September Athlete of the Month- Annelyse Santos


September Athlete of the Month- Annelyse Santos

1. In general, what is your background? Age, Occupation?

            I am 34 and was born and raised in West Virginia and moved to Lovettsville 8 years ago with my husband, Michael.  We have two sons, Rockwell (4) and Dashel (2), and I am mostly a stay at home mom, but do still work part time from home for State Farm Insurance.  As a kid I played baseball and then softball until I was 14; and I danced ballet for 10 years. Once I hit high school I abandoned organized sports for the stage, and I spent all my time singing and dancing in school musicals and choir and doing community theatre in Martinsburg and Charles Town.  

2. How did you get to know about Catoctin CrossFit and why did you start?

            In October of 2013 I begrudgingly walked into a “regular gym” to talk to someone about getting a membership.  I was heavy into community theatre at the time, and Brunswick was close to home, but I had not been athletic for any of my adult life and the idea of using a treadmill and other gym machines sounded horrible, but I wanted to lose weight – how original – and didn’t know how else to do it at this point. I met Zach that evening and told him that I hated the idea of joining a gym, and maybe I would enjoy group classes like Zumba and Pilates.  He asked me if I’d ever tried CrossFit and I said heck no! He invited me to join a CrossFit group class that he coached on Saturday mornings. I think I laughed at him and told him he was trying to kill me.  He said that I did not need to “be in shape” to try CrossFit. Sure enough I showed up on Saturday to a WOD that included burpee broad jumps and dumbbell thrusters. After that I was hooked. He told me as luck and timing would have it, this was his last week at Anytime, and he would be opening up his own CrossFit gym in Purcellville…..if I was interested.  Needless to say, I never signed up at Anytime, and CCF has been my home and my obsession ever since.      

3. What has Catoctin CrossFit changed about your life other than a new workout routine?

            CCF has given me strength and confidence that I didn’t believe was possible.  It has changed the way I view my own capabilities and shown me how fun it is to be STRONG! That is to say nothing of the friendships I have made that feel more like family.

4. What motivates you and keeps you coming back to Catoctin every day?

     My weaknesses. I want to get better and learn more every day I show up.

5. What advice would you give someone thinking about trying a class at Catoctin CrossFit?

            Give it one day. Modify, modify, modify, and trust that everyone in class started where you are. Be open to the expert coaching and camaraderie from classmates that will hook you on day one and keep you coming back forever.

6. What Goals have you set for yourself in 2020?

            To not beat myself up over my weaknesses or my modifications.  Keep working hard to get better, but know that there is no time limit and I’m in this for the long haul to get better step by step.

7. Favorite CrossFit moment so far?

            There are so many things that make me smile when I think about CCF and CrossFit, but if I had to pick one, it would be the MetCon Rush competition last year when Liz McCoy and I battled back and claimed a 2nd place podium spot after a finals WOD that included running!

8. Favorite and least favorite type of workout or movement?

            Favorite would have to be snatches, all day! And after that, anything with a barbell.  I don’t like to say I have a least favorite because weaknesses are meant to be worked through and overcome, BUT running is the worst.

9. If you had to teach a class on one thing, what would it be and why?

            I’d love to coach CrossFit Kids. CrossFit has become such a passion of mine that I want to pass along the empowering confidence and healthy lifestyle not only my own children, but all children! I look at CCF all the time and wish I would have had it as a kid.

10. If you could be on a reality TV show, what would it be and why?

            Chopped! I love cooking and weird ingredients. And Chopped has taught me a lot about cooking technique and creativity.