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Change…for the better.

Let me start by saying I weigh as much now as I did when I was in sixth grade!  Yes, that sounds just as crazy to me as it does you.  I love sports and was always active in my youth playing sports like baseball, basketball and soccer.  So, I guess my first AH HA moment came when I tried out for the high school soccer team and did not make it.  It was not because of my skills because I was told I was good.  It was because I couldn’t run the mile in under the “x”  number of minutes that was needed to be considered for the team and believe me it was something ridiculous like 12-15 minutes.  After enduring names like King Chub Sloth and Telechubby for years, not making the team and finally topping out at over 200lbs on my short frame, something finally clicked and I realized it was time for a change.

I started going to the gym, first to the YMCA, then Bally’s, Gold’s, back to the YMCA, we all remember the drill.  Just your typical globo-gyms and I started with the typical globo-gym workout of alternating days between the treadmill and the elliptical and, of course, ending with some abs.  At first, it was amazing, it was all working and over the first couple years I lost about 30lbs.  But then…. the plateaus came and working out became tedious and boring.  As the years past I ventured into the weights section, first the stationary machines and then the Hammer Strength machines.  I was now doing cool things like bicep curls and leg extensions!!  Finally, I entered the big boys club and started in on the free weights.  Mirrors, plates, bars, cables… oh, the sights and sounds… it was intoxicating!  That’s when I became addicted to working out and have not stopped since. One reason I continue is I love challenging myself and the feeling of satisfaction that working out gives me.  And secondly, I have no choice.  I understand that my weight will be a lifelong battle and in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle working out is mandatory.  It also doesn’t hurt knowing I have a congenital heart condition and staying fit, active and healthy can only pay dividends long into my future.

I came to Ultimate by chance and ultimately stayed because of my love of working out.  When I moved here from Cincinnati last June to the apartments across the street, every so often I’d see a bunch of people working out in the parking lot doing crazy things and decided to check it out.  It sure looked like a lot of “fun” from afar.  I had never heard of CrossFit before I started here but after my first visit I was hooked.  While I lost most of my weight before coming here, CrossFit has helped me come full circle from not just losing weight and gaining muscle but by improving my all-around athleticism, skills and diet.  The challenging and addicting nature of each and every workout has helped me reach goals I never even dreamed of.  I had never done squats, Olympic lifts or even thought about gymnastic type movements. Since I’ve joined Ultimate the more I’ve learned the more it all makes sense, like cutting calories and dieting was something I did to lose weight but it wasn’t helping me to be healthy just skinny.  I’ve learned that you need to make nutritional lifestyle changes along with the exercise to improve performance. All this information has really improved my overall health, appearance and abilities. The camaraderie and exercise is amazing at Ultimate but the tight-knit support system is what keeps me coming back. Making friends, having the encouragement to push yourself and everybody aiming for the same common goal can make even the toughest workouts fun.

I’m now working on getting my certification, not just to improve my CrossFit fundamentals but also in hopes of becoming a trainer and give back some of the knowledge and encouragement I’ve received over the years.  With any luck, one day I can get out from behind this desk and do something I love in life.  When I see pictures of myself then and now, it’s still hard to believe how far I’ve come from what I once looked like, many people don’t believe it.  It’s been quite a journey all these years and I plan to continue for the years to come.  My workouts are my obligations to life. They are my sanity. I’m proud to say Ultimate CrossFit has helped me to find total balance in my life, my box away from home.

Name: Boone Duwel
How long coming to CrossFit: 1 year
Average # of visits a week: 4-5x
Favorite CrossFit workout: CF Total, ain’t no party like a PR party
Least Favorite CrossFit workout: Double Unders, my archnemesis
Biggest CrossFit Accomplishment: Multiple Muscle-Ups
Personal CrossFit goal for the next 12 months: Beat last years FGB total (199 reps)
Who at the gym you most admire: Everybody.  Everyone has their strengths and it’s great getting to watch someone different every workout just crush it and give you some thing to aim for next time.
Favorite workout jam: Till I Collapse by Eminem
The slogan you would put on a Crossfit t-shirt: Harder. Better. Faster. Stronger. (see: Daft Punk)

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