Congratulations to Natalie Wilson for being named the August Athlete of the Month. Natalie has shown amazing progress since we have met her. Her improvement comes from being consistent in the gym, being a hard worker, putting in extra work in areas she wants to improve in, and implementing more than the gym to her lifestyle to live a healthier life. Thank you Natalie for being a great role model to all of us.
Please tell us about yourself. I am 51 years old. My husband Steve, and I, have a combined family of 6 children and 7 grandchildren. I am a hemp farmer and am currently enrolled in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and training to be a Health Coach.
When did you become a member at Defiance West? I joined Defiance West in March of 2018.
What made you join Defiance West and why do you do it now? I joined Defiance West because my husband kept encouraging me to try Crossfit. He had been doing Crossfit for two years prior at another gym and loved it and thought it would be a great fit for me. He was right! I do it now on a regular basis because I love the way it has strengthened my body, my mind and social connections.
What were your thoughts after your first workout? When I attended my first class at Defiance West and I watched the other members working out I thought to myself, "Wow! I'm really out of my league here. These people are seriously talented amateur athletes!".
What is your athletic background? I did not play sports at all in school. When I was in my 20's I did weightlifting and body building. In my 30's I started running and did several 5K's and 10K's. In my 40's I started running half marathons and by 45 I had ran 3 full marathons. In my 3rd marathon I qualified for The Boston Marathon. During training for Boston after that qualifier, I got a very painful hip injury and stopped doing long distance running completely. For the next 5 years, I set up a home gym and combined weight training with yoga to rehabilitate my hip.
What is your favorite movement or workout? My favorite movements are the gymnastic movements on the bar and anything that has to do with shoulder work. Probably because these are my strengths and I very much enjoy doing them!
What is your least favorite? My least favorite activity is spelled the B-I-K-E. I try not to say that word outloud.
What has been your favorite or proudest moment since joining? My favorite moment was participating in the Open. I was very proud to realize the progress I had made at that point!
How has Defiance West changed your life, lifestyle, and level of fitness? Defiance West has given me great confidence as I now see what I am actually capable of physically. It's made me realize that I can get stronger and more physically fit as I age if I put in the effort consistently with workouts and diet. Having Cierra coach me on food has taught me a great deal about what sort of nutrition my body actually needs to perform at its highest level. I now eat according to my own bio-individual needs and I feel very energized all the time! I'm so grateful she helped me dial in my diet. I feel like my level of fitness is better than ever because Crossfit has improved my diet, my endurance and stamina as well as strengthened my muscular system. I feel like the most significant change that Defiance West has made in my life is the new and amazing connections I have made with the coaches and other members of the gym. I appreciate so much the sense of community and all of the encouraging words and inspiration that I get from everyone. I look forward to every workout for the physical benefits and the sense of belonging to something so incredible!
What are your fitness goals for this year? My fitness goals this year are to run a few races and I would like to participate in the Festivus Games in September. I would also like to see improvement when I participate in the next Open.
What is something most people don’t know about you? I get really geeked out studying Bio-regulatory Medicine. I use several bio-hacks on a regular basis that activate my body's own systems to improve performance in the gym, overall health and wellness and longevity.
What advice would you give to people looking to get started at our gym? Don't be intimidated. You're never to old or too out of shape to try Crossfit. Defiance West is a fantastic community to be a part of and full of incredible people that will support you, encourage you and celebrate with you as you realize your own potential!