We wrapped up our 2020 Kickstart Challenge just before all hell broke loose in the world so our announcement of the winners is coming very late, but nonetheless, we still wanted to announce these winners and recognize their hard work!

This year was for sure the best one we had yet.  We introduced some tools and removed others that made adherence better.  We focused more on teaching the “whys” behind the habits we work on because knowledge is power.  This year proved to be most successful from all the amazing results we had and great feedback.

We have people who join for all kinds of reasons: fat loss, strength gain, muscle mass gain, overall health and wellness, increase in performance, and just accountability.  We had a few members who had the goal of not losing weight but gaining strength (women and men) and they were astonished by how much food they had to eat. We started them high and continued to ramp them up over the course of 6 weeks and they just could not believe how much they could eat and needed to eat to stay at maintenance in order to gain strength – all of them lost inches in the process and felt incredible. Its amazing what happens when you fuel your training! This is why we believe having a nutrition coach is not just for people who want to lose weight.  If you want to gain strength, size, or even just stay the same weight but tone up, we will get you there.

 

The 4 winners (in no order) of the 2020 Kickstarter are:

Tara Bishop, Michelle Greter, Crystal O’Brian, and Allison Leslie

Congratulations ladies, you earned this!

See their transformations and read about their experience below:

 

Tara Bishop:

Tara From Beginning of Nov/19 to End of Feb/20

Tara started CrossFit in November of 2019.  She came in and wanted a change, she was ready, I could tell.  She was eager to get everything filled out so we could get started on her journey to a total transformation and she was off to a fantastic start.  She had been applying some general nutrition tips as we advise off the start but come January she was looking to level up and was interested in our 1-on-1 Nutrition Coaching service, Mission Nutrition.  Since this year in the Kickstarter Challenge, we had a level that included that, so she hoped on and was excited to learn more and accelerate her transformation.

I had the pleasure of coaching her personally so I know that she had many weeks of somewhat frustration (but always staying positive) because the scale wasn’t moving a whole lot although she was doing everything I was asking.  “Should I do more?”, she would ask, “Am I doing something wrong?”, no girl you are doing everything right!  She was pushing herself to HER limits in workouts, showing up consistently each week and working to move well and get stronger.  Her weight wasn’t changing much but her body was!

It’s so cool to see people’s bodies literally change shape and transform from weight training and having nutrition under control to support their activity while eating the proper amount to shed body fat.  She was gaining lean muscle and strength while losing fat, regardless of what that scale was saying.  This is where a coach is so valuable to explain the long game and have a logical view of what is happening rather than emotional as we have with ourselves when we see that scale number.

6 Wk Kickstarter Challenge change

Tara only lost 2.8lbs during the Kickstarter, but check out those body composition changes!!

This girl has it far from easy in the gym as she battles with MS and her balance, but she overcomes obstacles that are put in front of her and goes after what she wants.  I’m always so inspired by our amazing members and Tara is certainly one I admire!

Overall, how do you like the challenge?

I loved the challenge. It made me feel accountable and gave me a reason to stick with the changes in my lifestyle when I just wanted to cave into some of the cravings.

 

 

What did you learn?

I learned exactly what good portions are. Learning about macros was so overwhelming at first…it’s interesting, and who would have thought. I learned that I was most definitely undereating. It amazes me how much food I should be eating daily. I learned that I actually like foods aka Brussel sprouts that I normally would never have tried. I also learned that the scale is just a number to help to see if you are on a good track but to never make the numbers important.

What results did you notice? 

I saw my clothes getting bigger, I went from large/extra large to a medium. I see my tummy getting flatter. I feel better and pain has become easier to manage. Who would have thought that too!! I have more energy than before. Overall I’m just so much happier.

What parts did you enjoy the most or found most valuable? 

My favourite parts where check-in days. Putting in an email about my week all the chaos and not chaos, it made it easier to push myself and stay on track, and I loved reading the responses! I loved learning new things about food, I never ever really understood the importance of watching what you eat. I mean I did but just wasn’t educated on a lot of things. I would like to continue to learn more.  The workouts continue to kick my ass but in a good way. Through this challenge, it pushed me to go out of my comfort zone which was super.

