By Ina Moses
The journey that brought me to CrossFit Full Circle is centered around my family, so let me tell you a little about us.
My immediate family is about as non-traditional as they come – my fiancé Jeff and I have been together almost 12 years, and may or may not get married; we haven’t decided yet. I have 25-year-old twin boys, Douglas and Duane, from a previous relationship. Between the four of us, we have three different last names. Although we are a non-traditional family, the four of us have created a family based on love, shared experiences, and a lot of laughter.
Seriously, we laugh a lot and loudly.
When my extended family gets together, it is ridiculous as the volume and chaos gets raised to a much higher level. I warn newcomers to our family gatherings about the chaos and silliness, but I don’t think they are ever really prepared. I am still surprised that my quiet, super sweet daughter-in-law, Amelia, chose to marry Douglas and become a part of our unruly family this summer.
I grew up in a physical family, we did the usual swimming and ballet classes, played on various team sports, and for a good number of years, did martial arts together as a family. The latter sport really stuck as my middle brother Michael runs a successful martial arts academy in Gaithersburg, MD, and my younger brother John continues practicing BJJ when he is not running with his son, my nephew Conner. His mother Courtney regularly participates in various 10k and half marathon races.
As an adult, my fitness level and activities have varied throughout the years. This list of fitness activities includes: aerobic classes (yes, I wore legwarmers and leotards – don’t judge, I am pretty sure I looked great!); working out at home on my Nordic Track; training for and running 5k and 10ks; swimming for a very short while; joining and loving a kickboxing class till I tore my ACL for the third time; enrolling at the local YMCA and riding the bicycle and elliptical while catching up on my reading; trying a weight lifting machine routine that I read about in a magazine; and sweating a lot in boot camp classes. As is for many people, I approached each new program with a lot of enthusiasm in the beginning and then lost that spark, becoming bored and uninspired.
Of course I had heard about CrossFit during my fitness journey. I read the articles and saw the pictures and videos of uber fit women who did things that weren’t in the realm of my possibility. I lack confidence in my physical ability, and I never considered CrossFit as an option for me.
[Tweet “CrossFit was something I may have tried in my younger, more fit days, but never in my “OMG, I’m almost 50” years. Then I got a few signs.”]
My sister-in-law Courtney was a Full Circle member a couple of years ago and during that time, told me how much she liked it and how it helped her running. I listened, happy for her, but never considered it something I could do, as Courtney is super fit. I am not. Then my brother Michael joined a CrossFit gym and told me how extraordinary it was, and how CrossFit was helping his martial arts.
We had a family beach vacation in Nags Head two years ago and both Courtney and Michael talked me into doing a couple of CF classes. Super nervous, I went. BANG! Something started in my brain; I couldn’t do most of the moves, had no idea how to load weights onto a bar, and was slowest in the class in all the moves but I loved it. Everyone in the class, from coach to athlete never made me feel bad and they were all trying to help. They even helped me unload the bar and waited until everyone and everything was put away. What struck me was that we were a class of mostly drop-ins, not regulars to this particular gym, and I wondered why everyone was behaving in the same way; supportive and helpful? In the end, I didn’t care why; I loved the experience and could not shut up about it to Jeff.
One night Jeff and I ran into our friends Zack Attack (Zack Butler) and Mandy, his wife. I can’t remember how it happened, but we started talking about CrossFit, and he lit up talking about Full Circle and how the program had helped him lose weight and pick up heavy weights. We talked a lot about CFFC that night and he encouraged me to check it out. I was just about ready.
The universe realizes I can be a little thick, so it sent me one more sign. In October 2014, Jeff and I went to the Scotts Addition Pumpkin Festival. Although I have never had one, I love Corgi’s and whenever we are out, Jeff points out cute dogs for me to fawn over, and Corgi’s are one of the cutest. As I am bending over to make a fuss over a cute Corgi he has spied, Jeff nudges me and tells me the guy holding the Corgi is wearing a T-shirt from the gym that Zack told us about. And like that, I am introduced to James Boatwright, a coach CrossFit Full Circle.
James kicks me over the “I am not sure I can do this” ledge to nervously signing up for the fundamentals program.
And as with so many CrossFitters, I couldn’t shut up about it. I talked about CrossFit incessantly in the beginning (and still do.) I texted my brother when I deadlifted 155 pounds that first month; I just couldn’t believe I picked up over 100 pounds off the ground. I didn’t bother texting him last month when I deadlifted 243 pounds; I figured I would wait till I hit 255. Jeff was already convinced after the Zack and James run-ins, and signed up in January 2015. Duane had been doing his own thing, becoming a very fit Marine and didn’t need much of a nudge to join, and he also signed up in January.
Now our dinner conversations are basically CrossFit conversations. We show each other videos that we have found concerning CrossFit, we discuss what classes we are taking for the week and see if they overlap. We talk about how to turn our backyard into a place where we can do supplemental workouts. Duane helps coach me on snatches when we are in the same class. Jeff and I roll out of bed on Saturday mornings to go to the 8 a.m. class together. I’m pretty sure our Christmas presents will feature a number of CrossFit related items.
Our family war cry has become “CrossFit, F*ck Yea!”
Douglas listens to us and rolls his eyes. I am certain we will get him hooked eventually, and I’m hoping to get Courtney back as well.
Full Circle has become another member of my family. I work at home and often my only interaction with humans, other than my family, happens at the gym. Similar to my first CrossFit class in Nags Head, the CFFC members are supportive, helpful, encouraging and fun! The coaches and members push me outside of my comfort level, which I need because I still don’t trust my physical ability. My confidence level swings from positive to negative from day to day, but I am getting more positive days now. I love the feeling of reading the WOD and thinking “WTF,” then finishing that nasty WOD with my fellow Full Circle family members and thinking, “We just kicked that WODs butt!” My gym relationships are starting to spill outside of the gym with some members, and I can’t wait to hang out with more CFFC family in regular street clothes. This feeling of family keeps CrossFit from becoming just another workout phase that gets boring and fades.
I believe that a family is made up of not only those you are related to, but those you choose to make a family member. I am happy to welcome CrossFit Full Circle to my non-traditional family.
Train with us at CrossFit Full Circle and join our family!