Congratulations to Erik Lau, our July Athlete of the Month! Keep up the great work and intensity, 2015 is going to be even better!
San Francisco, then moved to Livermore in 2000
When did you first start training at CrossFit 580?
What is your favorite workout/movement?
Overhead squat since it really challenges my entire body’s flexibility and upper body strength.
Least favorite workout/movement?
Any metcons that involve rounds of 400m runs.
Least favorite movement- Burpees!!!!!!!
Tell us about your fitness and/or lifestyle background:
Before CrossFit, I thought I was active. I’d hike, run, ski, road/mountain bike, golf and tennis. I’d be exhausted in any one of those activities and assumed that I achieved a workout. Boy, was I wrong.
How did you first get exposed to CrossFit 580? Take us back to your first workout… what was it, and how did it feel? I heard of CrossFit from my co-workers who have been doing it for about six months at a box close to work. From what I know now, it was exactly as how it was described, as a workout that involves cardio and weightlifting movements. I didn’t think of it twice, again, I assumed that I was active already with my activites at that time. Then it was a moment in time where a light bulb turned on in my head, that I needed a new challenge. I didn’t want to just join a typical gym where they’d hand you a membership card, a towel and just let you work on the weight machines. I’ve never done weightlifting before, other than dumbbell curls, so I knew I needed a lot of instructions. So I Googled “CrossFit in Livermore” and found CrossFit 580. Location and class schedule seemed to work well. I decided to give CrossFit 580 a try. I was expecting the “typical” gym environment and intimidations. Boy, was I wrong again!
Now here’s the exciting part.
On-Ramp Day 1 was my first workout. I remembered it was a crowded Saturday like it always is. Joy was the On-Ramp instructor. It started with a 250m run. You know, that run around the building. Then the typical stretches. I’ve stretched before, but not the types of stretches I considered as “normal” now. I was already huffing and puffing after the 250m run and the stretches. Then Joy introduced some weightlifting movements with the PVC. I recalled it was to understand how to prepare for positions 1, 2 and 3 for the cleans. During those instructions, I was still huffing and puffing. Then some air squats. Towards the 2nd half of the class, Joy asked us to complete a mini metcon. I remembered it was something like 3 rounds of 250m run, movements with the PVC and some squats.
After completing one round of 250m run, some movements with the PVC and some squats, I started taking off for the next 250m run. I was exhausted from the warm up run, stretches, movements from the introductions with the PVC and the first round of the metcon that I was at a point where I felt that that everything around me was spinning and I couldn’t hear a thing. After running towards the speed bump, I had to walk back and told Joy that I had to stop. I had to sit on the ground in the middle of the driveway waiting for my heart rate to return to normal. I was thinking, “OMG, I better not passed out in the middle of the driveway”. Then Mark asked if I was OK and explained that it’d take time to adjust to these types of workouts. After 10 minutes or so, I was able to stand up and conclude Day 1 of On-Ramp.
Then quietly walked away from the building, got into my car, drove away and asked myself, “What did I get myself into?”.
Now fast forward to July 2015.
What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting CrossFit 580? (before/after)
I definitely saw significant increase in my flexibility and upper body strength. I don’t feel as tired waking up early in the morning. The coolest part is having to buy all new clothes! I’m definitely more cognizant in what and where I eat. There is always that voice inside your head whispering, ” Do you know how many burpees, wallballs, runs, rows, squats one has to do to burn that off?”.
What changes in your life have you experienced from CrossFit 580 that were totally unexpected?
I can golf two rounds (36 holes), walking and carrying the bag without feeling sore the next day. I can ski starting when the lifts open until closing time without feeling as exhausted as before. I also realized that the mentality of putting in max efforts during the workouts, carries over into my professional life as well.
Please share with us any favorite CrossFit 580 moments:
I remembered it was 4 months into CrossFit when I Rx’d my first metcon. I remembered it involved a combination of cleaning 135#, front squats, 3 strict pullups and 100m runs for multiple rounds. That was the day when I realized I can clean 135# and do multiple strict pullups, both for the very first time.
What are your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of CrossFit 580?
Activities-wise outside of CrossFit, I’d like to golf, ski, hike road/mountain bike and tennis. I’m not sure if I’m considered a foodie or not, but I’m competing with friends to see who’d complete in trying all of San Francisco Chronicle’s Top 100 restaurants. So doing CrossFit makes the eating as a reward. I’d like to travel, for both vacation and work, so now, hotels gotta have a gym of some sort so I can at least get a workout in.
Any advice for people just getting started?
-CrossFit 580 is not like your typical gym where you pay your monthly dues and you’re on your own.
-Don’t get intimidated because everyone else has been through the treacherous learning curve and came out stronger on the other side.
-It is not a place to compare yourself with others nor will others compare themselves with you.
-Set mini goals for yourself and you’ll definitely see the progressions over time.