3. What has been your proudest moment or favourite experience at CrossFit Closer so far?
There are some PR which have a better flavour than the other ones. Muscle-ups are one of them. I am capable to do pulls-ups or even C2B but on this particular day, the WOD called for 15 bar muscle-ups or, scaling, 30 C2B.
30 C2B…!? Gosh! I was so lazy that day that my mind forced my body to do “only” 15 muscle ups rather than 30 C2B. And I did it. That was the first time that I did a BMU and the first time that I did 15 of them.
4. What would you say to someone thinking about starting at CrossFit Closer?
Don’t regret it, have a try. Family mind and coaching excellence will trap you as much as we all have been trapped. If you think you’re not fit enough, trust yourself, there are so many scaling methods to progress that you can start as Jabba the Hutt and finish as the Hulk.
What brought you to CrossFit Closer?
I was playing hockey in October of 2013 when I experienced a protruded disc in my lower vertebrae. It put a lot of pressure on the nerve that runs down my leg to my foot, causing lots of pain. I stopped hockey for a while as I recuperated, and fell out of shape. In the summer of 2015, some friends and I decided a weight-loss bet would be a good way to motivate ourselves to get back into shape.
My brother had been going to CFC for a while, so I took the bet as my opportunity to give it a try.
I felt that CrossFit would at least eliminate the randomness of hockey, so ought to be less likely to re-injure my back.
I didn't win the weight-loss bet, but that wasn't really my goal; I just needed a little push to get into shape. But I'm the only one of the group that didn't immediately return to the old habits, and eventually, weight.
How has CrossFit Closer changed your everyday life?
I spend a lot of time listening to strength and conditioning podcasts, which certainly never happened before. I also pay a lot more attention to posture and movement patterns. I've never been one to go to a traditional gym, and still am not. But crossfit has become a pretty big part of my life now. I also think a lot more about my nutrition. It's certainly not perfect, but feel much more in tune with how the food I eat affects my body.
How would you describe CrossFit Closer to someone interested in joining?
It's a supportive atmosphere, with people of all abilities. The quality of coaching is absolutely top-notch. You can tell that the members feel this way because you can see them referring their friends, spouses, kids, and co-workers.
I am a 48 year old mother of three amazing young people, and wife to an incredibly supportive man. All three kids are in post secondary, and all 3 participate in some form of fitness. My two sons, Adam and Kurtis, are both involved at our gym; and my daughter, Daniella, works out at Movati in Guelph while attending university. And as you know, my husband is a regular at the box too.
It was only when I hit my early 40s that I realized that I really needed to do something both with my activity and nutrition. That's when I found Adam Phomin, pre-Crossfit Closer, and learned many of the basics for fitness and nutrition .
1. Describe what you are doing both with your training regime and nutrition practice.
I changed the way I look at training and nutrition...really looked at it as something that I wanted, that I wanted to commit to. Not just something that I 'should do' because someone else said so, or because someone else is doing it.
I've made a commitment to myself to train 3 days a week. I know it doesn't seem like alot when you hear of people going 4,5,or 6 days a week. I found that too much, and that if I didn't go, I felt guilty.
So, I changed the way I look at training. Commit to 3 days a week, and pour my heart into the workouts. No half-ways, or 'maybe, I can do that'. I decided that I would do as much as I can and push myself.
After having been out of the gym for almost 8 months, moving the 35lb ladies bar was difficult. Deadlifts, for example, were pretty much non-existent. Move forward 6 months to today, and I hit my goal of 140lb deadlift (4 months earlier than expected!). While 140lbs doesn't seem like much, when I consider that 6 months ago I was barely doing a 35lb deadlift, I think that 105lb increase is something to smile about.
As for my nutrition, a few months ago, I tried one of the diet plans that many of the ladies at our gym were doing. In my mind, I was going to be that super-fit lean young woman, just like our 20-something athletes at our gym. I was able to stick with it for a bit, but couldn't sustain such a regimented schedule and abide by the strict rules. And realized (oddly enough), that I'm not 20 or 30 something anymore.
