When and how did you find CrossFit? It’s kind of a weird story but here it is! This past March, I went down to Anderson, SC to visit Anderson University. I was looking to transfer to the school so I was checking out the area surrounding it. I stopped into a Christian store and met a really cool guy. We got to talking and he told me he was a CrossFit coach! I had heard of CrossFit but was always too intimidated to try it. I figured if I was going to work out with him down in SC, I should be in shape so I didn’t look idiotic! Haha that’s why I started but I am doing it completely for myself now! I love how strong I feel.

What about CF 06830 appealed to you and has kept you involved? CrossFit 06830 appealed to me because it is so close to my house. It’s only a 5 minute drive! The incredible convenience it is to drive over and have a killer workout pushes me to come every time! Another reason CF 06830 appealed to me was because of the coaches. The way they teach each move and really drill on form before adding weight is great. It has saved me from injuring myself and has given me the confidence to lift amounts of weight I never thought I could. Honestly, I think the fact that I have been improving and growing as a person inside and out has kept me coming! The changes I have seen in myself keeps me motivated.

It takes a lot of commitment to keep showing up, and it’s really something to realize the give and take that people and families make to come in. What keeps you coming in? There are so many reasons I keep coming in. I love seeing the coaches and they always have some way for me to improve my movements. The fact that they give every person in that gym individual attention and really care about our form is amazing. I used to go to the Edge Fitness and I would see personal trainers training clients with horrific form and they didn’t do anything about it! It scared me when they picked up a barbell! Another reason I keep coming in is because I love to work out! I have always been involved with sports and fitness. I play softball, volleyball and I guess I could include bowling since I competed for years. I love challenging myself physically and mentally and CrossFit has brought my efforts to a new level!

What about the community? The community is unbelievable! I never thought a gym could be so close knit and be so focused on being a team. I have made close friends in the last few months that inspire me and keep me in check with workouts and life. I love coming to work out and see them! We push and motivate each other day in and day out. It is the best when a fellow CrossFitter and I are neck and neck in a WOD!! Just the constant encouragement makes working out easier and even when you feel tired and slow and just want to give up, people are there cheering for you to finish! There is something about being cheered on; it always seems to omit the physical and mental pain you’re feeling in that moment. I really couldn’t ask for a better group of people to work out with!

There’s a lot to get out of a gym like ours other than what happens in classes. Speaking of that, lets hear a bit about you outside of the gym? I am going to be a sophomore in college and I will be transferring to Anderson University in South Carolina. I was at Sacred Heart University for my first year and decided I needed to go south for school. I am studying criminal justice and I will be testing at multiple police departments in the spring! For work now, I am a babysitter. I absolutely love my job! I also help out friends who need certain tasks like for a few weeks this summer I was a driver because my friend couldn’t drive. It sounds pathetic but a lot of my time is spent either at CrossFit or walking! I don’t like sitting for very long. I get bored so easily! In the fall, I play on an adult co-ed volleyball league in Greenwich and I absolutely love it!

How about hobbies outside of CrossFit? What do you do to relax? I spend a lot of time cooking; I cook everything I eat. I love baking and I hope to open a bakery someday! If anyone is having a sweet craving, you let me know and I’ll hook you up with something delicious haha I also enjoy running. I have a route that I always run; I go around Bruce Park and then down Steamboat Road to the water! It is so beautiful and peaceful. I enjoy walking a lot more than running now a days. Some days, I am enjoying my walk so much, I walked upwards of 8 miles and don’t even realize! I also love to read on the beach. Summer time is my time! I love the beach, boating, swimming, paddle boarding, wakeboarding, and much more! Luckily I live only a couple blocks from Greenwich harbor so getting to the water is easy. I am also very involved with my faith. I go to gospel concerts all over! I once drove 6 hours to see Jason Crabb haha I guess you could call me a dedicated fan of God!

Did you have any injuries before CF? How have you dealt with them? Before CrossFit, I had many injuries. Most were from being clumsy and falling or tripping but in high school, I was playing volleyball and I went up to spike a ball and I landed wrong on my ankle. I ended up tearing ligaments and tendons and I couldn’t really play for two months. And most recently, I had a bulged disk in my back from running so frequently about a year and a half ago. I have always had bad knees because of the wear and tear of volleyball and running. My back actually started hurting again about a month into CrossFit but I went to Dr. Silverman and all I can say is that he works magic! My back feels amazing.

Any nicknames? I grew up with a few inappropriate nicknames and please use your imagination. My names Virginia…what does that sound like and take away the -ia and what do you get? Haha I never got offended by it because kids are so immature! One nickname that I love that my friend calls me is Leilani. It is from Hawaiian origin and it means heavenly or a child from heaven. We have known each other since kindergarten and I have gotten her through some tough times so she thinks I was sent from God to help her through them! I have recently gotten a new nickname at the gym with my friend Jeana. We are called JV!

Last stock question: What do you think we should look for in a future Athlete of the Month? In a future Athlete of the Month, you should look for someone who is not only dedicated but that also brings joy and laughter to the gym. Working out doesn’t always have to be serious! Sometimes dancing and singing in between sets of squats or deadlifts will do you good!