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Member Spotlight - Karen Harper

What ever possessed you to run a 50k?

It was a trail run, if that makes it sound less crazy. Just think of it as a long, fast-paced hike in a beautiful mountain setting! I love running in the woods.

After being a runner for so many years, what made you decide to try CrossFit?

After moving to Charleston last summer, I needed to find a new fitness routine. I didn’t have my running crew around anymore so I needed to find some sort of community to help motivate me. I was also looking for something to help me become more well-rounded and not just a runner. The CFJI gym is a mile from my house so it seemed like a great place to start!

What was your least and most favorite thing about your first day at CFJI?

I hated not having the strength to do much of the movements but I liked learning all the new moves. I loved all the different build-up options that are given and that I never felt intimidated asking questions.

If you had to do 100 reps of one movement (not running), what would it be?

I love doing box jumps! (Is this a trick- am I now going to have to do 100 box jumps before I start my next WOD?)

What do you like most about your workout crew?

I like that it’s a small but a varied group of people. Yes, lots of moms at the 9:00, but others thrown in as well.

What do you like most about CFJI?

The accountability that the community gives me. When you’re not there, people notice; it’s good motivation to go to the gym even if you’re not feeling it at the moment.

What are 1-2 of your goals at CFJI for 2017?

I’d like to progress to get some moments fully down without substitutions like toes-to-bar and pull-ups, and get more fluid at double unders.

Favorite Lift?

High Bar Back Squat

Least favorite Lift?

Sumo Deadlift

Least Favorite Gymnastic Movement?


Favorite “Girl” WOD? / Hero WOD?

I’ve only done a couple of the named WODs and couldn’t even tell you what they were, so have no idea on this one...


I grew up in Athens, GA.

Favorite Charleston Restaurant?

For good family time, I like going to Bowen's Island. It’s close, relaxed, beautiful views. There is no healthy eating here but we have fun!

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be?

A travel photographer.

What would you most like to tell yourself at age 13?

Don’t worry so much about what other people think about you. Seek out things that you enjoy doing and don’t be afraid if it’s not what the crowds are out doing.

What is the best book you have ever read?

Hard decision, but for now I’m putting Harry Potter. My kids all just finished reading the series in the past year, and I love that there is a book series that we all can really enjoy together.

If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you meet?

One of my great-great grandparents.

One thing about me people would be surprised to know?

I grew up in my family’s hardware store. As a ten-year-old I was pretty good at finding the correct matching nut or bolt to any random screw a person brought in.

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