Here at CrossFit Prince George, our members inspire us every day. They remind us that CrossFit is for everyone, regardless of age, athletic background, or body type. CrossFit is a methodology that meets you where you are – there is always something to improve, always work to do. Here are some of our members and coaches whose stories motivate us in and out of gym – we hope they inspire you too.
I remember when I was younger starting to gain weight around grade 1. It was around that time that I started using food as a defence mechanism. The pantry was always full of treats, and I would sneak them every chance I got. This is where my poor relationship with food started. I gained weight steadily through elementary and high school, caught in a circle of low self esteem and low self worth. My parents tried to keep me active, but it wasn’t enough to counteract my bad eating habits. Around grade 10 I discovered that I was hypoglycemic. I was put on a low carb, high protein and fat diet (Atkins) which had some results, but were still no match for my bad eating habits, binges and little to no physical activity. By the time I graduated high school, I was around 250 pounds.
Fast forward a few years. I was married and had two kids, pursuing a career in Massage Therapy. The stress of being in a toxic relationship, having young children, 3 years of intense schooling and the financial strain of having no career only made the weight gain worse. I had gone up to 355 pounds, my heaviest ever weigh-in. However, I was actually larger than this for a time. I’ll never really know how heavy I got, but a safe guess would be around 365-370 pounds.
I started working for Prince George Family Chiropractic within a few months of moving back to Prince George. At the time, we had an unaffiliated CrossFit gym attached to the clinic. Within a few weeks of working there, I was convinced to try a trial class. The workout, (which I would consider easy now) destroyed my world. It took me over an hour to stop sweating and breathing heavy. Thankfully that day I had no clients booked in that afternoon, as I had to go home early for the day to recover from a 9 minute workout. The next morning I could barely walk my legs were so sore. What a wake up call this was for me. How could I let myself get to this point? How could I be taken seriously as a healthcare professional when I was clearly so unhealthy. The following Monday I started my CrossFit journey.
I instantly fell in love with this style of working out. I had tried to lose weight in the past, signing up for weight loss challenges at globo gyms, doing the standard 20-30 minutes of cardio and about an hour of weightlifting, only to fall out of the habit a few months later. It was boring, and I didn’t really know what I was doing. I would get a few personal training sessions but they never really helped. CrossFit was something new, something exciting, and intense, with a high level of coaching and a strong community vibe. I was shy and reserved at first, but was instantly welcomed by nice, supportive and really awesome people. People who put themselves in the same level of discomfort as me even though they were much fitter day in and day out. It was something we all shared regardless of each other’s level of fitness. It gave me a sense of belonging, and also gave me something to work towards.
November 11th, 2012 I weighed in at 320 pounds. 6 months later, on May 11th, 2013, I weighed in at 219 pounds. Not only was my weight loss a huge triumph for me, the personal milestones I hit with my lower weight and increased fitness was probably the best part. I remember how happy I was that I could run 400m around the building without having to stop. Or my first pullup. Or my first 7k run which I performed without stopping once. And it wasn’t only in the gym that I noticed improvement. My happiness, energy levels, sex drive, everything was increased. I was a new man.
I knew you were going to be a challenge for me, but I now know that’s what I needed. At first you scared me. You intimidated me. You gave me anxiety. You made me force myself to step out of my comfort zone in a way that I never imagined. Then I got to know you, very slowly. And it turns out you were EVERYTHING I had expected and more!
I met you just over a year ago on this crazy journey of mine and I must say, today I truly don’t know where I would be without you. You have given me confidence, happiness and both inner and outer strength. After struggling with food and weight for over 30 years, you taught me how to listen to my body and give it what it needs for both nutrition and exercise. You’ve helped me shed over 40 more pounds and have taught me to reach higher for my goals. You have brought me into a community who encourages, motivates, educates and inspires.
You’ve seen me at my worst and pushed me to be better. You’ve made me sweat, smell, cry (more than once), bleed, curse and almost puke (it’s coming for sure, I know it!). But you’ve made me grow, laugh and love in ways I didn’t know were possible. Thank you for being you and for allowing me to be me.
My CrossFit chapter is far from done and I’m super excited to see what this part of my journey has in store for me.
Proud supporter of deadlifts, coffee & peanut butter,