Tell us a little about yourself. Where are you from? What brought you to Chicago? What are you passionate about?
I’m originally from Cleveland, Ohio. I’ve lived in Chicago before (2013-15) but I moved back this past November for work – I’m in marketing at Tyson Foods – and to be closer to my family, especially my 4-year-old nephew so I can be around to see him grow up.
I’m fiercely dedicated to my family and close friends. I’m an avid traveler, not just because I want to see the world but also because I want to understand it from different points of view. If I could I would be on or in the water every day. I’m also passionate about finding a purpose in my career. I haven’t found it yet, right now I feel like I’m adding tools to my toolbelt, but I’m trying to figure out what direction to head in next.
What was your relationship with fitness or athletics growing up? What made you decide to include CrossFit in your life?
I was a very active kid; I tried my hand at a lot of different sports growing up. My main gig from ages 5-15 was competitive figure skating, second to that was swimming. I am also a lifelong skier, though I’ve never done it competitively. I’ve never been enamored with the fitness aspect itself, I don’t think I’ll ever love conditioning just for the sake of it, but I loved that it allowed me to do whatever I wanted physically and that it made me feel purposeful. More than that, athletics to me means community. Whether as fans or competitors, it brings people together. I’ve also come to realize how inextricably linked fitness is with my mental health, something I’m personally dedicating a lot of time to these days.
A lot of that is what led me to try CrossFit, I wanted those things back in my life. I hadn’t been taking very good care of myself, physically or mentally, for a few years. And I was so guilty of always planning to “start tomorrow.” When I moved back to the city, I committed to finding something that would work, but I knew I needed support and some built-in accountability. I have a competitive streak and some buried athleticism that attracted me to the CrossFit workouts, but I also was hopeful about the community part I had heard about. I was VERY intimidated by jumping into this world, but I feel more like a real CrossFitter every day! (That’s probably not even the right word but I’m still learning!
What does training with The Foundry family mean to you in your life?
SO MUCH. More than I think I even realized until I sat down to write this. Putting in work at The Foundry has definitely helped me with the cosmetic things I’m working on – I’ve lost weight, gotten stronger, become so much more disciplined about my diet. It’s helped me to find a better balance with work, and to learn that even small wins are worth celebrating. But the other things I’ve gained at The Foundry are even more important to me. I have more confidence, energy, and optimism. I feel supported and connected, getting to see familiar faces every class – maybe I’m one to some of you now! – and knowing I’ll always get a welcome and a high five from our amazing coaches.
The Foundry has been especially helpful for me during this crazy time while we’ve been in quarantine! My lifestyle changes were still pretty new and then the world changed dramatically. But I’ve been able to keep at it, joining class every night at 5:30 and even popping into some of the noon core or stretch sessions. Somehow I’m MORE active now, and it’s keeping me sane and motivated. I’m so grateful for everything the team is doing for us, I’m still making progress even in isolation. Me-from-a-year-ago wouldn’t believe it. 😊
If there was one CrossFit movement you’d like to perfect, what would it be?
I don’t care if it’s in a year or five years, but one day I will do a perfect muscle up! For the shorter term I want to work up to solid pull ups.
What adventures, events, or future bright spots do you have planned?
Most immediately, getting out of quarantine?! Other than that:
-My best friend’s wedding in Scottsdale, where I’ll be giving a thoroughly embarrassing toast
-Traveling to New Zealand. I studied abroad there in college and can’t wait to get back. In the works to go next February or March
-Top 5 bucket list item coming November 2021: National Geographic cruise to Antarctica
What is one thing that most people don’t know about you?
I cannot be in the same room as sandpaper. Even thinking about it right now I’m covered in goosebumps.
What are your words to live by?
To steal from the great philosopher Dolly Parton, find out who you are and do it on purpose.
And anything said by Calvin or Hobbes.