My story begins between two white lines on a field of dirt at age six. Starting out in CYC leagues, moving to select, entering high school set to try out for the team, and preparing for a four year career at a university was my whole life. Softball was the only thing I knew. I knew I wanted to do what everyone expected me to do because of my talents. What I didn’t know was how to handle being told I wasn’t good enough to do these things. My last season of select ball is not one I like to revisit. Insecurity, lack of confidence, timidity, and self-doubt cloud those memories. I’ve never expressed how hard it was for me to continue playing my senior high school season after being cut from my summer team. But I had coaches and teammates that were depending on me. I played two more years at the junior college level and decided to hang it up. Softball had taken its toll on me physically, mentally, and emotionally and I was finished with it.
The days of inactivity started ticking by. Naturally, I started seeing changes in myself, physically and emotionally. Insecurity was back in a different form. I told myself day in and day out “today’s the day I’m going back to the gym” and every day it was a different excuse. Self-motivation was not something I was familiar with. I started realizing how much I cared about other people’s opinions of me. If I was at the gym would they be looking at me? Making fun of me? These irrational fears dictated my life.
I was extremely skeptical about doing CrossFit. So much self-doubt loomed inside me. I remember my first day at Endless. I was full of anxiety and uncertainty. The WOD was hard, I was out of shape, and I felt even worse after it was over then I did before I started. Those suppressed memories all came flooding back. I wasn’t going to be good at this, I was going to fail, this is an unachievable goal. I think I came back for a couple more days before giving up. I hated myself for it, but somehow not coming was better than being the last person finished. Luckily, I had someone give me the kick in the ass I needed, and I haven’t looked back.
My mentality about physical activity, myself, and life has drastically changed being a part of this amazing sport. It is the most positive addiction I have ever had. I find myself thinking about movements and weights, setting goals for myself, encouraging others to take that first step in changing their lives for the better. I love when people ask me about CrossFit, or when they tell me they have recently started doing it or are seriously thinking about doing it. I can say nothing but positive things. If nothing else, my message to them is if I can do it, ANYONE can do it. I am not the best athlete. I’m not the fastest runner, I don’t lift the heaviest weights, I take a lot of breathers during the WODs, but I try, and I try hard.
I think that’s what this sport is about. It’s about the effort that you give. The effort it takes to show up, the effort it takes to encourage your follow CrossFitters, the effort it takes to push through a WOD or finish that last rep. I see the effort of others and it motivates and inspires me. Seeing those names of the morning class goers on the board gives me new strength every day. You all make it here continuously, inspiring me to keep coming. Seeing the effort of the Rx athletes who have put so much into their own skills and strength inspires me to keep striving toward my own goals. Seeing you incredible women of all ages putting effort in day in and day out moves me. Every day something amazing happens at this place and every day I am reminded of why I am right where I need to be. This was the most positive step I have made of my path of life. I am beyond grateful.
I have many people to show gratitude toward for helping me along during this journey. Firstly, Mike and Kim for their constant support and motivation. Both of you have encouraged me to better myself and shown excitement for me when I reach a new goal. Saying the words “good job today” or “you’re doing great” may seem trivial, but I take those words to heart. I appreciate every single day that you are here, I appreciate your determination in training us correctly, I appreciate your effort in your own WODs, I appreciate your caring nature. It makes it all the more welcoming to walk in every day to Mike singing Dan Fogelberg or Kim laughing and telling stories and cracking jokes. I have never felt more welcome in a brand new environment than I have when I started coming to Endless. You are our trainers first and foremost, but you are also CrossFitters just like the rest of us. You do the WODs, you know our struggle, and that is what makes Endless so great. I feel so unbelievably lucky to have crossed paths with the two of you. Your instruction, support, and positivity mean everything to me. Thank you.
I’d like to thank my parents for helping me out financially so that I am able to come to CrossFit five days a week and commit myself to it. Without them it would be a struggle, and I am truly grateful for their generosity and support. Thank you.
To everyone that comes to the 3 o’ clock class: whether you’ve been there once or that’s your time, I am indebted to you for your constant encouragement and praise. To those of you who have run extra meters with me, or who have stood by me cheering for me to finish those last few reps, I appreciate it more than I can express in words. For someone like me it makes all the difference knowing that you have people around you that want you to succeed. CrossFit is one of the only sports where the loudest cheers are for those who finish last, and I have felt the energy of those cheers many, many times. Thank you.
To the 4 o’ clockers who come early: thank you for your encouragement as well. I hear your shouts and applauses while doing my WOD and it has honestly pushed me through. It truly means so much to me that even though you don’t know me and have only seen me at Endless, you still show commendation toward me and compliment me. You are all amazing people, and it is so gratifying to know you. Thank you.
Lastly, I want to thank that person who gave me that kick in the ass that I needed to start this amazing journey. Without her I would probably still be where I started, full of insecurity and doing nothing about it. She has believed in me my entire life and has never shown a single sign of doubt toward my ability to do anything I set my mind to. When I was in my worst state after being cut from my summer team, she was there never wavering from her trust in me to do my job on the high school softball field. When I went to college, she was the one that talked me through my nerves and frustrations on the field there. When I decided to move on with my life after two years of college ball, she was there to weigh the options with me and sort through an extremely tough decision I had to make. And she was the one who brought me to the first day of the rest of my life. When my attendance at Endless faltered when I first started, she did nothing except encourage me to come back, to start over and try again. Never has she been negative or ever put down my feelings about something. Amazingly she makes you see reason through positivity and reassurance. Thank you, Coach Terri Williams, for your relentless belief in me, even when I didn’t believe in myself. I will never forget what you have done for me. Thank you.
To be chosen as the Spotlight Athlete is so extraordinarily overwhelming for me. I cannot express how humbled and honored I am to be recognized for my actions in CrossFit. I think this means so much to me because I’m not the best athlete here, I scale my WODs, I’m slow as hell, and I hate burpees with a passion, and I was still chosen for this incredible honor. CrossFit has helped me see the world through a different lens, a more positive, accepting, encouraging lens. It has changed me in the most uplifting of ways, and I think I like who I am becoming.