Coaches Who Inspire You
Sports have always been a major identifying influence in my life. Growing up in a suburb north of Boston, there wasn’t a time when I wasn’t playing football, basketball, baseball or any other activity I could find. I am a firm believer in the impact that athletics can bring to individuals life, particularly in the area of relationships. I have seen first hand the lasting bonds that can be formed on the playing field, and discovering CrossFit has allowed me to continue to form those bonds. I began CrossFitting at the age of 34 in 2009, and am easily in the best shape I have ever been – surpassing years of focusing on weightlifting, running, and endurance events. None of these activities provided the dynamic results that CrossFit has for me.
We can all become more formidable human beings, and CrossFit is an extremely effective prescription to help us along that journey. I am a true believer in the notion that the physical, mental and emotional fortification that CrossFit provides is directly translatable to other parts of our lives. We are all trying to get better, whether personally, professionally, socially or physically; the “why” is different for all of us. At CrossFit Kells, our sincere mission is to provide a challenging environment that facilitates the betterment of all of the “why’s” in our community.
Driving change is incredibly hard work, but the rewards that accompany the kind of change that we are forging here are immeasurable. Done correctly, CrossFit will not only improve your physical well being…it will shape your mental toughness in ways you may not expect. It is our honor and privilege as coaches to contribute to the transformation of the Kells community, and we are grateful for the opportunity to have you in our lives.
If it is fitness related – from working out and training at gyms, to preparing for and racing in triathlons – I have done it. Being active and keeping fitness a priority has always been a part of my life, but until I found CrossFit it was really just a routine that I felt I needed to keep up with. I can honestly say, and it sounds cliche, but CrossFit transformed me physically, emotionally and most importantly mentally.
I have done things in this sport that physically I never believed I was capable of, and in turn It has emotionally and mentally made me a stronger, more well- rounded person. For the last 3 years of my life I have been able to wake up and get excited about going to work (if thats what you can call it). Not because of the laid back atmosphere and ability to wear sweatshirts and yoga pants everyday, but because of the relationships I have been a part of and the lives I have watched get better because of CrossFit. I realized pretty early on that I not only wanted to be a very good CrossFit athlete, but I wanted to create many good athletes.
Everything I know, everything I have learned, and everything I now teach was from a coach who has more passion for this sport than anyone I know. I firmly believe that my love for CrossFit grew from being coached from someone who cares so deeply about the fundamentals of CrossFit, and it is my goal to be able to do the same thing for my athletes.
Not only do I get to do what I absolutely love every single day, but I get to transform lives every day as well. I can’t call it “work”, because it is not. It’s as simple as caring enough about other people, and about how they want to look and feel. I feel that I have a genuine relationship with every single person that I have ever trained and coached, and I get just as excited for them when they achieve a goal as they do for themselves.
I watch my daughter mimic the movements and exercises I do, and I realize I am doing the right thing with my life. I am proud and lucky that she can imitate me, and wants to “teach classes”. I am content in the fact that I have chosen a lifestyle that will undoubtably make her choose healthy choices, and also see the benefit in helping others.
Throughout my life I have always been an active person. Whether it was playing a variety of sports at a young age, intramural sports in college, running, lifting at a globo gym or playing mens league softball as an adult. I think I was always searching for something to scratch that competitive itch. Unfortunately, that search also included years of unhealthy eating and a lack of consistent exercise.
I found Crossfit purely by accident back in 2012 when living in my home state of Pennsylvania. I reached out to a friend’s sister who owned a gym because the combination of obesity and a herniated disc made doing the simplest things difficult…serious changes were needed. I began attending Kettlebell and Ab classes on a regular basis, worked on my air squat and sit-ups (as I could not perform either) and seriously changed my diet. One day, I noticed my coach doing one of the Crossfit Open workouts, and I was hooked immediately!
There are so many different reasons to love Crossfit, and each and every member of Kells will have their own. For me, three specific reasons stand out as making me want to become a coach. First, the promotion of health and wellness. I am in the best shape of my life and I want to help guide others to achieve the same thing. Second, the competitiveness that Crossfit provides. Sure, we all look at the whiteboard and want to beat our fellow athletes in a WOD or compete against other athletes at a local competition, but I am not referring to that. There is an inner fire in everyone that pushes us to be better. It is that competition within ourselves where we say “how can I be better today?” Without question that leads to success in and out of the gym.
Last but certainly not least, it’s the COMMUNITY! Crossfit has had a great and lasting effect on my personal life. This began at my first gym in PA, where I am still close with my coach who I consistently reach out to for guidance. I still love seeing all of the achievements by the athletes I used to workout with. When I decided to move to Massachusetts in 2013, the first thing I did was look up Crossfit gyms. The hope was to get involved with a community similar to what I had, and boy did I luck out! In a short time, I have met a ton of awesome people who have become some of my closest friends. As one of your coaches at Kells, I will always strive to promote an environment that fosters a positive and amazing community.
Jim Monaghan, who is a magician as well as a CrossFit coach, believes that learning basic movements is the key to longevity and sustainability for new CrossFit athletes. “I do a lot of research to help members find different ways to progress into the ‘fancier’ CrossFit movements,” he says.
Jim’s high school athletic career included hockey and track and field, and he also lead an off-season conditioning program. More recently, he finished Sealfit20x, and he’s also Army Airborne. Jim became a CrossFit coach by a twist of fate. “I enjoyed CrossFit so much I wanted to help other people get the best out of it,” he says. “My wife got me my level 1 cert for Christmas and, coincidently, my good friends opened up CFK!”
Axel Peterson loves “walking on his hands” and teaching gymnastic movements. “I’m most passionate about gymnastics and keeping the mood light and classes fun,” he says.
Axel found CrossFit after being a member of a “globo gym” across the street and knowing he didn’t belong there. “I came to Kells and loved the vibe” he says. “I started to notice other members paying attention to my workouts, telling me they looked up to me, and I knew I wanted to help.” So becoming a coach was his next obvious step.