Jeff Shargel



What brought you to Mountain Strength CrossFit?
My wife, Nicky, introduced me to MSCF (if you do not know her, she is the shy girl that frequents the 9:15 a.m. class.)  Witnessing Nicky’s amazing crossfit transformation at a time when I was hitting a bottom in terms of work stress, lack of exercise, poor diet, and overall lousy feeling finally got me to visit the gym.  Nicky’s encouragement and my desire for a lifestyle change got me through the front door, petrified as I was.  But, it was Coach Rich’s encouraging approach and style that made me feel comfortable, confident and safe, that kept me coming back until the addiction set in.

 

What is your favorite exercise or movement?
I like lifting.  Who knew!  When I first came to MSCF, I do not believe Coach Rich thought I was safe holding pvc pipe.  But, after tripping over myself for a long time, I now have a general understanding, appreciation, and respect for proper form and technique.   Also, with lifting I am able to easily calculate my progress over time.  Not to mention, it feels pretty damn good to lift heavy! In particular, I enjoy cleans, squats, and of course, the high from a heavy deadlift cannot be underestimated.   

 

What is a skill or movement that you are working on to improve?
Pull ups.  Damn those pull ups.  Also, ring dips, bench press, toes to bar, and push ups. While I’m at it, anything involving overhead lifts.  I am sensing a theme here.  Running too.  I definitely need to continue working on my cardio.    Is there a maximum word count to this question?

 

What changes have you seen in yourself since you started at Mountain Strength CrossFit?
I find myself standing in front of the mirror shirtless for a lot longer than I used to, even recognizing the faint outline of muscle.  I have also grown the requisite MSCF beard (unfortunately the requisite male pattern baldness is progressing as well).  I have also taken to eating better.  Expressions like “this kale isn’t all that bad” and “I will have a protein shake” were things I never thought would leave my lips in the past.  In all seriousness, I love starting the day with MSCF.  By 8:00 a.m. I already feel strong, accomplished, confident, alert, and ready to conquer the day.  Often clients are surprised when they call me at 9:00, and I am bursting with positive energy from my workout.  Whereas in the beginning of my MSCF experience, I felt sluggish and tired (but in a good way) after surviving a workout, now I feel sluggish and tired (in a bad way) when I have to miss a day of crossfit.

 

What is your favorite memory of Mountain Strength CrossFit?
It is hard for me to choose as there are many, especially from the social aspects of great new friendships formed and attending fun social events with the other members.  From a physical aspect, my greatest memories are recent as I am starting to see the fruits of my labor.   Perhaps today as I write this is a perfect example of a great new memory- I decided to attempt the Rx the weight on a pure lifting WOD (the power clean), as the weight seemed reasonably low (albeit there were 75 reps).   Rx-ing a weight for a lifting WOD is something I have rarely done, and never when I began crossfit did I ever imagine I would progress to that point.  Instead of loading the bar with 15 lb plates from the start, I used two 10lb plates and two 5lb plates, just in case I needed to shed some weight mid-WOD.  Lo and behold, I made it through the whole WOD at the Rx weight, and with decent time too!  I now look forward to the next time around, when I will just add the 15 lb plates from the start, with newfound confidence. 


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