One of the longest running members of our community is heading out on the next leg of his journey. Andy, who’s been around since the gym started, has been a fixture here for a long time and will be very missed.
In addition to being a longtime member here, Andy also spent some years as a coach. I feel fortunate to have spent time with him as both, and wanted to share some of what he’s taught me. While this post is certainly a reference for myself, I hope that it also serves as a guide for all the other people I know who appreciate his teachings.
Progress, not Perfection
Andy carries this uplifting attitude with him every time I see him at the gym. He’s the type of person I love having in class because he realizes that this whole health and fitness thing isn’t a place that we arrive at, but instead, a journey we’re continually editing the details of as we make our way through life.
While he started out as a CrossFit coach, over the years he developed a passion (walking a fine line between obsession at times) for the sport of weightlifting.
It was this passion that reminded me of the progress that can come from slowing down and building skills–an understanding that getting through grueling workouts isn’t the only path to improving. If you’ve ever seen Andy lift, you know what I mean. He’s seldom chasing PRs, but the way he’s grown in his ability to lift with finesse is something that draws even more attention than the person lifting the most weight in class.
As is evident in watching him lift, technique is truly king. The positions you work in matter far more than the reps you complete or the amount you lift. Andy just gets it. He’s a role model to the rest of us, especially when we so easily get distracted by all the bells and whistles in training.
“Shit happens. Keep Going.”
I’ve had more than a few conversations over the years with members who are ready to throw in the towel. They’re busy, don’t have enough time in the day to workout, and are looking for an easy way out. Andy travels across the country for work on a regular basis, he has side hustles in addition to his full-time job, he’s a father and husband (hi, Martha!), and he deals with the same stresses we all do when things get busy. You know what he doesn’t do? Give up. His ability to keep at it in the gym–perfect or not, even when things get crazy–is something we can all learn from.
Andy, thanks for the mark you’ve left on me, and for leaving me with so much to teach other people. I hope this next chapter is a good one for you and your family. Come back and see us soon, and please keep us in the loop on what you’re up to in your new home!