My entire life I have struggled with my weight. I was always the biggest kid in school and even though i was active and had great friends the fact that i wasn’t always proud of my body effected me. Like so many other “Fat Kids” i turned to lifting weights and eventually contact sports. The High School and Collegiate environment of athletics is great because its regimented and geared towards fitness. Being immersed in that for many years helped me maintain a strong level of fitness and positive self image. But like so many ex-athletes i could never find a way to recapture that same passion and drive that i had for those years i was involved. After leaving college a few years passed on & my passion for exercise and a healthy life style waned as my responsibilities in life increased. As is the case for so many people. I gained weight & became lethargic about so many things in my life even my wife & family.
A little over a year ago is when I first walked into Brazen. I was a member at the old “Globo Gym” type place it was a few years earlier and honestly was trying to go back into that place to work out like I always had. I was over 300 pounds and I was miserably out of shape as well as depressed about myself as a whole. Apparently Brazen had opened up about a month earlier and upon walking in I met a giant and loving man (Jay) who showed me around and got me in essentials the next day. After a week of learning and relearning movements that i had done many years earlier I progressed into “Gen-Pop” as I like to call it… Also known as regular classes. The week of essentials and really every day since has been extremely focused on proper technique which in turn leads to safer and more efficient exercise. Its important to push ones self but increasing weights or speeds of movements means nothing at Brazen to coaches or members if your techniques is poor. That kind of egoless approach is one of the many things that has made my time their so much fun. I’ve lost over 60l pounds and I’ve transformed my body and lifestyle into something I can proudly display every day as an example to the kids I work with. Knowing very little about Crossfit coming into this whole process I was skeptical but knew what I was doing wasn’t working. I’m a big dude who’s naturally strong and likes to lift heavy $#\¥t. But, I have never been able to recapture the same intensity that Football and Wrestling provided me when I was in great shape. I may not be able to do all of the movements to the prescribed way they are intended but the coaches at Brazen have helped me get better every day. Scaled movements of the past have progressed into RX movements today. Even if they don’t come quickly that’s been ok, I’ve just focused on getting better every day and the results are evident in my entire life.
I often feel throughout the course of my day as full of energy now as I was as a 22 year old first year coach and teacher. But I am 32 years old now and i still get tired during my work day just like everybody else does. Somehow the positive environment at Brazen has turned exercising which use to be the dreaded and often forgotten part of my day into something i look forward to and plan my afternoons around. That energy that is so prevalent in all of the coaches, members, and Brazen as whole has trickled into other parts of my life. My diet has improved not because I had to, because I wanted it to. I wanted to give my body the tools it needs to compete every day in that box, because I so very much respect and love being there. I now have more energy and desire to spend time with my friends and family. To top it off, my wife is expecting our first child in June and my life is going to change again. But I know that having found an avenue like Brazen to help me stay focused I will have to modify at times but always continue my healthy lifestyle because I want to… Not just because I have to.
I can’t emphasize how much I appreciate all of the coaches at Brazen for what they helped me become once again. I can honestly say that this has been the best year of my adult life. Now that I’m happy, healthy, and driven I can’t wait for what comes next.
Kristy, Jay, and all the Brazen coaches…