For ten and a half years, I’ve been a constant presence at Oak Park/CFLA. And during that time, my life has changed dramatically in the best of ways. Here are a few highlights:
- When I found my way to CFLA, I considered myself a mediocre ex-athlete who was at a crossroads. At age 42 I was about to give up entirely on trying to stay athletic. I was an over-worked semiconductor broker and mother of two dynamic young daughters. But I was desperate to not lose the foundational part of my identity that was an athlete. I couldn’t believe my luck stumbling into this place.
- I then became a mediocre CrossFitter, but I took the “ex” out of ex-athlete and that’s all that mattered. I felt like myself again.
- The Whole Life Challenge used to experiment on us, in the beginning stages. We were subject to the hardest versions with the strictest rules and zero accommodations for vegans. I was determined to beat them at their own game even when the game clearly wasn’t written for vegans or vegetarians. The first WLC, I played a perfect game. I felt terribly after! But I won $300 and I immediately went to Lululemon and bought a coat that I still wear to this day.
- The following year, I helped the WLC write rules for vegans and vegetarians.
- The CFO of the broker company I worked for embezzled $16 million dollars and took the company down. I lost my stress-riddled, high-paying job. Shortly after I became an intern at CFLA to pay for my membership because I wanted this gym to remain in my life as we downsized other things. I went from running a multi-million dollar purchasing department to filing waivers and cleaning toilets. Interning was a meditation in priorities, humility, and awakening, and I gladly did it. When Sam moved to Chicago, Andy believed heavily in my life experience and threw me in as a coach. No net, some training, and a you-got-this, Diz. It was an incredible act of faith that I took very seriously and I have done with honor, dedication, and due diligence for seven great years.
- The many memorable Memorial Day speakers have made an impact on my life.
- Ricky Cassidy nicknamed me Dizzle/Diz eight or nine years ago after I made WLC compliant “cookies” and brought them to the gym. He’d ask me repeatedly, “When are you bringing more Dizzle Treats?!” And the name stuck.
- In my second year at CFLA, I did a year-long, self-inflicted challenge called Chasing Christmas after I saw a photo of the then not-as-famous Christmas Abbott doing a muscle up. The look on her face was this: It is so fucking fun to be this fit. And I wanted to feel that way. I spent a year getting as fit as possible. I got a bit stronger and was still mediocre (ha!), but I reinforced one of my personal athletic “whys”: that fitness is and should be fucking fun, and I don’t want it to be any other way. Christmas and I have been friends ever since.
- I PR’ed many things during our CF Open Events including my first 75lb snatch in 2012. This photo only partially demonstrates my excitement.
- I wrote fitness articles for Breaking Muscle for a couple years, including one called the “The Secret Advice of a Vegan CrossFitter”. I wrote it about eight years ago before one was allowed to utter the word vegan inside of a CrossFit gym. The article got me a mini cult following where I had many closeted, athletic vegans email me for advice; some for nutritional advice and a lot asking how to handle the close-mindedness of CF trainers.
- Any time Corey Reed was in the gym was a special time, but watching him — as a blind amputee — box jump for the first time was an emotional, enlightened experience for those who witnessed it.
- When Mina was age 12-13, I coached her rigorously for teen CF competitions, which eventually qualified her for the CF Games. She placed third in her division – at the CF Games! It was the most incredible experience to watch my child – my baby – train and fight and emerge as the badass she is and will forever be.
- All the times Maya was my partner in CF competitions were instant favorite memories. She is my favorite workout partner of all times.
- Both of my daughters grew up in this gym, and I could not have asked for a better childhood experience for them.
- I trained 7 months for a bikini bodybuilding competition and every day after lifting and working out, I would practice my stage walking in lucite heels over and over again in the gym.
- There’s that time I once, during mid-morning hours, let a homeless man take a shower at the gym. Looking back, I would do it again in service of this person, but let’s just say I had to shut down the bathroom afterwards for four hours. I personally cleaned it for 2 hours with ammonia and bleach, and then we had to bring in professionals. Kenny was not too pleased with me haha. I will spare you the details of the cleanup, but it is an epic memory for me personally forever burned in my memory of 3201 SM Blvd.
God, there are so many more memories. Mainly, I have made so many meaningful connections and best of friends over the years at this place. I’ve been able to grow into a very true version of myself and do my best to serve others. I am so grateful for all of you here, and I can’t wait to make more memories and even deeper connections at 1431 Lincoln.
FRANKLIN HILL – and we’re meeting at the Hill
ONLY ONE WORK OUT FROM: 9:00-10:30am
Meet @ Palisades Park @ Ocean Ave. & Montana Ave.
– Sand Runs
– Agility & Balance
– Power & Stamina
– Team Work
– May get wet!
At the new gym – 1431 Lincoln Blvd
Two special 90min classes at 8am and 9:30
We’ll start with breath, warm up, workout, and end with yoga
Complete as much as you can:
25 box jumps
25 box jumps
25 box jumps
25 box jumps
200 air squats
Time Cap: 42min