April Spotlight Athlete

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Introducing Andrea Brown as CrossFit Sworn’s April Spotlight Athlete!  Andrea has been working hard with us for over a year and shows no sign of slowing down.  While Andrea is no stranger to the world of fitness and sports, she enjoys the variety that CrossFit provides.  She is also inspired by the community and supportive atmosphere that we have been blessed with at Sworn.  You will always find Andrea with a great smile on her face putting in work with ‘The Dream Team’ 😉

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PS-Andrea, we fully expect to see your ski skills at this years boathouse trip!

CS:  Tell us about your personal life.

AB:  I work at Community Health Network, where I have worked for 15 years. My degree is in physical therapy but I am now the Director of Ambulatory Pavilions and Real Estate. I am open to new and exciting challenges, and the hours are a little better in this job so I can spend more time with my family. I love Community and have worked there since I moved to Indianapolis in 2000.

My family includes my husband, Kevin and my two children—Tyler (12) and Kelsey (7). You see Kelsey a lot at Sworn but Tyler is usually at baseball, with Kevin coaching, on the nights we are there. We enjoy spending time at the ball park with Tyler in the summer time and as a family we love movie nights where we just hang out together and relax. We are very close to our extended family in Evansville and have house guests often, so often that our family calls our house “Hotel Brown”. We also enjoy swimming, biking and running together.

Athletic experience including time crossfitting—I played softball for 12 years when I was younger. I continued to play on co-ed teams through college and beyond. My favorite softball experience was a restaurant league when I waited tables at Outback Steakhouse. Games were at either 1 a.m. or 2 a.m. Looking back on that I don’t know how I did it!

I have waterskied for over 30 years. I learned when I was very young and after moving to Indianapolis I even competed in some Indiana State Waterski Association grassroots competitions. I don’t get to ski much anymore, maybe one lake trip per year, but it is the one sport that I am truly passionate about (besides crossfit of course). I have also developed a love for running over the years. I am really slow, but I love to run. I have finished several 5K, 10K and half marathon races since college.

My athletic experience also has a unique twist as I was an athletic trainer in college and spent a significant amount of time caring for athletes. I am very conscious about avoiding injury and that is one of my favorite things about Sworn, the trainers and owners are conscious about that too.

I joined Crossfit Sworn in January of 2014 after several years of typical exercise and spinning classes (and wasted dues) at LA Fitness. I was motivated but wasn’t getting results and I wasn’t inspired. I didn’t tell anyone except my husband that I was doing the on-ramp. If I hated crossfit or it was the terrible cult that I had heard it was, I didn’t want anyone to know that I had failed. I loved it after the first week of on-ramp. There was variety, there were knowledgeable people who watched to make sure I didn’t kill myself and I felt great. I signed up and haven’t stopped going to or talking about crossfit since.

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CS:  What is your favorite move/wod?

AB:  I don’t have a favorite WOD but I do look forward to anything with kettle bells, thrusters, sumo deadlift high pull or back squats. Those are my strongest movements.

CS:  What is your least favorite move/wod?

AB:  Right now, anything on the rig is my least favorite. I am stronger with lower body movements so upper body strength exercises, like pull ups, are my weaknesses. I still need to master my kip for toes to bar and pull ups.

CS:  How has CrossFit changed your life?

AB:  If you ask my family, it has changed my life because I talk about it all the time.  My husband is very supportive and loves that I am happy but he listens to me ramble on and on about things that just aren’t the same away from the box.

In all seriousness, I have come to the realization that it is okay to take time for myself. As a working mom, it is easy to fall into a routine that eliminates any time for personal growth or improvement. I am much more balanced when I can get in 4-5 workouts per week. As a family, we have found a routine that allows for the kids to be active and we all can find our own ways to improve fitness. Before I started crossfit, it was hard to even get to the gym because I wasn’t necessarily motivated to fight the crowd for poorly maintained equipment or to even risk not getting a spot in class if I didn’t leave work early. Now, I have a supportive place to go and I clearly see the results. There is a wonderful group of people to work out with every evening and I love every minute of it. From a health perspective, my cholesterol, and many other indicators are in a more favorable place compared to last year and they continue to improve.

CS:  What is your greatest Crossfit accomplishment and future goal?

AB:  My greatest accomplishment is probably signing up and competing in the open. I no longer consider myself an “athlete” and the thought of doing that again was a bit scary. It has been fun and I am so grateful that I did it. I am also proud of mastering my form for overhead squat. Since starting crossfit, I have had a fear of having the bar over my head. Recently, I have gotten more comfortable and I have increased my weight. I am still working on getting my rope climbs, toes to bar and pull ups.

CS:  What motivates you to stay fit?

AB:  I have always had a love for exercise and well-being. The fact that I make time for exercise sets the example for my children that it is important. I want to create lasting healthy habits for my entire family.

CS:  What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting CrossFit or new to CrossFit?

AB:  I would tell someone who is thinking about crossfit to “just do it” and don’t think about it. It is easy to over-think it and try to get in shape before starting. This isn’t necessary and probably won’t help anyway. Crossfit isn’t like anything that you have likely done before, so just jump in.

CS:  What is something we don’t know about you?

AB:  I doubt anyone knew that I was a waterskier or that several years ago when I first started skiing with the clubs in Indianapolis, I was voted IWSA (Indiana Waterski Association) Rookie of the Year.

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