Cheyanne Reed-Warriner: Refusing to Let COVID Sink Her
When her gym closed due to COVID-19 in March 2020, Cheyanne Reed-Warriner felt the stress like everyone else. A school teacher stuck at home with her wife who has multiple sclerosis and is immunocompromised, the 39-year-old Reed-Warriner had every reason to let COVID sink her. Instead, she decided to fight. For Reed-Warriner, this meant dialing in her diet and committing to working out more consistently.
- “It would have been just so easy to make excuses. And so it just became one of those things where I decided I wasn’t going to let this thing dictate my life. I decided to focus on the things I could control. I realized that this wasn’t just happening to me, or my community, or my state. It was happening all over the world, and is full of so many unknowns that you can’t control, so it felt good to be in control of something,” she said.
Building a home gym: When quarantine hit, Reed-Warriner, a member of CrossFit Dig Deep in Paducah, KY, started by building a pull-up bar and a plyo box “with some scrap wood I found lying around,” she said. She even managed to convince her wife to start working out with her during quarantine.
- “It was a way of her supporting me and us doing something together,” said Reed-Warriner, whose home gym also now includes a squat rack, a barbell and weights, and a rowing machine.
Nine months later, what started as an effort to control her nutrition and exercise, turned into an entire lifestyle change, one where she counts her macronutrients and trains at home five days a week. As a result, Reed-Warriner is down 30 pounds (and 50 pounds in the last two years). She has also acquired new skills, like butterfly pull-ups and handstand push-ups, she said.
One big thing: The key to her success, and the message she wants others to hear, is the value of consistency.
- Though she had been a member of CrossFit Dig Deep for three years prior to the pandemic, consistency had never been her strength. “Staying consistent is probably the biggest change that happened for me this year…and remembering that one action, or one day, doesn’t define who you are. Even if something didn’t go as planned, tomorrow is a new day,” said Reed-Warriner, who is still training at home because of her wife’s condition.
- And the more she treated every day as a brand new day and chipped away consistently, the more success she had. This success made it easier to keep chipping away, she explained. “Just the fact that it was working helped me stay on track. I just always felt better after I worked out. Even on the days when I wasn’t the most motivated, I still worked out and always felt better, so I just had to remind myself of those things some days,” she said.
The big picture: As a result of committing to control what she could, Reed-Warriner’s life is less stressful and much happier than it likely would have been at the end of an unprecedented 2020.
- She has more energy and her knees no longer hurt. “And I just want to do more. Before, I couldn’t wait for the weekend so I could do nothing, but now I can’t wait for the weekend so I can go do something,” she said.
- Next stop: A muscle-up. “Getting one of those would be a big thing…but really, I just want to continue what I’m doing,” she said.