“When I get my checkup at the doctor, they ask me where my sheet of medications is. I only have one to take – and they’re surprised to see that at my age I’m only on one medication. I credit that to CrossFit and a healthy lifestyle.”- 70-year-old, Lois Aldrich on the importance of CrossFit to her health
At 70 Years Old, Lois Aldrich Credits Her Health to CrossFit
Five years ago, Lois Aldrich walked into her first CrossFit class at Sheyenne River CrossFit in West Fargo, ND.
It was an (almost) dare from her son Ryan Aldrich–now owner of that same gym–that drove her to attend the class.
“He was out to visit me and told me I should join CrossFit,” Lois Aldrich said. “From what I had heard of it, I didn’t think it was something I could do.”
“But when he left that day, I said, ‘I’ll see you at CrossFit tomorrow,’” she recalled. “He said, ‘Yeah right,’ and I took that as a dare. I went over and signed up without even trying or viewing a class.”
Now at 70 years old, cancer survivor, mother, and farm girl Lois Aldrich is a regular at her gym and sees the benefits of her membership every day.
Lois’s story: “At the time [Lois joined CrossFit], I had been doing CrossFit for four years, and I thought it would be a good fit for her. She was a postal carrier for a number of years, a job that was strenuous hard work… I thought [CrossFit] could replace that,” said Ryan Aldrich.
Going into her first CrossFit class, her perception of CrossFit was simply “people lifting huge amounts of weights with barbells.” Quickly, she learned it was much more than that:
“I found that they work with you so well. They scale the movements to your abilities so well and make it easy for you – or easier – so you build confidence,” Lois Aldrich said.
“And the community, the people are very welcoming and accepting. They offer a lot of support.”
Since starting CrossFit, Lois Aldrich said she feels more flexible, has dropped some weight, and overall has more energy. Ryan Aldrich said he’s seen his mother become more comfortable with movements like burpees and handling heavier weights.
“I’m more flexible and stronger to do the everyday things that you have to do. People my age, if you fall, it’s nice if you have the flexibility to get your reflexes going and you can catch yourself,” Lois Aldrich said.
“From a real-life standpoint,” Ryan Aldrich added, “She has been the primary caretaker for my dad for some time. There are scenarios where… if she wouldn’t be doing CrossFit, she wouldn’t be able to help him.”
“Even now, when I go to take him out somewhere, I need to load the wheelchair. When I’m doing that, I think wow – a lot of people my age wouldn’t be able to do that,” Lois Aldrich said.
In addition, Ryan Aldrich noted that Lois Aldrich’s diagnosis of osteopenia, a precursor to osteoporosis, has been reversed thanks to her CrossFit strength training.
Bringing her generation to CrossFit: Though she’s seen drastic improvements through CrossFit, Lois Aldrich is one of few people her age at her gym. That’s something she hopes will change.
“We were just talking about how [Lois] wishes some of her friends would come do CrossFit. She was saying that… it is not only something that you want to do but that you need to do as you get older. She just wished that other people understood it,” Ryan Aldrich said.
“We have a few other members who are close to her same age, and they all say the same thing, how much it has done for their life and longevity once they get in [the gym],” he continued.
Lois Aldrich added: “When I get my checkup at the doctor, they ask me where my other sheet of medications is. I only have one to take – and they’re surprised to see that at my age I’m only on one medication. I credit that to CrossFit and a healthy lifestyle.”
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Have a Speed Read you think we might like? Hit us up.
Zen Planner Says More Gyms than Ever are Closing, Offers Solutions for Long-Term Business Success
Long-time gym software company Zen Planner has noticed a trend they’re not that stoked
about: 50 percent “or so” of their customer cancellations are the result of the gym closing permanently.
“That’s definitely higher than what we have seen in the past,” said Michael Wuest, a former gym owner for 10 years and the Vice President of Marketing for both Zen Planner and SugarWOD, both of which are owned by the parent company Daxko.
The cancellations are a blend of both new gyms who have been in operation for two or three years, and gyms who have been around for a decade-plus, Wuest said.
CrossFit HQ, Noah Ohlsen Working with Miami Mayor to Bring CrossFit to Local Community
A new fitness initiative is brewing in Miami, Florida, where city officials are working with CrossFit HQ to bring the sport to people of all ages and backgrounds.
