AOTM

Crystal Bragg
Member name:

Crystal Bragg

Athlete of the month: November
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
I was talked into doing CrossFit officially by Erich! But he didn’t single-handedly get me in the door. I had always been around the community of CrossFit LT and for the longest time refused to join. It was the persistent of a lot of the older members that finally got me to try out a membership. It was Erich that built my confidence and courage up to walk in the door and do my first wod and keep me coming back for more and more!

2. What was your first impression?
CrossFit was scary ! I remember the first few times I tried to go to class I would sit in my car and try to come up with every excuse in the book to drive right out of the parking lot. I remember seeing strong women that were throwing weights around like it was nothing and I had yet to even touch a barbell. The intimidation wore off after my first few classes and I developed such great friendships, but at first it was scary!

3. How has that changed?
Well clearly I have done a 180 from the scared girl that used to sit in her car ready to drive away at the best excuse I could come up with! Now I look forward to seeing the wod everyday and seeing what new ways I am going to get to push my body and of course I love being able to see all my LT family!

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
I don’t think I could pin point one bright spot because they keep happening. Some of my favorite moments are/were:
– always working out with Kirstie! She is my rabbit ! I hope one day I can be as strong as her.
– Jen helping me get my first pull up as she judged me in my first opens.
– having Erich as my partner in wods on Saturday’s. We push each-other so much!
– getting to see new members learn new things ! I remember what it was like starting out and nothing makes me happier than seeing people achieve their goals.
– and lastly, being around all the members everyday! I wish I got to attend more of a variety of classes but i love all the athletes at the gym! And getting to know everyone is amazing!

5. What are you working on now?
What am I not working on right now! In general my CrossFit goals are to keep building weights on my bar and gymnastics!

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
I kinda combined with bright spots see above.

Alexandra (Alex) Ornelas
Member name:

Alexandra (Alex) Ornelas

Athlete of the month: October
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
This is going to sound crazy but it’s true, I started my very first CrossFit workout at the
Spring 2019 Open. My husband and I were invited to join Team Blue (Coming in Hot) and
we were there every Friday during the open! It was so much fun and I loved how
supportive everyone was so I decided to join CrossFit full time after!

2. What was your first impression?
My first impression of CrossFit prior to coming to CFLT was that it was easy to get injured
from stories I had heard. Also, I pictured there would be a bunch of gym rats and it would
be intimidating to be a beginner. I was happy to find to find out I was wrong in both
instances.

3. How has that changed?
I have learned from all the wonderful coaches that safety and form come first, then pushing
yourself to new PRs. I have always felt supported by everyone at the gym and have
watched everyone be cheered on at all levels of fitness. This is a true family.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
My first Bright Spot was when I was able to do my first kipping pull up. It took me forever
to get the swing down, but when I got it, it felt great! Garrett is a great coach and definitely
helped me get there.

5. What are you working on now?
My goals have really changed in the past couple weeks after my husband and I found out
we are pregnant! We are about 7 weeks along. This is super exciting news for us and I am
so happy I joined CrossFit prior to baby. I am eager to continue to work out during
pregnancy and maintaining my current fitness level.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
My favorite CFLT memory was the MURPH. It was an honor to be able to work out that
day and celebrate all those who have served. The workout was challenging but it was a lot
of fun to complete along with all the other supportive CFLT members. I love the sense of
community at our gym!

Kade Nielson
Member name:

Kade Nielson

Athlete of the month: September
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
What kind of question is that? CrossFit is so fun! It’s the people, the competition, the ups and downs. You get to see what you’re really made of. Plus I get to see Mike’s sexy face

2. What was your first impression?
This was my second box to join. I quit about 4 years ago after destroying my back. This time around I told myself I’ll crawl, walk then run as far as my progression goes. That’s worked so far.

3. How has that changed?
I still stick to my game plan. I started by doing women RX until I went unbroken. Then Men RX unbroken. Now I’m trying to move onto GPP but still slow and steady by doing RX but I up the weight a little. I’ll do that until I’m comfortable and unbroken then go full GPP.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
I’ve had a lot of little milestones but recently I got my muscle up. It feels good to level up my game like that.

5. What are you working on now?
I’m working towards GPP but I also am focusing a lot on auxiliary stuff like post workout stuff and a half marathon.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
I love all the big events like the open but my favorite is Murph. It’s such a kick in the teeth. Plus it makes me appreciate all that’s good about our country and the people that defend it.

Dominique Bible
Member name:

Dominique Bible

Athlete of the month: August
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
I was sick of the way I looked so my boss at the time said “let’s try Crossfit”, so I did and LOVED it ever since.

2. What was your first impression?
My first impression was, I was intimidated for sure, but I loved it. So I stuck with it, But I really started enjoying it more when I walked into Crossfit LT 1 year and 5 month’s ago.

3. How has that changed?
I have an amazing group of friends now that I enjoy being around and that support me. That makes a big difference to me. I made a great change for myself and landed at such a great gym.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
When I started hitting PR’s and GPP!! I can’t tell you how happy I am because all of you push me to be the best I can be everyday.

5. What are you working on now?
Now I am working on being the best athlete I can be. Have a great competition coming up September 14th with 2 amazing athletes and I can’t wait!

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
My favorite memories are the ones that I create with my Crossfit LT family everyday I see them all. Love you all so much!

Isaiah Santillan
Member name:

Isaiah Santillan

Athlete of the month: July
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
I was just finishing up high school, and wanted to stay fit since I would no longer be playing sports. My mom mentioned crossfit so we decided to give it a shot.

2. What was your first impression?
I liked the atmosphere right away. Everyone was friendly and I liked the competitive feeling. Crossfit seemed challenging but I was excited to start beating isaac in workouts.

3. How has that changed?
Nothing’s changed at all. I still love coming in everyday and competing with friends. Crossfit still challenges me, but I enjoy the mental and physical push.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
What I remember most was when I first got efficient at double unders. I struggled with them for a really long time and it was so rewarding knowing that all of that practice had paid off.