Did anything unexpected happen? 

I didn’t expect my family to get on board with eating the way I needed to but all were super supportive, although they are sick of chicken lol. I also didn’t expect to enjoy everything, I figured it would just be another thing on my plate that I would have to do. I also made some good friends!

Did this help Kickstart your year and how will this help you going forward?

Yes! I found it did, it set me up for success. I just needed that push after being away so long in December (due to being ill). I continue to use the information daily with nutrition and in any workouts I do. I also still use the at home workouts for days I can’t make the gym (which is every day now!). It has definitely opened my eyes to things I just didn’t notice before. So, for me, it was exactly what I needed.

 

 

Michelle Mackrell

Michelle joined the Lair for the Kickstarter this year in January.  I was so excited for her to join because she completed our Rowing Challenge this past summer and absolutely crushed it.  She went above and beyond what was required for that so I couldn’t wait to see what this woman would achieve in the 2020 Kickstarter.  Since I am writing about her now, you would know that she did not disappoint!

Start of Jan/20 to end of Feb/20

She also participated in the level that included unlimited group classes and Mission Nutrition.  She was at the gym 4-5x/ week and worked hard while she was there AND all the other hours of the day outside if the gym.  I received many texts asking questions about how to track this and how to make sure she was doing that right.  I love to see my clients giving their full effort on their end! In the beginning, it is hard but so worth it in the end to learn that nutrition knowledge for a lifetime and know how to apply it.

Michelle lost 9lbs over the 6 weeks and became leaner, stronger, and learned awesome habits to launch her forward and even to keep her going while life is currently upside down.

 

 

 

Michelle’s experience:

Awe man, I feel like I could write an essay on what I have learnt. There are so many things that have changed in not only me but my life, and some are still a work in progress. 

The challenge itself was good and the nutritional part of it was even better. I don’t think I would have come as far as I did doing the challenge alone as I would have just continued eating the way I was, which got me nowhere. It has taught me that food is fuel for my body. I also learnt you can still enjoy food, just make it fit and eat it as a treat instead of a regular occurrence.  That the fifth cookie tastes exactly the same as the first so no point going overboard.

I have learnt so much I don’t even know where to begin! The main take away would be to listen to my body. Sometimes when you think you’re hungry you’re actually not. And it’s okay to be a little hungry when trying to lose weight! I learnt it’s important for me to be ready and prepped for when I am hungry or running late with time and become hangry because that’s when I would go for the “junk”.

I enjoyed the CrossFit part the most. I’m a workout junkie, it’s something I crave. I enjoy learning the lifts and how to execute them properly.  I learned how injuries are not setbacks as there is always another way to do something rather than just saying I can’t do that. Now it’s what can I do instead.  I am now finding the things I couldn’t do in the beginning are either getting better or I can actually do them now! It’s also nice knowing that you’re not expected to be at the level of anyone else, you are there for yourself, on your own level and only competing against yourself. 

This challenge definitely set me on the right path for the year. It was exactly what I needed to take my life back! Although it was intimidating the first few workouts, that feeling quickly subsides knowing that everyone there is so supportive and is there to help you rather than judge you!

I know when I asked after the rowing challenge you had said you weren’t going to be doing the Kickstart anymore but I am so glad you did. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!

 

(Haha I do remember saying that and thought it to be true, but after this one… it’s so good and fun to do with you all!  Until the next Kickstarter I guess! 😉

 

 

Crystal O’Brian

Crystal has been a long-time member. She is one of our OG members and we love to see her smiling face and very funny and witty personality walk into the Lair J She definitely makes our 6:30am morning class more fun even though she assures us she is NOT a morning person ;P

This was taken near the end of the Challenge out for a night on the town at 80’s night!

