View Full Version : whats everyone's athletic background

Steve Kaspar
12-26-2008, 04:23 AM
just curious. lets hear about your athletic background. from your grade school days up to today. what was your favorite sports? did you excell in any? achievements in sports?
it aint bragging , just post up what you have done playing sports.
steve kaspar

Arden Cogar Jr.
12-26-2008, 05:52 AM
Nice start to what I hope leads to some good sharing among the group.

At age six, I went to work with my father (he's a logger) in the woods. I didn't want to be home with my mother. He sat me to work in his firewood business, lugging blocks of wood, and splitting ones I could. I eventually worked as a "gin-hand" or "chocker-setter." Eventually, he taught me how to cut timber. All of this physical work helped me with strength when I went into little league football and softball. I wasn't overly tall, but I was very "husky" and stout.

In gradeschool - played football, basketball, and softball. Didn't have any other sports in my school. I excelled at softball and did well in football. I sucked at basketball - even though I was one of two people on the basketball team that could grab the rim. I started dabbling in weight training in grade 6, when the 8th graders were having a deadlifting contest. I pulled 325 pretty easy with horrible form. I stated dabbling in my family's sport - lumberjack or timber sports.

In highschool, I played football, wrestled, and ran track. I didn't really run track. I threw shot. In hindsight, I didn't really excel at any of it. I did "okay" in football; and considering I had never wrestled until my freshman well, I did "better than okay" wrestling. I got much more serious into my weight training and did my first bench contest my freshman year. Nothing to write home about - 240 or 250, if I recall correctly. Unfortunately, I neglected doing squats and deads until my senior year. When I finally started doing them, I got really strong.
Continued working with my father during the summer and continued dabbling in my family's sport.

In College, I tried to walk on at WVU for football. Mistake. Too slow and not tall enough. Went into powerlifting. My best performance was 617-314-622 at 198 before I turned 20. I had dieted down from 225 to get to 198. When I was no longer a teenager, I gave that sport away because it required a "dark side" element to make the next step. When I gave the powerlifting comps away, I concentrated on timber sports. Once an athlete, always an athlete. Ya know?

In my sport, I've been blessed and I've done very well. It's 18 years later now. I've won several world titles. I've travelled the world. I've had a great time. And thanks to my introduction to CA style training, olympic lifting, and the improved athleticism that the training engenders I can see myself doing very well for another 10 to 20 years.

All the best,

Garrett Smith
12-26-2008, 06:20 AM
Baseball: ~12 years, up through varsity as a junior in HS, mostly played as catcher

Basketball: ~5 years, up through JV as sophomore in HS, mostly as forward/center

Swimming: Youth swim teams, ~4 years, best at breaststroke & freestyle

Soccer: ~3 years, defender (?, I can't remember the positions, I was just athletic and fast enough to push around the forwards from the other team)

Bodybuilding: From age 11 through early college, almost competed as a natural BBer until I actually watched a show in person and quit right then and there

Triathlon: 2 years, competed in 3 sprint and 2 Olympic distance (including with the UA team at Wildflower Collegiate Nationals)

Skiing then snowboarding, from early youth until college, started snowboarding in '86 when there were only like 3 other snowboarders on the mountain.

OL: First meet in Nov. 2008.

Um, there may be more. I'll have to see what I recall.

Brian DeGennaro
12-26-2008, 06:44 AM
Heh, it seems everyone's got a longer training career than I do.

First got on the track freshman year in highschool. This was my first sport. I ran all 4 years, even despite a very invasive appendictomy (which was stupid), ended my career running in the 53s for the 400m. The end of sophomore year I took up gymnastics for the hell of it; kept training it consistently every day until college. I never competed just trained it all, worked the crap out of tumbling and rings.

I lifted on and off, mostly "Power to the People"/"Naked Warrior" style all those four years. Played with KBs for conditioning stuff. I never really focused on it until the end of my senior year going into the summer. That year I had been working on CF exclusively until I found out my slow lifts had gone down. In that period my friend Adam turned me onto Oly, and I've been training it since September this year, as soon as I got bumper plates at college.

Joe Hart
12-26-2008, 07:59 AM
I played football, basketball and soccer in elementary school. I liked football because I played D. I didn't have the hands for skill positions. I was short for basketball but I wasn't afraid playing against tall kids. Soccer was good our team won state championships. I was a defender I think it was because I didn't have a problem with contact and I was slow compared to my teammates.

In 7th grade my math teacher Mr. Glauner asked if I wanted to wrestle. I enjoyed it right up until I broke my arm the day before the first match. I was out for the season. I wrestled freestyle during the summer and had great time.

I wrestled in HS all four years JV1 Varsity 3. I wasn't that good in our confernece we had about three - four wrestling powerhouses in our conf. I could beat most of the people on our team or atleast make it interesting. I really enjoyed wrestling even if I was a .500 wrestler.

The Marine Corps put a cramp on sports. I did do alot of BBing when I wasn't working on Helicopters. I didn't like squatting and didn't make any strength gains.

In college at SC, I was still BBing and trying some JKD. It was fun as college should be, but I should have applied myself more.

Whilst in the Navy I did Metzers HIT and ran and rowed. That was the beauty of being on an aircraft carrier (Kittyhawk). You have 3 gyms of various sizes that you could work out in and a flight deck to run on IF you like turning your knees to jelly.