5. What are you working on now?
Right now I’m working on getting better at pegboards, building strength, and planning my workouts strategically. It’s all a very slow work in progress.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
My favorite memory so far is last years MURPH workout. Thanks to everyone’s support I was able to push myself much harder and I was able to beat my original time by 9 minutes. It was an awesome feeling despite feeling like I was going to pass out

Darrell White
Member name:

Darrell White

Athlete of the month: June
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

Carrie made me go! She was working a health fair in IL that she organized. One of the vendors was The Body Compound – CrossFit. I was freshly into remission from an upper respiratory disease that I have, Wegeners Granulomatosis, and we were looking for different ways to be healthier.

We had joined other globo gyms and always lost interest quickly. Carrie was excited to try it out after talking to the CrossFit gym owners. I’m glad I went along because we’ve been hooked ever since.

2. What was your first impression?

A 7 min workout is not as easy as it sounds, even for a guy who thought he was in shape. AMRAP of 7 squats and 7 burpees for 7 minutes. I was sore for a week!

3. How has that changed?

Nothing has changed, I still look at workouts and think to myself, “that doesn’t look too bad”. Then I find myself trying to survive. And sometimes I’m still sore for a week, #Murph!

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

Competing in my first CrossFit Open. I was able to complete an RX WOD of Overhead squats and chest to bar pull-ups.

5. What are you working on now?

EVERYTHING!!! My goal is to continue to get better each day and be more consistent in getting my butt to the gym. Suffering through each WOD and working on eating clean keeps my disease in remission where it belongs!

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

Meeting Mike Gordon, of course!

Ok, ok, it was when we were visiting AZ for a friend’s wedding and we dropped in at LT. Leif and the rest of the LT Army welcomed us and cheered us on like we were already members. When we moved here a year later, we asked our realtor to make sure we found a house close enough to the gym so we could join!

Kirstie Burns
Member name:

Kirstie Burns

Athlete of the month: May
Details:
  1. What brought you to CrossFit?

Our friend Mike (you guys might know him), was doing CrossFit way back in the day and Justin was interested in trying it.  So, I got him a membership for his birthday and it took me another year and a half to join him.  I had a background in endurance sports (marathon running and triathlons) and I was burnt out and desperate for a new challenge.

  1. What was your first impression?

I LOVED it!  I loved the variety, the challenge of new movements, and the camaraderie between members. I also loved the competitive nature of it.  It was like nothing I had ever done before.   And let’s face it, lifting weights makes you feel like a badass.

  1. How has that changed?

None of that has really changed for me and that is why I’ve stuck with it since 2013!  There is always something new to learn and a weakness to work on.  Over the years, CrossFit has continued to add new movements for us to learn (dumbbell snatches and handstand walks, for example) and I still can’t do muscle ups (one day!)

  1. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

My first bright spot was getting my first kipping handstand push up.  When I started CrossFit, I had never done a handstand or even kicked up to a wall before.  The first time I attempted to kick up to the wall, I am pretty sure I let out a scream of terror.  But I kept working on it, and over time it has become one of my favorite movements.

  1. What are you working on now?

Stringing butterfly pull-ups together and someday I’d like to actually start working toward getting a muscle up.

  1. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

Honestly, how can I pick just one after all these years?!!?  I guess one that always sticks out to me is from one of the Wildfire Competitions that Justin, Mike and my friend Nicki did together.  One of the workouts, required us to carry our partner in M/F combinations 200 meters.  Justin slung me over his shoulder, took off running and I laughed the entire time, well at least until it was my turn to carry him.

Justin Cardwell
Member name:

Justin Cardwell

Athlete of the month: April
Details:
  1. What brought you to CrossFit?

At the time I was living next door to Kevin and Leslie Bunn, I think one day while introducing myself they offered to let me workout with them. Anyone that knows well knows that I’ll always try anything new, especially if it keeps me active. Eventually we started doing workouts in their garage on a regular basis and I felt confident enough to try LT. Hind sight is 20/20 because while I thought I was ‘working up’ to being able to actually try CrossFit, the workouts we were doing were pretty gnarly and just has hard as a regular WOD! I’d tell anyone interested in trying CrossFit not to be intimidated, we’ve all had that rough first day and it’s easier just to bite the bullet and give it a shot.

  1. What was your first impression?

What is anyone’s REAL first impression? This stuff is HARD but having gone to Orange Theory Fitness for a year beforehand, I knew I needed to make a change to lift heavier and make a run at completing as the World’s Strongest Man. Brian Shaw will never admit this, but I intimidate him.

  1. How has that changed?

The workouts don’t get any easier but the longer you’re a member at LT, the more you get to know the community and that certainly makes it more worthwhile. We’re all in it together and this gym supports that especially well with things like Hero Sundays and the IM Open.

  1. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
My ‘bright spot’ actually happened outside the gym while playing softball. It wasn’t long after starting CrossFit that I noticed I was hitting the ball harder than I ever had before. After a while, when I least expected it, I hit a Home Run that cleared the fence by at least 20 feet. I was so proud of that and to me, it really gave new meaning to ‘functional fitness’. I was seeing my hard-work in the gym payoff outside the four walls of the box. Now, I’m basically Mark McGwire (without the steroids)
  1. What are you working on now?

There’s a never ending list of things I’m working on like double unders and the ever elusive muscle-up. Recently though, I’ve tried to focus on my Oly form which seems to help during longer WODS. My coach, Gary Jander, keeps me honest during workouts and despite the misconception that CrossFitters are prone to injury, I’ve never felt pushed ‘too far’ in one of his classes. So, I guess I’d really say more than anything I’m continuing to focus on form and technique.

