athlete profiles

Small but Mighty

Name: Amber Garcia

Age: 23

Hometown: Grants, NM

Occupation: Nurse Tech at a Rehabilitation Hospital

Started CrossFit: September 11, 2016

Favorite lift: Deadlifts/Snatches

Least Favorite lift: Thrusters by far!!

Sports fitness background: From my youth and on into high school, I played: volleyball, football, wrestling, baseball, basketball, tennis, and track.

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Hanging out with family and friends, snowboarding, hunting, shooting guns or my bow… honestly, anything that is outdoors really!

Favorite meal? I don’t really have one.. I just love food in general!

How were you introduced to CrossFit? I started following Lauren Fisher and Brooke Ence on Instagram and watching their videos made me want to try Crossfit out. After the first day of trying it, I caught the Crossfit bug!

What have you learned since starting CrossFit? There is always room for improvement and there is always something new to learn. Also, I will forever hate workouts that have wallballs in them!!

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? When someone asks me about Crossfit, I tell them to try it out for themselves to see if they like it because the workouts can be spicy at times and you may want to die sometimes but you keep coming back for more!

What do you like most about CFABQ? The coaches and the members! I honestly am glad that I decided to go there, from day one they made me feel comfortable and everyone is easy to talk too. The coaches are very motivating and knowledgeable. If you ever need help they will work with you, observe your form and give advice on what you should do to fix it. It’s motivating for me because since they are willing to help, it just pushes me to become better. Everyone there just motivates you, they push you to get that PR or to finish that workout and even sometimes they tell you that the weight is too easy for you to go heavier 😜  It’s one big family there and I am really glad that I can be apart of it.

What is your favorite song to workout to? Anything that has a good beat that pumps me up!

What is your favorite dessert? Now, this is a tough decision… anything that is sweet is my weakness 😋

What life wisdom would you give your younger self? To not be so hard on yourself that everything happens for a reason because even though it may seem tough in the beginning, it will only get better and make you stronger and even a little wiser. “Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming things, you once thought you couldn’t.”

SG

Name: Shannon Welch Grace

Age: 40-ish

Hometown: born in El Paso, Texas

Occupation: Medical Representative

Started CrossFit: I think my two year anniversary is this month

Favorite Girl WOD: Grace of course!

Least Favorite Girl WOD: after 2 years I still haven’t memorized anything so not sure…but if it’s got running or burpees I hate it!

Sports Fitness background: I’ve always belonged to gyms but I would go and just run on treadmill but never seem to get anywhere literally but also physically!

Hobbies outside CrossFit: started taking dance lessons a few months ago

Go to cheat meal: there’s so many it’s hard to pick one! Cubano sandwich at Relish, carrot cake at Vinaigrette, Green Chile ranch on absolutely anything, crab legs with butter! Just to name a few…

Who introduced you to CrossFit? Since my company pays for my gym membership I decided to look for a gym somewhere close to my house. I looked on the internet and found CFABQ, walked in there one Saturday and saw some of the girls walking out and said, “dang that’s what I want to look like!”

Why do you keep coming back to CFABQ? I need to be challenged. I’m a very competitive person but if I don’t have a challenge in front of me I can be lazy.

What have I learned? I still hate to run.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Be prepared to be very sore and you might be on the floor at the end of class like I am most days.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Of all the gyms I’ve gone to I’ve never had people cheering me on and challenging me while working out. It took a little while to get used to it but it helps for sure!

T-Dogg

Name: Trent Loveland

Age: 24

Hometown: Maryland

Occupation: USAF

Started Crossfit: April 2017

Favorite Girl WOD: Isabel

Least Favorite Girl WOD: N/A

Sports fitness background: Baseball

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Anything outdoors really, whatever pops up that given weekend.

Go to cheat meal: Chipotle

Who introduced you to CrossFit? Mr. Nak, Cabral most of the guys I work with.

Why do you keep coming back to CrossFit? To stay in shape and it’s always something new, never gets boring.

What have you learned since starting CrossFit? All the Olympic lifts and gymnastics movements.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Ignore what people say and just give it a shot, you’ll be surprised.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Coaches and members are super friendly, I had no problems making new friends and also talking to coaches, they would never turn you away for asking anything related to a workout or just in general.

Chip (AKA Thurmanator)

Name: Thurman “Chip” Bitsie

Age: 45

Hometown: Tohatchi, NM (Dine/Navajo Reservation)

Occupation: Mechanical Engineer (Raytheon Defense and Honeywell Aerospace)

Started Crossfit: Feb. 2014 @ Crossfit FourPeaks (Fountain Hill, AZ.)

Least Favorite Girl WOD: Jackie (1000m row, 50 Thrusters and 30 pull ups…thrusters kills me!!)

Sports Fitness Background: Rodeo (Team roping and steer wrestling), Football (High School Quarterback and Linebacker), Basketball (H.S. Small Forward), Track (H.S. 100m, 200m sprinter, Javelin), Ultimate Frisbee, Spinning and golfing.

