Our Member Spotlight for April is Jim Maritz.  Jim has been a member of CFSTL since 2014 and is a regular attendee in the afternoon classes 3-4x a week.  We love seeing Jim pushing hard every time he comes to class.

How did you get started in CrossFit?

My journey to CrossFit began with 2 years in the US Army while assigned to the 82nd Airborne.  Exercise and fitness were part of our everyday routine, with a key focus on running.  After leaving the Army and as my career in business developed, I always tried to include some type of fitness program into my daily routine.  However, when I reached the age of 55 (I am currently 70), my orthopedic doctor began to notice arthritis in both knees.  My daily runs were becoming shorter and the discomfort was increasing.  What I did not notice was a slow decline in my overall fitness level.

The arthritis progressed to the level that in 2012 I had both knees replaced.  For the better part of 6 months my fitness routine reached a very low point as I recovered from the surgery.  It then became clear that I needed to kick start my physical training and bring it up to a new level.  I joined a local gym lifting some weights and riding bikes as long runs were not allowed.  I made some improvements in my fitness, but the problem was that I was going solo with no thought given to a plan of action.  I became comfortable, frequently repeating the same exercises.  There was no “push” to what I was doing in the gym.

What brought you to CrossFit STL?

I was introduced to St. Louis CrossFit by my son and daughter-in-law.  They had started going to CrossFit before the move into the new and larger facility.  I explained to them that my solo gym routine was becoming stale and not meeting my expectations.  We know the process, I came to On-Ramp for an introduction.  For me, it was a bit intimidating.  All the fancy gym equipment had gone missing.  In its place were lots of music, new exercises and sweaty (and friendly) people.  But it was exactly what I needed.  The best part was that every session was new and different.  And every session was a challenge.  For me nothing was easy, in essence I was starting new.

What are your CrossFit Goals?

My goal is to get to CrossFit 3 to 4 times a week.  My business requires a bunch of travel  so there are interruptions that cannot be avoided.  However, my commitment to CrossFit is strong and wherever I might be, I try to utilize some type of CrossFit exercise routine.  I travel with one or two of the more recent WODs written down.  That way I can always be participating in CrossFit almost every day. I approached CrossFit on the premise that I would “give it a try”.  CrossFit is the perfect program for me … starting with the warmup, then stretching, strength building and final the WOD.  It meets all my expectations.

What is the best thing about CrossFit STL?

As with any successful organization, it is the people that are key.  CrossFit St. Louis has a strong team that I very much enjoy working with  The coaches guidance and encouragement are key components of my time at CrossFit.