After that I CFd in MN for about 3 years. I sucked because my nutrition was poor. Pizza and beer in modration was my downfall.

Now days I spread myself around CF, CA WOD and Coach RUTs sites and practice BJJ. I coached my son's soccer team this summer and that was like hearding cats. This winter my son wanted to try wrestling which is fine with me.

My goal is to hit a reasonable BF%, eat lots of meat and veggies, live longer than my father (and not have alzhiemers) and get a black belt in BJJ. And to help my boys take care of business whatever that may be. I seems to be a simple plan for a soon to be 40 yr old.

This will be interesting to hear about others.

Arden- what is a gin somthing or other in your post?

Happy new year!!!!

Arien Malec
12-26-2008, 08:35 AM
I'm a bit atypical here. From the age of 6, I did 5 and 10K runs, and some longer distances -- my favorite being long hill runs. Besides that, a couple of years on a swim team and a bit of martial arts.

Then, about 12 years of mostly nothing, a few years of active weight loss, and 2 years of a mostly strength/power focus, with a goal to do Masters Oly comps.

Mike ODonnell
12-26-2008, 08:39 AM
Ice hockey from age 5 till.....well now (36). I stopped playing baseball once the pitchers could make the ball curve and slide in high school.....Joe-boo can't hit curve ball. No desire to really compete seriously anymore...just having fun doing other things like adventure racing, skiing, mountain biking or whatever else goes well with a beer right after.

Will Moore
12-26-2008, 08:53 AM
High School - Track and Cross-country running. Ran my first marathon

US Marine Corps - Every crazy thing you have to do as a Marine infantryman. Spent for nearly 5 years as a Combatives Intructor (martial arts/hand-to-hand combat). Boxed for 3 years.

Fighting - Won middle weight NC Toughman competition, 1996

Bodybuilding - Took 2nd place in two NPC events (middle weight - 164 lbs.)

Last 10 years - Don't compete in anything now but I refuse to get old. I still work out with weights, hit the heavy bag, and then there's my favorite endurance exercise: hiking with a heavy backpack.

Will Moore
12-26-2008, 08:57 AM
Hey, Joe Hart, I just looked back and saw you were a Marine too...helicopters...where you ever at New River Air Station? I was down at Lejuene for 99% of my USMC career.

Arden Cogar Jr.
12-26-2008, 09:33 AM
Arden- what is a gin somthing or other in your post?

Happy new year!!!!

I hear ya on trying to be as-fit-a-40-year-old-as we can be. Gotta keep up with the little ones.

A "gin hand" is basicly a timber fallers assistant or gopher. Beyond that, with traditional east coast logging, they run the chokers and wench cables from the skidders/dozers to the fallen trees. A gin hand then secures the "choker" to the log and the wench cable to the choker.

Throughout most of my youth, my uncles worked as my father's timber cutters. Which led to me learning a LOT of interesting stuff while running and lugging stuff up and down the steep hills of appalachia.

Wouldn't trade anything for the memories and what that work taught me.

Happy new year.

All the best,

Blair Lowe
12-26-2008, 10:40 AM
A baseball was in my crib when I got put in so you can tell what my dad pushed for a lot of my childhood. I still was exposed to and interested in any sport that came my way as a kid. So I threw and learned to hit and field as a kid before playing LL around 8yo to 8th grade.

My dad was into gymastics in the bronze age but also got into baseball and judo heavily in HS and college. Eventually his claim to fame was he was invited to the regional qualifiers in the 80's for the olympics and got to train with some names like Gokur and at some good clubs. I spent 6mo to a year in judo somewhere between 5 and 7, not really sure. I was a real monster as a kid and got to do lots of duckwalks and body drags and my dad was quite often teaching the kid's class. He eventually helped coach when I was in baseball as well.

I lived baseball as a kid besides any other ball sport. Still, baseball was on my mind with BB and football close. I was also into stats and history like a maniac.

I was always small and can remember practicing pushups and situps a lot as a kid to get stronger. I didn't climb a rope till college but I used to climb chains from our tree somehow. I don't remember how I did at pullups as a kid except that it was a pain to get up there.

Never got into gymnastics as a kid, but I never saw any gymnastics gym down in Socal or heard of any or kids doing any. Not in our area at least but saturday mornings were dominated by gymnastics much to my dismay of no cartoons.

Loved martial arts as a kid, eventually getting into it in HS. Karate and kobudo with some playing in the aikido class besides some other stuff. Our teachers had us do lots of L sits, besides the other Okinawan body training. I eventually started doing HS on wall for conditioning at home besides a lot of BW stuff.

Left MA and started running track and field as a jr because a friend wanted a friend on team but he went and did tennis. Got into sprints and polevaulting, but didn't focus on polevaulting till senior year. Was kind of all over the place.

Finally got into the weight training class that I never could all of HS which had really irked me. It was run by the football coach and was only football players which was "interesting." Got to learn the basic lifts and oly lifts but can't really remember lots of cues or tips and more than likely just watched everyone else and they had been instructed by the coach during season ( it was fall and then in football season ). Got my name up on the board for FS and BS and was weighing in around 152 from 125 as a junior. I bulked up a lot or maybe fatted up a bit from working as a stock boy.