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Drawing and Design (ProEngineer and AutoCAD), Cooking and Grilling, Cleaning and Organizing, Billiards, Golfing, Coaching and Mentoring, Machinist and Metalworking, Ranching and Craft Beer Sipping.

Go To Cheat Meal: Mutton ribs and stew with fry bread!!! Stuff Sopaipillas!!! Pizza and Wings!!!!

Who introduced me to Crossfit? In 2013, while living in Tucson my little sister mentioned the idea of doing Crossfit but I didn’t think anything of it or implemented myself to do researched about Crossfit. When I moved to Phoenix in 2014 a friend, Norma Jean Wauneka, mentioned the idea of trying out her friends new Crossfit box called FourPeaks. I showed up…..MAN the AGONY!! After sampling Crossfit for a week, I WAS TOTALLY HOOKED!! I never experienced working my body through rigorous workouts which pushed me to work hard (aka No Pain, No Gain), plus I enjoyed the people, motivation and ego-free atmosphere.

Why do you keep coming back to Crossfit? I’m hooked and it fun!! Who gets nervous before a WOD? Plus, at my age I feel GREAT about myself and the results Crossfit is providing me.

What have you learned since starting Crossfit? I’ve learned to workout body parts that I’ve never done in my life.  Wow, learning all sorts of lifting which is implemented into high endurance fitness. Most importantly, understanding my fitness capabilities and pushing myself beyond the normal threshold.

What would you say to people interested in trying Crossfit? People seem to compliment a Crossfitters’ physical presentation….My remark, DO Crossfit! People excuses in joining a fitness club…My remarks, totally different atmosphere, DO Crossfit! Overall, I would tell people my involvement with Crossfit feels like I am in totally different category amongst those in society, in terms of my everyday awareness, energy, performance and physical stature (aging is most important to me)…..IT FEELS GREAT!! Come ‘on join us at Crossfit Albuquerque!!

What do you like most about CFABQ? It has to be staff and fellow Crossfitters’. I’m proud to be part of an organization that has competitive athletes and plus those that participated in Crossfit Games and Regionals…..Wow super cool stuff!! Location is important as well, I travel about 5 mile radius between home, work and CFABQ.

 

Philociraptor

Name: Philip Jimenez

Age: 28

Hometown: Sacramento CA

Occupation: Special Mission Aviator

Started CrossFit: March 2017

Favorite Girl WOD: Grace

Least Favorite Girl WOD: Fran

Sports fitness background: I grew up playing baseball a lot when I was younger but stopped playing when I started High School. Once I joined the military, I got on board the traditional weight lifting train and basically did that all the way up until I moved here to Albuquerque. A couple friends of mine did CrossFit and they seemed to love it. I was getting pretty tired of the traditional weight lifting thing so I decided once I moved to ABQ I was going to try out CrossFit. I don’t think I’ll ever do anything else.

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Anything that has to do with eating lots and lots of food.

Go to cheat meal: Pizza and brownies.

What have you learned since starting CrossFit? Callouses and blisters are now a part of my daily wardrobe. Not every workout is a competition. You aren’t always going to have a good day of training. I’ll never be good at everything. Everyone suffering together builds a community that you will never find in any other type of gym. I’m my own worst critic. I didn’t think that I could have so much fun and enjoy the pain of working out like I do when I do CrossFit. I’ve learned that my grocery bill has gone up since doing CrossFit. I don’t know why, but I want donuts all the time now…

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Make sure you do your research and try CrossFit at a reputable gym under the supervision of a good coach. CrossFit is a very humbling experience. Don’t expect to drop into a gym and crush workouts right off the bat. Take your time, be willing to learn, and most importantly have fun doing it.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Hands down the people. The people at CFABQ are all awesome and make you feel very comfortable being there from day one. The coaches are also very approachable and knowledgable. Stepping into any CrossFit box can be a very intimidating experience, but the people here made the transition easy for me. I will always remember how my Journey through CrossFit started because of the amazing community that is CFABQ.

Beckster

Name: Becky Freeman

Age: 36

Hometown: Belen, New Mexico

Occupation: Sports Dietitian, Strength & Conditioning Coach

Started CrossFit: August 2015

Favorite Girl WOD: I honestly don’t have a favorite. They are all terrible. LOL. So my favorite is my mom’s WOD, ‘Melissa’

Least Favorite Girl WOD: See answer above.

Sports fitness background: I played/participated in numerous sports in my youth, middle school and on into high school: swimming, softball, volleyball, basketball, track, and equestrian (AQHA). In college I decided not to participate in collegiate sports and started long distance running and racing in half marathons, full marathons and triathlons. In March of 2008 I decided to quit running and start Olympic lifting with High Desert Weightlifting Club, competing locally, then nationally. After Nationals in July of 2014 I decided I was ready for something new to challenge myself….so now I am here at CrossFit ABQ seeing what I can do. 🙂

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: spending time with family, boyfriend and friends…and of course my pup, Kilo. Target shooting when I feel like it. Reading for pleasure as well as profession-gotta stay up to date on things! Off and on I do a little arts & crafts….I am pretty good at it. haha.

