I started Sol CrossFit in July 2017 after retiring from ASU. I considered myself pretty fit for a 60 year-old—I ran two miles a day, lifted light weights, did sit-ups, lunges and squats. But after sitting at a desk for 20 years, I was tight. I had chronic neck and upper back problems—mostly trigger points in my rhomboid muscles that would spasm, limit my mobility, and pretty much debilitate me for days at a time.
Before I retired, I noticed a colleague of mine losing weight and looking fit. I asked her what she was doing, and she said, “Jill, I’m going to CrossFit, and it’s right by your house.” I never liked going to gyms, so I asked her a lot of questions about CrossFit and wondered if it was something I could do, as bumping my fitness up a notch was one of my retirement goals.
After talking to Lance and a couple of coaches at Sol CrossFit, I decided to give it a try. Injury was my biggest concern, but Lance and the other coaches assured me they would work with me and modify anything that I wasn’t ready for. After two weeks of going, I knew CrossFit was the right “fit” for me.
It took a lot of time and patience (both on the coach’s part and my body because of my lack of mobility), but after a year of going 3 to 4 times per week, I can testify it has changed my life. Because most of the workouts concentrate on core, glute, and leg strength, everything is easier for me—getting up from a chair, squatting, or picking up heavy things (like grandchildren). My back spasms have pretty much stopped. My neck pain is gone, and my mobility has increased in ways I couldn’t imagine. I can ride my bike safely again because I can turn my head to look behind me.
Besides the positive changes in my mobility, strength, and figure (the workouts have really helped minimize the “over 60 belly fat”), I really enjoy the community at Sol CrossFit. Every coach takes a personal interest in every person, and my “Sol-Mates” are encouraging and have become friends. It’s easy to go. When I tell people about it, I usually get the “It’s too expensive” response. My answer is always twofold—1) How many people do you know who have a gym membership and never go? and 2) I consider it health insurance. If I’m going to live into my 90s as my maternal grandmother did, I want to feel good doing it. I’m not on any medications, and I want to keep it that way. My family is very encouraging and make fun of me when I use all of the acronyms for the different workouts, but they see how it’s made a difference in me both mentally and physically, and they’re happy for me. My motto in looking for part-time jobs is this: ”Those hours won’t work for me. They don’t fit with my CrossFit schedule”.