“Feeling more equipped to deal with things in life is an awesome thing, and with this toughness comes confidence.”
Congratulations to Will, our latest Cypher Athlete Spotlight!
I started road bicycling in 2007. At first it started as a way to commute to work and quickly escalated into something I desperately wanted to dominate. I participated in all sorts of organized century rides and insane hill climbing challenges like the Levi’s Gran Fondo, the Deathride, and the Nifty Ten Fifty. When I trained for these rides I rode up every steep and nasty hill in the East Bay. To help improve my cycling performance I joined an outdoor boot camp, and signed up for core, high intensity interval training, and yoga classes. During that time I was averaging 100 miles of riding a week.
Cypher: What do you do for work?
I am cell and molecular biologist and work in a research lab. Specifically, I conduct experiments supporting drug discovery efforts. I’m currently at BioMarin Pharmaceuticals in San Rafael, where the focus is finding cures for rare genetic diseases involving lysosomal storage dysfunction.
Cypher: How did you hear about Crossfit Cypher and CrossFit?
I first heard of CrossFit from a friend who was in a boot camp class with me. I dropped in and immediately loved the high intensity interval aspect of it. I learned about CrossFit Cypher by doing an internet search for boxes near where I live.
Cypher: Describe your first day participating in a CrossFit workout. Do you remember what the WOD was? What was it like, and what were your thoughts when you left the gym?
I honestly can’t remember the details of my first workout. Whatever it was, it was really rough because I specifically remember writhing in pain and doubled-over on the gym floor thinking “what in the hell did I get myself into.” In my car on the way home I remember thinking I want to do that again, but do it better.
What has been the most rewarding part of CrossFit for you?
Witnessing anyone achieve a PR or finish a really difficult workout. This really inspires and motivates me to try harder and push through when I struggle.
Cypher: What is one of your most memorable CrossFit PRs or milestones? What did it feel like when you did it?
Cypher: What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting CrossFit?
Cypher: What encouragement or words of advice would you give to new people coming in?
I would say to someone just starting to just show up for class. Period. It’s easy to come up with a reason to not show up, and even easier to convince yourself it’s a legitimate one. Every time I don’t go I end up regretting it.
Cypher: You have recently made some big gains in strength, congrats! What do you attribute to your success, and what do you others could learn from your experience?
For me, I attribute my success to trusting a plan and putting in the work. Once a coach assists you in defining goals and forms an achievable plans for success, it’s all on you to execute it. While some things can be achieved by attending class, most of this has to happen during open gym. While you can’t always control the end result, you can control the effort and should feel good about it regardless of the outcome. During this process, it’s key to get feedback from the coaches and make the necessary adjustments. This really started making sense when I started doing the Powerlifting program.
Cypher: What fitness goals have you set for yourself to achieve in the next 12 months?
At the moment my most urgent goals are to master double unders and kipping handstand push ups. I’d also like to get to a point where I’m able doing more than half of the WODs at the prescribed standards.
Cypher: What are some of your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of the gym? Any fun facts your gym-mates might not know about you?
I’m a huge SF Giants, SF 49er, GS Warrior sports fan. I rarely miss a game on TV or radio. I enjoy playing collectible card games like Magic the Gathering and Pokemon (I try really hard to play with my daughters and not with other adults, but it happens occasionally). I also like to binge watch anime and sci-fi (TV and movies), and play video games (especially first person shooters). I find that with all of the things I’ve mentioned, the amount of time spent pursuing them is inversely proportional to my fitness level. So the challenge for me has always been to keep my hobbies and my fitness activities in balance. Sadly, I mess it up more often than not.
Cypher: Spirit Animal & Super Power?
A dire wolf. Fiercely loyal.
Cypher: If you could describe Cypher in five words, what would they be?