted my ability that, ‘I’ve got this.” Matt: After college I started working 60-80 hours a week and fitness took a back-seat. But work led me to meeting my future wife. We had a great time watching Netflix on the couch and eating take-out. On Feb. 28, 2014 I weighed myself and I was 70 pounds heavier than my weight on my drivers license. It was time to make a change. I tried Crossfit on my own in my basement, but it didn’t work very well. I was nervous to join a box. I thought that because I was out of shape that I wouldn’t fit in. But within seconds of walking through the door, we were greeted by coaches Marcela & Douglas and they made us feel welcome and accepted. I’ve lost all 70 of those pounds, and have kept if off. But better than that, I feel and look like myself again. I’m happier and healthier than I have ever been.
What is the One Thing you have done here that you never thought you could do? Annie: I never thought I’d be able to run a whole mile without walking. I recently ran a 9:03 mile without walking. I was so excited! I also never thought I’d be able to lift 100 lbs over my head or deadlift 200 lbs, but I can!Matt: A real pull-up. Before I started crossfit I had never done a full, real pull-up in my life. Last week I did 100 pull-ups with a 20 lb vest. That blows my mind.
What motivates/inspires you? First, each other. This is the best hobby we could ever have. We feel great going to class together and it keeps us coming back. Second, the other athletes we work out with. There’s a great group of accepting and inspiring individuals that motivate and inspire me to do my best every time I walk into CrossFit100.
Can you tell us the story how you guys met and how did you guys get engage?
We met through work back in 2010. Two apartments and 1 puppy later, we got engaged on Aug. 25th, 2013 at Lake Park on a bench overlooking Bradford Beach. It was the last day before we were set to move from the east side to Whitefish Bay and Matt wanted to sit on “our bench” one more time before moving away. Annie’s brother was there taking pictures to capture the moment. It was really special 🙂