“Every gym has one of these guys and at CFED, we have Roy. The guy that doesn’t back down from a challenge, even though everyone knows he’s in over his head. Roy doesn’t care about what you think though, he’s that confident in himself and there’s nothing wrong with that.” — Owner/Coach Jonathan Beckner
In his own words:
“I come from a very non athletic background… When I was a kid I played tennis and got my first degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do but once middle school and high school hit I adopted a very sedentary life style. I stopped doing Tae Kwon Do and became a couch potato. I was a “Husky” kid growing up but by the time I was in 10th or 11th grade I was wearing a 2XL where I stayed for a long time. College wasn’t any more helpful for my activity levels or diet. I would say that before I started Crossfitting I had probably been to the gym less than 100 times in my entire life. I then got back into Tae Kwon Do in 2009 and dropped from around 300 to 270lbs. While doing Tae Kwon Do I decided I wanted to up my conditioning and that was right around the time a friend told me about this “Crossfit stuff”. I liked the idea of planned workouts; plus working out in a warehouse with no A/C seemed much more hardcore and appealing than working out in a regular gym.
I think part of why Crossfit was so appealing to me then and now is my inner competitiveness (shocking to some, I am sure). I attended Emory as an Undergraduate mostly because of its debate program and was a top ranked national debater throughout my time there. My inner competitiveness and the ability to measure improvement is what appeals to me so much about Crossfit. I can no longer compete as an individual in debate and coaching was not as fulfilling for me, so Crossfit gives me my daily competitive outlet.
I always find it funny and shake my head when I tell people about Crossfit and they say it is too hard for them to do or that they need to get in better shape before they start. I basically started at ground zero, no sports background, 270lbs and a bad diet and I’m somehow still around here, so what’s your excuse??”
Don’t think we could’ve said it better Roy.
Congrats Roy, we’re proud of you! Keep up the hard work!!!
What was your athletic/workout/eating routine before CrossFit East Decatur?
I was around 270 lbs. I could not get into any good regimen. I was doing Tae Kwon Do but I was still not eating well. I was pretty intimidated about going to a globo gym because I just didn’t know what to do and or look like an idiot doing it.
When did you start CF(CFED)?
May 10th 2010
Why did you choose CFED?
I told a friend of mine I wanted to get into shape and he told me about this thing called Crossfit. I had no idea what it was, but I googled it, and it seemed like what I needed. I needed a program where people told me what to do and could guide me down the right path. The most intimidating part of the gym to me was having a set of machines and weights and feeling uncomfortable doing stuff, or not knowing what to do day in and day out.
What were your goals when you started?
To lose weight. Looking back at the pictures before I started crossfit, I knew I was big but I didn’t get how out of shape I was. I didn’t have any weight loss target at first, so as the pounds came off I kept adjusting goals. I remember fondly telling Jonathan one day in June (at 270lbs) that if I ever got to 200 lbs I would quit crossfit, be happy and content. 4 months later I weighed 220 and wasn’t ready to quit.
What has your experience been with the nutritional guidance you’ve received at CFED?
I think nutrition is instrumental, if you are looking to lose weight or just feel better and perform better in workouts. Shana told me to keep a food log when I first started, and I’ve logged every meal and workout I’ve done since May 2010. With the exception of diet coke I was strict paleo for the first 6 months when I started CFED. I think for people who are just getting started going strict paleo for as long as possible is essential to getting yourself reprogrammed into better eating habits. Once I got to a point where I was happy with my weight and knew I wasn’t going to fall off the wagon I adopted a 5 days paleo, weekends off policy.
How do you feel after eating changing your diet?
Great. I’m not as tired or sluggish anymore (unless it is after a brutal workout). I think I have more energy to do stuff. Things like going for a run don’t seem as terrible or exhausting. Mostly I think I see food differently than I did before. I used to eat just for the sake of eating or because it looked tasty. Now when I eat I think about it in terms of my body needing energy to fuel itself. When my diet is off I feel more sluggish, tired and just not as good. When I eat a cleaner diet I definitely have more energy don’t feel bloated or sluggish and perform better in workouts.
What is your favorite meal?
Paleo- Steak and veggies. Non Paleo- Peanut butter French toast from the Highland Bakery.
What is your favorite thing about CFED?
The community and family CFED fosters. People are so incredibly supportive and encouraging of each other. Everyone takes the time to introduce themselves and make you feel welcome. At no point did I ever feel like an outsider there. I love that everyone cheers and yells in support of everyone during the workouts and that nobody leaves until the whole group completes the workout. The gym was a place I used to try to get in and get out of as fast as possible, now I spend extra time at CFED because I enjoy being there and interacting with the people. I think because everyone is doing the same workout and has had their struggles there is a common bond or understanding that just isn’t there when you do your workouts alone. The WOD is the WOD, but doing it with a group of people you enjoy hanging out with and competing with is not something you can find at every gym. I also like being very close to Southern Sweets Bakery… Just kidding… Kind of…
My biggest accomplishment in Crossfit THUS FAR is:
I guess if I reflect back on it, losing weight isn’t that hard, but keeping it off is probably significantly harder. It has been almost 3 years since I walked into CFED and I don’t see myself backsliding into my 270lb days. I also gave away all my fat man cloths so it could get expensive.
How many days a week do you workout?
I try to get into the gym 4 days a week. Sometimes it is 3, sometimes it is 5.
What is your favorite movement? Least favorite?
I like most squats with the exception of overhead squats. I could live without handstands but I’m working on it.
Favorite WOD day of the week and why:
I love and hate Monday. Since I tend to eat crappier over the weekend it is refreshing to get a workout in to try to cleanse that, but I also usually perform my worst.
I talk about Crossfit all the time. T/F
Favorite type of workout music:
Some hip hop or angry rap
I check the blog before I come into CFED. T/F
What do you do in your spare time?
….Crossfit. I like to try new places to eat, I enjoy lots of terrible reality tv, watching sports, and people watching at the mall.
How has CFED changed the way you live your daily life?
I’ve had to learn how to really cook. I find myself making sure I have time to go to CFED. I wake up and make sure the first thing I do after checking facebook is checking the CFED site to see what the WOD is. I am much more conscious of what I put into the body and why I am eating what I eat. I spend a good amount of time now reading about health and nutrition. I’ve definitely adopted a “dork” ish obsession with health, nutrition and crossfit and try to read as much as possible about them. I also had to buy new sized cloths, twice or three times now.
What do your friends say about your lifestyle?
They were surprised at first, and people I haven’t seen in a long time are still get a little shocked. One person I hadn’t seen since May told me that if they hadn’t seen my new pictures on facebook that I could have walked right past them without them recognizing me. I was always big and overweight, so not being overweight is new to both them and me. They are all happy and amazed about the work we do at crossfit, some people think it is a little crazy but the ones who I have gotten into it are addicted also.
One word to describe Crossfit_______