November Athlete of the Month – Gabriel Burns

As a box owner, you see a kid walk in with blond, flowy hair and you wonder how serious the kid will be about CrossFit. You think back to the days you were 16 years old and the things you were doing….and remember that CrossFit was not one of those things. Not even close. As a teen, was mastering your sport a priority? Well, it is for Gabe.

If there was one word to describe Gabe, it would be: CONSISTENT. He never misses a class. You see him at the box at 3:45pm every day, like clockwork. You also see him every Saturday morning. Usually he brings a friend to the 9am class and spends the hour encouraging the friend through the WOD and then he throws down with the rest of the class at 10am. Gabe also consistently logs his WODs and has clearly-defined performance goals. Additionally, he enters into every local competition that allows participants under 18 years old and usually makes the podium.

PS – the kid is GOOD! Butterfly pull ups: Check. Bar muscle ups: Check. 400+ lb deadlift: Check. 300lb back squat: Check. Ring muscle ups: Check. Three Minute Grace: Check.

Athletic ability aside, what makes Gabe so special is his positive attitude and willingness to help other athletes in the gym. It’s not easy taking direction from a 16 year old when you are more than twice his age, but Gabe is helpful in a non-boastful way and everyone loves him. Plus, we are all jealous of that hair flick:) Gabe has a very bright future in the Sport of CrossFit and we can’t wait to cheer him all the way to the Games in the very near future.

When did you start CrossFit:

Started CrossFit in November of 2012, took some time off due to inconveniences, then started up at Incendia in June of this year:) Cumulatively about 8 months

Why did you start CrossFit:

My Dad and I were invited by some Church friends to come check out their CRAZY gym, where they do CRAZY workouts like flippin’ tires, climbing ropes, and whatever the heck a (muscle up) is! So we gave it a try.

What kept you coming back/motivated:

What keeps me coming back to the gym day in and day out is the COMMUNITY. The COACHING. The RESULTS. The people at Incendia push me everyday to work to the best of my abilities. What keeps me motivated is remembering why I am doing what I am doing, to hopefully one day glorify God with my physical abilities and make it to the Games!

What is the best thing you have gotten out of doing CrossFit?

Through CrossFit I have the opportunity to reach and meet sooo many people within the community by getting stronger, faster, and healthier together.

What is the one thing you have done here that you never thought you could do?

I never could have imagined concurring Olympic lifts! Throwing 100’s of lbs over my head? You must be out of your mind! I’m so excited to finally be confident in those lifts and can’t wait to get even better at them.

What is one goal you have reached? And one goal you still hope to reach?

I set a goal to snatch #155 and planned to reach it by the end of the year, and whata ya know, thanks to our awesome coaches I’m at #165 by October 🙂

I hope to some day be strong like Don! Seriously. One PR at a time, it’ll take a long long while, but one day I’ll get there!

How has your diet changed since starting CrossFit?

Since CrossFit my family and I have changed our diet dramatically. I thought I ate “healthy” but this crazy idea of eating like a caveman had me hooked! I eat Paleo the best I can just about all the time, but once in a while, to keep my sanity, I’ll eat a sleeve of Oreos with a glass of milk (and feel terrible the next day) just to remind myself why I don’t eat that crap! Yes… I do have a shirt to remind me;)

Additional comments/anything you’d like to add?

A special thanks to Brian & Lisa and all the coaches, and all the members! So, pretty much everybody, thank you for all your support. I’m extremely grateful to attend a box full of like minded people where we can get fit and healthy together. I’m way thankful for amazing coaches and box owners who make it all happen day in and day out. And thank God for the abilities given to us so we can get better each and every day!