All Posts by Alex Ward

JUNE MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Member of the Month - June 2019

Meet Tayla!

Age: 20

Day job: I work 2 casual jobs - valentine bowling club and fitness revolution &  Studying my last year of Exercise Sport Science at uni.


Tell us something we don't know about you?
I surf & have only lived in Newcastle for 5 years, originally from a small town called Yamba.

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit):
Normal gym training and surfing.

Why did you start CrossFit?
Needed a change in my training and had always wanted to try it.

How has CrossFit changed your life?
I literally don’t know what I’d do without it. I’ve made the best friendships that will last a life time. I feel so much better about myself both physically and mentally and feel as though I’m constantly learning and bettering my self each day.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement?
Cleans and Split Jerks.

What's your current goal?
Currently just looking to better myself across all the movements and become stronger and fitter. I've also starting to compete in comps which is very exciting.

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community?
​The atmosphere, the people and the all round vibe.


MAY MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Member of the Month - May 2019

Meet Joanne!

Age: 40 something oh well ok then, two and a half months shy of the big 50!

Day job: I'm on a year's leave from my job in New Zealand where I am a primary school teacher. In Newcastle I am a Administration Assistant / Cleaner.


Tell us something we don't know about you?
In 2011, I couldn't feel anything from my waist down for about 3 months. At first it felt like pins and needles in my feet then it slowly moved up to my waist. Turns out I had damaged my spin at the T7. I could walk but slowly as I had to use my eyes to check where the ground was. It was a scary experience.

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit):
Nothing, but the year before I was at NBR Functional Training in Porirua, New Zealand (it was like a Bootcamp).

Why did you start CrossFit?
For fitness, to challenge myself and to meet people.

How has CrossFit changed your life?
I am physically and mentally stronger now. I drink a lot more water then previously and eating healthier. I am challenging myself more by entering events. I actually find I get grumpy if I haven't been training for a few days.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement?
I don't have a favorite - YET. I just enjoy the WOD when I can do the movement, can finish within the time and still be breathing!

What's your current goal?
​I have several: to complete a half marathon, to jump on that bloody box and to do a muscle up.

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community?
​The CF Hunter Community are THE BEST! They are friendly. They encourage you to push yourself. They are supportive as they will mentor you when you need it and cheer you on. They challenge you to be a better you.

MARCH MEMBER OF THE MONTH

MARCH 2019 - Member of the Month

Meet Andrea!

Age: 28

Day job:
FT Occupational Therapy Student, Community Support Worker and bottle shop attendant.

Tell us something we don't know about you?
I sky dived 15000 ft in Queenstown even though I am terrified of heights (trampolines make me cry).

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit):
12 months strength and conditioning gym, 8 months F45, and previous to that I was a PUMP and SPIN addict.

Why did you start CrossFit?
I needed to find a new gym and I was after something that would challenge me. I had been told lots of differing views of CrossFit both pros and cons. However, my personal trainer used to constantly talk about CrossFit and how amazed he was at the Games and especially the women who competed. I always thought I was not fit or strong enough for CrossFit but decided to just give it a go!

How has CrossFit changed your life?
I have always enjoyed exercise and found it as an important part of my self care. After joining CF Hunter in Jan 2018, it wasn’t just about the exercise anymore but rather a new PB, conquering a new skill, catching up with friends and having a laugh. CrossFit contributes to so much more than just fitness or strength but a strong sense of well-being belonging to a community.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement?
Anything that involves a barbell, dumbbell, dead ball, rowing and Partner WODS (Workout of the day). Alternatively, anything that does not involve gymnastics.

What's your current goal?
To be on time.. **jokes** 10 Double unders in a row before the Tri-Fit Games and never leave my gym bag at home.

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community?
CF Hunter has a great sense of community and I have made some great friends since I have started. It has such a friendly atmosphere and is full of positive energy. Everyone is happy to help or guide you in the right direction, no matter what your question might be. 

OCTOBER MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Meet Chris Zaarour
Age: My bio age is less than my actual age… Starts with a 4
Day job: Hospital Medical Representative (COPD & Asthma)

Tell us something we don’t know about you?
I’m an apiarist & will one day win lotto & buy a vineyard.

