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Member Spotlight — Michael Zehtner

Tell us a little about yourself and what got you on the path to CrossFit.

I'm originally from Germany, My family moved over when BMW began building their plant up in Spartanburg.

I lived there up until I went to college at University of South Carolina in Columbia for Electrical Engineering. When I graduated I got a job down here in Charleston at an Automotive plant as a Validation Engineer.

My path to CrossFit actually started with a re-occurring health issue. While some activity did happen at work such as lifting and moving, a lot of the time was spent sitting in front of a computer.

Add to that that I never really ate healthy or exercised. This eventually led to excessive lower back pain throughout the year which made me make a visit to an orthopedic. Long story short I have S-shaped scoliosis beginning to form in my spine.

The doctor told me that I would need to get my spine corrected and lead a better lifestyle if I didn't want major spinal surgery down the road. Two years later here we are, and I've never felt better!

What has made the difference for you in this type of environment vs other exercise routines you’ve had?

The fact that there is a coach always watching and letting you know the correct posture and method to each routine. I've tried Insanity in the past and this was one of the major issues i've had with it.

What physical changes have you noticed since you’ve started at CFJI?

The first change were all my jeans getting more and more loose. After that came the feeling of being more fit and just overall healthier.

What lifestyle changes have you chosen to make since you started at CFJI?

I've 99% cut off all soda. I only maybe drink one can every month now. Milk and cereal are gone too, replaced with scrambled eggs and Vegetables and a Banana. Oh and I drink loads more water than I used to.

What do you like most about your workout crew?

The 6:15 class is awesome in the sense that even after a long day they find the strength to come in and get a great workout before they finish the day.

What are 1-2 of your goals for 2020?

Get at least 20 or so Double Unders unbroken, and also do a wod with strict pull-ups and not have to scale them down.

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

Most likely Push-ups.

Favorite life?

High bar back squat.

Least Favorite Movement?

Double. Under.

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

Oh god, there are so many I would like to do. I think my top would be being a Formula 1 driver.

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

It would be to pick up a sport, I really wished I would have tried out for soccer growing up.

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

My grandparents from my fathers side, I was 6 when both passed away.

One thing about me people would be surprised to know?

I speak German very fluently, even though I have no accent.

What is your favorite movie?

Avatar, I went to see it 3 days in a row.

What’s the most ridiculous fact you know?

The tiger beetle is the fastest creature on earth. It moves so fast that it becomes blind after it starts running.

What is your hometown?

A small town in Germany called Buch am Erlbach.

Favorite Charleston restaurant?

Circa 1886. never have I had less than a fantastic dinner there.

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