A massive congratulations to Joe who has more than earned our January Athlete of the Month title. Since joining us back in October, he has been going above and beyond to improve his life which is clearly demonstrated in the Q&A we did with him below. Enjoy!!

How did you first hear of CrossFit Firewall? Why did you decide to join?

I only showed up for the bud light! haha …Well to be honest, the first time I found out was when everyone had to meet Laura’s new boyfriend on the cape one day. He strolls in on a boat to crash our party being some in shape muscle head named Dave Dubin. Prancing around on Andrew’s (Laura’s brother) boat with his shirt off, putting me and the rest of the whale’s species to shame that day! Classic move Dave! About a year later I had come to a realization after being stood up on multiple dates, that well maybe it was time to reach out to Dave and get my fat ass in shape. So I ask him about the 2 week boot camp trial that his gym was doing. I told him I would be there Monday, and to get ready! I’m gonna blow the doors off of that place! Well Monday came and no Joe to be seen! Ha! Tuesday came and after being out with some friends and having remorse about being a “no show”, I decide to drunk text Dave (like an old ex girlfriend) and the offer still stood. The next day, I showed up for a 530am class (hung over) and wanted to die! I left that day driving out of the parking lot thinking, wow that was intense! Maybe ill give it a shot for two weeks, 5 months later here I am still going strong!

Did you start in the CrossFit program or the OTCFit (Off the Couch Fitness) program? How do you compare the two?

Originally, I was an OTCFit member and loved it! The OTCFit program was a great foundation for entering the CrossFit program. When I first started, I couldn’t do cardio workouts with my own body weight to save my life, never mind introduce barbell workouts as well! OTCFit was a great way to get myself started on the basics of CrossFit. Before crossing over to CrossFit , I would recommend anyone to start out in the OTCFit! CrossFit is now more of my speed – I love the high intensity lifting with weights and pushing myself every day that I’m in firewall to get more PRs.

How much weight have you lost thus far and in what time frame?

As of now I’ve dumped off 49.2 pounds in 5 months! It feels amazing!

What were your initial expectations of CrossFit, and how did it compare to your first few experiences?

Well to be honest, I had no interest in trying it. In fact I was actually was breaking Dave’s balls one night about his “unlimited membership” told him here take my unlimited wallet. It should cover the bill each month, it’s chicken feed I said to him as I laughed. I then stated that it was like fight club. First rule of fight club: never talk about fight club. Similar to CrossFit except first rule of CrossFit: always talk about CrossFit! To everyone! haha! After that first day of Firewall, I was hooked in the worst way! I had never worked out to the point where I wanted to lose my lunch like that before. I knew at that point that this program might actually have good results. It’s safe to say I ate my own words of insult about the whole thing, open mouth and insert foot is an easy way to say it!

What would you recommend to someone who might be thinking of trying it out?

Not to pressure them into it but, probably ask them why they’re still standing in front of me and that they should have signed up yesterday for it already! But like I said no pressure in any way possible. If they want to get great results and make progress in and outside of a gym that could
improve there way of life – then this is for them! It’s an opportunity that is at least worth giving a shot at once and that’s all they will need!

Why do you commute 30+ minutes nearly every day to come to Firewall?

It has to do all with trust……. Well I stepped into a CrossFit gym that was local in my town. Without further a due they wanted nothing to do with a person of my size and shape (234 lbs of twisted steel and sex appeal and yes we all learned that round was a shape in kinder garden thank you very much) so I turned to my friends that started working out at a CrossFit gym close to me. Within the first week they both got injured, crashed, burned and advised me to not go through with it. Stick to heavy beer and fried food they said you’ll be safer! So it has to do with trust, at the end of the 2 week boot camp I wasn’t injured and had complete trust in all the coaches. The first workout with Bucky was great! He went over every detail of all the movement (what to do and what NOT to do) from stretching, to form, to rolling out the muscles at the end of the session. There workouts were very thorough and were on top of correcting your form. So yea, it’s trust. They earned my trust, not to mention all the positive reinforcement from a great community of people! If you could take motivation, inspiration and positive determination and shove it in one building, well I found it in all the people at firewall! I probably pass 20 gyms on my way here, but it’s no Firewall that’s for damn sure!