Go to cheat meal: I don’t really have a go-to cheat ‘meal’. My boyfriend and I have our normal eating out places we go to weekly and we still keep it healthy. It’s probably more like having a sweet tooth sometimes and making sure I handle it with something delightful. 🙂

What did you learn from going to the 2017 South Regional for the first time? For a first timer, I feel like I did a great job programming and training myself to be there and stay in the competition with the women at South Regional…. lessons learned: you have to train VERY, VERY hard and put in the time to practice as well as train for the volume & intensity the competition will ask of your body. You must also know your abilities before showing up so you don’t have unrealistic expectations of yourself; stick to YOUR strategies and plan for performing each workout. Same thought process I used getting through the open: do not let yourself get caught up in what every one else is doing-they are not you and you are not them. And upon leaving Regionals you are humbly reminded there is ALWAYS room for improvement. 🙂

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Definitely try it if you like the opportunity for variety and the challenging movements and intensity that are presented with the sport. Find someone that is skilled at coaching and willing to teach/coach you proper form. Also remember CrossFit is a learning process, so trust the process of progression and what your body can do. Don’t force things. Don’t get caught up in trying to do movements or heavy weight that you are not yet equipped to perform. We have ALL been a novice at one point in time. You do you. That’s all that matters.

What do you like most about CFABQ? I think the best part about CFABQ is its owner, Joe Vigil. He has such passion for CrossFit, the community, and coaching his classes/members. He is the man behind catching the priceless moments and PR’s at CFABQ on camera. He provides motivation and supports the athletes, including making the trip out to South Regional to cheer and support both Tylinn and myself. He works long days at this gym yet, he is always positive, approachable, and overall a great person that everyone loves being around.

What are two of your favorite memories of CFABQ? 1) The support I received within the gym’s community dealing with my mother’s death and creating and conducting a memorial WOD for her the last 2 years. 2) meeting my boyfriend 🙂

Juancito de la Papa (aka Secret)

Name: Juan Garcia

Age: 32

Hometown: Coalinga, CA

Occupation: Car salesman and track coach for St. Pius High school

Started Crossfit: May 2013

Favorite Girl WOD: Kelly

Least Favorite Girl WOD: Karen or Jackie

Sports fitness background: Elementary School, High School and College Track (16 years of track), 6 years of soccer, and 4 years of football

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: It’s a secret 😉

Go to cheat meal: It’s a secret 😉

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? I tried CrossFit in the summer during college when I was still competing in track and field. My friends from college got me started. We didn’t have a membership to a CrossFit gym, we just did CrossFit workouts in a gym our track and field coach owned. They were brutal! Once I finished college I knew I wanted to keep doing CrossFit.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? The workouts are going to be hard, but they are doable. The best part about joining CrossFit Albuquerque is making good friends and being part of a tight knit community.

What do you like most about CFABQ? The coaching staff and how everyone makes you a part of their family; they make you feel welcome and part of the community, especially when you’re from out of state. The reason I come to work out is because of the people that are here and workout with me. It’s hard coming from another state trying to make friends when you don’t know anyone. Everyone is really genuine, helpful, and accepting. I also like the competitiveness of the gym because that is what I’m used to, coming from a competitive athletic background, running for 16 years. It’s nice to have people pushing you and making you better everyday.

What is your favorite memory of CFABQ? My most recent birthday dinner, when my closest friends from CFABQ came out to celebrate with me at Pappadeaux’s followed by ColdStone Creamery for dessert!

JP Valdez

JP Valdezster

Name: J.P. Valdez

Age: 48

Hometown: Raton, NM

Occupation: Firefighter/Paramedic Albuquerque Fire Dept, Business Owner: Affordable Window Cleaning

Started Crossfit: Jan. 2012

Favorite Girl WOD: Isabel

Or anything with moderate to heavy snatches.

Least Favorite Girl WOD: anything longer than 20 minutes

Sports fitness background: High School football, baseball, Track

Hobbies outside of Crossfit:

Hunting, traveling and spending time with my family

Go to cheat meal: Pizza & beer

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? I remember talking with Sean (Elks) at the station about it at old Station 2, then Jo Marley and Jon Longdon put me through a modified Cindy workout at Station 14, and I was hooked. Since then I can honestly say that I’m in better shape now then I was 10 years ago.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? I would say it can be a life changing experience – if you take it slow, learn the progressions, listen to your coaches.  Check your ego at the door because there is always someone better than you. Remember it’s not about beating everyone else’s time or rounds, it’s about making yourself better than last year.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Like everyone else I would say the coaches and the community.  These are the people I hangout with the most, besides my family and my brothers and sisters in the Fire Dept.

