CrossFit Games

Meet Shaylin Laure: Semifinals Competitor Who Trains Just Three Times a Week

May 21, 2021 by
Credit: @tjameskphoto (instagram.com/tjameskphoto)
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The views about law enforcement in this article are the views of Shaylin Laure, and do not reflect the views of the FBI.

While most athletes competing at next weekend’s Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge in Knoxville, TN train six times a week or more, Shaylin Laure qualified to the Semifinals after skipping the gym for the entire month of November, and working out just three times a week from January until March.

  • It’s not that she’s a slacker; it’s that she has a pretty important career as an FBI agent in the violent crimes division of the Bureau in Raleigh, NC.

The details: Laure, a former gymnast, college rugby player and military infantry officer, works 50 hours a week and is on call 24/7. 

  • This means “there are some weeks where I don’t make it to the gym a single time because of the urgency of an investigation,” said the 28 year-old. “Other times, I’ll be at the gym warming up to train and I’ll get a call that we’re needed immediately. It adds a level of difficulty to training because no matter how well we plan out our time, there’s no guarantee that we’re going to make it to the gym that day or that week.”
  • She admits it can be frustrating sometimes, but “the importance of my job is my priority, so it’s not even a question. If I’m at work at an odd hour, it’s for a good reason, and that’s far more important to me than getting in my workout,” said Laure, who started CrossFit in 2017 and completed the Open for the first time this year.
  • None of this, however, stopped Laure from winning the recent Occupational Games, where she boasted a 262-pound four-rep max front squat, and, of course, qualifying to the Semifinals along with some of the fittest athletes in the world. 
  • She credits her success to “strong consistency as an athlete throughout my life,” she said.“I started gymnastics when I was 3, and never stopped after that, so I think my muscle development gives me a base even if I can’t make it to the gym as much as I’d like.”

One big thing: Laure admits that the recent rise of anti-law enforcement sentiment in the United States is sometimes hard to deal with and adds to the stress of her job. This is part of the reason she decided to compete in the recent Occupational Games. 

  • “The people you’re protecting are sometimes the people who are trying to harm you. That adds a layer of stress,” Laure said. “With all the negativity with law enforcement, I wanted to bring some positivity to our department and to law enforcement.”
  • The Occupational Games experience did not disappoint. Throughout the weekend, Laure bonded with both the second and third place finishers, Nicole Heer from Switzerland and Kathrine Juul Hachenberger from Denmark. Most women who are in a competitive field aren’t building each other up. But we were literally in a competition against each other, but we encouraged and supported each other (all weekend).”
  • She added: “And we need to. We’re the underdogs. About 10 percent of law enforcement are females, so we have to stick together.”
Credit: @tjameskphoto: https://www.instagram.com/tjameskphoto/

Laure’s message: To those who feel negatively toward law enforcement, Laure offered this: 

  • “Police officers are human, too. (A journalist) doesn’t submit a first draft for the world to see, but we don’t get a second draft. The entire world judges us off split second decisions (in tough situations), so have grace that we’re human, too,” she said. 

The big picture: This year, Laure is just happy and honored to compete at Semifinals, as it wasn’t even her goal to qualify, but now that she knows she can be as good as she is “on this little bit of training,” she is rethinking her future goals. 

  • “I train for stress relief and general health. I don’t think the Games are realistic for me this year, but now (heading into next) season, I’m going to start training to compete,” she said. That being said, her number one priority, and passion, will always be her career, a career she’s incredibly proud to have even in today’s climate.
  •  “I love that I get the opportunity to put something positive into generally negative situations. We don’t get called for good things, so the way we conduct ourselves and can sympathize with victims can make the worst day of their lives somewhat less bad, is a huge responsibility, but also an honor,” she said. 

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