Congratulations to Eric Russin on being our December Athlete of The Month!
How long have you been CrossFitting:
I started going to a CrossFit gym at the very beginning of 2019, in the first week of the year. After I moved in April, I switched gyms and started attending Beyond Parallel.
A little about yourself:
I am 32 years old. I grew up in the southern part of Pittsburgh near Mckeesport. I played baseball and soccer in high school and tried to stay fairly active. I went to college at Penn State and majored in Electrical Engineering. I currently work in Cranberry and have a wife and a 6 month old daughter.
How did you get started in CrossFit:
One of my co-workers is very involved in CrossFit at another gym and I would often ask him questions about it. After finally accepting that I was not getting into shape on my own, and I was making a little more money, I started going to his CrossFit gym and he helped me get into it.
How has CrossFit helped you outside the gym:
The biggest way that CrossFit has helped me is that I am in much better shape. I look better, I feel better and I can do a lot more. I feel like I have a lot more energy than I did before starting CrossFit and it has even been pointed out to me that I used to have dark circles around my eyes most of the time, which have since gone away. Also, I started to play ice hockey before starting CrossFit and I couldn’t last an entire game before I was too exhausted. Now, I have plenty of energy to play hard all game long.
What makes CrossFit Beyond Parallel special:
After switching CrossFit gyms, I noticed something very different and special about Beyond Parallel (BP). All of the trainers are there to help you do the correct moves and, more importantly, do them correctly. One argument that many people make against CrossFit in general is that the different moves have the potential to cause injury. This is true, but only if they are done incorrectly and the trainers at BP are all there to make sure that the moves are not done improperly. Also, the way that the workouts are designed allow anyone with any level of experience to perform them and eventually build up to perform the most advanced moves. Since going to BP, I have been able to work up and start doing double-unders (even just a few at a time), kipping pull-ups and kipping hand stand push-ups (HSPUs), all of which I couldn’t do before. Also, BP has a great nutrition program to help you stay healthy. It wasn’t until I started changing my nutrition that I started to notice real results. Since I started going to CrossFit, I have lost over 30 pounds. 20 of those came after starting the nutrition plan.
Any advice for someone looking to get started:
The only piece of advice that I can give is to just start going as soon as you can. DON’T WAIT! Going to any gym, or starting anything new can be daunting but most gyms and especially Beyond Parallel, have a great sense of community with all of the members. Everyone is there to help everyone else. Everyone will cheer you on. Everyone will help you if they can. And absolutely no one will judge you if you aren’t at the same level as someone else.