Fitness Background? (before starting CrossFit)
Soccer, touch footy & after multiple ACL & shoulder recons a long period of nothing.

Why did you start Crossfit?
After the birth of my daughter and chronic back pain I decided to make some changes. Wanted to be a healthier dad and improve my own mental, emotional & physical health. I needed a team environment that was going to stretch me & keep me challenged.

How has CrossFit changed your life? From monthly chiro treatment for chronic back pain, I now get treatment every 4 months. He is amazed at the results and admits he was wrong in recommending I don’t do it.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement? Anything that short guys do better lol. Squats, deadlift & push press.

What’s your current goal?
To take what I’ve learnt from “Cut The Crap” and apply long term. Continue to get stronger and improve overall health.
What do you love most about the CF Hunter community? Always encouraging, have a laugh (even at 5:30am) and push each other to be better. Love seeing others make gains and I also found a dog sitter there lol.

SEPTEMBER MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Meet Matt Law
Age: 26
Day job: Haul truck operator

Tell us something we don’t know about you? I used to work as a personal trainer

Fitness Background ? (before starting CrossFit)
Before starting CrossFit I played a lot of rugby league throughout my childhood, i made a lot of rep sides and played at a fairly high level.

Why did you start Crossfit?
My older brother had been doing CrossFit for a While, then one day he said he is opening his own facility. At the time I had no idea what CrossFit was. So, I did a class with him, since then I’ve never looked back. It’s been about 5 years now!

How has CrossFit changed your life?
CrossFit has taught me many things and changed my life in so many ways. To be able to push myself to limits that I never knew I could, to be as strong then i thought i could and to have a mentality to keep on improving because there is no end to CrossFit. There’s always something to improve on just like life.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement?
I love to lift! Snatch and clean & jerk. I like the complex 21-15-9 because it’s just all go! But I don’t really have a favourite WOD.
Grace and Isabel are my most disliked workouts hahahaha even though they’re lifting wods.

What’s your current goal?
My current goal in CrossFit is to continuing to improve in all areas. All my strengths have increased massively over the years. My main goal is to win an individual Competition and I’m getting closer to achieving this goal everyday.

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community?
I love the people at CrossFit Hunter, I’ve made good friends here and it makes me push harder during daily WODs. Everyone at CrossFit Hunter are awesome and training each day with them is something I look forward to.
Great Community + Great Friends

AUGUST MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Meet Thila Knox
Age:
36 years young
Day job: Nurse

Tell us something we don’t know about you? I can’t swim very well – Seriously!

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit)? I played cricket, baseball, and volleyball.  While i was active i wasn’t very strong.

Why did you start Crossfit? I was encouraged by family member, so i decided to give it a go. I haven’t looked back since.

How has CrossFit changed your life? I feel so much stronger and healthier than i was before.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement? Pull-ups

What’s your current goal? 20 unbroken pull-ups

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community? Friendly and very welcoming. Every session is fun .. It’s my happy place with happy people.

JULY MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Meet Jess Yates, CFH member of July
Age: 29
Day job: Real Estate Admin

Tell us something we don’t know about you? I am sport obsessed – cricket, footy, tennis netball, anything really.

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit) I trained at F45 and still play netball.

Why did you start Crossfit? My friend Dani kept hassling me for 6 months until I gave in and decided to give it a go. I should’ve just listened to her from the start haha.

How has CrossFit changed your life? I’m so much fitter and stronger. It’s also given me the confidence to do things I never thought I could.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement? Double unders.

What’s your current goal? To be able to do pull ups. Just one would be great!

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community? Very welcoming and encouraging, always cheering and supporting you even if you’re the last one to finish the WOD.

JUNE MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Meet Michael (Mike) Sommers
Age: 45, but let’s keep that between ourselves…
Day job: IT Engineering

Tell us something we don't know about you?
I help to run a martial arts center, in the little spare time I have. Most of the students are young kids, so it’s a bit like herding kittens at times, but its good fun.

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit)
I’ve always enjoyed running, and often enter marathons and half marathons. I also did (and still do) Taekwondo, boxing, and a little Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
I love watching UFC and enjoy the kind of training they do to get in shape for fights.


