For most of us CrossFit is not about competing with Rich or Camille. It’s about competing with the person we were the first day we walked in the door. We walked in barley able to lift 45 pounds and not understanding words like Kip or Kettlebell, but today we are no longer our previous self. A wise person once said “If you do not like where you are, then move, you are not a tree.” This is Scott’s story about moving…
My Name is Scott Bornstein, and I AM a CrossFit athlete.
Words I NEVER thought would come out of my mouth. But yet here I am just having completed my first Open workout and at 36 more reps than I had set as my goal. I am sure you are asking yourself “Who is this guy and why should I care?" I will admit I asked myself the same question when I was approached to write this but I guess it’s because I am not what you would consider an Athlete. Or at least I was not one.
It was Oct 2014 and I had been trying everything to get into some semblance of a healthy routine. I had gone back to weight watchers again, I tried a couch to 5K app thinking running might be good idea, I would try home workout DVD’s and NOTHING was working. I hated all of it.
One day I did a search “Am I too fat and out of shape to do Crossfit?” Here is where I confess my “shape“. I am 5 feet 5 inches, 42 years old and the scale reads over 250 pounds. I am a Type II Diabetic, I have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, not am not the picture of health by any means. I did my research, I looked at testimonials, and I checked out my Local box, CrossFit Solstice. One morning I woke up , turned to my girlfriend and said , “I have to tell you something, I have decided I am going to join a cult” She turned to me and said “Oh crap you are going to join CrossFit aren’t you!” This was the first day in my fitness and health journey.
I signed up for on ramp that day. I showed up scared out of my mind. I told my coach “I will be the fat bald kid in the corner curled up in a ball dying a slow death if you are looking for me at the end of the class.” Little did I know that decision to just SHOW UP would change my life.
I completed my On Ramp as fast as I could, 3 classes a week for 2 weeks , and as my 43rd Birthday present to myself I bought a one month unlimited membership. All the coaches told me to give it time so I started going every other day at 5:30 am and I would work out 3-4 times a week. I cringed at each workout that they would post the night before, and I would look at it going okay what in this workout CAN I do. My goal was to just SHOW UP. I laid out my entire month of November and went to every class.
It was time to renew so I said okay one more month Scott. Before I knew it I was going 4 days a week, excited to get up at 4:30 AM to get ready for my workout. I am stronger, I am jumping on 27 inch tall boxes, doing pull-ups, and I am lifting weights I had not been able to lift since college.
Random people in class are cheering me on. WAIT WHAT? Why are you cheering me? Why are you pushing me? Who are you people? THAT became the biggest surprise, the community I was becoming a part of. I NEVER once felt judged, I never felt like I did not belong, if I could not do an exact movement, or workout, all ANYONE wanted me to do was try. My coaches watched me carefully and they knew EXACTLY when to push me because they believed I could do more, even when I felt I could not. I would tell them “If you believe in me, then I believe in me.” WORDS that would come back to bite me in the ass 6 weeks later.
I kept signing up for unlimited classes in and I had moved to 5 days a week at the Box. I was getting stronger and my endurance had become 10x what it was. I may not be able to RX my workouts but I was not stopping as much mid workout anymore. I was walking taller and I felt energy I had not felt in years. I was not any lighter in terms of weight BUT MY BODY looked SO much different, my clothes fit different and my pants were falling off. The changes were amazing. Then the time came for 2015 Open signup.
My coaches all told me you have to sign up Scott, it’s going to be scaled you can do this. My immediate response came from my old self---“NO WAY, I am going to be in last place for every workout, I am not good enough, I am not strong enough, and I don’t want to embarrass myself and all of you guys who believe in me." All of my coaches said the same thing “NO one works as hard as you, you come every time and give your all, you owe it to yourself to do this.“ Basically the words I used earlier got me. They believed in me, so it was time I believed in me.
When 15.1 and 15.1a workouts were announced I looked at it for a min and said “ok they will certainly have a scale for the Toes To Bar, but man the rest of this I can do. I know I can I have been training for months. I had a goal set in my head-- 2 rounds (60 reps) and at least 80% of my previous 1 rep max C&J which was 115lbs. I signed up for my judging time and I showed up 30 min early to warm up . When the time came I was nervous as hell but I said to myself “Just meet your goal, you can do that, just meet your goal.”
Well as I said, I CRUSHED my goal, 96 reps later and a 135lbs C&J later I stood tall (as tall as my 5’5” frame allows me to stand ) and said “ I AM A CROSSFIT ATHLETE and I JUST proved it!" I may not be what you picture in your mind but that’s okay because thanks to trainers, members, everyone and anyone who walks into CrossFit Solstice, I BELIEVE I AM now.