  1. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

My favorite CrossFit LT memories are definitely some of the shenanigans associated with Friday Night Lights and the IM Open. The workouts are gut-wrenching but the comradery  and teamwork during competition is awesome. I’ve made some great friends though the gym, especially during Open Season.

 

Jaden Bailey
Member name:

Jaden Bailey

Athlete of the month: March
Details:
  1. What brought you to CrossFit?

I played soccer at U of A (Bear Down) and was trying to find a way to stay in shape during summer break. I came across CrossFit and immediately fell in love! Once I graduated two years ago I knew I needed something to keep me active. I started training for a marathon and 6 miles into the third day I thought “this isn’t fun” and ran straight into a CrossFit gym!

  1. What was your first impression?

These people are intense… There are so many elements to CrossFit, and I quickly realized it can be as challenging as we want it to be. I didn’t put the bar above my head for the whole first year!

  1. How has that changed?

I have since been able to put the bar above my head and have done GPP workouts with snatches, jerks and thrusters in them. I even know what those terms mean now! It’s fun to see personal growth here. I love how there is always something to work on and improve on.

  1. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

I think my first “Bright Spot” was getting my first muscle up. I had the whole gym cheering me on and it was such a great feeling to have all that support!

  1. What are you working on now?

I am currently working on stringing together chest-to-bar butterfly pullups. Watching other athletes who have them, I think it would make workouts so much more efficient. I also have a goal this year to squat 200 lbs. I have already seen so much improvement in my strength through this programming! It’s helpful we have SugarWOD to track our progress.

  1. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

My favorite memory was doing the Murph workout. This is the same reason why Sundays are my favorite day to come to the gym. We do a Hero workout and have a “why” behind pushing a little harder. I’m grateful for those who have served our country.

I love being a member of this gym!! It really is a family here. It not only makes me a better athlete but a better person as well. Everyone is so fun and encouraging to be around. So really every day at CFLT is my favorite because it’s one of the best parts of my day!

Jon Elmore
Member name:

Jon Elmore

Athlete of the month: October 20188
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
I was friends with one of the coaches at the time, Carlos Villalpando. For several years Carlos had said that if I was ever interested and wanted to try CrossFit to let him know. I thought about this off and on and resisted for quite some time. However, I decided to take a break from climbing to overcome some chronic injuries but still wanted to train and workout. I connected with Carlos who connected me to Mike. Mike took the time to meet with me and introduce me to the gym and how the gym and CrossFit worked. He worked with me on the intro class and introduced me and connected me with other coaches and members with no hesitation. Mike was super awesome to work with and so were all the coaches I have met and trained with and I haven’t stopped since.

2. What was your first impression?
My first impression was that CrossFit was much harder than I would have thought and much more total body than I was anticipating. For me this was great as I found it challenging, and this challenge created motivation for me to come in frequently and to learn and improve. I also immediately enjoyed the atmosphere and the members and coaches. This was because I wasn’t pressed to go above and beyond what I thought my limitations were and was also given tips and support on how to start and not overdo it while I was in my beginning stages.

3. How has that changed?
It has not changed for me. I still find it challenging but so rewarding every session. I have seen progress in many areas, but still see so much work, both of which keep me engaged and coming back.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
I think my first “Bright Spot” was when I could first overhead squat a standard barbell. For some time I was battling a bit of a shoulder injury and also did not have the strength, flexibility, or technique to overhead squat with a 45 pound barbell. When I first accomplished this successfully I was really excited and realized I had made some progress. I credit this to the great coaches, the Olympic weight lifting classes, and practice.

5. What are you working on now?
Overall I think I am looking to focus on overall squatting and leg strength, but for me I really think I am working on everything still. I like every work out and try to focus on how to improve each time but also appreciate where I am. I enjoy coming to the gym, working out with the LT family, and being my best self every day. I want to keep with this process and see where it takes me in CrossFit over the next year.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
I participated in my first IM open in 2018. I think this has been one of my favorite memories. Although there were teams and a bit of fun and friendly competition, everyone was supporting each other and really sharing and enjoying all the hard work and workouts being put in each week. Everyone came together to better themselves and each other and supported each other and the gym. This was a great experience and further allowed me to meet more members and become a deeper part of the gym. I look forward to making more memories and continuing to enjoy what CrossFit has brought me. It has been a great addition to my activity level in my life and am so glad for the atmosphere, coaches, and members CFLT has given me.

Carrie White
Member name:

Carrie White

Athlete of the month: September 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
I was an intern with the City of Bloomington’s Wellness Coordinator when I was putting together a health fair for city employees. Jesse from The Body Compound called to tell me all about the very first CrossFit gym in Bloomington-Normal, IL. He explained how I HAD to have them at my event. I had no idea what CrossFit was but he was so passionate about it that I decided to give them a spot at the health fair.
I met Jesse & Jim, co-owners of The Body Compound, at the health fair. They were crazy fit and really excited about CrossFit. After I graduated college and was finished with my internship, Darrell and I decided to finally give it a try. We’ve loved it ever since!

2. What was your first impression?
Our first WOD was a 7-minute AMRAP of 7 burpees and 7 squats. I could barely do push-ups on my knees let alone know what the heck a burpee was. I fell on my butt trying to squat below parallel to which Jesse informed me that I better be able to do that if I want to lift myself off the couch when I’m old. I only completed 2 ½ rounds and was extremely sore the next three days. From 7 minutes of work!!!!! My first impression was that CrossFit was hard, it was completely different than all the other globo gyms we had tried, and I had A LOT of work to do. It was just what we needed.

3. How has that changed?
It really hasn’t. I still have a lot of work to do (one of the good things about CrossFit, there’s always, always something to work on); it’s still different than all the globo gyms (God, I love our community); and it’s still exactly what we need.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
Finally stringing together those &*#@*$&* double-unders!! 🙂

5. What are you working on now?
Being more consistent in going every day! And even though I hate it so much, running more!