Why did you start CrossFit? 
Working in IT can take its toll on your body, especially if you spend a lot of time in front of a computer. I needed to do something that would help fix my posture and provide a bit of core strength. CrossFit for me covers a lot of the physical and mental elements I wanted from an activity.

How has CrossFit changed your life?
Well it’s certainly turned me into an early riser! I don’t know of another activity that has consistently got me out of bed before 5am before. It really is the best way to start a day.
I think I am fitter than I have ever been too, I can run faster and longer now without picking injuries, which I think is down to all the leg, glutes and core work I’ve done. CrossFit is constantly making me set new goals and pushes me to smash those goals, so it acts like a bit of an advert for life.

What’s your favourite WOD or movement?
I enjoyed 18.2 in the Open this year. https://games.crossfit.com/workouts/open/2018/2
And I do a modified version of 17.1 at home (it’s a real slow burner!). https://games.crossfit.com/workouts/open/2017/1
I don’t really have a favourite movement, but I’ve enjoyed the progression I’ve made in pull-ups.


What's your current goal?
Overall goal is just to keep improving my core strength, after all that’s where it all stems from. This I hope will then have a knock-on effect for things like my shoulder strength and mobility, which is seriously lacking (anyone who has seen me do attempt handstands, thruster's and overhead squats will testify to this!).

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community?
I love the fact that you get a real mix bag of people every session you go to. People from all walks of life and backgrounds. Everyone is there for you, they’ll pick you up when you’re struggling and pat you on the back when you are doing well... And no matter what your fitness experience is, everyone at heart has the same goal to be better than yesterday…

MAY MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Name: Chris McHugh
Age: 22
Day job: Project Estimator

Tell us something we don't know about you? I’m originally from Perth, I moved to Newcastle in early 2016 and I hate Eggplant with a passion.

Fitness Background (before starting CrossFit): I have played Hockey for about 11 years, which is the full extent of my fitness background.

Why did you start Crossfit? I was already starting to dabble in the gym, just using silly machines really. My partner Sarah was already doing CrossFit so I thought it would be a good opportunity to try something new, in a group environment that we could do together as a couple.

How has CrossFit changed your life? Before joining CFH I had never lifted proper weights; I could barely lift a 20kg bar when I started CrossFit. I feel stronger and look healthier. Something that I wouldn’t have been able to achieve with-out CrossFit.

What’s your favorite WOD or movement? My favorite movement would have to be double-unders.

What's your current goal? My current goal is to start doing perform work outs. I’ve still got a lot of work to do before then!

What do you love most about the CF Hunter community? The thing I love most about the CF Hunter community is the encouragement I get from other members and coaches. I love coming to the gym!

SEPTEMBER MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Meet Sally Carr
Age: 31
Day Job: Full-time student, part-time tutor.
Tell us something we don’t know about you: I genuinely believe that one day I will be able to lick my elbow. I don’t care if it’s “anatomically impossible” – I can get damn close, so I definitely know its achievable for me. One day!
Fitness background before CrossFit: When I started CrossFit, it was after a few years of trying my hand at half marathon and trail running. Something which left me broken physically and mentally. Growing up, I was a swimmer, a rower, a netballer, a basketball and a complete menace to my poor parents who chauffeured me around to all these pursuits.
Why did you start CrossFit? At the end of the day… I felt like I had no other choice but to just give it a go! I had spent long enough googling it and talking myself out of it. Then one of my good friends got embroiled in it and took me to a bring a friend day and the rest is history.
How has Crossfit changed your life? Crossfit really has shown me that there’s no such thing as “I can’t do that”. Because you can. Maybe not straight away, but if you work for it, you can.
What’s your favourite WOD or movement? Anything with a barbell or a rower.
What’s your current goal? I have a toilet roll list of gymnastics goals in my sights now – I’ve always put my focus on lifting numbers. Now I’m looking more at things like pull ups, toes to bar, handstand push ups, anything that’s going to guarantee my hands will be perpetually in tatters from practice.
What do you love most about the CF Hunter community? There’s such a collection of real gems here. It’s the perfect mix of people to push you and people to be silly with you and it just makes coming into the gym every day so much easier and so much more fun.