June Athlete of the Month- Meredith H.

Name:    Meredith Holland        Age: 34   From:  Santa Cruz, CA (Where CrossFit started!)

How long have you been with CrossFit Torrent and what made you decide to start?

I signed up as soon as I could, which was back in April or May of 2018.  My first WOD was I think the first class that was offered. I think Michelle Polson even convinced me to come to the 5am class that day.  I started at Torrent because I wanted a gym with awesome coaching and I wanted to follow Callie to Torrent as well.

What do you do when you’re not at CFT?

I do a variety of things mostly related to work and school.  I’m trying to finish up my PhD at Western in Psychology. I currently work with special needs children as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.  I’ve also taught at Western and KVCC and hope to get a full-time faculty job in the near future.


When did you realize that CrossFit is right for you?

I think I first heard about CrossFit from a work friend back in 2009, long before it was really a thing.  It sounded really fun, but I was dealing with a chronic pain issue and I didn’t think that I could handle a workout.  Fast forward to 2015 and I tried CF at a few different boxes, but really fell in love with a local box in Santa Cruz (CrossFit UP) and was hooked.  I loved the people, the encouragement of the community, and toughness of the workouts. I was a rower in high school and I really loved how CrossFit reminded me of being on a team and working towards a common goal.  Now at Torrent, I love my gym family and look forward to each and every workout. I love to see my friends succeed and improve.

What were your thoughts after your first WOD?

I don’t really remember my first WOD, but I do remember my fundamentals workout.  I did fundamentals at a box in Turlock, CA and it was just me and the coach. I think it was an 8min AMRAP and it maybe had air squats and rowing in it.  What I remember is how I felt like I was dying immediately and the next day I could hardly walk. I think the first WOD I actually did was in 100F weather and I kept thinking, “why am I doing this?”

54798694_1209493935879790_2785093022222647296_nWhat is your favorite or least favorite WOD/movement?

I basically refuse to do a handstand.  It scares the crap out of me. I HATE wall walks too because it is basically a handstand.  I love a lot of the movements we do, but my favorite barbell movement is probably the power clean.

What is the one thing you have done at CFT that you never thought you would do?

I literally never thought I would ever run again. I’ve been dealing with chronic knee pain since I was 16 and chronic whole body pain since I was 23.  So for me even doing CrossFit is a major goal I never thought I would accomplish. I remember telling Callie that running was never going to happen. I’m so glad she figured out what I was doing wrong and got me running.  I will forever be indebted to her for that.

What motivates you during a tough workout?

Seeing everyone else suffering, hearing people cheer me on, and trying to beat Michelle Polson or any of the other ladies that I feel like I can ‘chase’.  I often lose though, but it helps keep me going.

unnamed.jpgWhat’s your favorite thing about CrossFit?

The people.  I tell my friends all the time that if I didn’t do CrossFit I would never workout.  But because of our awesome community, I will get up at 4:15am and come workout. I will run outside when it is snowing.  I will push myself to do things I don’t want to do. I keep coming back for the people and our awesome coaches.

What are your short term and long term goals?

Long-term is just to keep coming every day and keep improving.  Short-term is I really want to hit the RX button a bit more often.  I’d also like to get a body-weight back squat and a strict pull-up. That would be cool.

How have you seen yourself change- mentally and physically since joining Torrent? What impact has CFT had on you in and out of the gym?

Physically I dropped 10 pounds rather fast after joining CFT.  I also have improved SO MUCH on all my lifts thanks to the focus on moving well.  I love that the coaches care more about how well we move as opposed to how much we move.  That had made a world of difference for me.

Mentally I think the biggest impact that CFT has had on me is that I don’t hate living in Michigan as much.  Having a great gym community has really made me like my Michigan life a lot more. Moving here from California was initially really, really tough.

Do you have any advice for people just getting started at CFT?

Listen to the coaches.  Don’t argue with them, just say yes and thank you.  Come every day. Eat real food. And always smile during a workout.

1-2Quick Questions

Favorite Cheat Meal: Pie

Favorite Musician/Band: Don’t really have one

Favorite Sports Team: Do CrossFit people count?

Favorite Tv Show/ Movie:  Parks and Rec & 30 Rock

Favorite CrossFit Athlete: The Canadians! Vellner and Fikowski

Coach’s comment:

There is a lot we could say about Meredith but we decided to focus on her willingness to learn and get better. She is truly a student of the sport! She knows her abilities well and stays in her lane. She knows that doing the movements correctly, trying to beat herself, and be better than she was yesterday is what will make her a better overall athlete.  She has a positive mentality and even when she doesn’t think she can do something she listens to her coach’s advice and surprises herself! She is supportive of fellow athletes and is the first person to encourage someone who is struggling.  She shares her “smarticle particles” with us as Morgan says. Really, she helps us improve as coaches by sending athlete psychology our way.  Oh, and also she is always smiling, even on the assault bike, OHS or anything else challenging. 😀 Congratulations Meredith! We appreciate you!

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