What is your favorite memory of CFABQ? Training and competing in the first Barnyard Brawl. Having everyone from CFABQ, my wife and kids cheering me on was a moment that I’ll always remember.

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Sophie the Slayer

Name: Sophia Lockerby

Age: 25

Hometown: Great Falls, MT

Occupation: US Air Force

Started CrossFit: Summer 2012

Favorite Girl WOD: Helen

Least Favorite Girl WOD: Amanda (Only due to lack of current ability… Girl WODs are da bomb!)

Sports Fitness Background: Div 1 Soccer Player (USAFA), Montana State High SchoolTennis Champ, All-Armed Forces Soccer, Crossfit Level 1 Cert, Crossfit Endurance Cert

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Soccer, drawing, traveling, eating, hop scotch, solo chess games, banana phone convos, checkers…but only at Cracker Barrell, smelling candles, bug collecting, knitting, Nintendo 64, Pogs, tandem cycling, The Bachelor fantasy league #WorstImpressionRose, Facebook stalking, actual stalking, wearing Pink…only on Wednesdays, and fishing.

Go to cheat meal: Just one? Pizza, nachos, sushi, Eggs Royale and/or lobster rolls! Food is awesome!

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? The summer of 2012, I was home in MT on a rare school break. My little brother told me to try a new Crossfit thing he was doing, and he promised it was brutal and that I would love it. First class was a wallball and running workout. I was hooked from day 1. #ThanksBro

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Don’t knock it till you try it, and if you decide to try it, good luck not falling in love with a brand new bod and super fun community.

What do you like most about CFABQ? OMG, the people win first prize! They are the best. (Second place would definitely go to the innovative hashtags.)

What are you most excited about for the 2017 Open?
-Watching CFABQ peeps own face!
-Dave Castro
-A repeat burpee/thruster wod
-Facebook and Insta posts increasing by 34%
-When the 2017 Open closes

 

marcus

Marquis

Name: Marcus Adams

Age: 23

Hometown: Lincolnton, North Carolina

Occupation: U.S. Air Force Military Police

Started CrossFit: 2013

Favorite Girl WOD? Karen

Least favorite Girl WOD? Eva

What is your sports/fitness background? I played football from the time I was 8 until graduating high school. I also wrestled for 2 years and ran track for 4 years.

What is your go to cheat meal? Pizza, donuts, and brownies

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit for getting you started? I’ve always had a passion for fitness and sports. I started on my own at the base gym then signed up for CFABQ 6 months later. I fell in love with the competitive atmosphere and haven’t looked back since.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Amongst the plethora of different reasons I love CFABQ, I would say the coaches are what I love most. Never have I met such a genuine group of individuals who I can call family. Any adversity or troubles I have wether it be crossfit related or personal, the coaches never fail to mentor me with their own experiences in the right direction.

What are your favorite memories at CFABQ? So many memories! But if I had to chose one it would be the weekend of Boxtoberfest(my first competition). Prior to the first event I chugged my Blue Raz C4 pre-workout pumped and anxious, thinking I had 30 minutes left. Right after I clicked the shaker bottle closed Coach Joe and I had to run down to the field for the first event. After the finish of event 1, I ran over to the hill and laid in a fetal position, puking up C4 in a grocery bag for an hour lol! All in all, Joe and I earned a first place finish in the competition so it was all worth it!

Favorite quote? My favorite quotes are always changing, but right now it’s definitely, “You wanna play? Let’s play…” -Lanx Castle

What keeps you motivated? I’m constantly surrounded my motivators each and every day some positive and some negative, but my ultimate motivation has always been my family and friends. Nothing feels better than to see them proud.

What makes you most excited about The Open? What makes me the most excited about The Open is definitely the atmosphere. Everyone is so in tune and focus. It’s also great seeing how far everyone has come since the previous year. The coaches are always stressed out, but stay composed so it’s always a good time.

fullsizerender Mandy

Name: Mandy Medoro

Age: 37

Hometown: Gallup, NM

Occupation: Doctor

Started CrossFit: 1.5 years ago

Favorite/Least Favorite WOD- I love them all and don’t hate any. The more challenging the better

What is your sports/fitness background? Running and swimming before CrossFit

What is your go to cheat meal? Pizza, but I really try not to cheat.

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit for getting you started? Myself, I saw a gym and walked in. My coaches from a former gym got me hooked and CFABQ keeps me hooked

What do you like most about CFABQ? The owner and coaches really are amazing, they create a friendly environment of health and fitness and attract a great group of individuals. They also know how to push us to make us stronger and healthier and better.

What are your favorite memories at CFABQ? The day I thought I couldn’t do a pull up and Joe and Pat put me on the spot and I did one (I didn’t believe I could and they didn’t believe I couldn’t). For the first time in my life (and continued doing them). Another great memory was similar situation with HSPU and rope climbing. Also really enjoyed Bugaboo. Love the friendships I have made.

Can’t quit, won’t ever quit, #addicted! Healthier and stronger every day.

