Megan T. Is Our August Member Of The Month It seems like every single time I turn around and ask Megan how much she has on her bar it’s heavier than the week before. She’s what I like to call a silent assassin and it really makes her fun to watch. I’ll be standing at the front of class watching each of our members plug away at setting a 1RM, I look over at Megan and she’ll execute her lift with near perfect form and then turn around with a HUGE smile on her face. She doesn’t scream and yell or jump for joy, but when I see that smile I know exactly what just happened, another PR. There are very few people that I’ve ever met that listen as intently to coaching, think about what was just said, and then execute the movement including the tweaks that were just asked for like Megan does. We love having you as a member, Megan, and are looking forward to many more successes in your near future. Here is a little Q & A with Megan about her experience with Cróga CrossFit Dave(D): When did you join Cróga? Megan(M): I think I joined in April 2013. Time flies… (D): What were you doing before for fitness? (M): I wasn’t doing much, and what I was doing involved mostly cardio-based activities, such as running and cross country skiing in the winter. I was a member at 24 Hour Fitness but, honestly, I never went and had become pretty ambivalent about going to the gym. (D): What improvements have you seen in the way you look, feel and perform? (M): I’ve got muscle tone! Woo hoo! I definitely feel stronger and fitter. This past winter when I’d go skiing (Bear Valley!), I noticed a significant improvement in my strength, technique, and endurance from past years. Same goes for running. (D): What’s your favorite WOD? (M): I like WODs that are a combination of weights and cardio. (D): What’s your least favorite WOD? (M): Anything that involves snatches. Ugh, they are my nemesis. (D): What do you love about CrossFit? (M): I love the variation, the constant challenge, and the coaches who keep pushing me. That’s what keeps bringing me back week after week. I also like the structure and the ability to scale with no judgement. (D): What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? (M): I get so hungry! I have a long commute and by the time I get home I’m starving. The quickest protein boost I’ve found is to top whatever I’m making with an over-easy egg. Put an egg on it! (D): What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? (M): My initial goal was to conquer the elusive double-unders. I’m very excited that I’ve finally got those figured out. Next, I’m coming for you, pull ups. It’s going to happen. (D): What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? (M): Be patient and keep coming regularly. I think it took me about 3 months to really see and feel a difference. Also, start logging your workouts in Beyond the Whiteboard right away. I wish I had started doing that sooner so I could see my progression over a longer period of time. (D): Row a 1,000 miles or run 1,000 miles? (M): Run. (D): Anything to add that we didn’t touch on yet? (M): Two things: 1) I have to give a shout out to my little brother, Adam. He’s the one that instigated this madness and he’s been an awesome motivator to keep me going. Most of the time we either talk about how sore we are from last night’s workout or what the workout is going to be tonight. 2) Croga is like Cheers. Everybody knows your name and are always glad you came. Dave has created an incredibly welcoming place and everyone there is so friendly. It makes going to work out an easy decision, and, for the first time, I actually look forward to it! Thanks again, Croga Team! I’m so honored 🙂
Steve Smith is our July Member of the Month Congratulations to Steve S for being our Member of the Month for July! Steve is a very unique individual that brings humor, sarcasm and hard work to each class. Many of you know that Steve has been lobbying for Member of the Month for quite some time now, but you probably didn’t know that he has been in the top 3 of attendance for 5 months straight, so he’s definitely put in the time to earn the title. From the first time Steve stepped in the gym he worked hard and even during the first couples weeks of complete soreness, he never missed a day. It has been fun watching him get a hang of all the movements and now seeing his focus turn to getting stronger and more proficient at everything CrossFit entails. Here is a little Q&A with Steve about his experience with Cróga CrossFit and how he feels about being member of the month. (David): When did you join Cróga? (Steve): First off I would like to thank my friends, family and fans who motivated me to strive for this humbling award. I joined Cróga