We believe that quality coaching improves results, prevents injury, and provides proper motivation. Our coaches are a dedicated collective of fitness experts, and our members are a tight-knit community. We welcome those of all skills, abilities, and physical levels.
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Growing up I was kind of a spaz. I had a lot of energy but not a lot of outlets to focus that energy on. In middle school I started lifting weights in an attempt to get ready for high school football. Everything just clicked. I became very strong very quickly and realized the correlation of hard work to results through the weight room. During high school I found powerlifting and competed on the state and national levels.
When I went to college, I chose to study exercise science and physiology. I loved learning anything and everything I could about the ways the body adapts to strength and conditioning. I graduated with a degree in exercise science for sports management and obtained my Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists certification through the NSCA. I moved to Colorado and set out to be the best trainer I could. I worked with the Colorado School of Mines football team for a season. I worked at large chain "globo-gyms." I worked at private training studios that catered to the individual needs of each client. Personally, I ventured into bodybuilding for a while as that was the next "step" after sports based strength training. I had no aspirations of becoming a professional bodybuilder and it didn't take long for me to figure out that bodybuilding was not going to produce the kind of results I wanted to achieve.
While working at a team training studio in Colorado, I was introduced to mixed martial arts. It was instantly apparent that conventional isolation strength movements were deficient when attempting to build a better fighter. While attempting to develop a more functional approach to strength training for MMA, I was introduced to CrossFit. I started following the main site WODs as best I could with the knowledge I possessed and the equipment that was available to me. I was hooked! I dove into CrossFit headfirst! I read every article I could get my hands on. I watched every video I could find on the internet.
Shortly thereafter, I obtained my CrossFit Level 1 certification. My interest in CrossFit fueled me to obtain my Level 1 sports and performance certification in USAWeightlifting (Olympic lifting) and my Level 1 and 2 coaching distinction through USAKL and IKL (kettlebell lifting). Nearly every waking minute was spend either studying, practicing or explaining CrossFit to anyone that would listen. I left my 40 hr week job managing fitness facilities and personnel, and concentrated on coaching full time. All of the pieces really came together after attending Kelly Starett's Mobility Clinic in 2013.
Shortly thereafter I knew that my calling in life was to develop, coach, administer and evaluate CrossFit workouts, movement patterns and programming. I feel fortunate in that sense. Many people have no clue what truly makes them happy or what their life's destiny is. I not only know but get the chance to live that dream out through CrossFit Viral. Life is good!
I never considered myself an athlete...growing up I wasn't into sports and I didn't feel that competitive drive to pit myself against another. I suppose my journey into CrossFit and later into coaching is one that many "crossfitters" will be able to relate to.
In the beginning, I was intimidated by the idea of doing a workout at an actual CrossFit box. At the urging of my husband, I started CrossFitting with him in the garage where I was happy to do my workouts alone and under the watchful eye of no one in particular. Once I started, I loved CrossFit; the ever changing workouts were fun and challenging, and I really liked the steady results I was getting.
Eventually I was dragged out of my comfort zone and into a BOX! I was soo nervous my first time in but what I found was a collection of happy, fit, inspiring people who wanted me to feel welcome. The environment inside the gym became a bit of an addiction and the community and support made me want to come back. After continuous training with my coaches, I was approached and asked if I would like to pursue coaching others. I was blown away by the compliment. My coaches believed I moved very well and wanted to develop my ability to teach other people to do the same.
I completed my CrossFit Level 1 and began apprentice coaching. After shadowing for a few months, I was ready to tackle the challenge of coaching on my own and I have never looked back. I absolutely love coaching at CrossFit Viral. I live for the days when people have a 'click' and understand a movement better or the days when people acquire new skills for the first time. I really love the personal stories of people who have overcome illness or had a dramatic body change through CrossFit and wellness.
It was a natural step to pursue my CrossFit Kids certification, which allows me to coach and mentor young people toward moving well and moving often. I have seen what CrossFit can do for anyone who is willing to "put in" and I am very much looking forward to watching lives continue to change at CrossFit Viral!
