Posted by Andy Petranek : Wednesday, Jul 18, 2012
ATHLETE PROFILE: Mike Brown
Hometown: New York City
Occupation: Real Estate Developer
When did you first start CrossFitting?: September, 2007
When did you first start training at CFLA?: November, 2012
Favorite WOD: I like Murph
Least Favorite WOD: Anything with heavy weights or double unders
Tell us about you sports & fitness background: I grew up with a Dad who wrestled for the USMC and the USA and swam in the Olympic Trials, so we were an active family from the gate.
I swam competitively as a child and won a lot of trophies. I seem to have gotten out of sports through my preteen years as I didn't care much for teams. I did wrestle in high school.
As a teenager I rock climbed and kayaked at expert levels, working in both industries and doing some very serious ascents and descents throughout New England and in the Colorado Rockies. Eventually this lifestyle gave way to hard partying and a long career in heavy construction in the Intermountain West.
The hard partying finally ended in 2004 and since then I have had 3 additional swings from couch-potato to peak fitness: one around alpine mountaineering before I left Colorado, one around mainsite-crossfit-and-surfing with a bunch of former SF guys that I went to business school with, and this one, which started just before the holidays and is centered around CFLA.
How did you first get exposed to CrossFit? Take us back to your first WOD... what was it, and how did it feel? My first WOD was at the track at UCLA. It involved sprints and burpees. It made me feel like puking and pooping at the same time - while sprinting. I fell in love immediately! Really what attracted me was the functionality, the low time requirement, and the versatility. I like to do stuff!
What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting CF (before/after)? In the 7 months since getting off the couch again and becoming a regular at CFLA, I have lost 20 pounds (thank you, WLC). This has put running, burpees, box jumps and pullups back in the zone of comfortability, which has really helped my overall outlook. At 33 I had gotten to feeling out of shape. Granted I set a high bar for myself versus a lot of the population but feeling great is a subjective experience.
What sort of changes in your life have you experienced out of taking on something like CrossFit that were totally unexpected? I did not expect that CFLA would become a focal point for my whole mind-body-spirit wellness, but it has. I read the blog each morning with my meditations and I immediately feel plugged in - reminded that I am part of a community of people that is 100% committed to achieving optimum health and fitness and to supporting each other in getting there and staying there. It's awesome. It puts a big smile on my face, as does the feeling I get when I know I am going to the gym to see some of you all!
Please share with us any favorite CrossFit / CFLA moments: #3: Killing myself to turn in a respectable 15 rounds in the WLC baseline opener - not bad for a 205 lb, semi-out-of-shape 33 year old. #2: Improving this to almost 18 rounds in the finals, and really feeling a part of CFLA. #1: Getting completely smoked by my cousin, Chris, in the process.
Any advice for people just getting started? Slow and steady wins the race. Do embarrassingly low weight for like 3 months. I did this and still got hurt, still came down with colds. I did below womens' RX (some lifts I still do). Peak fitness comes from consistent training, staying healthy, and AVOIDING INJURY, not heroics. Tanya may always squat more than I do!
What are your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of CrossFit? Motorcycling, climbing, surfing, and helping people. CFLA makes me better at all of my life.
Five rounds for time of:
21 Ring Rows
12 Box Jumps (32/24)
...and coming Wednesday
1 mile run, for time
- 4 minute rest
Complete as many rounds as possible in 7 minutes of:
7 KBS (32/20)
- 4 minute rest
1 mile run, for time