CrossFit Community

29 Mar



Why join a CrossFit Box? The term CrossFit is popping up everywhere lately over Midwest Michigan. What is CrossFit? The most basic definition of CrossFit is “The sport of fitness” (Glassman, 2000). This leads to the question, “What is fitness?” Fitness is “The ability to carry out daily tasks (work and play) with vigor and alertness, without undue fatigue and with ample energy to enjoy leisure-time pursuits…” (Clarke 1976). CrossFit training encompasses everything from metabolic conditioning, plyometrics, Olympic weightlifting, powerlifting, gymnastics, and interval training. One thing both novice and experienced CrossFitters know is that this sport will challenge you both physically and mentally every day. It takes someone with intrinsic self-discipline and motivation to push through their limits everyday. Which is why CrossFit Affiliates are important. Affiliates at their core are communities of people who challenge one another and keep each other accountable, all the while helping and encouraging each other to be the best version of themselves.

CrossFit Lake Effect is a CrossFit gym in Holland, Michigan that just celebrated its first anniversary on March 28th, 2014. Within that year, Paul Burkert (owner of CFLE) has grown his Affiliate into more than just a gym. He’s grown it into a family. In its humble beginnings, Paul had two members, his best friend, and Andy Sturgeon. Andy came to CrossFit weighing over 300 pounds. He had never worked out before in his life, and was apprehensive, like many first timers, of what this CrossFit thing was all about. Looking at Andy now, you’d never have guessed that he was overweight. He’s shed over 90 pounds in his first year of Crossfit. He’s gone from not being able to hang on a pull up bar, to being able to do full pull ups, from never running, to running a mile in under 9 minutes, from never lifting weights, to Olympic weightlifting. And through it all, Andy has shown up everyday, ready to work, wearing his best smile. You’ve never seen someone as determined, kind hearted, and encouraging as Andy Sturgeon…that is, except for his mother.

Alyce Sturgeon is another of Paul’s first members. She’s known around the gym as the encourager. Andy definitely gets his no-quit attitude from his Momma. She is living proof that you can accomplish whatever you set your mind to. Both Andy and Alyce competed in the recent 2014 CrossFit Open and watching them for even one minute you can tell there is no quit in that family.

Not only do Andy and Alyce do their best everyday, but they also bring out the best in others. Alyce and Andy are the first people to high five a member after a grueling workout, the first to cheer others on -often staying after their own classes to watch other members and encourage them. They are the first to greet you at the door with a wide smile, and a “How ya doin’ today?” They’re the first to listen, the last to judge, and the first to give you a hug when you’re upset. Andy and Alyce are the epitome of the CrossFit spirit.

What sets CrossFit gyms apart from traditional gyms is this sense of family. The workouts are challenging, but CrossFitters know that we’re all in this together, and we’re not going to give up on each other. CrossFit Lake Effect is a gym that builds others up, helps athletes conquer their weaknesses, celebrate strengths, and grows each other physically and mentally. At CrossFit Lake Effect, Paul Burkert and his trained coaches work hard to ensure that all members are safe, being challenged, and see results. Athletes come to CFLE for a great workout, and stay for the community. CrossFit isn’t easy, but as Alyce and Andy can attest to, “Nothing worth having ever comes easy.”

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Andy pre CrossFit in March 2013, and now March 2014

Alyce in the 14.5 Open

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