Ruth started CrossFit at ChalkBox in March 2017 and has made a lot of progress. She has since joined some online CrossFit competitions and will do her first "real" competition this year. Especially our Barbell Coach is super proud of the progress Ruth has been making. She turns up every session with a smile on her face and gives it her best.
We have asked Ruth some questions and this is what she answered:
What activities did you do before you started CrossFit?
About 3 years ago I took a picture of myself trying on a dress in a changing room. It was the start of a change, I hired a PT who measured me and I was 40% fat which completely startled me as I just hadn't had time to notice what was happening to me. I got started going to the gym, a normal gym at first just getting moving, at first I had to overcome old injuries before I could really get started. It was a really slow change but I slowly built confidence and a little fitness!
Why did you start CrossFit?
On a trip to Gibraltar for work a couple of years ago I was chatting to a colleague and she mentioned she did CrossFit. She told me all about it and how she did competitions and encouraged me to give it a go. I tried to forget about it but her enthusiasm and watching the 2015 games was infectious. I decided I would give it a go at a free session near where I worked.
Whilst it got me started I new it wasn't quite the right Box and I started looking a bit closer to home. When I found Chalkbox I knew it was the right place. Everyone was really supportive and friendly and I felt at home really quickly.
How was your first session?
Hard, really hard, but exhilarating. As a woman CrossFit challenges you to do what stereotypes tell you can't or shouldn't be able to do. I loved (and still love) that challenge. My first WOD was Fran!
What is the hardest bit of CrossFit for you? And what do you enjoy the most?
The hardest part is learning new skills. I'm a slow learner so it takes me a while to build the muscle memory needed to get the more complex techniques right. Strangely what is hardest is what I love most. I love learning new skills, the ability to do something you couldn't do before and now you can because you worked hard and challenged yourself is an amazing feeling.
How do your friends and family see your new love for CrossFit ?
I think they see how much more confident I am in myself. At the last family party I got told I look "buff" a lot and still not quite sure how to take that!
What is your best memory within the Box?
That's a really hard question because there are so many. I love doing the team WODs and they are always memorable. I love it when my team partner achieves more than they thought they could, and if I can help with that through encouragement then I will try!
But I have to go to one of my early Barbell sessions... I think probably only my second or third. We were doing a deadlift, clean, front Squat, Push Press, jerk complex (which probably has a name!) and I was working by myself on the bar, minding my own business when I realised half way through the complex the whole class was watching me. I absolutely hate being the centre of attention so this was suddenly my worst nightmare but slightly dangerous and with weight attached. It came to the jerk (which I'd probably learnt the week before) and I realised I just had to go for it. Somehow I got the lift and the whole class cheered me on. It was my first real community experience that I can remember and it made me realise what a special place Chalkbox is.
What is changed for you since you started CrossFit?
For me it is my confidence. Since I started CrossFit I have already achieved what I never would have believed a few years ago. In my mind if I can do a pull up (and that has taken a long long time to do!) then everything else in life is conquerable!
Ruth you are a joy to have in the sessions and we can't wait to cheer you on in the Tribal Clash competition this year!
Keep it going!!!!