Kerry's outgoing and inspiring personality drew us to follow her on Instagram, and then we ran into her in an @over40fitness group on Facebook where she was recently nominated Athlete of the Month! She's such a positive contributor to the group and to all her know her. We are excited to welcome her to Team HBP!
Ever since I was little and I watched Nadia Comaneci win 3 Gold Medals on TV in the Summer Olympics I have admired athletes. Like most girls I did acrobatics and gymnastics but quit when it was time to start competing. I also played soccer for 10 years until I got out of high school. However, I had developed bursitis in my hips and the 15 lbs. I gained in college did not help at all. My roommates and I started lifting weights and I finally dropped a few sizes. I learned about nutrition and was a very healthy eater.
As I began to work full-time I continued to learn more about food and nutrition. I would work out in the gym off and on but I fell into a cycle of gaining a few pounds, focusing at the gym until I lost the weight and then I would give up. I was just so bored with the gym. I liked lifting weights but if a machine was busy I felt lost and out of place and like I didn’t know what to do so I would go home.
Fast forward several years… I got married and got into rock climbing (in a gym – there aren’t any rocks to climb here). For a while, my husband and I climbed together on a regular basis and I got pretty good at it. We wouldn’t go home until I had reached the top of the climb I was aiming and he was very patient with me. I would keep falling try after try until I finally got it. I loved being on the wall because I couldn’t think about anything else. It didn’t matter what was going on in my life, what I had to do the next day. I could only focus on that wall. More time went by and I got away from rock climbing and got pregnant with our first and second children. I wasn’t one of those Moms who exercised a lot while I was pregnant but I faithfully did yoga and Pilates once a week. At the end of my pregnancies I did water aerobics and was in the pool until the day before my births.
However, as a new Mom with 2 kids, a husband, full-time job, and a dog I was very sleep deprived. It was hard to commit to working out. I hired a personal trainer for a month before I went back to work but once I started working again I just couldn’t figure out how to get the energy to workout consistently. One rough night with the baby and I was done for the week. My husband recommended CrossFit. I googled it and thought those people were crazy. I finally tried it and had a bad experience two classes in a row. I decided that was not the right gym for me and didn’t go back. I told my husband the only way I would try it again is if there was a gym closer to our house. Well, a few months later they opened a CrossFit gym nearby and it was free for the month. I gave it one more shot and fell in love! The coaches were sticklers about making sure I learned it correctly and watched me like a hawk – they still do. I couldn’t believe how hard it was, that I was actually doing it, and most importantly the sense of community that I found. When I would go to the regular gym no one would talk to me. Here I had a great group of friends who really wanted me to do well.
About 8 months into CrossFit, I competed in my first CrossFit Open competition which was amazing since I couldn’t do any pullups yet. I completed all 5 weeks RX and stayed in it. I think what made a difference was my coach who believed in me and told me I could do it. Just hearing it from him made me believe in myself. This was HUGE. I was told a lot that I COULDN’T do many things. It was nice to hear some encouragement for a change. I hope to inspire others with my story. I still love to compete. I don’t know what that will bring in the future, and I work out now so that I will live a long, healthy life and get to play with my grandkids. So much has changed the last 4 years as I have evolved and learned. Anyone can do this if they want to. Just find something you love and stick with it.
Helping people makes me happy. I am a proponent of natural health remedies and prevention. I am a representative for one of my favorite lines. It aligns with my mission to educate people about health and not rely on conventional Western medicine. Don’t get me wrong, I think science is wonderful but I also believe in the exponential healing potential of our own bodies and minds. I believe it is best to give our body what it needs to heal itself and find the issue rather than masking symptoms with medication. I am constantly learning and striving to be and do better.
A few months ago I found HandBandPro. I read that they keep your hands from ripping and got a pair not sure if they would work or not. Well, I got rid of all my other “gloves” and wear my HandBandPros for every workout. They have served me well for every lift and rope climb. My “man hands” are a thing of the past, and I don’t need to use chalk anymore. They also keep the pads of my hands from being sore for days after deadlifts. I highly recommend them for both men and women.