September 2016 CrossFitter of the Month

This month’s CrossFitter of the Month is a fighter.  Here is Lacey Leonard, as she attempts at, fights for, and then succeeds with her first bar muscle-up during last year’s Open Competition (photo credits to Christos Christoudias):
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photo2(139)Look at that smile! Talk about sheer joy!  We chose Lacey to represent us this month because of this smile, this attitude, and this level of inspiration.  Her love of a good challenge keeps her fighting the good fight.  Like yesterday, while most of us were barbecuing and drinking a cold one, Lacey was in the gym getting her very first set of strict ring muscle-ups!  What? Yep… That’s right!  Perseverance, determination, and commitment – these three words sum up Ms. Leonard.

Not sure if many of you know this, but Lacey was born in New Jersey!  She moved to Tahoe when she was quite young, allowing her to develop a more west coast-accent.  😉 As an almost native Tahoan, Lacey attended Al Tahoe Elementary School (before it was an annex to the school district), South Tahoe Middle School, and graduated in 2005 from South Tahoe High School.  She left Tahoe for a brief stint while she went to college in Phoenix.  She received her undergraduate degree from ASU.   Lacey might have been enamored by the sun of Arizona, but it was the cool mountain breezes of Tahoe that beckoned her home.  She moved back after college, and then communted to Marysville, CA while working on her X-Ray license.  She currently works for Carson Valley Medical Center and Barton Hospital as an MRI tech.

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Cassy and Lacey, Superheroes-in-Training!

In and out of school, Lacey was always active.  If she wasn’t swimming on the city club team, she was kicking around a soccer ball with the local AYSO.  Once in high school, she turned in her soccer cleats for a tennis raquet and track shoes.  After high school, she took up mountain biking and rock climbing. When asked how and why she walked through our doors, she mentioned Jenn Galea.  Jenn, a co-worker and friend, had been trying to get Lacey to try out a class for a while. Lacey signed up for the Ski Conditioning Class and met Cassy Burnside.  The two of them decided to see what the rest of the box was all about.  That was almost two years ago.  Monika Renk took these ladies through Elements, and despite being a little nervous about getting hurt, Lacey was hooked.  Two years in, and she has already competed in two functional fitness competitions:  New Kids in the Box.  She loved these events and hopes to compete in more, especially if there is swimming involved!

photo4(71)Like many of our members, she has natural athleticism. However, being a natural can only take one so far.  She is determined to do better, pushes herself further, and accomplishes what she sets out as her goal.  She is also extremely unassuming.  I wish I had recorded her reaction upon discovering that she was to be this month’s athlete.  She was shocked, to say the least, and questioned our selection.  She is amazing.

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Deadlift Ladder at the 2016 NKIB

For Lacey, anything difficult is fun.  Her favorite movements include pull-ups, handstand push-ups, rope climbs, and double-unders.  Her very first WOD is still her favorite:  a 30 minute AMRAP of rope climbs and push-ups.  (I remember that WOD…only because my arms felt like they were going to detach from my body fifteen minutes into the workout!!)

When asked if she has any future goals, she simply stated, “To continue to have fun and improve!”  That’s really why we all do this, right?  Oh, and to get that strict muscle-up… (did I mention that she got it, today?)

We selected Lacey because she is a strong and determined young lady.  She, like all of our past Athletes of the Month, continues to inspire all of us not only because of the work she does, but also because of her attitude and spirit of competition.

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Make sure you tell Lacey “Congratulations!” when you see her!!