on October 17th, 2013…it was a Tuesday. Kristi and I had recently moved in together and she made some nasty comments about how comfortable I was becoming with my appearance so she dropped some not so subtle hints about me joining CrossFit. She had worked with Dave and had joined Cróga from the beginning and basically gave me an ultimatum of shaping up or shipping out. (D): What were you doing before for fitness? (S): Before Cróga I was mainly getting my fitness from back alley bar fights, hustling basketball games in the parks of San Jose and running from the law. When I wasn’t doing all those things I was just going to 24Hr Fitness, hitting the Spin Bike while watching episodes of Dawson’s Creek (it’s a guilty pleasure of mine). (D): What improvements have you seen in the way you look, feel and perform? (S): The biggest improvement I’ve seen in my life is the way Kristi looks at me now. The biggest improvement I’ve seen in my performance is the way I have been able to handle workouts with multiple exercises. It’s been really motivating to be able to move through workouts without taking too long of breaks between movements or resting mid set. I’ve also been able to Rx most exercises (except for heavier squats/deadlifts, I still need a lot of work on those) and I certainly wasn’t anywhere near Rx’ing when I first started. (D): What’s your favorite WOD? (S): My favorite WOD would probably be Jack, push press, kettle bell swings and box jumps for 20 minutes. I like when we combine multiple exercises into one workout. (D): What’s your least favorite WOD? (S): My least favorite WOD would probably be anything that requires a lot of body weight movements and has Preston coaching (just kidding, Preston). Toes to bar and pull ups are still something I need a lot of work with (D): What do you love about CrossFit? (S): The thing I love most about CrossFit is that I do things that I would never design on my own. Every day is a new challenge and something unexpected which is what keeps me motivated and coming back for almost 10 months. The thing I probably enjoy more than the exercising is the community at Croga. I have met a ton of great people that I really enjoy seeing each day. Croga has done a great job by creating a welcoming environment that combines fun and fitness. I get to socialize and crack some jokes while getting an intense workout each day. (D): What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? (S): I don’t really do the paleo diet all too much but I do love the fact that it incorporates bacon and eggs into it. Since breakfast is my favorite meal of the day I get to add a couple of extra slices to my morning intake and feel good about it. (D): What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? (S): My fitness goal for 2014 has just now been achieved by receiving this honor, but my other fitness goals for 2014 are to improve on my weaknesses. Ever since the PR board got going last month it has been motivating to add a few to it. As Todd once said, “PRs are addicting.” I really just want to be a better all around CrossFit athlete so I will never have to see my friend/rival, Ben Petty, turn in a better time or score than me ever again. For all you 6am’ers who see him two times a month you know who I am referring to. (D): What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering
June Member of the Month: Teresa S. You know those people that you can just tell are driven to succeed and they’ll do anything to achieve their goals? Ya, Teresa is one of those people. When she first started with her partner, Pam, I was pretty surprised when she showed up 4 days for her first 3 or 4 weeks straight. It’s not that I didn’t think she was capable, but she would come to 7:30 pm class and then be waiting for me at 6:00 am the next morning with a big smile on her face just waiting to crush the WOD. It’s with dedication like this that she continues to make HUGE strides monthly, if not weekly. Your work ethic and dedication is inspirational, Teresa. Congratulations on all you’ve accomplished by doing CrossFit so far and we look forward to seeing how fast those half-marathons are by the end of 2014. Here’s a little Q&A with Teresa: Dave(D): When did you join Cróga? Teresa(T): I joined in April 2014 to support my partner Pam who wanted to try CrossFit. D: What were you doing before for fitness? T: Running, working out with a personal trainer twice weekly & cycling. D: What improvements have you seen in the way you look, feel and perform? T: More upper body strength, increased endurance & better times on my half-marathons. D: What’s your favorite WOD? T: Since they are all so new to me, I cannot yet say what my favorite is. I am learning to enjoy all