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
I have a few favorites but the one that stands out the most is my first week back to CrossFit. When we moved from IL to MO, we didn’t have a CrossFit close to where we lived. We tried to continue at home but it’s really not the same without the people from your gym suffering alongside you! For almost two years we just did what we could at a globo gym. We traveled to AZ for a wedding and dropped in at LT. We were so impressed by the people and the gym that when we moved here a year later, we told our realtor we wanted to live close to LT so that we could join that gym. Our first week back was extremely hard but it felt like we were finally home.

Daryl Miller
Member name:

Daryl Miller

Athlete of the month: August 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

We started doing Crossfit at the fire station about ten years ago. We found the high intensity and functional movements were perfect training for fighting fires. We eventually got rid of the leg extension and peck deck machines, and replaced them with pull up bars, kettle bells, and bumper plates. I had the opportunity to attend a Crossfit level 1 instructor class in ’08 and have been crossfiting ever since.

2.  What was your first impression?

This is no joke! These workouts were HARD. Was fun to follow the main site, post scores, and compare to other athletes across the world. I was always amazed at how fast and strong these men and women were (I was nowhere near at their level). Was a bit challenging, though, going to a ‘globo gym’ and doing kipping pull ups or clean and jerks, you got a lot of strange looks…

3.  How has that changed?

Well the workouts are still hard, but it is nice now to have actual Crossfit gyms to go to that are designed to do Crossfit workouts (no more strange looks).

4.  What was your first “Bright Spot”?

My most recent bright spot was the day I decided ease up a bit (I am over the hill now, people). The injuries and soreness were becoming too much. I decided I didn’t have to RX a workout and get PRs to benefit anymore. It was hard at first, but I still get great workouts and the injuries and soreness have diminished.

5.  What are you working on now?

Avoiding injury and maintaining strength and endurance.

6.  What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

Working out with friends and family.

Ashley Rohr
Member name:

Ashley Rohr

Athlete of the month: July 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?
I heard of CrossFit pretty much thru social media about 5 years ago. It was just picking up popularity and from what I had heard of it I knew I would like it. I took my first trial class about 6 weeks after my second child was born about 4 ½ years ago with the main focus of losing the unwanted baby weight. Have been going pretty religiously ever sense!!! It has become part of my family’s routine and I love it!!

2. What was your first impression?
My first impression was how intense and hard each workout was! I LOVED the team atmosphere but at the same time the competition with yourself and each other. As someone that has always had an athlete soul I loved every aspect of the sport CrossFit.

3. How has that changed?
It hasn’t! The beauty about this sport is each workout can literally kick your butt no matter what it is. Literally all depends on your personal push and drive for each workout. I will say the biggest thing that I have learned and truly love so much about CrossFit, is how it is for EVERYONE. Does not matter the age, gender, limitations, height, weight, this is something everyone can do and find success with it. I love that!

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
My first pull – up! This was a huge moment for me. A pull up for most is such a daunting movement to achieve and at one point I definitely felt that way. With practice and increase in strength it was a awesome day when I PULLED my chin over that bar!

5. What are you working on now?
After having a baby 7 months ago the biggest thing I am focusing on along with CrossFit has really been my nutrition. Being older having this last baby I knew what I put into my body is so much more important especially to get the results I wanted. Zeroing in on that with my system has help my see those results sooner than if I hadn’t.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
I love the IM open! Friday night lights and how it brings the whole community together! I love how it brings the mornings classes with the evening classes and that really is such a highlight each year!!

Garrett Janda
Member name:

Garrett Janda

Athlete of the month: June 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

I first heard about Crossfit before my sophomore year in high school. I was taking boxing classes with a friend and our boxing coach mentioned that he does Crossfit and that we should try it out. I checked out Crossfit.com but didn’t try a workout until 6 months later. I was constantly trying different weightlifting and fitness solutions in high school pretty much just looking for a shortcut to results but Crossfit instantly became an addiction for me because it forced me to work hard, and there was nowhere to hide from the pain. I started in my garage with friends but then transitioned to Crossfit LT when my grandma bought me a month for Christmas in 2011. I couldn’t workout in my garage after going to Crossfit LT because the environment and culture was next level. I still remember my first workout in my garage: 10rds of 15 Deadlifts @135 & 15 Pushups, but even worse was my first workout at LT: 100 Burpees for time. Despite all the suffering, I am grateful to my boxing coach for exposing me to Crossfit.

2. What was your first impression?

My first impression was that I didn’t know what the hell it was but I loved it. Once doing more research the methodology just made sense to me and I loved everything about the culture. Constantly varied, high intensity, functional movement was all I wanted to do. I was seriously addicted. If I could tell you how many hours I spent in my garage working out or watching videos it would be embarrassing. My friends thought I had a problem. Crossfit was much different back then (2009 & 2010), it was hardcore and no one had heard of it. If I found out someone did Crossfit I knew they were a badass.

3. How has that changed?

It really hasn’t changed much but it’s been really cool to see Crossfit & Crossfit LT grow and basically take over the fitness space, at least for anyone that is serious about health. As I get better I actually just realize how much more there is to work on. I love that about Crossfit, there is always something or someone that will outdo you, and the environment at LT makes chasing those challenges fun.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

My first bright spot was probably winning my first Crossfit competition when I was 17. It was a Crossfit Kids event in Ramona California. I took 1st in all 4 events and they didn’t put out enough weight for me and another competitor in a 1RM Clean event so we had to go head to head after for a tie breaker. I think my Clean 1RM was 265 back then. It’s always really cool to represent Crossfit LT at competitions, even when I don’t podium.

5. What are you working on now?

Deadlifts, running, & gymnastics (mostly muscle ups and strict work). Pretty much everything but those are probably my biggest weaknesses right now. It doesn’t help that I train everyday with 130lb lightning bolts. Another big one is the mental game. It’s easy to build capacity at this or that but once tends to stop me most often is what’s between the ears.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

My favorite CFLT memory is probably the Open every year. It is just such a great time of year where everyone comes together, tests their growth over the past year, and just has a great time while doing it. It really is hard to pick one favorite memory from all the amazing times this community has given me.

