Our Members of the Month for October are Amanda Bates and Steven Charles! 

Amanda

*Where are you originally from and where do you live now?
I grew up in Canton, but Stallion Stiv somehow convinced me to move to Dedham a decade ago. The Dirty D is home now.

*When do you workout?  And what’s your favorite part of being a member of CRAIC?
I attend the 9am class Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. I’ll attend whichever class my work schedule allows on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. My favorite part of CRAIC is its community. They constantly encourage me to push past my comfort zone. I love that there is always a new goal to chase and so much support from the members and coaches to achieve them. I’ve also never experienced so many resources from a gym.

*Anything interesting you’d like to share about yourself (job/hobbies/fun facts/family, etc.)?
I’m just a regular-shmegular gal. I have a ten year old son that is legit my homie and a Josh Stiv that’s been stuck with me for 12 years (poor thing). I hate my job. I grew up with three older brothers so I’m disgustingly aggressive and competitive. I love individual sports like running, kickboxing, and swimming.
I’m very sarcastic and you are bound to catch me dancing to anything, including, but not limited to, ringtones or car alarms. Finally, despite my RBF and avoided eye contact I’m actually very friendly, just super socially awkward.

*Your proudest accomplishment(s) in training so far are…
My upper body strength is embarrassing so the day I got my first pull up was a super exciting day.  Also, for anyone that knows me well, the fact that I haven’t tripped, fallen or broken anything is a huge accomplishment for me!

*Some current training goals are…
My biggest goal right now is to surrender myself to this program. I walked into Craic not fully understanding my capabilities. I know I have much more to accomplish, but this gym has pushed me to do a lot of self-reflection. I look forward to where this next year will take me. To start, I will stop avoiding pull-up and snatch days… maybe.

*What’s the best advice you have in six words (or less)?  You may submit multiple answers.  For example, “You can always take another step.”  Or, “Bring your weather to the picnic.”  Or, “Remember, french fries are gluten free.”
Expect nothing and appreciate everything. // Nothing kills you like your mind. // Stay patient and trust your journey.

*Do you have any questions you’d like to ask the coaches or the members?
When are you putting the heavy bag back up?

*Based on your experience at Craic, what advice do you have for new members or people who are looking to join the gym?
Honestly, just get there and all the rest will fall into place. Nicole, Tommy, Andrea, and Sandra tried to get Josh and I to join Craic forrrreveeer (slow motion voice) and we kept making excuses not to. The day I walked into that gym I was overwhelmed with excitement and instantly regretful for wasting so much time (and money) at my other gym. There is endless support here and every single workout is your workout! Even on a bad day you are walking out of that gym a better, more knowledgeable person.

*This month’s question is:  What skills did you learn in high school that you’re still using today?
Organization, prioritizing and how to get drunk with your last $5.00.

*What do the coaches say about Amanda?
Amanda is so sweet and such a hard worker.  She’s always doing extra work on her own, and she has an engine that never quits!  We knew Amanda was a great athlete from the second she walked into the door, but now she’s on the path towards becoming a more elite athlete.  She has the potential to explode when some of her strength and foundational movements become more engrained in her!  Despite her athleticism, Amanda has taken the time to prioritize work on form and technique and not just rely on her speed all the time.   However, she is, hands down, one of the fastest people at Craic!  We’re so glad you gave Craic a chance, Amanda!  We can’t wait to see you progress over the next few months and beyond!


Steven

*Where are you originally from and where do you live now?
I was born and raised on Long Island, NY.  But I want it to be known that I am a Mets fan and HATE the Yankees… I’m on your side, Sox fans!  I used to have a pretty thick Strong Island accent, which is mostly now gone.  I currently live in Westwood…right near Wegmans, which I visit practically every day (and sometimes twice a day).

*When do you workout?  And what’s your favorite part of being a member of CRAIC?
I hit up the 6pm classes during the week, and sometimes also make it in on Saturday mornings.  I also try to squeeze in 5-10 miles of running every weekend…especially since it’s no longer 110 degrees out.
It might be cliché, but my favorite part about Craic is the people/community.  I was a bit intimidated when I first joined – you guys really are incredible athletes! – but I was welcomed in, encouraged by coaches and members to keep trying and try harder, and I truly feel like I’m a part of something great.  Even though I scale back my lifting pretty far from the Rx at times, I never feel judged and always feel encouraged by the group.  Craic is awesome!

*Anything interesting you’d like to share about yourself (job/hobbies/fun facts/family, etc.)?
– I’m a pub trivia junkie and play at Nappers in Norwood most Wednesday nights.  I’ve finally found an outlet for the tons of useless info I’ve picked up over the years!
– My GF and I have been on a Canada-travel kick lately, and have hit up Toronto, Halifax, Quebec City, and Prince Edward Island (my favorite) in the past year.
– I have some serious FIFA skills on Xbox… any Craic challengers? BRING IT!

*Your proudest accomplishment(s) in training so far are…
– Completing Murph in under 50 mins.
– Increasing front/back squat weights almost every month (I could only air squats at first).
– Knocking 3 mins off my BAA 10K compared to last year.
– And dropping over 25lbs of body weight since my Craic start date, mostly due to gaining better nutrition habits at the NBCs.

*Some current training goals are…
– Learn how to kip repeatedly and effectively
– Stop substituting ring rows for pull-ups during WODs
– Sub 8-min 2K row
– Get low enough on all of my squat reps to avoid being yelled at by coaches!

*What’s the best advice you have in six words (or less)?  You may submit multiple answers.  For example, “You can always take another step.”  Or, “Bring your weather to the picnic.”  Or, “Remember, french fries are gluten free.”
“The first reaction is usually the correct one.”
“Your lack of preparation does not constitute my emergency.”
(Both are just over six words, but important to remember in the daily grind when you need to get things done)

*Do you have any questions you’d like to ask the coaches or the members?
Any tips for motivating non-morning people (like me) to attend classes in the early morning?
How does Giorgio come up with the names of these WODs?  Some are very creative.  Consider me impressed!

*Based on your experience at Craic, what advice do you have for new members or people who are looking to join the gym?
– Don’t be intimidated!  Everyone is friendly and wants you to succeed and get better.
– The coaches will help you optimize your workouts to fit your goals and skill levels.  Once you put your fitness goals into the hands of the coaches, you’ll wonder how you ever got by without it.
– Keep going and work through the soreness.

*This month’s question is:  What skills did you learn in high school that you’re still using today?
I mentioned the pub trivia before… so four years of high school learning still helps me win a $20 gift certificate at Napper Tandy’s every once in a while.  My teachers would be so proud!
More seriously, I suppose, I learned how to prioritize.  It always felt like there were a million responsibilities – tests, soccer, SAT prep, college applications, etc. – but you find a way to get it all done. I think I’ve maintained that ability to prioritize throughout my career, without ever realizing it until now.

*What do the coaches say about Steven?
This guy ALWAYS has a smile on his face!  Steven takes coaching really well and seeks to understand why he’s making the adjustments he is.  He is quiet, but responsive and comes to class every day looking to understand the workouts and how they benefit his physical abilities.  He works really hard in class and his hard work certainly pays off.  Along these lines, Steven has the ability to adjust his workouts appropriately for himself to keep moving and crushing it each day!  He has a great attitude and it’s always great to have him in class!  Congrats on all of the successes so far, Steven!  Keep it up!