Schaefer Family Testimonial
Love the Schaefer family story & how it has changed all their lives & is now something they bond over as a family! :-)
In October of 2011, at the age of 45, I was just coming out of a difficult emotional season that had taken a toll on my physical wellness. A friend invited me to come try CrossFit with her because she knew that I needed to do something to invest in myself and help move me physically to the place I was striving for emotionally. I responded to her invitation and came to check it out despite my insecurities about being a “weak” person. I had grown up competing in endurance sports so I was motivated by fitness but had always viewed myself as weak.
Over the past 3 years I have accomplished so much more than I imagined was possible. I have a whole new view of my capacity to set goals in all areas of life and achieve them. I have gained a remarkable new confidence in my body and continue to set goals and achieve new personal records at 48. I’m inspired by some of the older members at the gym and look forward to MANY more years of CrossFit ahead. I’m so excited by the prospect of moving into the next few decades of my life with strength and functional mobility that I KNOW I never would have achieved without CrossFit. I am so, so grateful to Brandon and Kristina and all the coaches at Prevail that have invested in and encouraged me along the way.
Michelle & Beau
One more awesome aspect of my Prevail journey is that over the last couple of years my family members have gradually started to join me at Prevail. My husband, Beau, started coming in the summer of 2012 and then my college kid #1, Doug, came the summer of 2013 while he was home from school, and then this past summer, 2014, college kid #2, Hannah, joined Team Schaefer at Prevail as well. I LOVE the times when we’ve all been able to come to Prevail to WOD as a family. It’s a blast!
Before I came to Prevail, I had been doing CrossFit workouts from the main CF site at the school where I work with a couple of other coaches sometimes and by myself at other times. I’m not normally one who requires others to be motivated to workout so I had no issues with getting started on CrossFit at school. It was different and highly challenging so I was all in. There was only one problem that was also many problems…..I sucked at just about all the movements other than the very basic ones. I’ve never lifted much, even as a college athlete, so the barbell technique was pretty foreign to me, and I couldn’t do much with it. I couldn’t do any kipping pullups and I couldn’t do ANY double unders. That’s what it was like BEFORE Prevail. Since I started coming in the summer of 2012, almost 2.5 yrs ago (really? How time flies!), I’ve gone from being able to do 0 kipping pullups to being able to do 22 consecutive (the last time I tried), and from 0 double unders to 104 consecutive. Most of this has largely been due to the efforts of the awesome coaching staff at Prevail. The Prevail coaches have always helped me anytime I have asked, and their endless tips and support have been a major part of my success. I have set PR’s repeatedly on all my olympic lifts that I can do (I have a structural lower back issue, so I can’t do 3 of them), and I continue to improve.
I started coming just so I could workout together with Michelle, but it’s evolved to more than that. Its uplifting every day to come to Prevail and hang out with all the awesome people, coaches and athletes, whenever I can. Some days I can’t make it, especially when I’m coaching during baseball season, so I do the workouts at school, but I MUCH prefer coming to Prevail. I’ve been to other boxes in other states, and, while they were all supportive, none of them were as awesome, fun, and so concerned with teaching as the Prevail staff. It’s also been fantastic how accepting of Doug and Hannah and all the younger athletes that Prevail is. I did not see many young athletes at the other boxes I visited, and being able to workout as a family has been a real blessing for us. I also think its amazing that Prevail is so involved in service to others. The charity WODs and gift-giving boxes, etc. are fantastic. So anyway, that’s my story. I love Prevail and my experience here! Thanks to Prevail and all you do.
My Prevail experience started in 2013, when my mom talked me into coming and visiting. I immediately fell in love with the atmosphere and attitude that everyone had - everything everyone did was at max effort and I really appreciated everyone’s desire to become a better athlete.
I was homeschooled my entire life until college, so my ability to participate in organized athletics after middle school was limited, meaning that weight training never happened. I did some of the body weight workouts on the CF website when I was growing up, but the only working out I ever did consistently was run, because I took to it naturally and there are an abundance of 5k’s in this area. When I got to college, I walked on to the Taylor University lacrosse team, and because of the aggressive full-contact nature of the sport, I found myself seriously lacking in the strength department. I practiced and ran a ton, but I had unintentionally limited myself as an athlete by deciding that strength training wasn’t really my thing. Fast forward to 2013 - after a month or two of consistent attendance at Prevail, I started achieving some insane strength gains (for me), and I realized what I had been missing out on. Ever since, even though I go to school out of state, I realized that I needed to make CrossFit a priority as often as possible if I want to succeed as a college athlete. Last spring during lacrosse season, I experienced a severe shoulder separation, which really solidified my decision to make the gym a priority. CrossFit has been instrumental in helping me build strength, get faster, and prevent further injury.
It’s been a wonderful experience working out with my mom and dad and Hannah. My dad and I share a lot of strengths and weaknesses and have very similar body types, which makes working together on lifts and team WODs beneficial for the both of us, because we know the areas that we suck at or really don’t suck at. Having my whole family there is great because they’re the best support system there ever was, and there’s nothing not fun about watching my family members totally crush a WOD.
Prevail is great and everyone there is great! And for anyone interested, I will be a starting midfielder for Taylor Lacrosse this spring, and I couldn’t have done it without the incredible attitude of the Prevail athletes inspiring me to work harder.
Exercising and physical health have been a big deal in our house for as long as I can remember. I pretty much played every different kind of sport as a kid, but after a while I decided art and theater were my thing and shifted my competitive streak to the performing world. I’m the least competitive person in our family, so beating other people isn’t really important to me – I’m all about self-improvement.
Mom and Dad started going to CrossFit my junior year of high school, and it quickly became the most discussed topic in our house. For a while that made me pretty defensive about not going. The competitive nature they described didn’t sound like a safe environment for me, when I was finally learning to accept my body and be comfortable in my own skin, so I refused to go.
I gained a lot of confidence and independence my freshman year of college. When I had some space from what I perceived as judgment of my choices, I realized I really wanted to make some health changes of my own accord. CrossFit felt like a place where I could learn more about weightlifting and exercise under the watchful eye of coaches who could prevent me from hurting myself.
I’ve only been going to CrossFit for 7 months, but I’m already amazed by the changes it has made in the way I think about exercise. CrossFit has not only trained my body, but also my mind. Every time I want to quit or take a shortcut in a WOD, I am challenged to go the extra mile. It has stretched my mental and physical endurance in ways I didn’t know were possible. I feared being judged for not being as “athletic” as most of the people there, but everyone is so gracious. Rather than an atmosphere of criticism and competition, everyone has such a team spirit and it’s great!
At first I felt unsure about going with my family, but the camaraderie that builds between athletes at CrossFit spread to our family dynamic too and we’re better for it. Now I can enjoy being at the gym and looking over at my mom practicing her double-unders, or Doug and Dad attempting a muscle-up, and I am grateful we have an activity we all do together that brings us closer.
Schaefer family - Fight Gone Bad