The Miami initiative is being spearheaded by CrossFit HQ and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez’s office, along with support from Games athlete and a Miami native Noah Ohlsen, and Rogue Fitness, which is donating equipment.
Remind me: Miami has been home to one of the most exciting and well-attended events in the whole CrossFit season— Wodapalooza. The fitness festival is typically held in the winter and draws elite level athletes, along with all types of athletes in the community.
The initiative kicked off earlier this month at Moore Park. Mayor Suarez participated in a workout and Ohlsen was present as well helping to lead the event. The event had different equipment such as rowers, echo bikes, ab mats, and dumbbells.
“Mayor Francis X. Suarez is creating a fitness initiative to expose fitness and CrossFit to people of all ages and abilities, who might not have access to this style of training, or CrossFit gyms,” said Dave Castro. “He wants Miami to be the hub of this initiative and would love to see it spread across the country to other cities.”
“Rogue Fitness donated a variety of items to help with the training and local affiliates have also leaned in to support with equipment for the kick-off event.”
Castro added, CrossFit HQ is not providing financial support,“but are supporting it with guidance, advice, and connecting them with key players like local affiliates, local athletes and partners.”
On whether the initiative could be scaled for other cities, Castro said: “Yes, it could be expanded to other cities but the scaling of it is going to require local leaders leaning in and making it happen, taking ownership of it. This isn’t something we are going to cities with at this point and starting for them, but we’re more than happy to help with executing on and starting a program if cities reach out to us.”
Separately, Ohlsen said he’s optimistic for the continuation of the events and believes the city will rely on local CrossFit affiliates to “keep the momentum going.”
While a calendar of future workouts has not been set, he plans to be a part of it as much as he can.
“I’m hopeful that they’ll put in something that’s a little bit more consistent and regular,” said Ohlsen, who is a member of Peak 360 located in South Miami.
If the initiative is held once a week, “I’d come down and coach a free class for whoever from the community wants to come out. I’ve got friends that would also be willing to do something like that. I think we’re just waiting for the continuation of it to take shape a little bit more.”
The bottom line: The Miami fitness initiative is a great opportunity for people from all backgrounds to get exposed to CrossFit who might not otherwise come across the sport. However, the follow through from the mayor’s office and from CrossFit HQ will be pivotal to its success.
Chalktober: Benefitting Compete for a Cure
Bidding is OPEN on select items for Chalktober: an auction with products donated from your favorite brands with all proceeds going to Compete for a Cure, a 501(c) non-profit thatfunds breast cancer survivors’ and thrivers’ wellness within local communities, and provides education for coaches, trainers and athletes. Show your support for Breast Cancer Awareness month, and win some great prizes!
If you would like to donate directly to Compete for a Cure, text “mcu” to +1-325-603-3395!
Today’s workout is programmed by Team WIT Fitness athlete and 2023 CrossFit Games Demo Team member, Victor Hoffer. The French competitor, known for his gymnastics skill has competed at the Europe Semifinals three times, most recently as an individual where he placed 13th. He won gymnastics-heavy Test 6 at that competition and wowed his demo teammates with his time testing the “Inverted Medley” at the Games.
6 Rounds for Time:
4 Sandbag Cleans (200/150 pounds, 90/68kg)
9 Ring Muscle-Ups
12 Burpees Over Sandbag
Scaling tips: Go lighter on the sandbag (it should be challenging, but achievable without too much rest between reps). Adjust the ring muscle-ups to bar muscle-ups or the most advanced gymnastics pulling movement you can do.
Advice from Victor: “I chose this workout because it really challenges me–a perfect mixture of my weaknesses and strengths in one and a great way to track my progress! This is a very elite, competition-style workout so pace yourself on the sandbags, be efficient on the burpees and transition on the muscle ups. Don’t start off too fast, it’s all about pace and consistency.”
To inquire about submitting an upcoming workout of the week, shoot us a note.
Combatting Unhealthy Thought Patterns in Athletes
We all get in our heads sometimes during our workouts, thinking we could have pushed harder, what we could have done better, that we aren’t good enough. But knowing how to break these patterns is a powerful tool.
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Bid on Some Amazing Prizes for Chalktober: Proceeds Benefiting Compete for a Cure
Want to win signed swag from Dani Speegle, Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr, Fee Saghafi and more? How about a pink barbell or a full set of sandbags? Check out the Chalktober auction for new prizes to be released up until the 15th. Bidding is LIVE.
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