As a growing CrossFit Box, we are all getting to know each other and building that tight community we always envisioned. Each month, we profile a CrossFit Grail Athlete that is interesting and inspirational. A person that demonstrates a positive attitude, shows up every day and puts their heart and soul into their workout, never gives up, cheers everyone on and is passionate about the CrossFit Grail Community. And someone who is pretty cool! Although we think everyone has these qualities, we can only pick one.
February 2018 Athlete of the Month: Steve Braman
Why we chose Steve: When I interviewed Steve for the 6-Week Challenge, he had very specific goals he wanted to accomplish and seemed very motivated to reach them. I know that first week of On Ramp classes were tough, but Steve tackled it with enthusiasm and determination. Then he consistently pushed himself with each CrossFit WOD, more than doubling all his PR’s in a very short time. And his strength, mobility, and flexibility increased by leaps and bounds. Flash forward 9 weeks and Steve came in for his Body Comp. He had lost a whopping 35# in just 9 weeks! Fitness is not all about weight / fat loss, but when you are faced with a diabetes diagnosis, it is crucial. Steve is a great example of what can happen when you commit yourself to getting and being healthy – showing up consistently, putting in the effort, and being diligent with your nutrition.
Check out Steve’s video interview here.
Tell us a little about yourself:
I’m originally from central Illinois but I’ve lived in Colorado for 32 years. I am a District Manager for a retail company. I have one son who is 26 years old. My hobbies include watching professional sports (the last two years of the Broncos have been TOUGH!), concerts and listening to local live music, movies and comedy clubs. I want to get more active this summer by walking, hiking and possibly biking.
How long have you been doing CrossFit and what got you started?
I started CrossFit at the beginning of November 2017. This is the first time I had exercised with any regularity in more than 30 years. I started CrossFit because I was recently diagnosed with diabetes and had to begin taking medication. I saw the ad for a 6-Week Challenge and decided I would check into it. Because I had been inactive for so long and I was very out of shape, I was nervous to start because I wasn’t sure if I could do the exercises (and I didn’t know about scaling the workout.)
What did you do for your fitness before CrossFit?
What do you like most about CrossFit?
I feel a connection with the other people at CrossFit Grail because they also want to get in shape and it motivates me to work hard. I also like the support I receive from all the coaches, as well as the way they challenge you to do more weight or reps. I learned that there are modifications for most of the exercises we do to accommodate any fitness level.
How has doing CrossFit changed your life outside of the Box?
Since starting CrossFit, I’ve had more energy, a better attitude, and I don’t take naps during the day on the weekends anymore. I’m less sedentary and I’ve lost almost 40 pounds. I went from a tight 44” waist to a 36” waist and from a 3x shirt to a 2x shirt. In addition, I was previously on three blood pressure / cholesterol medications and a diabetes medication, each twice a day. I was able to go off one blood pressure medication within 10 days of starting the program and about 3 or 4 weeks in, I was able to cut the rest of my medications in half. I am hoping to get off all medications within the next 3 months.
What motivates you to keep WOD-ing?
My biggest motivator is my health. I was already taking a lot of medication, and as I age, I do not want that to increase. I also like the way I feel now, I have less aches and pains, and I like that I have learned so much during this journey.
What are your 3 favorite CrossFit movements?
Definitely NOT Burpees! I like doing Deadlifts, Squats and Rowing.
What do you consider to be your biggest accomplishment?
My biggest accomplishment is raising my son to be a good person and productive member of society. I’m very proud of how he has turned out. He has a good job (software developer), a great start to a 401K and a savings account, no debt (paid off his student loans and his car), and has had the same girlfriend for over six years.
What is YOUR QUEST?
This month: My QUEST for this month is to finish the Nutrition Challenge. I hope to have lost at least 50 pounds total by the end of February.
This year: I want to continue my CrossFit workouts 5 times per week and work on improving my form for the exercises. I also want to get to my goal weight of 190 pounds and then begin to build more muscle.
This lifetime: I want to be healthy going into my retirement years and have a good quality of life.