Mike Lewis is ringing in the New Year for us as our January Spotlight athlete! Mike has been a positive fixture in the gym and for those that have taken a class with him, well, you know he’s kind of a big deal;). Mike has a motor and drive that will not quit! When he isn’t killing a WOD, you can find him working quietly in a corner sharpening his skills and improving his mobility. Mike tells us that even though he has been a life long athlete, he could not properly air squat when he started CrossFit 3 years ago due to mobility-and look at him now! Mike’s is a great example of what simply acknowledging and working your weaknesses can do. He is constantly hunting and hammering them out with a positive attitude. Let Mike be an inspiration for you to do this for yourself this year no matter where your goals lie-home,gym, work etc.
It’s easy and fun for all of us to work on what we like and are good at. It takes great strength and humility to be able to honestly look at ourselves and acknowledge what we aren’t good at or where we are lagging behind a bit and making these things a priority. On no uncertain terms does mean you get to beat yourself up! This means you make an honest assessment of yourself in all areas-the good, the bad and the ugly-and then concoct a reasonable plan of action to set and accomplish your goals to become the person you want to be. If you fall off track-we all do, its part of life- rub some dirt on it and keep moving! Here’s to a happy and healthy 2015-thanks for being an inspiration Mike!
CS: Tell us about life outside the gym.
ML: I work at Cummins Inc. a great company to work for, lots of awesome people and products. I like to spend my time supporting & encouraging our daughters in their numerous academics, athletics, & community activities. I like to read to unwind, currently reading “The Boys in the Boat”.
CS: What is your athletic experience including time CrossFitting?
ML: Growing up baseball and football. I got into running in the early 90’s, completed 4 marathons and several half-marathons on/off over a 20 year period. I have been doing CrossFit for almost 3 years.
CS: What is your favorite move/wod?
ML: Light weight wods and chippers, these types of wods typically offer opportunities to leverage strengths and work on weaknesses.
CS: What is your least favorite move/wod?
ML: Snatches and overhead squats but recently joined the barbell club and I’m really looking forward to turning these weaknesses into strengths someday.
CS: How has CrossFit changed your life?
ML: Over the years I lost a lot of flexibility and strength. CrossFit has helped to regain these two skills and significantly improved several other skills such as power, speed, agility, balance, and coordination. CrossFit also motivated me to eat a diet primarily of lean meats, vegetables, and fruits.
CS: What is your greatest CrossFit accomplishment and future goal?
ML: Greatly improving flexibility/mobility has been an enabler to increase overall strength. In the future work on mobility 30 minutes/day and continue to work on improving overall crossfit skills, especially weaknesses.
CS: What motivates you to stay fit?
ML: I always look forward to coming to the gym. I find that my motivation to exercise is different each day and include both short-term and long-term benefits. I feel better in general after exercising, but I also continue to do it because I enjoy the activities, along with the long-term health benefits that I know I receive from it.
CS: What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting CrossFit or new to CrossFit?
ML: For those thinking about it, join the on-ramp classes to learn more about crossfit. Always warm-up and stretch before the strength/wod begins. Focus on technique before moving up in weight. Scale the workout, asks the coach to demonstrate scaled movements. Log your workouts to track your improvement. I prescribe to “Beyond the Whiteboard” an on-line tool to log your workouts. Additionally, encourage everyone to sign-up for the crossfit open which starts in a couple of months, it’s a lot of fun.
CS: What is something we don’t know about you?
ML: When I started crossfit, I could not do an air squat and break below parallel my overall flexibility/mobility was horrible when I started.
CS: If you were not in the gym you would be?
ML: Working, at one of my daughters’ events, or at one of our favorite restaurants/bars in downtown Indy.