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Matt

Name: Matt Garduno

Age: 26

Hometown: Albuquerque, NM

Occupation: Manuels Lawn Service

Started CrossFit: 1 year ago

Favorite gymnastic skill/lift: Deadlift

Least favorite gymnastic skill/lift: Overhead squats

Sports fitness background: Personal trainer/ baseball/ powerlifting

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Spending time with family

Favorite meal: Chicken fried steak

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and whom can you credit with getting started? My girlfriend, Jen, got me into CrossFit.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Do it, it’s a challenge every time.

What do you like most about CFABQ? The environment and the coaches.

What keeps you coming back to CrossFit? I can see results both physically and mentally.

burnsyBurnsy

Name:Daniel Burns

Age: 24

Hometown: Springfield, IL

Occupation: Electrical and Environmental Specialist on MC-130Js and HC-130Js (Airforce)

Started Crossfit: February 2015

Favorite Girl WOD: Diane

Least Favorite Girl WOD: All of them

Sports fitness background: Varsity baseball and wrestling in high school. I did speed skating for Capital City Speed Demons.

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: ‘Merica and guns

Go to cheat meal: Buddha Bowl w/ chicken from Flying Star

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? Patrick Bollotta got me started. I decided to try CrossFit because Pat was the only one that could score what I scored on the PT test (for the Airforce) and his body aesthetics.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Come in the gym and give it a try. If you don’t like it you don’t have to stay, although I think they will like it.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Camaraderie and the way they treated me when I was deployed. They sent me care packages while I was deployed and continued to talk to me.

What are two of your favorite memories of CFABQ? One of my favorite memories was my first competition at Duke City the year I started because of the family atmosphere. Although we were competing against other teams, everyone was there for the same reason, we were like a big family, and we had fun and meshed well while hanging out at the tent. One of my other favorite memories was the first time I went to dinner with some of the other members after the gym on a Friday night. A lot of people think CrossFitters are crazy and only talk about CrossFit. Having dinner with them shed light on the fact they are just like everyone else and are normal people; they eat normal food (not Paleo), they talk about things other than CrossFit, and they like to have fun.

Lynn LazerLynne Lazer

Name: Lynne Rogerson

Age: 53

Hometown: Lexington, SC

Occupation: Expert Procrastinator

Started CrossFit: 1 year ago!

Favorite lift/skill: Dead lift

Least favorite lift/skill: Snatch

Sports fitness background: Trail running

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Hiking with my dog and family, yoga, ballet, painting, cello, napping

Go to cheat meal: Chocolate almonds

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? When I moved here last year I had trouble running because of the altitude. I came to CFABQ’s beginner class and liked pushing myself to learn different skills. I was apprehensive about my first class. Joe said I was ready. Everyone in the class was encouraging and I didn’t suck. So, I came back and then I was addicted.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Come give it a try! Then come back!

What do you like most about CFABQ? I like the coaches – they have been helpful at scaling WODs and being supportive while making me work.

What makes you come back to CFABQ each day? I like the 9:00am class. They encourage me to do my best.

Eric Turner

ET

Name: Eric Turner

Age: 50

Hometown: Golden, Colorado

Occupation: Insurance agent

Started Crossfit: April of 2013

Favorite Girl WOD: Grace and Isabel

Least Favorite Girl WOD: Mary

Sports fitness background: Cyclist and mountaineer way back when

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Outside of CF I like to backpack and hike or stay at home and read with my cats piled on top of me.

Go to cheat meal: Five Star Burger.

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? I decided to try CrossFit on the advice of one of the UNM tennis coaches, Kelsey. It was love at first sweat! I had been doing P90x and liked how CrossFit was always different instead of the same thing every day in the gym.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Don’t be nervous or scared, just dive in! You will not find a more supportive, friendly group of people. If you’re out of shape, older or have other difficulties to overcome CrossFit is perfect because you can modify to suit your level and our coaches are completely awesome at helping you out in any way you need!

What do you like most about CFABQ? I like CFABQ mostly due to the great people who go there and the amazing coaches. You read things online about some gyms and NONE of them have ever been true here at CFABQ. Everyone has always made me feel like I’m a part of the group, not just some overweight old client, but someone who matters. That’s so awesome.

What are two of your favorite memories of CFABQ? Memories: there’s so many. First I guess is how welcome I felt from some of the fittest guys in the gym like Pat, Gavin, Rudy, and Butters. That made me feel great. The other was when Joe took the time to be concerned about my overtraining and mention it to me. I always felt that he went above and beyond with that little piece of coaching. I guess in general, no matter how I’m struggling there’s always someone to tell me “good job, ET”. CFABQ inspires me to be a better person in all areas of my life, every day.

