How John Got His First Overhead Squat…

August Member Focus:  John Tichenor

“I was introduced to CrossFit by my son Jack, who is one of the Bison swimmers. After  a year of dropping him off and picking him up an hour later, my wife Martha and I (at Jack’s encouragement) decided to make better use of our time by adopting his regimen and joining ourselves. We have both tried to keep in shape through the years but were having difficulty maintaining consistency. I was reluctant to start, having witnessed Jack’s sweaty, exhausted body after each workout, but I knew I had to do something since I just kept getting less fit over time.

“In August 2014, we started OnRamp, and I knew right away it was for me. I felt I had no choice when I was faced with the realization that I had lost much of the mobility of my youth. I was determined to work to get it back. I remember one specific OnRamp class when we were introduced to the overhead squat. I could not get anywhere with the movement and couldn’t understand why everybody else could. I asked Katy if it was possible for someone like me, meaning someone older and immobile in so many ways, to every get this movement down. She said very candidly that she had seen it done but only after a lot of hard work and tenacity. That’s all I needed to hear to know that someday I could do it. It took about 8 months, but I did finally manage to perform my first OHS. I couldn’t believe it. I did it. That’s what CrossFit is to me – trying what I know I can’t do, but learning I can do it when I’m part of a community of great coaches and fellow CrossFit athletes who keep pushing me
on. It was the continuous encouragement from the CrossFit coaches, each providing me separate unique bits of advice along the way, that helped me finally manage to perform my first OHS.  And, it’s because of this community that I know someday I will manage to perform my first pull-up without bands.

“If I was trying to work out on my own, I would never be able to push myself this hard. I remember one WOD that included 150 wall balls. Everyone was finished and I still had over 30 left. I turned and asked Ginny if I should I just go down in weight. She came over and stood right beside me and said, ‘No, you can do this – you are going to try 5 at a time, and when that doesn’t work you will do 3 at a time, and then 1 at time, but you can finish.’ She stayed right beside me until I finished and collapsed in exhaustion. It was one of the best feelings of my life. I did it. That’s CrossFit – it’s doing the impossible because you are in a community of great people who are all doing the impossible. Nobody wants to quit. I’m hooked.”