5 Years ago tonight, September 30th, 2010, I don’t think I slept. I was too excited because I was opening the doors to my new gym the next morning at 5:30 AM. I had so many visions and so many plans. I was unsure of the future but only had positive thoughts and looking back now, I was a bit naive but I thank God for that because if I wasn’t, I would have never made it through some of the first years!
Opening a business was NEVER in my plan for life but I had a passion. I was a personal trainer at a local gym and discovered CrossFit by chance. I took one class and that was it. I knew I had to do this. I was lucky enough to have great friends and through those friends, met my first partner. Jared believed in my idea and so he backed me. He let me run the show and kept his eye on the business end from Boston. I learned a lot from him and although I’m sure it was not always easy to deal with a girl who loved to coach but didn’t really love to do the books, I am so grateful every single day for the chance Jared took on me.
Through the years, there have been so many ups and downs. We’ve had some great coaches that I am so thankful for. All you folks that have been here with me from day one, get ready for a trip down memory lane…..
Ashley – She was my side kick from day one! She helped out with on ramp and coaching a class or two a week. Her ability to coach with authority had most of the MEN in our gym scared and at attention in her presence! LOL! Ashley meant business but at the end of the day, had the most awesome personality and even though she could crack the whip in class, not one person didn’t absolutely love her! I miss her SO MUCH!
Tony – Ashley’s husband and the complete opposite of Ash! Tony was chill as ice and cool as a cucumber! He is a teacher and it showed in his coaching. Tony had a way of making everyone feel so at ease but still could get you to do anything you set your mind to. He got me to do my first muscle up! The combination of Ashley and Tony brought so much life to the box and I really do love and miss them. They are living in West Hartford with their beautiful babies Jax and Liv and I hope if they are reading this that they come in for a visit!
Lyle – Lyle started at MCCF early on and had a love for the sport! He was quiet and sweet and had an eye for detail. Lyle always brought a friendly smile and was just a great guy. He moved and I believe is still crossfitting!
Eddie – Where to begin! Eddie was a character! Always had us laughing and had a great love for the competitive end of the sport! I’m not sure if there are more Eddie stories in the box or out of the box but whatever the story was, it was always entertaining! Eddie moved back to Philly and I’m sure is at a box somewhere making someone laugh!
Tim – Tim was one of the most detailed and respected coaches at the box. Tim had a way of making the class listen and at times had it quiet enough to hear a pin drop. He commanded respect without having to say a word. I love that about Tim. I am happy to report that he just got married to his sweetheart (Jess) that he met here at MCCF! I could not be more happy for Tim and hope that he makes his way to regionals with SCF!
Shawn Hatchel – Shawn is a fire ball! His energy is like no other and he will get in your face to make you do your best but always follow it up with a huge smile and a proud high five! His energy and spirit are infectious! Shawn took some time off from CrossFit but I am so excited and happy to report that he is back at MCCF working out and pushing people to their limits with his enthusiastic ways! Welcome home buddy, we missed you!
Now that I have recognized all of the past coaches, I would like to recognize my team, my backbone and my friends.
Zack, Kristin, Maggie, Sean, Jocelyn, Riky and Kaylyn (Wendell too but he gets his turn later) – To each and every one of you. I could not have made it through the past 5 years alone and when the going gets tough, you all have my back. Through the good times and the hard times, you have all been right there for me, for our members, for each other. There are days we can drive each other crazy (I’m talking about the group texts here) and there are days you can’t tear us apart – we are a family after all. You have all made MCCF run and for this I love you. MCCF is my baby and as the saying goes…”It takes a village”. You are my village.
So about 4 years into this amazing journey, it was time to part ways with Jared as we had agreed and I knew that with everything going on outside the box, I could no longer do this alone. I am terrible at asking for help but I knew that if I didn’t have the help I needed, there would not be enough of me to take care of the growing needs of MCCF. It was a hard year and I had different options. I was confused and not feeling settled with anything. Then one day, I got an offer that gave me peace. I knew that this offer would keep MCCF the family box that it had been all the years that we’d been open. I knew this the right fit….
Wendell and Mike approached me with an offer to help me buy the gym equally and run it together. I have known Wendell for 4 years. From the moment I met him, I knew he was a sincere person and I value that quality more than any other. I met Mike about 2 years ago and his energy was infectious! He had such a passion for CrossFit and I loved his enthusiasm! When these guys came to me with a solution to the agonizing problem, I was so happy but even more relieved. I had spent 4 years creating a place to call home. Making sure that people knew they were welcome and making sure people knew to leave their worries at the door because for one hour out of their day I was going to make sure that they had time to be them. We became a family and I was so afraid of changing that. I know growth takes change but I couldn’t risk losing the foundation that MCCF was built on.
Wendell – You have come in and only enhanced the family atmosphere. You’ve taken the back end of the business and completely turned it around. This coach that NEVER planned on owning her own business thanks you every day for that! You are a great coach, business owner and most of all friend. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for always listening and understanding. I knew you were pretty cool and special when I met you and I am so happy to be sharing this journey with you.
Mike – You have such a passion for everything you do and I love that about you! Any time I come in and turn on the lights to a fresh coat of paint or a new shelf or a new gadget on the rig, I know you have been there for hours at night working hard. Running a business does not only take a front end person and a back end person, it just as much takes the person willing to put in the extra time to fix the things that need it and pay attention to detail. Thank you so much for all that you do and thank you for believing in this box and coming along for the incredible ride!
To our members – I could cry when I think about where we began, how long the journey has been, where we are now and where we are headed. You are the life of the box. The heart and soul of who we are. Not one of you is more or less important than the next. You are all my family and from my early morning 5:30am crew to my late evening 6:30pm crew and everything in between, we (myself, Wendell, Mike, Zack, Kristin, Maggie, Sean, Joce, Riky and Kaylyn) could not do this…any of this… without you. I appreciate all of you and just know that when I am telling you to get lower or throw the ball higher or back your weights down or stay in your heels….it is out of complete care, concern and love. I WANT you to be your best because I believe in you. After all…. you all believed in me.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the most amazing journey I have ever dreamed of…..
Before it all began…..
What it looks like now….