Coach Jeff Lockhart What inspired you to start doing CrossFit?
I had been in to weightlifting and fitness since about 7th grade. It was always the 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps of isolation exercises based on the 1970’s world of bodybuilding. I even went so far as to compete in a teenage bodybuilding contest. As I passed through college, the pounds piled on even though I was still working out fairly regularly. Fast forward to massage therapy school. I read a magazine article about common gym exercises to avoid. Well, that magazine had a sidebar about an emerging way of thinking about fitness fit called CrossFit. That little sidebar was a life changer. With all the stuff I was learning about anatomy and physiology, CrossFit was really the only thing that made sense from that point on.
What are some of your goals in the gym?
I would love to get a muscle up put together. In fact, I have dreams about it. I tore my Achilles tendon in March of 2013 which, for a while, put me on the rower for any workout that involved running. As much as I don’t like rowing now, I have a grudging respect for it. I would like to see how low I can get my 500 meter time.
What do you love most about coaching athletes?
That is such a tough question since there is so much to love. Helping people discover and deepen their connection to their own body is probably one of the most rewarding things for me and it ties in nicely to my work as a massage therapist too. CrossFit just does it with the volume turned up to 11. I also absolutely love the camaraderie and community that comes with working so hard together. From the athlete getting through their first WOD to the person hitting a PR on a technical lift, there is always something to celebrate in a CrossFit gym.
What advice would you give to a beginner CrossFit athlete?
I would ask them to pay attention to their own body and what it’s telling them and then be really honest about it. If you need to scale a workout, do it. You’ll be glad you did. The only time I’ve hurt myself is when I let my ego do the driving. If it’s time to take a breather, take it. If it’s time to step on the gas, stomp it. First and foremost, though, have fun! Just remember that CrossFit fun and the fun you’re used to having might be a little different.
Which types of community work inspire you the most?
In my other line of work, I’m a massage therapist at a Twin Cities hospital. I work with hospitalized people trying to help them have less pain and anxiety. It’s pretty humbling to be invited into the middle of someone’s life altering experience to try to help them feel better.
What do you like to do outside of the gym?
I love spending time with my family, especially if we’re outside. We like to take mini trips with our 1970’s pop-up camper. We’ve got a lot of great mountain biking trails in the Twin Cities area and I really enjoy trying to not break my bones on those. You might also find me taking a nap in our canoe in the middle of a lake.