How did you get involved in CrossFit?
  • Brandon: My sister does CrossFit out in California and I saw the amazing changes that it made in her lifestyle and thought that was really impressive.  The head of the fitness division at my work is also a CrossFitter and he convinced me to go with him to his gym one day to give it a try. 
  • Allison: Brandon made me… just kidding. We had been wanting to try it for a long time, but we both pushed each other to try it and I’m so glad we did!

What was your first WOD/experience

  • Brandon: I went with my sister to her box in LA while I was visiting on vacation at 5 AM!! It was a back squat/front squat complex for the strength, and then a quick 3 rounds for time of power snatches, sit-ups, ring dips, and something else. I was able to barely beat the time cap which I was happy with.  I was also paired with a few guys who were much bigger than me for the strength portion and of course I had to try and compete with them even thought I had not done a squat in about 6 months.  I was hurting for a week afterwards.
  • Allison: I don’t remember the exact workout, but I remember that is was the 5am class, Jason was the coach, and I almost died but he was so supportive and kept pushing me to finish!

When did you start coming to CrossFit Kilter/ how long have you been CrossFitting for?

  • Brandon: I just hit my 4 month mark at CrossFit Kilter on the 1st of October!  This is my first CrossFit experience, so 4 months total.
  • Allison: May of this year (2016).

When did you realize that CrossFit was right for you? 

  • Brandon: I grew up playing sports since I was a little kid, with football and wrestling being my passion and main focus.  I got really into weight lifting at a young age as well all thanks to my older brother who I always had to try and beat (I never could).  After high school, my time wrestling was over and I missed the atmosphere of a high intensity, motivating, team environment that also focused on the individual.  I missed the feeling of being pushed to the limit, but realizing somebody else is pushing harder than you.  Insert CrossFit! I get the same feeling during CrossFit workouts that I did when I was back wrestling, which is an amazing feeling.  Once I joined Kilter and had the first person push me through a workout, I was hooked (thanks to the whole 5am family for that!).
  • Allison: My first day. The feeling of finishing last, but having everyone screaming for me to keep going. That’s what made me want to join.

What are you short-term and long-term CrossFit goals?

  • Brandon:
    • Short-term: To get my name on that Kilter leader board.  Its gonna happen!
    • Long-term: Be able to compete with the elite top members in every area of CrossFit.  I want to be able to do all of the movements efficiently, and compete in competitions.
  • Allison:
    • Short-term: to keep up with the group and not always finish last.
    • Long-term: to be able to master a perfect snatch.

What is your biggest accomplishment?

  • Brandon: In fitness, it is running and finishing the Chicago Marathon in 2015.  My dad has been a marathon runner his whole life, and I wanted to make him proud.  In life, my biggest accomplishment is finding the career path that I love and enjoy doing every day.
  • Allison: Multiple pullups in a row with no band. Before Kilter I couldn’t even do 1 rep!

What is your favorite / least favorite WOD/movement?

  • Brandon: I love any WOD that is long and drawn out with mostly body weight movements. I love doing endurance work! 
    • Favorite Movements:  bench press, deadlifts, double unders, and any variation of push-ups.
    • Least Favorite Movement:  Snatch, by far.  I can not figure it out for the life of me.
  • Allison:
    • Favorite Movements: Pullups, box jumps, running
    • Least Favorite Movement: Snatches, pistols, dips

What do you do for a profession outside of CrossFit?

  • Brandon: I am a firefighter/paramedic for the Lincolnshire-Riverwoods Fire Department.
  • Allison: I work in merchandising at a hotel supply company.

What are your hobbies outside of CrossFit?

  • Brandon: I love riding my motorcycle over mostly anything! The Green Bay Packers also consume my entire life (just ask Allison).
  • Allison: Riding the Harley with Brandon, going to the dog park with our pup, doing anything outdoors, traveling, and trying new things!

What do you do for nutrition? Do you eat Paleo or Zone? What is your favorite paleo/non-paleo meal?

  • Brandon: Nutrition is my hardest subject.  I do my fair share of research and reading up on many different approaches to a well balanced and healthy lifestyle but have a hard time following a plan.  I love food and beer too much, and have trouble with self control! I don't have a favorite meal, I love them all.
  • Allison: To be honest, I have been kind of slacking lately. Brandon has to keep me in line! When he is off shift we usually eat clean. I love rice & bean stuffed bell peppers!

Fun fact about you?

  • Brandon: I was born in California and moved to Libertyville when I was 8.  I am the youngest of 6 kids, and three of my siblings were old enough to stay in California when the rest of us moved.  I call California the place that I was born, but Libertyville is where I am from.  From the time I was a little kid all the way up through high school, I worked at one of the most famous Libertyville food joints, Bagels By The Book!  I can still whip up a mean breakfast sandwich.
  • Allison: Brandon and I completed our first marathon together last fall.