Adrianne Nelson
Member name:

Adrianne Nelson

Athlete of the month: May 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

My husband was introduced to Crossfit while serving in the military. For six years he tried to get me to give it a try, just once. I was always too intimidated and thought there was no way a out of shape, mother of four would be able to do it. One Saturday my in laws were in town and offered to babysit so me and Matt could go do a partner WOD. The lure of a morning away from kids finally got me through the doors.

2. What was your first impression?

I instantly fell in love with the community. People were kind, they made a effort to know my name, they supported each other…I loved it. I had been going to “Globo gyms” and made more connections in a week at Crossfit than I had in years elsewhere. But it was not only the people, I loved the workouts and the challenge of trying new things and getting stronger. For the first time in my life I cared more about what my body could do and not how I looked in skinny jeans.

3. How has that changed?

I still love the community and that is what keeps me going. Over the last four years my husband has traveled extensively for his job. Crossfit has literally kept this over-worked, mother-of four, sane!

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

My first bright spot was getting a strict pull up. I had not been able to do one since my sixth grade, Presidential physical fitness test. Any of you old enough to remember those??? I just thought it was something that woman my age couldn’t do. This year my goal is to do 10 in a row.

5. What are you working on now?

I also want to work on increasing my squat numbers. I have had a few minor injuries over the years that have really weakened my lower body. This year, I want to stay healthy and increase my strength.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

My favorite LT memory….now that is a hard one. I have been a member at four gyms, in three different states, and LT is by far my favorite. I love the people. I love seeing people get stronger and push themselves. This all seems to culminate at the open.

Josh Freemole
Member name:

Josh Freemole

Athlete of the month: April 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

Mike Gordon. I was inspired to try CrossFit after I saw how in shape he was. I have worked out at plenty of gyms but would always work out for a few weeks and quit going. I wanted something that would keep me coming back.

2. What was your first impression?

I hated it. I’m a big guy. So, the endurance part of the work out sucked. I had the strength all day long.

3. How has that changed?

I started to go to the gym more often. I would say 3 to 4 times a week. I started a diet called Keto. I have lost 45lbs in 9 months. It is the combo of diet and working out that has helped.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

That would be 18.3 of the open. The work out had muscle ups, which I can’t do. The scaled version is pull ups. Last year they had the same and I was stuck when I got to the pull ups. This year I figured out the movement to do a kipping pull-up. I completed 24 pull ups that day. I can’t do more than 2 in a row but I will continue to work on them.

5. What are you working on now?

There are a lot of things I’m working on. I continue to work on the snatch and heavy clean and jerks. Working out in the afternoons has helped me out a lot. Thank you, Coach Garret.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

I have many great memories of CFLT. I love coming in and looking at the morning’s times for the work out and saying to myself “I’m going to beat their time”. Then to lay on the floor after, just dying and sweating. Thinking they felt the same way. I would like to say thank you to Mike and Angela for all they do. I hate CrossFit but I also love it. The people are awesome and so are the coaches.

Erin Ray
Member name:

Erin Ray

Athlete of the month: March 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

I had just had my 5th baby and I had 4 months to train for a Tough Mudder to get ready. My friend, Christie Jones, told me about the benefits of Crossfit. She raved about how it would get me in shape. I have always been the type of person to try anything before saying or thinking anything negative about it. So Christie and I went to her gym and jumped right in.

2. What was your first impression?

The first day I stepped into a Crossift gym I had no clue what to expect. I started with 7 minutes of burpees and it sucked!!! But after talking to the coaches and the other gym members I was hooked. Everyone was so encouraging and kind. The coaches gave me daily and weekly goals. What made me want to continue was the fact that they are so dedicated to help me achieve those goals.

3. How has that changed?

I love the coaches at Leiftime and the community. I feel as if my support system has increased immensely. I feel more confident from the challenging workouts. That amazing feeling you get when you push yourself for one more rep or one more mile is addicting. My children have started picking up on a healthier diet and a more active lifestyle makes me feel like I am instilling a great core value in them for a life time. I look forward to increasing my goals each year.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

For me, my first bright spot would have been when I got a kipping pull-up for the first time. I had worked on it almost every day for months and was always so close. I kept hearing from my coaches, “Almost, keep trying”. Then one day I got my chin over the bar and I started dancing and screaming around the gym. I am sure some people thought I had gone mad but I was so happy!

5. What are you working on now?

I am working on my technique now. I am trying to be more aware of how my body moves and correctly do the Olympic lifting lifts. I am slowing down my movements and not so worried about time (or trying not to be) but focusing on the movements.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

I can’t think of just one. There have been so many times I have laughed and felt empowered and even cried at the gym. I love Leiftime and the people that put up with me every day!

Travis Liversedge
Member name:

Travis Liversedge

Athlete of the month: February 2018
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

After my brain surgery, I needed something that would rehabilitate me quickly and get me into shape for an upcoming physical fitness test. I had heard people around base talk about and I had watch a few videos online of Rich Froning doing Grace, I thought that doesn’t look too bad (I was wrong).

2. What was your first impression?

My first workout was Linda and I did not think it was too bad although my clean form was horrible I was able to muscle it around pretty good. I came back to that gym a few days later and Fran was programmed…. I have never been so destroyed by any type of workout in my life also let me add it took me 8:57 to complete. I told myself after that I will never be back to that place again… We all know that is not true I could stop thinking about crossfit.

3. How has that changed?

I still love crossfit I believe that as an overall fitness program there is nothing that compares.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?

One of the first bright spots that I remember was the day that my snatch form just clicked and once that happened it was like every time I snatched, I PR’d.

