First of all, I’d like to take a second and say, “Welcome home, Justin!! Thanks for your service!”(he just got back from a 6+ month Naval deployment). And I’d also like to say, “Elle, you rock! Thanks for all that you do for CrossFit Hillcrest.” For those of you who don’t know, Elle is a never ending source of niceness for our little box. Whether it’s coming up with amazing, excellent ideas for social events or for increasing membership, or providing birthday doughnuts (or random breakfast treats) for our trainers, Elle does it all. She is one of the most thoughtful, conscientious individuals I know, and CrossFit Hillcrest is a much, much better place because she’s a member. If you want to experience all of that, just come to some early morning classes and experience the energy for yourself! Ok, now I’ll get out of the way and let you read all about Elle and Justin.
1. Give us a little background on yourselves, as much or as little as you’d like to share (age, where you’re from, what you do for a “living”, etc.).
We relocated to San Diego in March of 2015, after I (Justin) got orders out here from Jacksonville, Florida. I am originally from a farm town in Indiana; Elle is originally from New Smyrna Beach, FL. I am a Helicopter Aircrewman in Navy H-60s, and a Rescue Swimmer. Elle studied Elementary Education in school and works as a Physician’s Administrative Assistant at Rady’s Children’s Hospital in San Diego. We met in 2009, and were married in 2012.
2. What hobbies or interests (other than CrossFit) do you have?
We both love to be outdoors, so hiking and camping are some of our most loved hobbies. I like to hunt and fish as well, and Elle grew up surfing in FL (I could never get the hang of it…) [Florida surfing is HARD!]. We were blown away by all of the available hiking and camping on the West Coast, and we are planning to make some trips after I return from my deployment to see Yellowstone, the Sierras, the Lost Coast, and out to visit family in Colorado. We also enjoy a lazy Sunday every now and then just spending time together with Regin, our dog, on the couch. He’s a senior citizen, so he appreciates the down time to get extra attention on the couch! [We all appreciate down time on the couch…or maybe I’m just a senior citizen myself?]
3. What got you interested in CrossFit? Why do you do it (i.e., what are your health goals)?
We had been interested in CrossFit while we were in Jax, but we had always just done workouts with a coach on the base at Mayport. We had never been members of an official box before. Once we settled in to the community of Hillcrest/North Park, we began to look for a gym to join. After making some calls and dropping into a few of the boxes around San Diego, we came to one of the Saturday morning WODs at CFHC and had a blast doing the workout and meeting everyone, and we decided to join. We really like going to the 5:30am class, because it gets us amped up and ready for our work days [is THAT why people come to the morning classes???], but we also try to come to Barbell class whenever there’s room (coach Virginia is just awesome) and Saturday hero/partner workouts as well!
4. What’s your favorite CrossFit exercise? What’s your least favorite?
Out of all of the movements that CrossFit trains, I would have to say the Olympic lifts are among my favorite. I’m a big fan of playing to my (limited) strengths, so I like squats and deadlifts. Elle loves slam balls [I knew there was at least ONE person out there] and Handstand Push-ups. My least favorite exercise is without a doubt running. I have never enjoyed it. Elle’s least favorite exercise would probably be box jumps and GHD sit-ups as she said she always feels like “she’s going to die.”
5. What do you like the most about being a member of CrossFit Hillcrest?
What we like the most about CrossFit Hillcrest is most definitely the other members and coaches. The CrossFit community is a strong and close one anywhere, but it seems even more at CFHC. We’ve met so many great people and have had many fun times out and about with everyone after an awesome partner WOD on a Saturday. From the very start, the other members have been nothing but supportive and encouraging, and the coaches are always there to help you improve and push through to the next rep or round. We don’t feel like we have to drag ourselves out of bed in the mornings to go and grind at some warehouse where nobody talks to each other, we feel like we get to wake up early and hang out with friends before we head in to work. The fitness is just a pleasant side effect of fellowship for us. [You just captured the essence of what we’re trying to provide at our box!]
6. Any other comments you’d like to share with our members?
I would just like to personally say how excited I am to get back into town in order to get back to the box. Deployed folks have a lot to miss when they are away, and apart from the obvious, it really says something about CFHC when I say that I have honestly missed coming to do the WOD and getting to hang out with great people. I’m looking forward to getting back in there with everyone and getting to work! Elle would just like to tell other members that it’s not going to be easy at first and it is okay if you don’t get movements right away. The coaches are so great and patient, that even if it takes you 2 weeks, or in my case rather 2 months, to get what they are saying, especially Coach Dan, you’ll get it! And, when you do get it, it makes the struggle that much more worth it.
Thanks to both of you for taking the time to let us know more about yourselves, and thanks for being cornerstone members of CrossFit Hillcrest!