of them…except for burpees. D: What’s your least favorite WOD? T: Anything that involves a burpee. D: What do you love about CrossFit? T: I get an intense and great workout in a short amount of time. The group workouts give out a positive vibe. The people with whom I work out and the coaches are awesome motivators. D: What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? T: What’s Paleo? I’m a picky eater. D: What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? T: To run a half-marathon each month and to improve my times as the year progresses. I’ve already run 6 half-marathons this year. Since joining Cróga, my last two run times have improved significantly. I’m excited to see how much better I can do on the rest of my runs this year. Lastly, I want to be able to do at least one double-under this year–I don’t think that’s too much to ask for. D: What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? T: CrossFit is not as intimidating as it seems from an outsider’s perspective. The coaches allow us to scale-down the exercises to our abilities, which in turn helps me improve on my own time. You have to remember that you are competing against yourself and not against others. The more consistent you are in attending the group workouts, the more rewards you see in your fitness and physical abilities. If you want to be prepared, go on the website where they post the WOD for the following day to see what the workout is going to be like. D: 10,000 pull-ups or 10,000 toes-to-bar? T: Uuughh. If I have to pick one: pull-ups — I want to work on my upper body strength and get rid of my “wings.” D: Anything to add that we didn’t touch on yet? T: Yes – I love all the coaches: Preston – he was very patient in teaching me on the first day of Turkish get-ups. I would have kicked myself out of the class if I had been teaching myself that day. I have absolutely no patience… Britt – all that power in such a small package. “strong like boool!” I love it when I see her kicking our asses in a workout, music blaring, dancing and getting her groove on. It brings a smile to my face despite the ***’in’ burpees. Anthony – I like it when he plays his old school, 90s rap music during our workouts. He’s awesome at teaching me correct lifting mechanics. Dave – same with Dave. He’s also very patient at teaching me how to lift a bar overhead without hitting my face–not that I’ve ever done that! Kelly – she has a special place in my heart. I first met her during the introductory session when she kicked my ass with that first workout. That’s when I realized that I want to continue with CrossFit so I can get better at it.
May 2014 Member of the Month: Jen D. Jen is one of our die hard 6 AMers and with the help of her CrossFit buddy, Melissa, she comes to class 4 or 5 mornings a week. The two came to Cróga about 6 months ago for their first intro class and I think it’s fair to say the rest is history. Jen is one of those people that likes to be prepared, she looks up the WOD every night, watches youtube videos to make sure she knows what movements she’s going to be doing the next day and she’s always ready to rock when the clock beeps 3, 2, 1, GO… Here’s a little Q&A with Jen: Dave(D): When did you join Cróga? Jen(J): September 2013. I convinced my friend Melissa to try it with me. After a very friendly Intro WOD & pep talk by Coach Kelly – we committed to give it a try for a couple months. I actually finished my last intro class before Melissa & tried out a real WOD on my own – how tough could it be right?….oh, the WOD my first real day just happened to be “Kelly”. From that moment on, I am fanatic about checking out the WODs ahead of time & getting mentally prepared via YouTube demos. D: What were you doing before for fitness? J: Occasional Jogging, the elliptical trainer & a weekly pilates class. Despite incorporating some fitness activities from time to time, I knew I wanted to be in better shape but wasn’t aware of how out of shape I had accepted being. I now am committed to being strong to do more with & for my family but also to simply get more out of this life. It’s so eye opening to experience how much easier so many aspects of the daily routine are w/ a stronger, fit body. D: What improvements have you seen in the way you look, feel and perform? J: I’ve dropped 2 – 3 sizes (depends on the brand) – so officially no “mom jeans” for me now. It’s really cool to see the muscle definition & to simply be more compact. Each WOD I find not only can I do a bit more but I can push a bit harder. There’s a number of skills that I’ve scaled to finally achieve. Those are the best days when all of a sudden your mind and body just pulls it all together & “bam” I can jump on a box, do