I first discovered CrossFit online in 2010. After slowly learning more about it, I decided to give it a try about a year later. A friend introduced me to the movements and put me through basic workouts for a few months leading up to my first year at Notre Dame. When I got to ND, I did a quick Google search for gyms in the area but decided I would just workout on campus. I met Sarah Connors when I commented on her Nanos one day in the dining hall, and she told me about CFSB. She ended up taking me for my first visit (as well as nearly every day for the rest of the year).
Being a total CrossFit nerd, I thought CFSB was the coolest place ever when I first arrived. I was so pumped to finally use rings, bumper plates, sandbags, and all the other things I had only seen on YouTube videos. I laugh now because the gym has nearly tripled since then, but I love that I can be considered an “OG member”. Back when there were only 3 Oly bars I used to camp out by the wall racks during the warm ups. And I still have nightmares about what might have happened to you if you accidentally stepped on that Jiu-Jitsu mat with your shoes on. It’s been so nice to see the size of the gym, amount of equipment, and number of members grow over the years. The gym has always had a very comfortable and positive atmosphere, which must be the reason why I always perform my best at CFSB.
My first big accomplishment took place during my first CrossFit Open. One of the Open workouts involved an ascending snatch ladder—30 reps at 75, 135, 165, and 210lbs. I had just hit 130 for my 1RM snatch a few days before trying this workout. My goal was to get 1 rep at 135. After missing my first attempt, a group of members and coaches started cheering for me and giving tips. Thanks to their encouragement, I ended up getting 14 reps at 135.
What accomplishment am I working towards now? Being elite?? Not. I don’t have many specific goals at the moment… I’ve just been enjoying working out with friends and having fun with my training. I’m trying to focus more on the basics (mobility, squatting mechanics, etc.) and not worry too much about numbers.
The community of members and coaches is definitely my favorite aspect of CFSB. I don’t think I could’ve made it through Notre Dame without this place. Many times, going to the gym was the only highlight of my day. The workouts were a great way to clear my mind and have some fun with other like-minded people. I never really had a college social group, so I was happy to have found one at CFSB. It’s been great getting to know the CFSB family both inside and outside of the gym. Missing everyone already!