5. What are you working on now?

I am also working on handstand walks and actually just finding more time to get in and get back to where I was not so long ago.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

My very first time at CFLT we did Kettlebell Annie (50,40,30,20,10 of KB swings, sit-ups, double unders). I remember that I was in great shape and I was going to crush this and make my mark on the gym. I was wrong El Tigre aka Chris D not only did the 2 pound KB but did GHD and was only a few seconds behind my finishing time. After we finished that WOD not only did everyone who was at that class gave me props on a great work but was talking a little S*#@ I knew this would be my gym.

Heather Evans
Member name:

Heather Evans

Athlete of the month: January 2018
Details:

What brought you to CrossFit?

I had commented to Daniel that I was going to need to start Crossfit for stress relief after my relatives went home. He told me that I really should try it. Then he took time to explain to me about Crossfit, its benefits and how it can be scaled for anyone. His enthusiasm for Crossfit and the idea of a new challenge for myself made me come to try it for a week. I was hooked.

What was your first impression?

Certainly there was a bit of fear but also excitement for the challenge. I had never done anything like this before…I ran, played tennis and other sports. But along with the fear I also noticed that there was a community there. The coaches were there to help and to encourage and all the others in the classes supported one another to help each other get better.

How has that changed?

Not a lot has changed. Although I have become more comfortable in the gym and I see that putting in the work and commitment day after day builds results.

What was your first “Bright Spot”?

I would have to say that my “bright spot” has been taking the Olympic Lifting class with Daniel. Breaking down the technique of the various lifts and really working on perfecting the movements has helped me to be more confident that I can lift heavier weights even in the fast moving WODs.

What are you working on now?

Wow, that’s a tough question because my list keeps getting longer of what I want to work on. But I would have to say that I am trying to improve mentally to start because believing in what I can do helps the all-around performance I think. On top of the mental aspect, though, I am really wanting to work on my core strength/glute strength because that is so important to lifting and Crossfit movements.

What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

Well, I have two…one is when all of the barbells fell domino style and I attempted valiantly to catch them so that they wouldn’t hit the ground…never drop an empty barbell was the thought that rang in my mind! It must have been a humorous sight to watch. =) Then my other favorite memory at CFLT was when we had the Barbells and Breakfast WOD one Saturday and other coaches joined the relay style warmup and the partner WOD. It was just a lot of fun, friendly competition with coaches and fellow classmates teaming up.

Chris Suykerbuyk
Member name:

Chris Suykerbuyk

Athlete of the month: December 2017
Details:

1. What brought you to CrossFit?

I had just finished running a marathon, and before that 2 Olympic distance triathlons. My body was broken down and I was underweight. I tried going to conventional gyms, but I was struggling trying to maintain my cardio while adding on muscle. CrossFit gave me the opportunity to do both, plus offered a challenge to learn new fitness techniques and skills.

2. What was your first impression?
It was love at first sight for me. I have always pushed myself, and CrossFit gave me that outlet. I loved how every day was like a mini race that I could try to improve on as time went on. CrossFit satisfied my competitive nature while helping to maintain whole body fitness.

3. How has that changed?
For me, not much has changed. I still walk in every day trying my best. As I have learned more about the sport of fitness, I realized you can’t give 110% all the time. Pacing yourself and knowing your limits is critical step for any athlete. I am also a little more humble (if that can be believed). I see the amazing accomplishments of my fellow athletes and it inspires me to try even harder.

4. What was your first “Bright Spot”?
My first bright spot was deadlifting over 400lbs. I had not done that in several years, and I weighed about 30lbs less than the last time I had tried that weight. That same day, I rowed a PR 1000m Row. I knew at that point that this was really working!

5. What are you working on now?
One of my Professors once said to me “When you gradate College, you think you know everything. When you get your Masters, you think you may not know everything. When you get your Doctorate, you know you don’t know anything.” I think CrossFit is the same. The more I learn, the more there is to learn. You got muscle ups? Great! Now handstand walk! Personally, I am trying to get back to some fundamentals, chest to bar pullups and double unders, form on my Olympic lifts, etc. You can only build on a solid foundation, and sometimes it is worth going back to check that your base is well constructed.

6. What’s your favorite CFLT memory?
I have so many, it is hard to choose! 5 years of great friendships and friendly competition make for some great memories. What always sticks out for me is the “Murph”. I remember the first time I tried to do it and I think it took me over an hour with no vest. I was shocked and humbled at how hard it was to accomplish. The difficulty in the workout made me think more about the sacrifice of Lt. Murphy and all of the brave men and women that Hero Wods are named after. I have done this workout every year with a vest since, and my best memories are always from Murph days. The comradery that we share and the whole gym cheering each other on is what CrossFit is all about!

Jennifer Centner
Member name:

Jennifer Centner

Athlete of the month: November 2017
Details:

What brought you to CrossFit?

My husband had gone to a few workouts with some Brazilian Ju-Jitzu friends and would tell me about what they were doing and I thought that it sounded like something I would be interested in to help push me out of my comfort zone and help get me the results I wanted.

What was your first impression?

When I first stepped into the box I saw these super fit men and women finishing a WOD and I think my jaw hit the ground. I thought “what have I just walked into” After my first work out it took me three days to recover, and I had been doing boot camp classes 5-6 days a week. So needless to say I was hooked. I thought anything that can make me feel like that in such a short period of time has to be worth sticking around for.

 How has that changed?

Although I still sometimes dread the WOD, I get excited to push my body to new levels and see what I am capable of achieving.

 What was your first “Bright Spot”?

I have been doing crossfit off and on for about 5 years, so I am going to go with my most recent bright spot. After having two kids I never thought I would get even close to how fit I was before getting pregnant and even before I got pregnant with my second baby wallballs were a cuss word to me! Just the thought of them made my knees hurt and I just knew that I would have to use a 12 lb ball and even with that I couldn’t do more than 10 at a time without needing to rest. Thanks to the awesome coaching and atmosphere I can now, with confidence, use the 14lb ball and do well over 10 at a time. The last time we did them in a work out I actually laughed at myself because I used to dread wall balls.