Basically was into weights for a few years, working as a dairy clerk and loving to pull in the half ton of dairy off the trucks. That was a blast. Got up to 170s eating lots of food at the market and working stock and working out in my spare time at the apartment gym. Lots of fried chicken and lasagna. Didn't have access to squatting or deading.

Never did DL to the last couple of years upon CF. We only trained jump shrugs in snatch or clean grip in HS so I only did that. Didn't really have any resources while I trained at globogyms but stuck mostly to freeweights playing around on machines.

Took a gymnastics tumbling class in college around 8 years ago. Digged it but had a bad experience tumbling because of a bad spot ( neck injury ). Had a friend who was an ex gymnast and we played on rings together and I ended up coaching rec as did he at different gyms. In fact, I took over for him as he left one gym. Started learning about gymnastics, mainly women's and basics while coaching.

Started getting some exposure to MAG but didn't really know anybody at the gym who knew jack about MAG so I managed to learn from some books, a few cd's, and more clinics-tinkering on my own until I started going to watch at other men's gyms ( I was in a girl dominated rec gym ) and eventually went to one for 9mo and splitting from there.

Came across drillsandskills around 03 and eventually met Roger Harrell working out at the gym I just got hired at in 04 eventually getting exposed to his CF oriented gymnastics workouts and CF. And here I pretty much am.

So I still tinker with MA and other stuff and gymnastics. None of my friends really play sports and I never had the time off to do adult hockey in my 20's though I thought about going back to wrestling ( wrestled 145s senior year ) or polevaulting. No real time then.

Currently I'm back coaching gymnastics though I've been on and off again coaching the past few years while dabbling in IT or just working to live. Haven't really been out of gymnastics though I did take about 9mo off back in 03 when I thought myself down after trashing my wrists upon falling badly in Volleyball. Officially told myself was done and lost a lot of strength I had built up like levers and working on planche and cross. Grr. Yearned for that strength again ever since.

Steven Low
12-26-2008, 10:57 AM
gymnastics: 5-10/11 (5 years)
baseball: 11-12
track: 12-13 <- damn you Osgood Schlatter's!
golf: 15-17 (well, I still play occasionally)
rec gymnastics: 18->present

As you can see I hopped around quite a bit, but most of my background is in gymnastics.

Emily Mattes
12-26-2008, 11:15 AM
I was an incredibly nerdy, unathletic kid. Like most kids, I got put in youth softball, soccer, whatever, but I was pretty terrible at it and knew I was terrible, so never lasted long in anything. Gym class was my personal hell.

I did youth swimming off and on, but my parents didn't like driving me to practices so I never did it seriously until the first two years of high school when I was able to get rides.

Between the first and second year of high school I did triathlons in the off-season, and spinning/running on the treadmill to supplement it. Looking back I mostly was just doing a lot of mileage really, really slowly with no actual attempt at a training program. I was driven, but to be honest it was more for bad psychological reasons (eating disorder, whee) than actual athletic commitment. I got over it, and with it went my drive to put in the insane amount of mileage and time--without the crazy, nothing was motivating me. So I'd go through cycles of triathlon training but by the beginning of college was pretty well out of the sport. My claim to fame was completing a half-Ironman--did it in about four-and-a-half, five hours, I think, not terrible, but not great.

I made stabs at going to the gym through early college, but thought the only way I could be athletic was to spend hours and hours on cardio machines like I had when I was in triathlons.

Then maybe junior year, a friend of mine who was into bodybuilding/lifting got me started on machine work, and I did that off and on for a while (a year I think?). I got frustrated because while I was putting up more weight I wasn't feeling any stronger, so I looked for other programs. Did bodyweight stuff for a few weeks and then discovered Crossfit. I did Crossfit off-and-on (mostly off, honestly) for a year, up until this past summer when I found an Olympic lifting team.

I originally joined up with those guys to learn the lifts better for Crossfit, but quickly wised up, dropped the Crossfit, and started Olympic lifting full time. I feel better and stronger and more committed to lifting than I have to anything else--I mean, I've been working out regularly since the beginning of October, which is probably a first for me.

So yeah, my background is decidedly unathletic, and up until recently the quasi-athletic parts were not really athletic at all.

Blair Lowe
12-26-2008, 12:57 PM
CrossFit got me back into Oly lifting which is why I love it. I love some of the workouts but ideally I'd do more of a gymnastics hybrid program. However, I just love some of the short workouts because they are fun.

I lean towards more of preferring to train power and strength than endurance. I have enough endurance to train all day at seminars for MA all go or go do outdoorsy stuff. I don't need lots of endurance for gymnastics really and it's self defeating. BW stuff like pullups, pushups, situps, squats is ok but it's more fun with a bar or beyond basic BW movement.

Dave Van Skike
12-26-2008, 02:31 PM

School sports, TF, standard ball sport crap, Racket sports,
Sailing, rock climbing, rowing


Motos..Hare Scrambles and general offroad Moto-foolishness,


Bike Racing...MTB, Road, Track, and some cross.


toe in the water with Strongman and PL.
Upcoming season I hope to hit 3 or 4 Highland Games.