I took a bit of time off from dieting - still frustrated with lack of progress in the gym, I found (with my sister-in-law's help) a different kind of 'diet' - macros. I found Stronger U which provided me with the flexibility to enjoy food - whatever I wanted, so long as it fit within my planned macros. I eat based on the nutrition information that Adam Phomin gave me a number of years ago. So, I tend to eat mostly whole 'real' foods. Occasionally, I do have something different - but only if it fits my macros. And, the added benefit is that I have a nutrition coach who is always there to respond to my questions, or 'talk me down' if I'm having a terrible day.
So far, in the past 6 weeks of counting macros, I've lost close to 12 lbs and 17.5 inches overall! And I'm not interested in 'finding' those pounds or inches again!
2. What made you want to prioritize your nutrition?
I've played around with many, many diets over the years. Most 'worked'...at least temporarily, but nothing really stuck or became a way of life. I yo-yoed for years. I got some results and was happy, but couldn't sustain that particular way of dieting.
The fact of the matter is that I'm not 20 or 30 something anymore where looking at food doesn't cause weight gain. I'm 48 - entering into a different stage of my life which also means a different way to take care of my body. And, also a different way to understand how my body is going to work and respond with food. As much as I love pizza, it doesn't quite love me as much anymore.
Sadly, I see many women my age that are overweight, on some sort of medication, constantly unhappy with themselves and blaming everyone around them rather than taking the matter into their own hands. I don't want to be just another 48 year old with all kinds of medical conditions or issues. I don't want to be part of that statistic.
I want to be an active participant in my kids lives for a long time and enjoy every minute of my life with Mike - healthy, happy, and pain free.
3. How is the prioritizing your nutrition changing your everyday life and results in the gym?
That's an interesting question. Initially, I didn't really notice very much. I'm not craving some of the 'not so healthy' foods anymore though.
Now that I've made a commitment to myself, and not to anyone else, I feel more in control of my body and what I"m putting into it. I'm definitely seeing progress at the gym, hitting PRs (re-established goals), the bar moves easier around my body, body weight workouts are not as tiring as they used to be. Don't get me wrong, I am definitely pooped out at the end of a WOD, but it's different. There's more satisfaction because I poured myself into the workout.
I still have those days when I'm frustrated, thinking that I should be farther along than I am. Let's face it, I've been one of Adam's students for almost 7 or 8 years! But I think I finally figured it out.
Good nutrition = good/great training = a very happy Darlene!
2. What made you want to do a race like this?
When I was in chiropractic college I was chosen to represent my school providing chiropractic care to the athletes competing in the world championship Ironman triathlon on the big island of Kona Hawaii. At that time in my life, I knew nothing about triathlon. I learned that an Ironman triathlon is a 4 km swim, 180 km bike and then a 42K run. I was so inspired that I decided that one day I would do an Ironman race.
My dream of doing an Ironman almost disappeared several months ago because I was so frustrated with my swimming and generally overwhelmed with the craziness of a busy life and a lot of kids. I was ready to give it up completely when a good friend and Ironman himself reminded me that this was a deeply rooted dream that I needed to pursue. I then signed up for the Olympic distance (precursor distance to a half Ironman) and trained hard and really worked on my swimming especially. A big shout out to Kristina Ireland for making me commit and organizing the neighbourhood Ironmoms to train together. We all had a blast.
During my training and especially now that I've done an Olympic, I finally believe that I will do an Ironman distance race. I never had much doubt about the bike and run distances but always wondered if I could really learn to swim that far. I'm really pumped about the future because it's only going to get more fun! I'm doing a half Ironman next spring and will train really hard on my swimming and of course lots of CrossFit, biking and running!
3. How did CrossFit Training help you during your race?
Crossfit helped immensely. It made me stronger so that I was able to push and train harder in all 3 disciplines. The high-intensity intervals helped my bike and run times and because your mindset is key in any sport, feeling stronger from CrossFit made me more confident and powerful than ever!
What's your proudest moment so far?
See how my friends have progressed……best comment from Catherine when she did 17. 2 and got 5 Bar Muscle ups and said she didn’t want to disappoint me from all the work we put in together. So excited for her. I love seeing myself and others progress and do things we never thought possible. And I’m super happy with my standings so far in the open this year!
What's your best / funniest CrossFit Closer story or experience?
Phil judging me when I got my first BMU