Clean and Jerk 205#
Murph in turnout gear
CrossFit Level 1 Certificate
American Heart Association CPR Instructor
Emergency Medical Technician (CT)
Very few years of my life have been spent still. From a very young age, I have been a physically active person. Through the early high school years, you would find me either outside with friends or on the baseball field. My early working years had me on my feet all day and spending time becoming a “jack of all trades” type of handyman at the heels of my father. In college, physical fitness started to become something to strive for. More importantly, it was then that my passion for serving others began. After college, I spent a considerable portion of time working with community service groups, developing my ability to connect with people. I ultimately felt unsatisfied though, as the work I did wasn’t typically directly impacting others. I wanted something more tangible. This is what drove me to become a volunteer firefighter and EMT. The ability to have a direct and immediate impact on another person’s life in a positive way was exactly what I was looking for and I dove right in. I became an EMT, as well as a Child Passenger Safety Technician, CPR Instructor, and Firefighter. Through these various roles, I discovered a passion for coaching and helping people conquer the unknown. This passion has grown to make me a better father to my four children, as well, as become involved in a coaching capacity in the vast majority of their activities. It was also through those roles that I found physical fitness as a lifestyle. Combining the two became the natural progression & has resulted in acquiring my Level 1 Certificate and becoming a coach here at Tolland CrossFit.
I have always been an active person, so my physical fitness hasn’t been something at the forefront of my mind. I believed that since I wasn’t on the couch all day and I wasn’t overweight that my fitness was fine. That all changed while I was at the Hartford County Regional Fire School training to become a firefighter. I remember the specific moment when I exited the training facility in full gear, absolutely spent. I took off my helmet, ripped off my mask, and collapsed on the ground. Looking around, I saw my classmates, most of whom were considerably younger than I, and they looked fine. It dawned on me that in order for me to serve in this capacity, I first needed to serve myself. Physical fitness became professional preparedness in that moment & it has been at the forefront of my decision making processes since. While pursuing a better level of fitness, I found CrossFit as an affiliate was preparing to open its doors in my neighborhood. I looked into it and, like so many others, developed a preconceived notion that one had to be fit in order to do CrossFit. I spent many months in my garage elevating my fitness in order to “meet the standard” that I created in my own head. I even went so far as to complete the grueling hero workout, Murph, before allowing myself to walk through the doors. I couldn’t have been blown away more by how wrong I was. This methodology is so amazing for its ability to meet everyone exactly where they are and make them better.
My first real journey into coaching was becoming a nationally certified Child Passenger Safety Technician. In this role, I taught families how to safely and properly use car seats to transport their children. They came in with a passion to protect their families & I fully empathized with that, having four children of my own. I discovered moments when people finally came to an understanding of an idea, process, or movement after a time of struggle that really lit my fire as a coach. That “ah-ha!” moment, which you could see very clearly in their eyes and demeanor, gave me purpose. I have tried to carry that motivation through all of my coaching endeavors, whether it’s car seats, cub scouts, little league, and now individual fitness goals. We all struggle & I love to be the guide through that people.