Scott Kustes
12-26-2008, 03:23 PM
Basketball: grades 5-9
Volleyball: grades 6-8
Football: grades 9-11
Track and Field: grades 6 and 9-12
Skiing for the last decade (Whistler in 2 weeks!)
Weight training since 9th grade in some form or another.
1 softball league per year

Track was my point of pride. Culminated Sr. year with a 10.9s 100m and 52s 400m. Missed winning 100m in State to DQing on a false start in Regionals. Had the opportunity to run for a small school in Central KY (Centre), but decided to get my engineering degree (note that I don't have an engineering degree :D ).

Now I train for fun, still get in as many track meets as I can. Had to give up pickup volleyball and basketball due to danger of shoulder dislocations.

Rafe Kelley
12-26-2008, 07:46 PM
I grew up in the woods, always kind of introverted and never interested in fitting in video games, magic the gathering or other time wasters my friends liked I spent a great deal of time tromping around swinging around toy swords kicking over snags and, climbing, running, and jumping. Made go-karts, obstacle courses, sparring swords etc with brother, cousins friends and always doing this kind of physical play as young kid.

Team sports: I played soccer from kindergarten through sixth grade. I was usually bigger stronger and faster then most other kids but never had good ball control. I was usually in heavy rotation as midfielder or defender disliked and failed as a forward. The teams I happened to play on were terrible we only made the play offs one year. Got into pick up basketball when I was 15 didn't play for the high school because I was home schooled. Played extensively till I was 21. Was usually stronger and faster then most other players I was a very good individual defender and loved to block shots, I had good a vertical leap and was very good at rebounding, my ball control again was poor and I never understood offense much. I was much better one on one or three on three then in full five on five games. Obsessed with dunking got to the point I could dunk with both hounds and consistently dunked on the break but never in the half court when I was 18 then broke my ankle and couldn't do it again till I was 21. I was a b level player in general were every I went.

Martial arts:
I started martial arts in first grade. With tang soo do trained for year then my school closed down. After that I went to aikido sporadically whenever my dad had time to take me(the school was over and hour away) for a few years. Did some form of Kung Fu from 11-14.

Did jujitsu mixed with some kick boxing from 15-17 in little school in a shed, was just considering competing when my school shut down. Played around with jits and boxing when ever I got the chance from then on but never committed to a school or really focused on it. Showed the same athletic profile in jits as soccer and basketball, strong, fast, but not very skillful. Good defensively my offense was crude but effective against other white belts, color choke, or rear naked chock

Started training Muay thai and Jujitsu seriously again when I was 25. In jits I got allot more skilled positionally and became much better with arm bars but gave it up again after a year because the abuse to my joints just wasn't working out with my parkour practice. I took to Muay thai very well lots of individual practice and natural long reach left me with a very good jab, I picked up the round kick and push kick and clinch very well, I have slowly added better hooks and upper cuts to my Jab and Cross, developed a pretty good spinning back kick and spinning back fist, and a rather effective flying knee. Was hoping to fight my first fight next month but due to work I am moving and will have to leave my school :( .

Gymnastics: I started training in gymnastics when I was 14 I was very tall for my age and skinny I didn't show allot of talent but I kept doing it recreationally here and there for years and ended up becoming a coach when I was 21, eventually I managed to get good enough to do handsprings, tucks, pikes and lay outs forwards backwards and sideways with basic twists, I could swing a little high bar and do some basic rings but otherwise not much.

Started going to the gym at 12. Was taught basically body builder routines muscle isolations on machines and cardio. Never felt stronger working on machines was pretty bored by the whole thing, hated cardio. Drifted in and out of it till I was 17 never learned anything or got stronger from it. Started doing really weight training when I was 21. On the first day I found squatting 115 pounds challenging and could do one pull up, 6 months I squatted 320 pounds for 8 reps and did 15 pull ups then I quit school and lost my access to a gym.

I discovered parkour when I was 23(2004) and that has been my biggest passion since, I have traveled to france and england twice to train have put out a couple samplers that while not particularly great were well received and become the lead instructor for the Pacific northwest parkour association a non-profit we have started to develop parkour and educate people in our region.

I discovered crossfit around the same time as parkour and have played with incorporating elements of the crossfit method into my training worked in various functions with different crossfit facilities in the area.

In 2006 I discovered Method Naturelle which is the forefather of parkour and when I went to france for first time I stopped in Nice and trained with Erwan le Corre at that time the leading proponent of Methode naturelle. I have been working with him sense as he has created his own education system based on Methode Naturelle called MovNat which has been very interesting and enlightening.

Allen Yeh
12-27-2008, 07:28 AM
Naturally unathletic kid, got kinda chubby, in middle school my parents enrolled me into kung-fu and I did that until I went away to college, never got awesome but it did help with coordination and discipline and things of that nature. In my senior year of high school I really started paying attention to the amount of chub I had on me and started going to the gym and following routines laid out in Mens Fitness.

In college I started getting into bodybuilding more seriously with the eating 5000 calories and split routines and toyed with doinga show or 2 but never got the balls up to do it. Also in this time I got heavliy involved with the club wrestling team which for the most part was guys that didn't want to dedicate the time to the real team. Despite being bigger than most of these guys I was usually getting my ass handed to me on a regular basis as I had no technical skills. I did get better but never great as you can only get so good doing something 1-2 times a week.