a pistol or get through a few doubleunders. D: What’s your favorite WOD? J: The ones I can put Rx next to my name. D: What’s your least favorite WOD? J: Was not a fan of Cindy XXX. Anything with multiple rounds of 400m runs for time. I can jog at a “chit chat” pace for miles. With the sprints, I’m always the “wait for me” girl at the end of the pack. D: What do you love about CrossFit? J: It not only trains my body but also my mind. It has made me realize how much more I’m capable of doing either right out of the gate or over time. Most all of which, I never once considered trying on my own. Watching others do these incredible feats makes me want it too & I start envisioning how cool it will be when I get there…because there’s not stalling out at this point. The people I train w/ are really cool. We all know we are walking into a personal physical fitness battle & the camaraderie is awesome. The silence before the WOD clock starts reminds me we are ALL thinking “crap – WTH am I getting myself into”. Then we just go and push ourselves, as well as, each other through. In the end , it’s a round of exasperated smiles, high fives & “see you again tomorrow“. I love it. D: What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? J: Sweet potato pancakes as the bun for buffalo burgers topped w/ bacon & avocado. My stash of Paleo cook books have been well broken in since doing the Whole 30 in October. D: What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? J: Mastering Pull ups & ring dips. It’s fun to show my girls that I can do cool tricks on the monkey bars too. D: What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? J: Just lock in your time to be there & commit to try it out for a few weeks. You’ll find yourself regretting the days you can’t go. It is so varied that you can rule out getting bored. Everything is scalable – which means you can indeed do EVERYTHING. You will be impressed with how in tune Coach Dave is with your abilities and what he recommends you strive to do. When
April 2014 Member of the Month: Todd L Todd is one of those people that always come to class with a positive attitude, ready to work hard and learn and all three of these qualities have helped him be very successful in a short period of time. He is one of the few that has come to Cróga with some CrossFit experience under his belt, but he kept an open mind and listened to our coaching and he is taking his game to a whole new level. Congrats, Todd, you have made some enormous strides in a very short period of time, keep up the good work! Here’s a little Q&A with the Todd: Dave (D): When did you join Cróga? Todd (T): I joined December 5th, 2013. It was a cold and lonely night and I had been roaming the mean streets of Willow Glen, looking for a Box to call home. D: What were you doing before for fitness? T: I’ve always been athletic but before finding true fitness I like a lot of people would bounce around to different Globo-gym’s expecting to get results. D: What improvements have you seen in the way you look feel and perform? T: I feel great! I look like I’m carving myself out of myself always improving. My performance is insane! I’m stronger, faster and all around better at age 36 then I was at 26 kind of a Benjamin Buttons effect. D: What’s your favorite WOD? T: Anything that involves pushing weight. D: What’s your least favorite WOD? T: Anything involving burpees. I don’t hate many things in life but I hate burpees. Seriously though. They suck. D: What do you love about CrossFit? T: I love the competitiveness of the workouts of course however I also love the community as well. In no other competition will you see the first person to finish cheering on the last person to finish. D: What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? T: I would have to say combining my paleo waffles with pulled pork. If heaven was a diner it would be on the menu. D: What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? T: I want to compete! D: What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? T: You will never find a workout program that is as rewarding as it is hard. You get what you put into it and you’ll have a community of great people will lift you up and help you find your greatness. D: 20,000 Thrusters @ 95 lbs or do 10,000 toes-to-bar? T: 20,000 thrusters @95lbs cuz this aint your momma’s jazzercise class! D: Anything to add that we didn’t touch on yet? T: I would like to say that Coach Dave and Coach Kelly are pure awesomeness! Thanks to them I have crushed more PR’s and become a better athlete in the 5 months I have been here then in the whole 2 years I have been doing Crossfit! I’m very thankful to be a part of their gym and have them in my life.