What do you do for work?

I moonlight as a male stripper for nursing homes, teach blind dolphins sign langue at the local aquarium and write romantic love cards for hallmark. Pretty much created valentines day… no big deal though, just saying! pretty busy guy one might say! Only kidding, I am a general contractor/ builder for a family owned construction corporation, primarily building custom energy efficient homes and remodels. I absolutely love my job and couldn’t picture myself anywhere else! ……… but if anyone asks me, I just tell them I make saw dust all day haha.

Have you been in a fitness routine before? If so, did you see much success with it? Why or why not?

Yes in previous year I used to go to the local YMCA but had no training what so ever. Most of the time you tried to watch the people working out/lifting in the same room as you and hoped that they knew what they were doing so you can replicate their workout. Needless to say it didn’t work very well – they had no clue what they were doing either. I did tons of crash diets where I would loose weight, fail miserably, pack all the weight back on and blow up like a wood tick all over again. I guess that pizza and beer diet wasn’t like the cookie diet, who the hell knew right? I had no nutritional knowledge or any structure on what works on a good workout program. It was an epic fail over and over again! Turns out it wasn’t that I needed to diet, I just needed a lifestyle change for the better.

Have you found your current workout routine to benefit you outside of the gym? How?

Absolutely! first off, medically – I no longer need a inhaler for my asthma, Raleigh, or a cpap machine for breathing while I sleep. My blood work numbers came back with text book results from the doctors office not to mention my scale started to read pounds instead of saying “ouch! get the hell off me before I break!” Mental health has grown unbelievably, not that I was depressed or anything like that, I’ve always been a happy go lucky person who has loved the life placed before me, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say my confidence and positivity has improved significantly! Self-esteem is through the roof! It snow balls, your outlook on life improves. Nothing but positive thoughts enter my mind and positive results show up at my door! It’s become a natural high in life that nobody can bring me down from! It’s something you want to share with everyone you come in contact with! Physically – I love what the workouts and eating healthier has done for my physical appearance! I haven’t been this light or had this small of a waist size since around 6th or 7th grade! I do construction so it was like I was trying to maneuver around a job site with a 50lb bag of concrete on my body all day, or feeling like you have been 9 months pregnant with twins your whole life! Being lighter and stronger helps with that all day long!

What are your 2019 goals both inside and outside of the gym?

Inside, well to try and push myself every day to try and keep up with the savages of the 530am crew. Great group of people that bring it every day and set the bar high! Thanks, you wild bunch of animals because without you all I wouldn’t be where I’m at now! You all absolutely rock!!!! Outside the gym, well goals outside the gym are endless I am constantly writing new goals on my bathroom mirror and my refrigerator to look at traveling more and seeing the world is on it. Another one in particular is that my father found an old picture from when he was my age out in California holding up his surf board. He has visible ab muscles. I wouldn’t mind recreating that picture again. Totally corny but it’s a goal!

What is your favorite comedy movie of all time? What’s your favorite scene of it?

It has to be National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, classic comedy, I look forward every Christmas to watching it and laughing my ass off during the whole movie. My favorite seen is when he is trimming the Christmas tree in the driveway. The neighbor asks where he’s going to fit a massive tree like that, he responds” bend over and ill show you!” But the whole movie is funny as hell.

Have you ever binged on a Netflix show? If so, what was your favorite one?

The Ozark, badass show! I lost so much sleep over that show watching it till the early hours of the morning, I was hooked for sure.

What’s your dream car/truck?

I have way too many! But I will tell you this much, 60 percent of the time its a classic car or truck every time! It’s got to be fast, gut wrenching fast, that gives you butterflies in your stomach that throws you back in your seat when you smash the gas through the floor! There’s something about speed that really excites me…. haha