Joined the Army Reserve as soon as I graduated college in 2003 as it was something I had promised myself duing 9/11. After graduating from basic training there I got much heavier into the Crossfit stuff as it appealed to my sense of being able to do all things better without running every day. Unfortunately for me I hadn't built a good enough base in running for this to be true for me.

I'd toy with strength programs and such here and there and had gotten into Oly with Crossfit through Dan John. I didn't really have any oppotunity to practice until they bought a bunch of bumpers and stuff for a Crossfit gym they were setting up on Bolling AFB. I'd like to compete sometime late next year, since I'll be out at officer training from Feb. - June.

Kevin Perry
12-27-2008, 12:02 PM
Somewhat athletic.

Played soccer for several years from about 5 till 11 then baseball till about 13 or 14. I hated baseball because I was never put on the field, maybe played 1 or 2 innings out of each game but dad kept signing me up for it. Did some martial arts for a couple years but could not afford it after that. Did not really do anything else till my senior year.

I tried getting on some of the sports teams but the only one I could get on was the wrestling team. I did pretty good, placed 2nd at the novice tourney at 130lbs. I only did that for a few months because I graduated early at 17 and my dad lost his job and get an offer across the country so I ended up joining the Marines but I ended up coming down with a respiratory virus that left some scaring in my lungs and made it difficult to breathe so after spending 8 months or so in med platoon at SOI they offered me a chance to stay or go so I left since there was no point in staying anymore.

Spent the next couple of years doing some Crossfit off and on but nothing to serious, my conditioning came back really quickly and my lungs started healing better so I tried numerous times reenlisting without much success, my stuff has been sitting at the docs office at meps for the past 3 or 4 months now going no where.

I got a little sick of being a smaller guy though, some confidence issues here and there (im short) so I took up SS and have put on a good amount of weight and strength and have basically been doing that off and on for a little over a year now. I got a little involved with Olympic lifting but without any serious coaching and no training partners it has basically gone nowhere. I actually really enjoy fitness and nutrition so I'm studying to be a trainer and just taking my own initiative.

I'm doing it mostly for fun now, although I am eying the Crossfit games someday and maybe some powerlifting and Olympic lifting competitions over the next few years as well as numerous seminars and certifications.

Jonathan Dunn
01-03-2009, 02:31 PM
Very cool thread!

I grew up in rural Alabama. Not enough other kids around for many team sports, other than basketball, so I hunted, fished, hiked, camped, climbed trees, swam, shot rifles, loosed millions of arrows from homemade and "store bought" bows, bicycled and did some roping off huge (at the time) dirt pits. Not to mention plowing, planting, hoeing and gathering crops, along with cleaning fish and dressing deer and the occasional hog. We really ate paleo way back then, without even knowing it. I did get to play baseball some, but only sporadically. I was yanked from HS football when i made a tackle and ate a shoe, knocking off upper and lower braces, meat-grinding the inside of my mouth and knocking 8 teeth loose. It's bad when the coach turns pale after seeing you stand up with parts dangling out of your mouth!

College was a dream come true for me. Intramural softball, volleyball, basketball, football, soccer....whatever...I played all I could. And I got to lift weights in the Rec Center!!! Way cool. And swim in the Nat (so cool to swim without having to scare off/shoot snakes before jumping in; we won't talk about leeches and where they were found on one's body!). Very cool indeed. I almost want to re-enroll!

Scott Borre
01-06-2009, 12:07 PM
Besides being an avid outdoors person (playing sports with friends, hiking, biking, X-country skiing etc), I mostly played soccer (overall I'd say 10 years). I was very thin, but fast. Fairly decent soccer player. I quit going into junior year of high school. I screwed up. I wasn't in shape going into the season, and it made me hate life. Besides that, I played tennis for several years off and on. I wrestled freshman year, but didn't do well. I

Later years in high school were basically sportsless, but I did run and play recreational tennis. I also was an avid aggressive inline skater. I was in decent shape but not great shape. Camping monthly with the boyscouts gave me lots of time to play outdoors I should have been more active, I regret it now. I skiied a few times a year.

In college I did very little. I'd play intramural sports, and did well, ran a lot, and went to the rec center to lift from time to time. I started Tae Kwan Do, and ended up as a brown belt before no longer having the time available (evening classes got in the way). I raced mountain bikes a couple of times. I think around my 4th year I started to do Body for Life, thinking that that would make me strong. I really didn't care about the bodybuilding figure. I just wanted to be in good shape. I was also climbing a bit in the rec center's indoor gym.

After college, I got more into mountain biking, and long distance running. I also competed in tennis. Going into my professional career age after grad school, I was running a lot trying to get into shape for adventure racing. I got injured and couldn't run for a long while without lots of pain. That was the end of my real activity, other than occasional runs and light workouts. Then I saw 300. I decided that I was weak and pathetic, and had let all my decent (not great, but the ability to just go out and do whatever at a fairly good level) conditioning go away.

I started to research and do a modified-CF at home with no real equipment. Then I went to a CF facility for a few months, until I no longer could keep up the payments. This led me down a heavy path the last few years reading, and researching as much as I could about fitness. I have continued to explore various fitness programs, philosophies, strategies, etc. I now continue to do essentially a modified-CF endurance style workouts (with little equipment other than rings, and a rowing machine), and a lot of bodyweight workouts. I haven't lifted heavy much at all. Its frustrating. But I found an okay gym nearby for $25 a month that I'm going to start going to, so at least I can lift and squat heavy, even though I can't work on many of the olympic lifts. But I need to get things worked on.