March 2014 Member of the Month: Doug L When we first met Doug, it was obvious that he took good care of himself and enjoyed working out. We saw that he was coordinated, athletic and driven and we were very excited to see what he would be capable of with some coaching and our programming. So far the results have been outstanding and with only 7 months of CrossFit under his belt, we’re just starting to crack the surface. Here’s a little Q&A with the Doug: Dave (DWM): When did you join Cróga? Doug (DL): I I joined in September of 2013. DWM: What were you doing before for fitness? DL: Before CrossFit, I was just running to try to stay in shape. I had tried P90X, Insanity and things like that, but I got bored quickly, lost motivation and eventually stopped. I was in decent cardio shape from the running, but had lost the muscle tone I used to have. As I turned 40, I was afraid that I would never again be in what would be considered “good shape.” It was depressing. I started doing CrossFit at another local box in June 2013 at the urging of my wife, who knew that I was not happy, but still had the potential to get in shape. It was okay, but I was turned off by the large class sizes and lack of instruction on the technical stuff. I knew I would like CrossFit, but I needed a different box for me. Then I discovered Cróga, and I knew I had found the right box. From the beginning, Dave and Kelly provided me with the kind of one-on-one coaching that I needed to learn the technical movements, and to get in shape without hurting myself. It also didn’t hurt that it was less than a mile from my house! DWM: What improvements have you seen in the way you look feel and perform? DL: CrossFit at Cróga has changed my life. I have gotten myself back into the shape that I was in in my twenties–I’m in the best shape since college, when I lifted and played sports. And because of this, I feel so much better about myself psychologically. It has improved not only my fitness, but also my overall happiness. I’m better at work, a better husband and a better father. I really can’t say enough about it. And, I had a blood test done in late January, and my cholesterol had dropped from 206 the previous year to 158. And my Triglycerides dropped in half. No wonder I am feeling better! DWM: What’s your favorite WOD? DL: My favorite WOD would be something that hits my strengths—running, front squats, shoulder press and some sit-ups. What’s that one called? I’ll call it “The Dougie.” DWM: What’s your least favorite WOD? DL: Anything with Overhead Squats in it. I need to work on my ankle and shoulder flexibility! DWM: What do you love about CrossFit? DL: I love that it involves other people, and that it has a competitive nature to it. I’ve got great Coaches and I get to compete against great people every class. Those coaches and people hold me accountable. It’s what gets me up in the morning to go to class. If I miss, I feel like I’m letting others down. Exactly what I need to stay motivated! DWM: What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? DL: My favorite culinary discovery has to be a new way of eating. I did the Whole 30 on my own in January and lost 12 pounds. But more than that, I felt great! I wasn’t hungry between meals like I always have been, and my body felt better than ever. I’ve stuck with most Whole 30 principles since then, and am still feeling great! DWM: What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? DL: My early goal was to compete in the CrossFit Games Open and to finish in 50th percentile or higher. Even after a rough start with Snatches, Double-Unders and Overhead Squats, three of my worst movements, I was able to finish in the 59th percentile overall and the 65th percentile for my age group. Next year, I’m shooting for the 75th percentile in my age group. My goal for the rest of the year is to work on my weaknesses and be able to do all movements that I might see in a CrossFit competition. Gotta get a Muscle-Up! DWM: What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? DL: Just do it, it will change your life. It really doesn’t take that much time (classes are only an hour) and you will get the most intense workouts of your life. And that intensity leads to results.
February 2014 Member of the Month: Ann M Ann is one of those people that always seems to have a positive attitude and a fresh outlook on life and the challenges it presents. These are two very important traits that have made her successful at CrossFit since the day she showed up for her first class with her daughter and son in law last fall. The amount of progress Ann has made in what we would consider a short period of time (barely being able to finish a scaled version of her first workout to 351st in the world in her age group after Open WOD 14.1) is astonishing and we think the sky is the limit. Here’s a little Q&A with the one and only, Ann: Dave: What kind of shape were you in before you joined Cróga? Ann: I weighed a lot more than I wanted, I was carrying weight around my middle and couldn’t seem to take it off. My diet was high in carbs and sugar and I was drinking Diet Coke (ugh!). So glad that is off the grocery list. D: What were you doing before for fitness? A: I have been a swimmer all my life. I was swimming a mile 2x/wk at the Campbell Community Center and jogging about 3 miles around the neighborhood but very inconsistently. D: What improvements have you seen in the way you look feel and perform? A: I have lost 8lbs and I have much better muscle tone in my upper body. My midriff bulge is gone and I am more comfortable in my clothes. The biggest change is really in how I feel. I am not as stressed out as I used to be and I am putting my health and