I used to think one of the hardest things to do in life was to become fit and live healthy. I would go to the gym, play basketball and eat what I thought wasn’t too bad. I have always been the big kid, big teenager and big adult. I felt I was destined to stay like that way forever with no looking back. The last straw came when I saw a picture of myself and was disappointed in what I had become. I had never disliked myself like that until that moment. Getting up off the floor while playing with my daughter was laborious and as much as I loved playing with her it became tiring. I never wanted to feel like that ever again. I tried out a boot camp where they would push and push you. The small group of boot campers were delegated outside of the gym where all the machines and fit people where and ran laps around the parking lot. It came to a point where as I ran around the lot I got in my car and left…on my first day.
Months later, I heard a friend talk about CrossFit and how it they are doing pull-ups after never being able to and a pull-up is something that I’ve never been able to do but always wanted to. I looked up CrossFit online and found CrossFit Forest. On a Saturday afternoon after lunch I decided to just drive by to see where it was and if I could look inside the window hoping it would be closed so no one would see me. As I got there and took a peek inside Pete was there waiving me in. I had a couple of questions as to what CrossFit was and he just said, “you’re here, just give it a shot now”. I then went through some basic movements like push-ups, sit-ups, squats and ring rows, all of which i had tremendous trouble with. I left the gym, dry heaved in the parking lot and slept for the next 3 hours. I took a leap of faith and signed up the next day.
Almost three years later, I’ve gone from dreaded going to the gym for the WOD to looking forward to it daily no matter how difficult it may be. I’ve lost around 50 pounds but more importantly I’ve ditched the scale and base my results on how I feel. CrossFit Forest has not only given me a new healthier life but a support group in addition to my wife to help me be the best person I could be. Not only with pushing and advice on workouts but with teaching me about food that is more healthy and delicious that I ever thought possible. I feel better than I’ve ever felt in my life. I’m happier, I have more energy, I walk upright and with a purpose. I can finally do pull-ups for the first time in my life and I can now get up off the floor with my daughters with ease. Everything I had known has been flipped. As I had found it difficult to live and become fit and healthy, it is now my basic way of life.
All CrossFit gyms are different and they all have different personalities. CrossFit Forest has become a second home to me and so many other athletes who I suffer and laugh with daily. It is a welcoming place that helps me achieve things that I never thought possible. I owe a debt of gratitude to the coaches Pete, Heath, Martin, Skye, Kevin, David and all of the other athletes as CrossFit Forest. The community everyone has helped build here is one of the best things I’ve ever witnessed.
- Paul Maglalang