Right now I'd say I'm in the best overall condition of my life, but I have a far distance to go to be comfortable. I have no real athletic/competitive endeavors.

Justin Algera
01-06-2009, 01:12 PM
Played soccer and baseball from the age of 5 to HS. Never allowed to play football because I always was over the weight limits for pee-wee leagues, and they wouldnt let me play with the older kids. As soon as I got into HS, played football and made All-State junior and senior year. It was here where I first started lifting weights and we did the Bigger, Faster, Stronger program. Loved weight lifting from the beginning, because 1) I was pretty good at it and 2) was always the strongest in the school, which helps when you are in HS. We were introduced to power cleans but did them completely wrong (although we were taught to squat properly). Was pig headed and stubborn when I graduated and since no Division IA programs recruited me ( I was told I was "too short" by a number of coaches, including Steve Spurrier), eventhough I was offered full rides to UCF, The Citadel, and Cumberland College, I decided to quit. 2 years later walked on to the U of Tennessee where I proceeded to get my ass handed to me on a daily basis. So I quit, partied, got fat, found Crossfit years later, lost over 120 lbs., learned to Oly lift properly (well still in process), then put some more of the weight back on.

Now just trying to find the balance between a good mix of fitness and size while maintaining (and hopefully gaining) strength and increasing my ability to do the Oly lifts without being a big fattie (which I currently am thanks to the holidays).

Kelly Frankson
01-06-2009, 02:22 PM
I was born with crooked legs (needed to wear forest gump type splints as a kid to try and straighten them out) was really chubby and uncoordinated as a kid. My sister was a nationally ranked gymnast, but I only lasted about a week in the sport (coordination issue got in my way :).
Grade 6 I could finally run in a straight line and started playing volleyball, basketball and softball. My parents thing was anything to do with sports they would drive us and pay for, anything unrelated to sports we were on our own. By Grade 8 I was obsessed with basketball and played every day. I was a starting guard but was always known as the kid who "worked really hard" (being 5'3 didnít help my cause much). Grade 10 started playing Netball, Grade 11 had to do cross country as a pre-requisite for being on the basketball team. When I went away for university I started playing Ultimate Frisbee and started an elite touring team when I moved back home. Then I went back to school to do my MBA and stopped doing everything. Was working crazy consulting hours and did nothing and got chubby for a 2 year period and then found crossfit through a friend of a friend.
At first I was terrified of weights, but then became obsessed with crossfit, dropped 20lbs, started putting up some pretty big numbers and began coaching. I went to one of burgeners o-lifting certs so I could learn how to coach it to my clients and Tim Swords recommended that I contact a guy in BC and see what could happen if I trained at it. I started training with an ex Nigerian National team Coach last November, and was planning on training for corssfit games and o-lifting at the same time. In my first olifting meet last January I qualified for Western Canadians and then at Western Canadians qualified for Nationals and decided to focus on o-lifting until after nationals and then I would still have enough time to get my metabolic conditioning back up for the games. 3 days after Nationals, all excited to get back into crossfit, gave myself Rahbdo doing Tabata jumping squats with a 45lb bar and from that point forward decided to focus just on olifting and gave up the idea of doing both. Now I'm all O-lifting all the time and train about 12hrs a week (although I still coach crossfit on the side).

Amy Crawford
01-06-2009, 05:54 PM
I've always been pretty athletic, definitely with some high and low points. I was always the first girl picked on mixed teams, but I wasn't stellar until adulthood (for a bit). Have always been very competitive!

4th & 5th grade ran a little XC, played soccer. 6th - 9th grade soccer, basketball, softball. Had to have major knee surgery 9th grade. Swam & dove all 4 years of high school.

College - varsity beer and bourbon drinker, 2nd team all state with bourbon. Not always a pretty sight!

During my 1 semester of grad school - rugby, still varsity beer drinker (aren't all ruggers?). Still played rugby for a bit afterwards, broke a rib, couldn't play for a while and realized that I was drinking/eating/smoking my life away.

Started running and lifting stupid split routines (about 23 years old). But something was better than nothing and it worked. I became a 20 minute 5K runner and dabbled in personal training, then got in to strength training (working with athletes).

Moved to Vail, CO when I was 26 and bought a mountain bike. I had finally found my sport! I started to race and went from beg to sport to expert in 6 races. We moved back to Virginia, and I was sponsored by a national team. Won a lot of races, won the state title in '98, regionally ranked, etc. Herniated a disc in my back, still rode, but didn't have the time to train to perform at races as I liked. Continued to dabble in weights this entire time.

Exercised through 2 pregnancies, staying pretty damn fit.

I was turned on to CF a couple of years ago. Liked it then, love it now. I like to dabble in the Olifts, but training alone at my own affiliate, it's hard to coach myself with my limited knowledge. Thinking about training for the CF regional qualifiers, with no expectations that I'll make the cut. But if, my divine intervention, I do, that's what I'll do.

Kisholi Mendis
01-06-2009, 10:04 PM
I was an incredibly nerdy, unathletic kid.