What are you working on now?

Right now I am focusing on correcting my form overall and gaining strength so I can attack some of the movements that I have never been good at. I really want to master handstand push-ups this year.

What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

It is so hard to pick just one! I was still fairly new to the CFLT family and we had a work out with dead lifts in it that I really wanted to crush, as deadlifts are my favorite movement and after words I really felt like I could have done better or could have gone heavier, and just plain down on myself and I hear this super sweet voice say how awesome I did. Even though I had never met him before, this sweet man was so encouraging and so positive that it made my day and changed my whole demeanor! Thanks to Allen Howell, I changed how I viewed my work outs and progress for the better.

Allen Howell
Member name:

Allen Howell

Athlete of the month: October 2017
Details:

What brought you to CrossFit?

One Saturday afternoon I was playing with my 17 month old grandson.  We were on the carpet in our living room playing with toys and talking baby stuff.  The little guy popped up and took off.  He was out of sight.  Jude is our first grandchild and we hadn’t done any baby proofing.  So I crawled to the sofa and hoisted myself to a sitting position and then I was able to stand up.  I was a mess in terms of strength and mobility and I decided right then that I had to fix this.  Around the same time as the toddler scare I saw a magazine article about how ordinary folks in reasonably good condition could climb the Tetons in Jackson WY.  Sounded like something I’d really like to do. So I decided to set a goal to climb the Tetons and I was going to prepare and do it on my 60th birthday. I found CrossFit LT and jumped right in.  A year later my Son Christopher and I climbed the mountain as planned.

What was your first impression? 

Very soon I figured out the social interaction is the secret sauce at CrossFit.  I started with the 5:30 AM crowd and was soon part of the group.  I met the owner after maybe three classes.  I told him about the mountain.  With absolute confidence but in a very low key and humble way his eyes lit up and he said “we’ll get you up that mountain”.

How has that changed?

The group has changed and evolved over the years and now I’m pretty much a 6 PM regular.  For me the sociability remains a driver for my consistency.  I’m reminded of the Cheers song “where everybody knows your name and they’re always glad you came…”    When I got back from the mountain trip a 5:30 am regular asked what was going to be my next target to train for.  I didn’t readily have an answer, its 4 years later now and I guess the answer is I’m training for my life.  So I can pop up off the floor and catch a toddler on the run, so I can hike and climb through Indian Cliff dwellings like my wife and I just did in Colorado this summer.  I training to stay healthy, to stay out to the hospital and I’m training to take a sabbatical from work and go on a Mission for my Church.  I’ve still got of mountains climb, dreams to live and I need health, strength and mobility to get it done.

What was your first “Bright Spot”?

About 6 weeks in I realized that I’d overcome my biggest obstacle. That obstacle was me not believing that I could stick to it. One day when I fading out on a rep someone shouted in my ear “your can do anything for 3 minutes – just finish it”. I repeated that to myself quite a few times until I didn’t hate it.

What are you working on now?

I’m working on finding joy and better mobility through the yoga classes.  I seeking greater mobility, range of motion, improved posture and balance.

What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

One Saturday morning we were teaming up for a partner WOD.  That strikes a memory with dark emotional pull, forming up teams at school for softball or soccer.  So I’m the oldest by about 25 yrs. and the crowds pretty much paired off and there’s just one guy left, and he’s a big one.  I think I’ve seen him around but don’t’ know him.  He’s rocking a generous Dad, bod, mid 30’s maybe.  At the time I’m age 61.  I thinking maybe this will work, he seems OK, likely will take it slow to moderate, so I’m down.  The WOD starts and this guy who’s never met me is jumping around shouting and cheering and telling me to get busy like a crazed parent or coach – and he is serious about this!  I’m like; “maybe back off the Red Bull dude”.  And he pounds through the WOD and even knocked off some of my reps.  For the big ending after the four rounds of some sort of sadistic torture like rowing, wall balls, and burpee box jumps, we go outside and drag this massive truck tire around the building.  The tire has a length of fire hose bolted to it; you wear it like a harness. It’s heavy like a rock and the rubber side wall is lying flat on course asphalt – this thing is not going anywhere fast.  But my partner’s all like “this tire is taking a hot lap and let’s get it done”!  It was scary; I thought he was going to have a stroke.  I think we finished 3rd out of 6 teams.  As he was doubled over gulping for air at the finish, I thanked him for being there and working out with me, and then I said, you know, I don’t think this tire thing was really supposed to be a race.  And he said “yes it was”, a couple years later he bought the gym.

 

Debbie Foley
Member name:

Debbie Foley

Athlete of the month: September 2017
Details:
1.    What brought you to CrossFit?  

I had been teaching group fitness (HIIT training and Spin…..and yes Step) for 17years and felt like I was in a rut. Our good friend Chris had recruited my husband 6 months before and they both told me that once I tried CF, that I would never look back. Clearly, they were right.

2.    What was your first impression? 

I was so intimidated by the entire gym. The bars, weights, rowers, rig….everything. But I immediately noticed the amazing relationships that the members shared. People actually encouraged each other and coaches were genuinely invested in making the members better. I loved it and wanted to be a part of something different.

3.    How has that changed?

I walk into CFLT and know that I am where I am supposed to be. I still look at all of the equipment and know that it all humbles me on the daily, but has also has made me a better athlete. The coaches are amazing and know how and when to push me. No one lets me slack, because each coach knows what I am capable of. I love this.

4.    What was your first “Bright Spot”

Completing the “Hotshots 19”. I had completed other Hero WODs, but there was something so incredible about this. The way that the coaches presented the workout…..the way that the athletes continued completing each rep, despite the heat, in honor of local heros. It was at that moment, that I knew that I had found my place and my people.