From the time I was very young I knew I wanted to work in health care, which led me to join the Army at 17 to become a combat medic. It was several years later, while sitting at a duty desk at William Beaumont Army Medical Center at Fort Bliss Texas that a Captain said to me, "Have you ever heard of CrossFit?" I did not know how much that question would change my life... I "tried" to start CrossFit then, but couldn't find anyone interested in trying these workouts with me. Most believed the WODs would be "too short!"
My plan throughout my career was eventually to go on to medical school but a meeting with a friend and now a mentor changed my life map, and when I finished my service in the Army I matriculated at Palmer College of Chiropractic. I continued my usual mundane routine of weight training but kept CrossFit in the back of my mind. Eventually I found a training partner and threw myself into CrossFit training at Palmer.
I have never loved a training system as much as CrossFit. But, that is actually not what lead me to coaching; I hadn't had my big life changing moment...YET. Upon finishing up my education I took a big leap and moved to Australia where I enrolled in James Chestnut's Certified Chiropractic Wellness Practitioner course and that's when everything came together for me. Through my CCWP training I received all of the pieces of the human wellness puzzle and started to live my life for health and wellness.
After that, things began happening very quickly. Very fortunately for me there was a CrossFit Box in Albury-Woodonga Australia. I contacted the coaches there and told them I had wellness lifestyle workshops I would like to deliver to their clients on the science of living well. They met with me and agreed to have me present to their clients. I began my training with them, and through CrossFit and my lifestyle changes lost 55 pounds and have been the healthiest, strongest, and happiest person I have ever been. I have also had the privilege of training with and being mentored by some of the finest coaches and athletes in Australia.
CrossFit has literally changed who I am. Eventually my coaches at CFAW asked if I would like to take on coaching as well. I couldn't have been more pleased. Coaching in a box and teaching wellness lifestyle has been incredibly rewarding and is truly my "calling." Like coach Kuna's training with Kelly Starrett, my training with James Chestnut was my AHA moment when my life's ambition became clear, and is why I feel very fortunate to be able to work with someone else so focused and driven. I love to watch lives change at CrossFit Viral!
I have always been active (playing high school sports, recreational sports leagues, biking, etc.). Like many people, I had settled in to a fitness routine that was just that…routine…with little noticeable change. I was tuned in to the growing ‘buzz’ around CrossFit and decided to give it a try. I joined CrossFit Viral in September of 2014 with the intention of gaining some Olympic lifting skills and returning to my globo gym after a few months.
One week in, I knew I would not leave this amazing community. I have always had a strong interest in health and fitness however, being surrounded by so many like-minded individuals, desiring to improve themselves, has been truly inspirational.
Having a desire to increase my knowledge, I pursued a CrossFit Level I certification and began the rewarding journey into coaching in early 2015. Helping others improve their fitness is both exciting and humbling at the same time. Being a part of and seeing my community set, achieve, and set new goals is incredibly rewarding and I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of something so inspiring.
I was involved in multiple youth sports, but found a passion in softball. I played competitively for 14 years, in which the last five were at the Division 1 level (I red shirted my sophomore year due to a torn ACL). It was the summer before my redshirt senior year that I realized my days of being an athlete were dwindling. I devoted most of my life to the sport, and it was about to come to an abrupt end. I knew that I had to find something to replace softball, otherwise I would have gone stir crazy.
I tried yoga, cycling, kickboxing, etc., but nothing really intrigued me. Then I heard about something called CrossFit and thought I would give it a try. I was greeted by two large men with beards (Nate and Kuna) and wonderfully welcoming woman named Steph. After completing the On Ramp, I completed my first WOD which was the “Murph.”
The next day, I couldn’t move a single part of my body and my hands were torn to pieces. So naturally I was hooked. I spent the rest of the summer taking in as much as I could before heading back to college. I completed my last season of softball and graduated in the summer of 2015 from South Dakota State University with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus in Family Consumer Science and Nutrition.