Glad to hear I'm not the only one, Emily!

I was very chubby and wore thick, nerdy glasses till I was 17 (yay for contact lenses!). Although I was definitely nonathletic (except for excellent flexibility, regardless of the chub), I always loved sports and physical stuff of any kind. I was always the kid running at the end of the pack but probably the kid who was making the greatest effort as well. My parents were always more interested in my academics so I usually ended up sacrificing sports for studies.

Anyway, I did play defense on the school basketball team; I was big and could shove people around so that worked out alright. I was taken for swimming lessons but somehow never learned to breathe properly so that eventually fell by the wayside. Played table tennis seriously for about six months but again, some exam thing came up and I dropped it. I remember looking forward to holidays which involved some hiking and climbing in the outdoors.

Having started my first job, I scrounged up enough money for a gym membership and that's when things started changing, albeit very slowly. I was initially put on a cardio-heavy, machine-heavy, 20 rep / 2 set weight programme (yes, I still keep a copy to remind myself how far I've come).

Anyway, the internet has been great. I'm mainly self-taught when it comes to strength training. The average gym-goer in my country thinks I'm mad to even squat and bench, so you can imagine how they react when I do cleans. My gym has no squat rack so I have to clean the weight I want to squat with.

Recently I took some boxing lessons and a few months of karate. Also hired a coach to teach me to swim. I have fantasies about someone opening a CrossFit type gym over here but that will probably take another ten years. Anyway, at the ripe old age of 28, I'm just about starting to feel like an athlete :D

Great thread!

Thomas Bailly
01-07-2009, 10:51 AM
5 to 18years old :soccer
7 to present :running, all trails and mountains, no roads.
7 to 10 :judo
11 to 16 :BMX all day long, all of the time
teens,discovered skiing,heavy beer drinking and got into Muay Thai for a couple of years
20's to present : surfing and rockclimbing
past 15 years: backcountry skiing,mountain running, mountain biking and climbing are my mainstays.
2007:Gym Jones inspired me to work on my weakness' :strength+power hence CF and CA

Andrew Ager
01-08-2009, 08:02 AM
I was a pretty non-athletic kid, aside from normal running about and playing. Hated kickball (picked last!), but rather enjoyed tetherball.

Started track as a thrower in 7th and 8th grade, then stopped. Started running cross-country as a sophomore in high school, and continued through college, adding steeplechase and javelin back in for outdoor track season. I sucked at all three events (although my final season of XC wound up being my best one, at least).

A knee injury my sophomore year of college dogged me for years after, and eventually I just canned the running. I started lifting weights, mainly free weights, with a buddy senior year, and got a little more into it in grad school, bulking up from 175 to 200 lbs on the "lift heavy and drink a lotta beer" plan. Also started riding a bike again more seriously (I had dabbled in cycling in HS).

Became a bike commuter, and hit the gym regularly while working, although I endlessly did progress-free machine routines.

On-and-off with the machines for years, then after another move, I did nothing regularly (occasional day or 5 of running, occasional short bike rides, hiking) for a few years. Now I work at a college, and I did a "core fitness" class for like a year, just because it was different from what I had been doing. Got bored, had one of the trainers devise a program for me. That was OK for a few months, but again, all machines, almost no progress. Casting about for something else to do last spring, I stumbled into reading about 5x5 programs, which led me to SS, which led me to stumble on Crossfit.

Did SS over the last summer through September, took October off (new baby), and started Crossfit 4 times a week after I got back to work the last week of October, through the last 2 weeks. Pure CF was pretty fun, but I missed doing the strength stuff a lot, and wanted to work on Oly lifts as well ... so I'm kicking off Gant's hybrid beginner template on Monday.

I'm really just interested in being reasonably strong and lean, with a longer-term goal of getting back to a bit of running as well (POSE-like to ease life for my knees). Kind of vague, but combining the fun(hellish) metcon pieces of CF with the fun(brutal) strength/power moves of SS and Oly lifting -- and the gymnastics pieces, which I'm really interested in as well -- has made going to the gym really, really fun again, which can't possibly hurt.

Michael Drew
01-15-2009, 05:59 AM
Soccer 7- 22

Golf 13 - 29 (Present)

Skiing 7 - 29 (Present)

Baseball 7 - 14

Corporate (Ski) Race Leagues 23 - Present

Golf Leagues 22 - Present

Bought my first home gym when I was 13 with my own money. Broke my back when I was 16 playing soccer.

Craig Brown
01-15-2009, 09:04 AM
Scott at Level 4 in Seattle asked my this, and I told him that I played the bong and the Thin Lizzy when I was in school. True.

Totattly unathletic until about 30, then got into weight training, a brief bit of boxing, got injured, statred running, moved to the mountains, started long distance trail running (up to 30+ miles in the mountains), hurt my foot, started skateboarding in the lovely AZ skateparks, moved to Seattle, found CrossFit, kettlebells...recurring injuries have me knee-deep in Hatha Yoga and I keep at the lifting via the KBs, rings, sandbags, shot puts, and clubs.

Still don't play sports. Could conceivably do a GS comp someday, but that's about it.


Matthieu Hertilus
05-24-2009, 07:01 PM
Just browsing around the forum and I saw this post. I think it should start gaining some steam again.

