CrossFit Strong  -- Athlete of The Month
  Strong Heart, Strong Mind, Strong Body
 Adrienne Gidley - Q & A  
How long have you been Crossfitting? — I started CrossFitting in late July, 2009
What is your occupation? — I am a grant writer/web developer for a research center affiliated with the University of Texas at Dallas.  I also do academic advising for a masters program in psychology.
Where are you from? — I am from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Yep, I’m a Sooner.
How did you hear about Crossfit Strong? My sister (who still lives in Tulsa) started doing CF in February 2009. It was all she would talk about! During one of her visits to Dallas in July 2009, she convinced me to give it a try.

She sent emails to several CF gyms around here to inquire about intro classes and CrossFit Strong was the only gym to return her email promptly. We walked into the gym and did the Saturday intro class. That 10 minute sample WOD was one of the most challenging workouts I’d ever done! My legs were shaking and my heart was pounding. It was a rush. During those 10 minutes I didn’t think about anything but the work I was doing. I knew I had to come back and get that feeling again.
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 Adrienne's Transformation  
How have you seen yourself change – mentally or physically – since being a part of CFS? I have changed profoundly since finding CrossFit. I’ll try to keep the summary brief.

Mentally: I have gone from being very introverted and nervous in large groups of people to being much more outgoing and much less self-conscious. Unlike a lot of CF members, I do not have an athletic background whatsoever. Walking into the CF gym for the WOD during my first month or two was one of the most intimidating things I’ve ever done. I felt very clumsy and awkward trying to mimic Gale’s & Ashley’s instructions for how to move my body and how to perform those Olympic lifts, but their patience never flagged and so I kept picking up the PVC and trying. Eventually I quit worrying about how silly I looked and instead just concentrated on getting better.

Physically: I am the strongest and fittest I’ve ever been and the way I view exercise is completely different. I’ve definitely gone through sedentary phases in my life, but even in my active phases I always held back during exercise. I never pushed myself past what I thought were my limits. The minute I walked through the door of CFS I was being pushed to my limits and I’ve exceeded what I thought were my limitations many times since.
What is your favorite move? — The deadlift—the first move I had checked off on the way to becoming an intermediate. I also enjoy running—a lot.
What is your least favorite move? — Double-unders, ugh! Will I ever learn how to do them? I’ve been whipping the heck out of my shins and ankles for over a year and I still haven’t improved very much.
What has been your favorite WOD so far? — Oh, I have liked so many—tough to pick just one! I like Chelsea & Cindy, the Indian, and I like our box benchmarks of Pepper and Salt. I have also really enjoyed several of the Endurance WODs.
What has been your least favorite WOD ? — I can’t remember the name but it involved doing some type of lift (cleans or front squats), modified handstand-pushups on a box and then running outside. It was 104 degrees in the gym and not much cooler outside. It is one of the few WODs I never finished and the only time I’ve ever met pukie at the box.
What are some of your goals that you have for yourself in the next year? — I want to be able to: do pull-ups without a band, finish the White Rock Half Marathon in less than two hours, and do a few WODs Rx. I very seldom complete a WOD Rx.
How do you see CrossFit as different from other programs? — Many things about it just resonated with me: the rush, the supportive community, the competition, and the effort of all of the coaches. Most importantly, it works. I learned the moves, I added weight, and I got stronger and faster. I pushed myself during all of those runs and heard Marla and Cat telling me 'remember your form!', and now I run faster and more efficiently. I changed the way I eat and the things I eat and lost body fat while gaining muscle.
Did you think a sport of elite fitness would ever be for you? — I’ve always been an avid reader and on the geekier side of the spectrum in terms of how to spend free time. I never had much interest in fitness…until CrossFit. I ran a half marathon this past April (the Big D) which is something I never thought I would be able to do.
How can other people relate to your story? — I have no natural athletic ability, never participated in team sports, and I am not particularly strong. I have work stress, and I have personal stress like you wouldn’t believe. None of those things matter the minute I walk through the gym door. I just pick up the weight like everyone else and do my best to get a good workout.
What is something that no one knows about you? — I’ve never alone-danced. Really—I haven’t. (Gale say, "I don't know what to say to that")