fitness as a priority in my weekly schedule. I am important! D: You seem to be constantly making huge strides forward, what drives you to get better everyday? A: I love the way I feel physically, emotionally and spiritually and I want to keep my life on that track. My greatest motivation comes from Dave and Kelly, my coaches, who believe in me whole heartedly. I strive to learn all the CrossFit movements and improve from week to week. The atmosphere is fun at Cróga and everyone strives to achieve their personal best on each WOD. D: What do you love about CrossFit? A: I love the variety and the repetition. Sounds weird but I love that I can be super sore in one muscle group then go the next day and that muscle group recovers and another one gets challenged. I really like the Exercise of the Month because I can see great improvements by the end of the month. For example, February was Handstand Month. At first I learned to walk backwards up the wall and hold, then I was able to kick up and hold, then I was able to do a Hand Stand Push Up (HSPU). I was so excited I said “Dave, Dave, Dave watch me!” and I did a second one. Dave laughed and said “Dad, Dad, Dad watch me”. D: What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? A: I did the Whole 30/Paleo Diet in October and I am just starting it again in March. The no Sugar is a challenge but I can do it!. I make a stir fry with zucchini, yellow squash, asparagus, red peppers, garlic and chicken and it is divine. Simple but I could eat it every day. D: What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? A: I set a goal to do a CrossFit Competition and I am participating in the CrossFit Games Open now. My goal is to be in the top 30 in my age group in Northern California. D: What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? A: CrossFit makes everyday movements so much easier because your muscles are toned and stretched. It is not just for athletes or weightlifters, it is for everyone since your only competition is with yourself. Anyone can do it and get the results of total body fitness in a relatively short period of time. Many of us will live to be 100 or older and there is no better time than the present to get started living healthier. At Cróga CrossFit, there are people of various body types and fitness levels. We all do the workouts together and Dave and Kelly take the time to make sure we know the movements and that we are using proper technique. It is like joining a family at Cróga. It is a lot of fun and you get so much encouragement. D: Anything to add that we didn’t touch on yet? A: Even though I may be
As Kelly and I looked back on 2013 and thought of things that we wanted to do in 2014, a Member of the Month spotlight was at the top of the list. With that being said, we will be featuring one of our awesome members each month, writing a blog post about them with some Q&A and giving them their very own RPM Speed Rope as a gift. For our very first month, January 2014, we are proud to announce our Member of the Month is Sam L! Sam has been a member for more than six months now and we have had the pleasure of watching him lose a substantial amount of weight, continue to add strength to an already very strong frame and become much more flexible at the same time. Sam and his girlfriend, Pareesa, have become a very important part of our community through outstanding attendance and participation in all our events and we are happy to see them each and every time they walk in the door with a big smile on their faces and ready to work. Now for some Q&A with the man of the month: Dave: What kind of shape were you in before you joined Cróga? Sam: I would have to say I had a pretty good workout routine but a horrible diet. I was going to the gym 5 days a week but not pushing myself hard as I worked out. I thought my cardio was good until I got hit with the Cróga reality that I was not at all as fit as I thought. D: What were you doing before for fitness? S: Weights for 30-45mins and then 1 hour of some type of cardio. D: Your attendance has been awesome and you love hitting a “burner” bodyweight WOD after lifting sessions, what drives you? S: Beating my coach at a WOD motivates me. I would just have to say that since I have started CrossFit I have noticed such a good change in my body, mind, and choices as far as health that doing extra keeps me going harder. I like the way I feel after a workout even though it hurts. I don’t push myself enough so the people and WODs at Cróga do it for me. D: What improvements have you seen in the way you look feel and perform? S: I’ve dropped 30lbs, learned how to fuel my body properly and I’m so much stronger then ever before. I just feel better all around. D: What do you love about CrossFit? S: The community and the ever changing workouts. It’s everyday cardio and movements that I’m doing and it’s made into a kick ass workout. D: What’s been your favorite culinary discovery since joining Cróga? S: Spaghetti squash. I had never heard of it before the Whole30. D: What’s your biggest fitness goal for 2014? S: Possibly compete in some type of CrossFit event. But I really want to improve all my times, scores and max weights of lifts. D: What words of advice do you have for new members or people considering joining Cróga CrossFit? S: Stick with it, try your best and you will see results and have fun doing it. Congratulations again, Sam! We love having both you and Pareesa as members and integral parts of our community. We are looking forward to watching you continue to progress throughout 2014 and will be there to push you to new heights and support you in that first CrossFit competition.
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