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C.Dill

Name: Caitlin L. Dillon (a/k/a C.Dill)

Age: 28

Hometown: Anthony, NM

Occupation: Assistant District Attorney, Crimes Against Children

Started Crossfit: April 2011

Favorite Girl WOD: “Helen”

Least Favorite Girl WOD: “Fran”

Sports fitness background: Basketball and Lacrosse

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Books and Records

Go to cheat meal: Rebel Donuts

Why did you decide to try CrossFit and who can you credit with getting started? My Dad was going to a spin class at CrossFit El Paso, and he watched one of the classes and signed me up for a trial. My first WOD consisted of wall balls, running, and deadlifts. I DNF’ed, and was completely trashed afterward, but I couldn’t wait to try it again.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Show up, smile, work hard, and keep an open mind.

What do you like most about CFABQ? I love CFABQ! The community is amazing, and I’m so grateful to be a part of it. I didn’t know anyone when I moved here for law school in 2011, and now the gym is my second home, and my extended, very fit family. It’s wonderful to be surrounded by such rad, hard working people. WOD o’clock is my favorite time of day!

What are two of your favorite memories of CFABQ? Twenty-four hours of rowing and Boxtoberfest 2011.

Kelly picJilly

Name: Kelly Butterfield AKA: Jilly

Age: 22

Hometown: Bartlesville, Oklahoma

Occupation: Air Force Security Forces Officer

Started CrossFit: May 2014

Favorite Lift and Skill: Snatches/hand stand push-ups

Least Favorite: Thrusters!! This exercise was designed by Satan himself.

Sports fitness background: I tried to run a mile once in high school…

Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Yeah…no, I only do CrossFit.

Go to cheat meal: My whole life is a constant cheat meal.

Why did you decide to try CrossFit? My husband, Justin, forced me to go one day and I haven’t looked back.

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? It’s addicting…honestly, every WOD is the most fun you’ll never want to have again…expect you just keep coming back for more.

What do you like most about CFABQ? I’m a firm believer in “misery loves company” and the athletes/coaches here are the best to sweat it out with!

What are some of your favorite memories of CFABQ? I really enjoy watching others meet goals and move right on to the next one. The desire and excitement is contagious and influences me to work harder!

Sean T. Elks

STElks

Name: Sean Thomas Elks

Age: 38

Hometown: Albuquerque, NM

Occupation: Battalion Commander, Albuquerque Fire Department

Started Crossfit: October 2008

Favorite Lift and Skill: Lift- Power clean, Skill- Double unders

Least Favorite: Heavy AF deadlifts

Sports fitness background: Prior to high school, I played baseball, basketball, karate and wrestling. In high school, I played football.

Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Golfing. All the time, in our living room, in our bedroom, in the gym…

Go to cheat meal: Burritos and Mint Oreo DQ blizzard, double oreo.

Why did you decide to try CrossFit? I was interested in something other than traditional weight training and I saw an article in Muscle and Fitness magazine about CrossFit. It looked like something I would be interested in.

What are some of your favorite memories of CFABQ? For the 2010 CrossFit Games season we decided to put a team together in January. We competed at Regionals in March 2010 and earned ourselves a spot at the very first CrossFit Games at the Home Depot Center. Event 1- Dave Castro didn’t know who we were and we came out and got second place in a stacked heat. On the max shoulder to overhead, I yelled at the girls because they didn’t know “bro math” and didn’t know how to put 225# on the bar. On the final, we had a plan, then the girls immediately aborted and grabbed the wrong sandbag right from the start so we had to formulate a new plan, mid-workout (the sandbags were much heavier than we thought). Ultimately, all the training, suffering, execution (and sometimes lack of execution) leading up to and during the CrossFit Games in 2010 are fond memories of CrossFit that I will always have. Another favorite memory of mine is during the time I was courting Whit and was spotting her at Regionals in 2011 because she couldn’t jump into the muscle up rings for the CrossFit workout “Amanda.”

What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Just come in and give it a try. Know that there will be a learning curve in the beginning. Stick with it and focus on the basics. You won’t regret it. Most importantly, you will not get in shape for CrossFit by not doing CrossFit. So just do CrossFit.

What do you like most about CFABQ? Whit. And the fact that my girlfriend works and trains there so I never get in trouble for being at the gym excessively.

How have you seen CFABQ grow and what are you looking forward to in the future for CFABQ? I have had the fortune to watch CrossFit Albuquerque grow. We were initially the first CrossFit gym in town and now, 7 years later, we are still standing strong. We have experienced coaches and a solid group of members.

Rose athlete pic

Rose

Name: Rose Ronquillo
Hometown: Santa Fe
Age: 38 going on 28 lol
Occupation: Retirement Planner
Started Crossfit: November 2015
Favorite Lift and Skill: Bar Muscle Ups
Least Favorite: Not sure yet
Sports fitness background: Gymnastics, NPC Figure Competitor
Hobbies outside of Crossfit: Love trying new things and going new places!
Go to cheat meal: Pizza and Chocolate
Why did you decide to try CrossFit? Thought I’d try something I’ve never done before.
What makes you come back each week? I know that everyday is a new challenge.
What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Not for the faint of heart.
What made you decide to participate in your very first Open? I didn’t know what I was getting into really… Haha. I wanted to see where I ranked up in the World of CrossFit!
What did you learn from doing the Open? I learned I can lift more weight than I thought, I can do a bar muscle up, and also what I need to improve on. I also came to realize how vast the CrossFit community is!

