Lisa Powers-Vayda

I reluctantly began CrossFitting at the age of 37, five months after giving birth to my daughter by C-Section (my second). I was born with heart problems and severe asthma. I have had open heart surgery, I have fractured my pelvis, I have disk issues in my back, and I have had inguinal hernia surgery (twice) and four other abdominal surgeries in my life. I never went to any gym for more than a two week span and fitness was not part of my routine. I was a vegetarian, but not the eating-vegetable-kind-of-vegetarian (think: margaritas, cheese, refried beans, Lean Pockets, and bread). Oh, and I smoked a pack a day for almost 20 years, quitting in December 2010. Clearly, I have never been considered an “athlete” in my entire life!

My husband had tried to get me to do CrossFit with him since he found it in 2008. I would mess around with it occasionally, but it really got in the way of my smoking so I was never serious. Once I quit smoking in 2010, I decided to go to CrossFit with him, but wanted to “get in shape” to go to CrossFit. (I know, right?) I didn’t want to be totally embarrassed walking through those doors. Even though I probably wasn’t considered overweight, I certainly couldn’t run. He worked with me during this time, teaching me PVC pipe lifts and other fundamentals. And then, I got pregnant! In the middle of my preparations to join CrossFit, I got pregnant! I had a high-risk pregnancy and was always sick. I did some occasional CrossFitMom workouts, but for the most part, working out was not something I did.

Rewind to the beginning of this story: at 37 years old and five months after giving birth, I swallowed my post-partum pride and decided to go to CrossFit. The owner and manager of CrossFit Fury were so encouraging and I know that if I hadn’t given them my word that I would show up at 5 am on that Wednesday morning, I probably would never have gone to CrossFit. That first day, I had to run 800m for the warm up. It took me five and a half minutes! I had to go home and go to sleep after that first WOD and before going to work that day. It sucked (bad), but I was hooked! I told myself that I would give it six months to see if this CrossFit thing was all it was cracked up to be. During this time, I went “all in.” I even switched from vegetarianism to strict Paleo!

I’m a busy mom. When I started CrossFit, I was a successful full-time Realtor in the Phoenix-area and I also had a full-time job, managing the family Insurance Agency. I had a newborn, a five year old, and a firefighter husband that worked 24 hour shifts. It was hard for me to find time to pursue CrossFit five times a week. Once I started seeing my body change and my performance increase, I made sure to work it out – whether that meant training at 5 am before my husband went to work or at 4 pm before I had to pick up the kids at daycare or in the garage doing double-unders if I couldn’t make it to the gym. Six months after starting CrossFit, I went to my 20-year high school reunion. Nothing makes a girl feel better than hearing that she looks better at 38 years old than she did in high school.

I know that we moms put our fitness last most of the time. We are so over-committed that commitment to ourselves is always last on the list. I’m not trying to become a Games-Level CrossFitter. All I ever wanted was to look good in my bikini and have the energy to chase my kids around. I know many of you feel the same way. CrossFit helped me achieve this goal and achieve it quickly. My passion is sharing my experience with other ladies to give you the opportunity to find your inner athlete. You can do it! My job is to create an environment that is supportive of well-rounded health and fitness and ultimately, TO MAKE YOU LOOK BETTER NAKED!

  • CrossFit Incendia Co-Owner and Director of Operations & Marketing
  • CrossFit Coach
  • CrossFit Level 1 Trainer
  • CrossFit Level 2 Trainer
  • CrossFit Olympic Weightlifting Trainer
  • CrossFit Rowing Trainer
  • CrossFit Endurance Trainer
  • CrossFit Kids Trainer
  • CrossFit Movement and Mobility Trainer
  • BS in Management from Arizona State University
  • MBA in Marketing from Grand Canyon University
  • Realtor
  • Mom