As this is my first blog post on the Dirty Gym site, I feel it is necessary for me to give a little background on myself...
I spent the majority of my teen years being nerd-tastic and antisocial, which led me to a nerdy tech school where I received a degree in Mathematics and a commission through Air Force ROTC. The Air Force decided I wasn't done learning, and I got shipped out to good old Dayton Ohio for a Master's degree at AFIT. It's a good thing I did, too, or else I never would have experienced the wonders of The Dirty Gym.
When I first got to Dayton, I knew I wanted to "get in shape."
I had no athletic background from high school or college sports, but I was an avid aerobics/boot camp/body sculpt class goer. So I knew I liked the feeling of "getting my pump on."
CrossFit was something I had heard of and knew I wanted to try. I took an intro class and started doing WODs on a daily basis. This went on for about six months, during which I competed in the Open. New to CrossFit, I didn't anticipate that I would perform particularly well, but I wasn't particularly pleased with my performance either. Doing Metcons every day made me fast as hell and very well conditioned…but that's it.
I didn't know what I was doing, I wasn't strong enough to do anything well, but I was too ignorant to actually realize it. In the end, budget cuts and management issues caused our little on base CrossFit gym to fall apart, and I was looking for a new gym.
The Dirty Gym came to my rescue! My fellow Mini Monster Katie Carroll talked me into coming down despite how terrifying she made Marcus seem, and so "Katemily" was born. I showed up every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, and we did whatever Marcus told us to. Usually we did it wrong, but we slowly learned the ropes.
I learned about all the things I had been doing wrong before. I was hitting PRs nearly every training session. I was getting STRONG and I was loving it.
I struggled a little bit in the beginning with what I wanted to train for.
I remember filling out an application and waiver on my first day at DG and listing that I didn't want to compete in anything. A month later I wanted to compete in Powerlifting, Weightlifting, CrossFit, and Strong Man. After training the first three categories concurrently for quite some time, I decided the stress on my body was too much, and I needed to pick an area to focus on. Since then, I have focused mainly on my Powerlifting goals.
Getting strong and lifting big is just too much fuckin' fun to not do. And its the only one where you bench... And I freaking LOVE benching.
It's been about a year since that first day at DG. I've put on about 15 pounds. My squat and deadlift both increased by 100 pounds and my bench by 65. Somewhere along the line I stopped just doing what Marcus told me to because I had learned enough from everyone at DG to be able to build my own training cycles.
I still ask for help and input from numerous sources because, even though I'm an American Record Holder, I still consider myself a beginner and regardless, there's always someone who knows more.
Unfortunately, I will be leaving the Dayton area shortly as I am PCSing to San Antonio. I will miss my DG family and hopefully will be able to come back to train in the future. My first goal upon arrival to my next base is to find a gym that offers something similar -- like minded, goal-driven, strong people training their asses off day in and day out.
I hope to use DG Member Mike Parrott, currently stationed in San Antonio as a training partner and invaluable resource going forward.
Training for Big Goals.
This year, I hope to achieve a master level total and overtake the Junior 132 class American Records. My next meet isn't planned until September, so I haven't started a serious meet prep cycle yet, but I'll be posting more of my training once I'm settled in SA.
For now, I'm focusing on bottom strength/power on squat with box squats and technique in my deadlift with seated sumo deadlifts. I recently widened my grip on my bench and am still learning where my weaknesses have shifted. I will probably work in some bands and weighted push ups to help with my transition from lats to triceps.
My accessory work as of late has consisted of high volume body building for my quads, triceps, lats, and rear delts.
I also make it a point to do all the eating. All of it.