Brawl - Rope Climb

 Cathy the Katana

Name: Cathy Nishida
Hometown: Saratoga, CA
Age: 45
Occupation: Wildlife Biologist
Started CrossFit: 2012
Favorite Lift and skill: Snatches (when all the stars align and somehow I get it right), Double Unders, and Handstand Pushups
Least favorite: Wall Balls
Sports fitness background: I played volleyball and softball in high school, and gymnastics before that.
Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Snowboarding, Hiking, Traveling, Bird watching
Go to cheat meal: I have a weakness for cheese and all things caramelized in butter.
Why did you decide to try CrossFit? One of my best girlfriends is a CF coach in WA. While visiting her, she convinced my husband to check it out. I agreed to “try” it to support him. But then I ended up loving it.
What makes you come back each week? Being stronger and in better shape makes me a happier person. I love the sense of accomplishment from learning new skills or finally getting a new PR after a plateau.
What would you say to people interested in trying CrossFit? Do it! Everything can be scaled. And the results in how you look and feel are worth all the effort.
What do you love most about CrossFit? I love the supportive community CrossFit fosters.

Lucas Rose PicNo Thorns, Just Lucas Rose

Name: Lucas Rose
Hometown: Albuquerque, NM
Age: 13
Occupation: Student
Started CrossFit: August 2015
Favorite Lift and skill: Deadlift and pullups
Least favorite: parallette holds and thrusters
Sports fitness background: Basketball
Hobbies outside of CrossFit: Basketball
Go to cheat meal: Brownies
Why did you try CrossFit? To get in shape
What made you come back? My dad!

 

 

CorreenCorreen Bales

Name: Correen Bales
Hometown: Happy Jack, AZ
Age: 48
Occupation: HR at Sandoval Regional Medical Center
Started CrossFit: 2012
Favorite Lift or Skill: Deadlift
Least Favorite: Front Squat
Sport/Fitness Background: Barrel racing
Hobbies outside of the gym: Horses, triathlons, being a grandma
Go to cheat meal: Chocolate milkshake
CrossFit Milestone or Favorite Moment at CrossFit ABQ: During the 2014 Open, we came to CFABQ to do the workout because the gym we were going to cut us off after a certain time. I wanted to finish it. While trying to do the burpee thruster workout, I didn’t think I could 65#, so my son, AJ, took the 10# plates off and put different 10# plates off, making me think I did 45#. I completed the workout at 65#.
Why did you decide to try out CrossFit? You can’t be AJ’s mom and not do CrossFit, whether you want to or not.
What made you come back after your first WOD? AJ
What would you suggest to people that are new to CrossFit? You can do it. Anybody can do it. Everything can be scaled. If I can do it, you can do it.

 

Bollota-picBobo 2.0

Name: Patrick Bollotta (aka Pat, aka Uncle Bobo)
Hometown: Bloomfield, NJ
Age: 23
Occupation: Aerospace Propulsion Journeyman in the United States Airforce
Started CrossFit: 2012
Favorite Lift or Skill: Snatches and muscle ups
Least Favorite: Overhead Squats and box jumps
Sport/Fitness Background: Played baseball all through childhood and high school. Winter track in high school to stay in shape (not for the women)
Hobbies outside of the gym: Going on long walks with Marvin (Matt Booth’s puppy), tanning, and laundry.
Go to cheat meal: Pizza (he’s Italian, go figure)
CrossFit Milestone or Favorite Moment at CrossFit ABQ: Winning first ever competition at the Barnyard Brawl in 2013.

ButtersButters

Hometown: Bartlesville, OK
Age: 23
Occupation: Aerospace Maintenance Journeyman
Started CrossFit: October 2012
Favorite Lift or Skill: Cleans
Least Favorite: All gymnastics
Sport/Fitness Background: Football
Hobbies outside of the gym: shooting guns and meticulously sculpting his hair
Go to cheat meal: “My whole life is a cheat meal”
CrossFit Milestone or Favorite Moment at CrossFit ABQ: Testing into WolfPack and “working out with Matt Booth”

 

 

Jacy G.

Hometown:  Raton, NM
Age: 24
Occupation: Chemical/Materials Engineer
Started CrossFit: August 2012
Favorite Workout of the Day (WOD) or movements: Cleans and Squats
Least Favorite: Double Unders
Sport and Fitness Background: I have always played sports of some type, volleyball, basketball, track, soccer and have always had some sort of workout routine

How were you first introduced to CrossFit and what was your first WOD?
I was introduced to Crossfit by Whitney, finally I gave in and came to see what it was all about. My first WOD was in bootcamp, I am not sure what it was but it was love at first WOD. I could not remember being that sore after the first week. That weekend was Bugaboo, there I was introduced to the true atmosphere Crossfit has to offer (people everywhere, cheering each other on). I knew after that I would never turn away.