Crystal is there for herself and her own health and wellness; she knows the value of exercise and enjoys CrossFit with the group. She knows that she likely won’t do it on her own as well or as consistent as she does with the group.  She enjoys the little social part of it but also is there to work hard.

She approached this challenge with a new mindset this year and decided to just do what she could for her own self.  There was nothing overly difficult about this years challenge and that’s exactly what I wanted to achieve in designing it.  It was more about focusing on the little things that TRULY do matter that seem to get missed or overlooked.   We live in a society where we think more is more, but that couldn’t be farther from true.  Better is more.

Crystal lost 9.6lbs during the challenge and really learned the power of consistency!

 

 

 

Overall, how do you like the challenge?

After taking a year off [from the Kickstarter Challenge] this was a nice way to start the new year!  I liked all of the weekly challenges and found most of them easy to incorporate into our lives.

What did you learn?

I learned that booking into the classes really does make it harder to skip them!  I thought that this would be a silly exercise but it WORKS! 

[Crystal did not miss a 6:30 am class the whole duration of the challenge!]

What results did you notice? 

I found I had more energy when I was diligent with the meals, sleep and water.  I also got into the routine of adding another CF class every week. Mon, Tues & Thurs, Fri.  By Friday I am dragging a bit as I am trying to add a spin class in on Wednesday because the weekends aren’t yet open for me.

What parts did you enjoy the most or found most valuable? 

The most valuable was macronutrient tracking.  I notice I can tell how I feel in my energy, mood, and workouts when this is off.

Did anything unexpected happen? 

I lost a fair amount of weight…without really trying.  I didn’t really feel any different but my clothes did!

Did this help Kickstart your year and how will this help you going forward?

I think this did help start things off right!  There wasn’t anything crazy – no super hard, really dig deep and push yourself challenges so I didn’t get wrapped up in the things I can’t do but instead was able to focus on little changes that will lead to big changes overall.  Thank you for doing this and helping all of us to better ourselves!

 

Allison Leslie

2020 Kickstarter Challenge results

Allison got talked into doing the Kickstarter with her good friend, Michelle.  Michelle, good work on this one, I don’t think she regrets it one bit =)

When she contacted me I could tell this was a big decision and she said she had been putting this off for years but really wanted to do it. She has always put her family first and now was the time to turn the focus back to her and her health.  She was craving and change and this was exactly what she needed.

Allison lost 20 lb and gained self-confidence and self-respect and even has her son doing CrossFit with her.

 

 

 

Overall, how do you like the challenge?

I loved the challenge it was the kickstart I needed for a healthier life. 

What did you learn? 

I took away so many great lessons: how important it is to choose whole foods over processed foods. That the number on the scale isn’t the know all. I learnt that I am actually capable of sticking to a plan and that hard work does pay off. 

What results did you notice?

Besides my weight dropping, I noticed the number of inches that also came off.  I noticed the changes in my body through the weekly pictures. I noticed how much better I felt throughout my workday. I feel healthier and stronger. 

What parts did you enjoy the most or found most valuable?

I just love the whole environment at CrossFit. The people are so encouraging and even when you want to give up someone is always there cheering you on. I loved my coach (Val Thomas) and all the tips she constantly gave me and meal plan ideas. 

Did anything unexpected happen?

I reached my 20lb goal in a few short weeks, something I thought would take me until summer. I gained way more confidence and self-respect. My mood changed drastically and I started looking at things in a more positive manner. I feel amazing both mentally and physically. I honestly didn’t think I could ever feel like this again. 

Did this help Kickstart your year and how will this help you going forward?

It definitely kick-started my year. I think after seeing these amazing results I will continue on with everything I have learned. I did join CrossFit full time so I am super pumped to continue to see results. 

And of course, if you have any comments on how it could improve, I’m always open to hearing that as well.

The whole 6 weeks were great. Starting out it was a little stressful but after you gave a day meal plan for an example it was easy to catch on. The results prove that what you gals are doing is working. Thank you so much for this opportunity. 

 

Congrats to these 4 winners and also to everyone else who took part <3<3<3