Each month, in order to get to know our Centex community better, we are going to highlight an Athlete of the Month. This athlete has exhibited determination, growth, and a great attitude in the gym. They challenge and encourage their teammates on a daily basis and represent CrossFit Centex with pride.
To kick things off, congratulations to our April Athlete of the Month, Lance Gay!
For those that haven’t had a chance to get to know Lance, you’re missing out. He is a great guy who always shows up at the gym with a smile on his face and an enthusiasm for life that is contagious. He is willing to help no matter the need, always encouraging to those around him, and has a great success story in regards to his fitness.
We feel Lance was the heart of this year’s Open at Centex. Lance embraced each week’s workout as a challenge to push himself both physically and mentally. He was there every week challenging, encouraging, and judging other athletes. Over the past two Opens, Lance has seen many successes and you’ll read about one in his comments below. It’s super exciting to watch athletes like Lance grow at the gym and do things they didn’t think they could.
Tell us little bit about you and your family.
First and foremost I have been saved by my Risen Savior! I am blessed to be married to Cathy, my high school sweetheart, for 21 years. We have three great girls, Katie (16), Anna (13), and Caroline (11). Katie and Anna swim for the Belton Tiger Sharks and Caroline is all about dance. I tell people that I live in an estrogen hurricane but I really would not want it any other way, except for some of the drama.
What are your hobbies and interests?
I really like outdoor stuff. The girls and I started bouldering about a year ago. I was looking for something to do with them that was active but new to all of us. We started at the indoor climbing gym in Harker Heights and have transitioned to outdoor climbing as well. It has been a lot of fun. We also go on a weekly Sunday afternoon hike at one of the great places we have in the area.
What is something we don’t know about you?
One thing that most people do not know about me is that I have not always been active. My active lifestyle started 10 years ago because I wanted/needed to keep up with Katie and be a good example to her and her sisters. Santa brought Katie a bike for Christmas in 2005 and in May 2006 my Mom taught her to ride it (my Mom teaching kids to ride bikes is another story). Katie kept begging me to ride with her so I fixed my old bike from college and we went for a ride. I could not make it around the block without resting in a neighbor’s yard. It was an eye opener! The next day I started my fitness journey. I weighed 234 pounds, ate poorly, dipped snuff, and drank too much beer. The first day I walked four laps around the old track in Belton.
When did you start crossfit? Why?
I started CrossFit almost two years ago. One of the main reasons I started was community. As an endurance athlete a lot of my training was solo. I worked remotely with a coach and most of the workouts were best done on my own. A close friend and fellow cycling teammate bought the CF affiliate in New Braunfels and really influenced me to give CF a try.
Do you remember your first wod?
I do not remember my first WOD but I do remember my On Ramp with Jeffro. I was like “Holy smokes, who is this guy!” After the first workout I had tears on both hands and he told me to go get some O’Keefe’s Working Hands. I was doing movements that I had never done before and had only seen channel surfing during the Olympics while looking for track and field events. Who purposefully does a Snatch? What the heck is a Wall Ball? I LOVED IT!
What is your favorite/least favorite thing about crossift? (movement, wod, etc.)
The favorite/least favorite things about CrossFit are usually one and the same. I am weakest overhead due to shoulder injuries so thrusters, snatch, and jerks are not my favorite movements, but they are some of my favorite goals. As far as WODs go my favorites are the high rep movement ones, bring on the Burpees!
How has crossfit and/or Centex affected your life?
The community of CenTex has really affected me by bringing some great likeminded people into my life; people that not only share my interest in fitness, but more importantly share my interest in God, family, friends, and community. These people not only hold me accountable in health, but also in life.
What advice would you give a newbie?
The best advice I can give a newbie is to scale and stick with it. No one cares that you are doing a workout scaled as long as you are giving your best. The other thing is to get involved in the community.
Tell us your most memorable moment/wod/etc. at Centex?
The most recent memorable WOD was this year’s 16.2 workout. My max clean up to that point was 145, from the 2015 Open. As I was setting up, LeAnn encouraged me to set up the 115# bar, the 135# bar and the 155# bar. I was not sure I could get past the 135# weight before time ran out. Long story short I surprised myself by hitting 8 of the 9 reps at 155# before time ran out.
Have you met any goals since starting crossfit? What future goals do you have?
I have hit several goals since I started- one of my favorites is kipping pull ups. My top goal at the moment is to get double-unders. I really want to get better at all the gymnastic movements as well.
Give a favorite quote or encouraging word.
One of my favorite verses is 1 Corinthians 9:24 “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.” Give it everything you have as though you will win.