What changes have you noticed in your body, health, and fitness since starting CrossFit ABQ?
The changes I have seen in my body have been great, I feel strong when I do things, whether it is movements in a WOD, or going and playing basketball. I feel that I am finally on a road to having a healthy lifestyle that I will be able to hold on to for life. And of course, my fitness levels have increased greatly.

What are some things you have experienced from CrossFit that were unexpected?
Camaraderie, Community, and Infatuation. The camaraderie is people cheering each other on to finish one more rep, knowing the person next to you is pushing your limitations but you both keep moving.  The community is the friends that I have made because of Crossfit. And the infatuation is the love I have for the WOD’s, time spent in the box, and the ideals that keep me coming back for more (it’s very addicting).

What are some of your favorite memories at CrossFit ABQ?
I have a lot of good memories at Crossfit ABQ, but some of the best would be the time spent with my sister and friends, when we all start giggling over what someone said and we just cannot stop. When Brain got his first muscle up, it was awesome. I love to see people PR or successfully get a movement they have been working on.

What advice would you give to someone considering starting CrossFit?
Do it now, stop waiting. Get to an intro and get started. You will not regret it. You will be challenged and you will find something out about yourself that you didn’t know when you started.

What are some of your hobbies outside of the gym?
Hanging out with my family and friends, traveling, reading, cooking (lots of cooking).

 

Chris G.

Hometown: Los Lunas, NM
Age: 25
Occupation: Corrections Officer
Started CrossFit: February 2012
Favorite Workout of the Day (WOD): Fight Gone Bad
Least Favorite: Anything with snatches or airdynes
Sport and Fitness Background: Football, basketball, and track in high school.

How were you first introduced to CrossFit and what was your first WOD?
My friend Nick Wilhelm spoke to my brother and I about Crossfit. I tried it out and was immediately hooked. I don’t remember what my first wod was though.

What changes have you noticed in your body, health, and fitness since starting CrossFit ABQ?
After being there a while I find I have more energy, confidence, stamina, and strength than when I worked out on my own at a generic gym before.

What are some things you have experienced from CrossFit that were unexpected?
I always thought I was in pretty good shape at least endurance-wise until I got to CrossFit Albuquerque. Now I have much more respect for real athletes with Crossfit endurance. Even to this day I find myself gasping for breath and not wanting to move after wods, but I’ve gotten much more endurance and strength than when I started. Also the intensity of the workouts is something I’ve come to love. 10-15 minutes on a tough wod at CrossFit will wreck me for days now while before I’d workout for up to 2 and a half hours at another gym and be no worse for wear the next day.

What are some of your favorite memories at CrossFit ABQ?
Doing my first muscle up, and the comraderie of course. It’s very motivational to have the support of everyone at the gym, especially when you’re the last one still gutting out the wod and everyone is yelling for you.

What advice would you give to someone considering starting CrossFit?
I would tell them about my experiences and growth that comes with it, and let them know that after CrossFit I will never join a ‘regular’ gym again because of what CrossFit does for me.

What are some of your hobbies outside of the gym?
Hanging out with friends and family, hiking, and most sports.

Jason G.

Hometown: Los Lunas, NM
Age: 26
Occupation: Orthopedics
Started CrossFit: December 2011
Favorite Workout of the Day (WOD): “Nasty Girls” or anything with power cleans
Least Favorite: Anything with thrusters
Sport and Fitness Background: Football, basketball, and track in high school

How were you first introduced to CrossFit and what was your first WOD? I was first introduced to CrossFit by a current member (Nick “The Wonderboy” Wilhelm). My first WOD was muscle-up progressions, handstand pushups, and double unders. I felt completely smoked at the end, but was immediately hooked.

What changes have you noticed in your body, health, and fitness since starting at CrossFit ABQ? I feel much healthier overall and have noticed a big difference in my fitness level since starting CrossFit. My overall strength (especially my legs) has increased dramatically.

What are some things you have experienced from CrossFit that were unexpected? The camaraderie and supportive atmosphere of CrossFit ABQ was something that was unexpected and unlike any other gym I previously attended. Also, there is a spirit of competition present that is motivational.

What are some of your favorite memories at CrossFit ABQ? Hitting Personal Records (PR’s) on lifts and movements. Also, getting my first muscle up.

What advice would you give to someone considering starting CrossFit? I would tell them to definitely try it. There are progressions and ways for everyone to do the WODs. No one is excellent at everything and everyone is constantly trying to improve. I would encourage people to not let pride get in the way and just come in and give it a shot. No one judges at CrossFit ABQ and it is a very supportive and encouraging atmosphere.

What are some of your hobbies outside of the gym? I really enjoy playing beach volleyball and snowboarding.

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