While I finished my Bachelor’s Degree in the summer, I also spent my time at the local box called CrossFit Brookings. This is where I received my CrossFit Level 1 and had the opportunity to coach. But I couldn’t help the fact that I was missing my home and the Viral family. So I made the hasty decision to move back to Omaha. Now I spend my time intern coaching at CrossFit Viral, where I get the opportunity to improve as an athlete, coach, and person. My life changed for the better once I started at CrossFit Viral and I am grateful for the chance to do the same for others!
I played sports in high school but it wasn’t until my sophomore year when I learned the benefits of eating right and training. My training mostly consisted of body building workouts, but eventually I realized I needed a new challenge. That’s when I discovered Strength and Conditioning. Shortly after, I decided to pursue a degree in Exercise Science at South Dakota State University. As I was studying texts, I came across the sport of Olympic lifting. I was fascinated by the two lifts, Snatch and the Clean and Jerk, and that fascination eventually developed into a passion.
One day, I was looking through an Eastbay magazine and came across an add with Rich Froning who was supposedly the “Fittest Man on Earth.” So naturally, I googled his name to see what the hype was all about. There was a video of him doing a work out called “Fran.” I remember thinking, “Oh I could do that.” I went and tried “Fran” the next day and left with a time that was 3 times longer than Rich Froning’s and a bruised ego.
After that, I didn’t try CrossFit for very long time…until a couple of friends convinced me to try it again at a local box that just opened up. I eventually drank the Kool-Aid and devoted my time to CrossFit. In August of that year, I received a CrossFit Level-1 Trainer Certificate and coached at the local box for a few months. My last semester of college required all of the students to find an internship in the Exercise Science realm. While looking for an internship I was introduced to CrossFit Viral and spent my last semester of college learning as much as I could from the coaches. I eventually worked my way up from an intern to an assistant coach.
My time here has improved not only my coaching skills, but also my athletic ability. I love the community here and I’m very fortunate to be a part of the CFV family. I love helping people change their lives physically and mentally here at CrossFit Viral!
There just had to be a different way other than the common path. Surely it is not the role of every human to have a playful, energetic childhood, maybe play organized sports for a few glory seasons then move to an injury-prone adult recreational league or abandon playfulness altogether. I have not ever been content with the model of when the sport season ends, the desire for movement, competition, fitness and health expires as well.
I am that guy who had some glory years as a decent fish in a small pond and I loved it. Later I continued to chase whatever I could to keep a hold of that love of sport: more wrestling, kayak water polo, adventure races, obstacle races, half-marathons, fun runs, whatever you got. I wanted to have a level of fitness that was within striking distance of doing whatever I wanted to do for an hour, a day, a season. Then….a few more birthdays, more time in my office job, life’s normal happenings…and suddenly that striking distance grew new margins and so did some of the desire. I do not think that I am the only person with this background. In fact, the more I visit with people checking out CrossFit, many of us have this in common.
I had heard of CrossFit but at a glance I thought it was for professional athletes only. My wife and I encountered some challenges that put more emphasis on my health and strength so we wondered if this would be a good option. I knew that my striking distance of physical competence had slipped but I was about to find out just how far it had slipped. I immediately loved that CrossFit made sport out of playful movements, lifting barbells, simple gymnastics and conditioning by tracking workouts and competing against your previous effort….and maybe that guy or gal next to you. The thought of another gym membership with shiny machines and dull routines, pushy salespeople and phony relationships, and no identifiable purpose to movements…drove me absolutely crazy. Then, I walk into CrossFit Viral and I see a raw setting yet deliberate equipment and movement, smiles, sweat, laughter, effort-inspired noises, a daily program to follow, a desired result and an intentional purpose. It looked like real work was getting done.
One of the many things that is most appealing to me about CrossFit is that no matter how long it has been (or maybe never have) since a person last trained, competed or thought seriously about fitness, there is a place in a class for you. We take movements that you use in everyday life, work to make them more efficient and powerful then use them to create a workout to challenge you. And that is a big part of why I wanted to become a coach – to be part of making you playful and powerful again. I want you to be inspired by the person that you want to be for yourself and others…now is the time and this is the place.