5.    What are you working on now?

Oh the dreaded pull-ups. I dream about being able to consistently get them in WODs without scaling. I will not stop until I master them. I am confident that I will have them….along with HSPUs and DUs soon. The coaches held me accountable and I will have them before the next Open.

6.    What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

Completing Murph with my family. This year, I had the honor of doing it along side my husband and my 12 year old daughter. 3 years ago this month, Michael almost died from a random infection…..this year, he destroyed Murph and it brought me to tears. Our amazing 12 year old asked to join CFLT in order to prepare for her Cross Country and Track seasons….planned on doing a half, but completed the full. I am so proud to workout with them, and all of the other athletes and coaches week after week. Thank you to Mike, Angela, Ashley , Daniel, Garrett, Carlos, Josh, and Kevin. You are all amazing and I am incredibly appreciative for all that you bring to me and my family. Please continue to kick my trash on the daily.

Keith Goyen
Member name:

Keith Goyen

Athlete of the month: August 2017
Details:
  1.    What brought you to CrossFit?

I came to crossfit looking for something different.  I needed something to challenge me and improve my overall conditioning.

 

  1.  What was your first impression?

My first impression was this is torture!  Not really….Right away I loved the competitive nature and community of Crossfit.

 

  1.  How has that changed?

Nothing has changed since I joined CFLT.  Every day I look forward to working on some skill and completing the WOD.

 

  1.  What was your first “Bright Spot”?

My first bright spot was being able to string together a couple of DU’s.

 

  1.  What are you working on now?

At the present I’m working on Ring MU’s.  I’m getting close and hope to complete one soon!

 

  1.  What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

My favorite memory is when I completed a bar MU in the 2016 Open!

Carrie Miller
Member name:

Carrie Miller

Athlete of the month: April 2017
Details:
  1.    What brought you to CrossFit?

My husband had been doing crossfit for several years prior so I would see him look at the main site for workouts and info. Some friends had also started crossfit a year or so before me and I would hear them talking about it. One day I just decided to actually give it a try and join them. I was certain I would hate it. I had never lifted weights ever in my life. Nearly 3 years and almost 800 workouts later, I can’t imagine my daily life without it!

  1.    What was your first impression?

The first time I ever saw a crossfit workout was on tv. My husband was watching it and I’m pretty sure my exact words were: that’s the stupidest hint I’ve ever seen. Grown adults flipping tires and climbing ropes?!? Heck no.

  1.    How has that changed?

I never imagined that I would now be so inspired by those athletes I’d once watched on tv. Coming to Crossfit Leiftime was the best experience. I knew NOTHING about this ‘constantly varied, high intensity, functional movement’ thing! It was so different from anything I’d ever done. But the awesome coaches worked with me from the ground up. I remember my first workout. Helen! I scaled it as much as it could possibly be scaled. But no one ever made me feel inadequate because of it. Everyone has always been so encouraging and the coaches have always pushed me to dig deep. It’s funny to think that 3 years ago, I never touched a barbell (or any weights!) because I was afraid lifting weights would make me look those bodybuilder men!

  1.    What was your first “Bright Spot”

I remember the first time I looked at the whiteboard and realized I had not finished dead last. When I first started I was so out of my element, not to mention out of shape! I had accepted the realization that every day, someone will always have the fastest time and the slowest time. And the slowest time was usually me. But it was okay! That’s when I learned the beauty of crossfit. That it magnifies our strengths AND weaknesses. In everybody.

  1.    What are you working on now?

#*+$!@ Muscle ups. And handstand walks.

  1.    What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

oh man, I’ve had a lot of laughs in the gym with the 8:15 crew. My homies!!! Some of my favorite times have been working out together with my husband. also winning 2nd place in team competition with Mike G and Brandyn J! And that time Amber K thought the wallball target was an arrow pointing to where the ball should hit. And not the two lines on the target.

The picture on the left (attached) is a few months after Finn was born. I was still carrying a lot of ‘baby weight’, I was sleep deprived having a newborn at home and a wild 19 month old to keep up with. I also had undiagnosed postpartum depression at the time. Crossfit has helped me over come my post partum depression in so many ways. I know I have a long way to go but I realize that I’ve also come a long way (I used to overhead squat the pvc pipe!). Crossfit gives me an escape and it has not only been good for my physical strength but for my mental strength as well. Because everyone knows I get grumpy when I don’t lift. and I love that my kids know that fitness is a part of our EVERYDAY life. I want to be a strong, healthy mom and wife for my family. And lifting heavy weights is pretty cool, too.

Justin Fish
Member name:

Justin Fish

Athlete of the month: February 2017
Details:
  1.    What brought you to CrossFit?

Initially I looked into CrossFit as a way to motivate me to keep up a healthier lifestyle. I had made a few changes in my life and I felt CrossFit would motivate me to further those changes. And it has!

  1.    What was your first impression?

Intense! In a good way. I’m not one who shy’s away from competition so the first day I pushed myself to my limit. It absolutely kicked my butt. Both the coaches and athletes were supportive, cheering me on, and congratulating me after. I felt like everyone had my back even when it was slightly embarrassing how little I felt I could do.

  1.    What was your first “Bright Spot”

So those first few months I felt like every week I had a ‘Bright Spot’ or a PR but I think the one that really stuck out to me was being able to do an unassisted pull-up for the first time. When I started I couldn’t even do one pull-up with the black band assisting me.

  1.    What are you working on now?

I still have a lot I need to work on. I think double-unders would be the next one I need to tackle. Those 3-to-1 single-unders are killing me!

  1.    What’s your favorite CFLT memory?

So I decided to tackle the open after only a few weeks of CrossFit. 16.5 was a very long workout for me, over 30 minutes actually. Throughout it all everyone was there rooting for me to finish it and after being able to relax and hang out (and eat!) with everyone was so fun. I think that was the moment I really felt a part of the leiftime family officially. Thank you everyone for supporting, motivating, and pushing yourselves with me each day!

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