No sports in high school.
Cheerleader in college senior year.
Started lifting weights my freshman yr in college
Been focused on Olympic Weightlifting since February
170lbs BW: 405 deadlift, 405 back squat, 275 front squat, 225 clean & jerk, 155 snatch

James Bailey
05-25-2009, 03:29 PM
I didn't do too much outside of sport at school, tennis, football, cross country shit...till I was about 12 then did judo for a while and karate. Then got into other martial arts at about 16, muay thai, krav maga and kali mostly...did that for a bit then dropped it around 18 just kept up running and a little bodyweight conditioning until 22 when I discovered crossfit and did that not very seriously for about a year till I herniated two lumbar discs with a combitation of snowboarding and deadlifting.

Now I've been back to training for about 4 months properly and am concentrating on oly lifting, hoping to compete this year. Just getting stronger and fitter, still do some metcon and gymnastics work but am mostly lifting, occaisional sprints...

Jon Brody
05-25-2009, 04:23 PM
Always played competitive sports as a kid -- lacrosse, football, tennis...in high-school I committed to tennis, was recruited by colleges, etc. If I didn't drop out of school I prolly would have made an attempt at playing professionally.

I also took up boxing and muay-thai around these years, and as I gradually burned out of tennis spent more and more time on that. Had a couple of boxing matches and one MT. Got hooked on combat sports.

Aside from actual skill training my background in GPP and strength and what-not is pretty limited, if not horrible. Some basic bodybuilding shit @ globos with friends....5 months ago I started lifting with more intensity, and then ~40days ago found this site and started some pretty legit programming.

I dabbled in BJJ, took to it well, and am going to start integrating that as my sport of choice. Building around it I'm looking to mix in oly, PL, gymnastics and heavy metcon work.

Brian Solar
05-25-2009, 06:32 PM
Crossfit and SS, on and off, Ages 15-16

Crossfit Strength Bias, Age 16-present

Had a bar, dumbbells, iron weights and a jump rope when I started. Made a pull up bar, med ball, rings, parallettes, GHD, and a 400m track. Bought a steel power rack($100) off craigslist, and still need to buy a new bar with bumpers($570), and a Concept 2 off craigslist(will probably have to watch for months).

05-25-2009, 09:15 PM
cross country
track and field
scottish highland games
grip specialization
Olympic weightlifting

those are listed in rough order of importance, not chronological. my three main sports have been wrestling, powerlifting, and Olympic weightlifting. there also may have been some things i've forgotten. my memory isnt what it used to be.


Sam Nutt
05-26-2009, 04:30 PM
I swam in high school and college, then gave it up to focus on drinking. I then devolved into a total meathead, doing nothing but bench presses, curls, and everything else that targets the beach muscles. CF came along in '07, where I was introduced into the Olympic lifts. They've been my sole focus for a couple months now.

John Filippini
06-03-2009, 02:10 PM
Another one for being extremely nonathletic as a kid - somewhere along the line with my parents hating football and my idolized older brother being a science nerd, I sort of got the "jocks are the devil" mindset early on.

The only two sources of regular physical activity I had as a kid were a lot of backpacking trips as a kid in Scouts and a lot of Ultimate Frisbee senior year of high school. Not particularly good with ultimate, but it was fun and for the majority of senior year I was playing something like 3 hours/day, 5 days/week. After I left, the group my friends had started actually turned into an official team and then a local league a few years later, which I'm mildly proud of.

I dabbled with going to the gym through college, but really didn't know what I was doing so I didn't stick with it. Sometime late junior year of college I started going to the gym with a couple of friends, doing split routines for the most part. I may have started because the girl of the two started to make me feel embarrassingly weak.

After that, started CF'ing at the end of senior year, moderately consistently for about a year I think. Found an oly lifting team downtown that I started lifting with for technique help for CF. Dabbled in Oto's hybrid program for a bit, which I liked for the increased focus on both barbell and gymnastic strength.

In November or so I decided that there was too much skill training to be done on both weightlifting and gymnastics to be able to be happy with my progress doing both at once, and decided to try doing 6-month splits between them, starting with weightlifting since the oly team was so convenient.

Now 8 months later I've decided to focus entirely on weightlifting because my gains have been too fast for me to walk away from. Going from a total of 127kg in July of last year to hopefully 190kg by the end of the month is just too exciting to walk away from. I'll likely return to something like my split idea when I finally start to slow down my progress in weightlifting.

Emily Mattes
06-03-2009, 05:07 PM
I may have started because the girl of the two started to make me feel embarrassingly weak.

It's my patented "Over The Top" inspiration scheme!

Dave Lemanczyk
08-16-2009, 09:55 AM
High School Football, Baseball, & Basketball
College Basketball
Professional Basketball (Overseas)

Nowadays I stick to lifetime sports like tennis, golf, frisbee, and I like to run long distance (3-13 miles) for cardio. It feels good to work hard but especially to know that I can do so on MY schedule instead of a coach's. Just yesterday, I was talking to an ex-college teammate about the battering our bodies took. The gist of the conversation was that it feels amazing to train and actually be able to recover. Sometimes coaches forget about the whole recovery thing. :)

Brandon Oto
08-16-2009, 11:40 AM
I swam in high school and college, then gave it up to focus on drinking.


My background's Allison Stokke in 1280x800.