What got you in the doors at CFJI and what keeps you coming back?
Fake News: I saw this shiny bald head from Folly Road and went to investigate, turns out it was Kyle F.
Real News: I had visited several other boxes in the area and none of them really fit my goals and/or personality, so I just kept looking around until one felt right. In Crossfit you turn over the planning of your workout, and hence your end self/goals, to your coach in many ways. The programming was really important to me and that is what I have really enjoyed about CFJI. The implementation of that programming is also exceedingly important, and so Coach Jenna has played a large role in keeping me and so many others coming back every day. The social atmosphere is also very important to me and I have very much enjoyed the people that are here and our ‘9am family’. Every day I learn a little something more about child rearing that I never intended to ever learn!
How has your nutrition and weightlifting changed since you started?
Fake News: I’ve learned that wearing a tank-top on Friday’s supposedly helps you lift more.
Real News: I think my outlook on things is constantly evolving. I’m constantly learning what else my body is capable of and constantly learning how everything including sleep, stress, food, drugs, etc. impacts your performance. I have learned that the gym is an integral part of my happiness and makes me a better clinician, researcher, and teacher.
What do you like most about CFJI?
Fake News: The air conditioning.
Real News: The humans, they are great. You don’t come for the elaborate facilities (albeit ‘spacious’), the shiny equipment (that just means someone got done sweating all over it), or the safe running routes (now I know how Frogger felt), you come for the other people that are going to sweat and bleed with you.
Favorite encouraging words you’ve heard at CFJI...
Fake News: “You have better hair than (the other) Kyle”
Real News: “Good job”-Jenna
Fake News: A fork attached to a pancake
Real News: Anything that goes over my head. Probably the Snatch because it is so complex and form is so important. It constantly reminds me how focused and disciplined we need to be when doing all these lifts to get the most out of them.
Least favorite lift:
Fake News: A fork attached to a vegetable.
Real News: I don’t have a least favorite to be honest. The most frustrating one for me is the bench press I think because the longer your arms are the more you are at a disadvantage. Yeah, I can reach the top shelf but your short little range of motion allows you to push a ton of weight.
Fake News: I came to improve my tan/work on my melanoma.
Real News: I grew up in Salisbury, NC. No, that isn’t where the steak comes from but it is where Food Lion comes from and that is equally disgusting. Believe it or not I didn’t come here for the beach, I came for work to be trapped inside all day.
Number one thing you want to accomplish in the gym this year?
Fake News: Figure out what Kyle Frazier does all day
Real News: A handstand walk. Not sure to where but just to somewhere that sells pancakes.
What do you enjoy to do in your free time?
Fake news: Making mix tapes.
Real News: I don’t have a lot of it to be honest. When I am working, the few hours of free time I have is entirely spent at the gym. When I am off, I can be found at the gym, at Starbucks working on research, or at a bar. So two-thirds of my life is relatively healthy.
Biggest Pet Peeve?
Fake News: Spandex
Real News: When I was in high school I gave a sermon at my church regarding apathy and it remains the one thing that annoys me more than anything else. I don’t care what you believe, but whatever it is, at least be motivated to action by it. Don’t tell me you love pancakes but just sit your fat butt on the couch, go and get after it bro!
The most random thing in your car...
Fake News: A hot woman
Real News: I found a wheel the other day…to a table…yeah, just one and I don’t know where it belongs.
One thing about me people would be surprised to know?
Fake News: This isn’t my real hair color.
Real News: That one’s tough, everyone knows different things about me. I guess that I used to run for fun, I was on the cross country team in high school. Everyone is dumb when they are young I guess haha. The question most people want to know but are afraid to ask is about my braces. Around my junior year of high school my dad took me to the doctor because I kept spraining my ankles over and over again. After seeing a couple of specialists I was diagnosed with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT). This is a hereditary disorder that damages the nerves your peripheral nerves (arms and legs). It is classified by some as a subtype of muscular dystrophy although that is not entirely accurate. It affects about 1 in 2,500 people. There are over 70 different genetic variants of this disease and I’ve been exceedingly fortunate that mine isn’t that bad. For me, I have extreme weakness in my ankles. A few years after my initial diagnosis as my ankles slowly became worse I had my first ankle surgery that included an Achilles tendon lengthening and a calcaneal osteotomy. For those that may not be familiar with this awesome surgery, it involves basically cutting off your heel bone and moving it…and you thought Crossfit hurt. This helped me for a time and I returned to playing sports for a year or two but as the weakness progressed and my ankles got worse I essentially stopped doing anything physical. I stopped exercising and doing sports entirely. I was taking as much ibuprofen as I could just to make it through the day and I was calculating the steps it took for me to get from one spot to the other to anticipate the pain it would take to get there. I wouldn’t go places because it hurt too much. I was bitter and angry for a long time. Being at the mercy of an uncontrollable force that you did nothing to earn is a tough pill to swallow. I hated those I would see in life that had perfectly fine ankles and didn’t exercise or play sports. They were wasting what I saw as a gift. But everything in life teaches you something. It helped me focus and it’s taught me compassion for people that are struggling and appreciation for the blessings that I do have. Eventually I got up the strength to have the surgery done again about nine years ago. After this last go around they wanted me to use braces to try to make this surgery ‘last’ as long as possible. At first, I hated the idea. Nobody wants to look different, nobody wants to look weird and stand out. I’ve always been a very independent person and this was making me very dependent, something I despised. But once again, there is always a silver lining to every obstacle in life. Much to my astonishment these braces have had the opposite effect. By providing the stability that I needed, they have enabled me to do things that I had long ago written off and they have opened a whole new world of physical activity to me. They told me that this last surgery would only last five years and that at that time I would need to have an ankle fusion. Crossfit has helped me make it at least twice that long, with no real pain, and given me the ability to do things that all ‘experts’ would agree I can’t and shouldn’t do.