Our Box

Member Spotlight

August Athlete of the Month

Jen Raymer

Meet our athlete of the month for August, Jen Raymer!

A long time member of the #manateemuscle, Jen has recently shown us what consistency can do! She shows up to class everyday with a positive attitude and a willingness to work hard. We love watching her interact within the community by offering support to the last athletes working and she is always a staple in our outside the box events. She pushes herself by going to competition and testing what she is capable of. She makes nutrition a priority and leads by example with her weekly food prep! Follow her on Instagram and check it out! Congrats Jen! We are so proud of how far you’ve come! Keep up the great work.

Tell us about yourself. 

I was born and raised here in the lovely Bradentucky! I work as a Production and Client Relations Manager at a local advertising and marketing agency. I never played any sports in high school, but about 2010 I decided it was time that I start doing something more for me vs everyone else (kids, husband at the time) and I joined a local all women’s gym called Shapes. It was there that I started doing cycling classes and group classes such as Body Pump and started running. You can’t really see it nowadays, but I actually used to be a runner. I started doing 5ks, 10ks, ran my first and last half marathon and ran in the Ragnar Relay from Miami to Key West. I will say that Ragnar Relay had to of been the MOST epic thing I have done.

How did you get started at CrossFit Manatee? 

After wanting to try out crossfit for a while I finally gave it a try with a couple of friends that used to attend CFM. From that moment on I drank the Koolaid.

What has been your proudest athletic moment? 

When I finally got pullups after FOREVER!!! Now if I can just start stringing them together!

What is your favorite and least favorite movement/lift/drill? 

Favorite is back squats

My least favorite? Snatch

What do you think makes CrossFit Manatee different from other gyms that you’ve tried in the past?   

The community is awesome!! Everyone is so supportive and encouraging. I have met some awesome new friends here! It is a second family!

What do you like to do when you’re not training at CrossFit Manatee?   

Besides working and and taking care of kids, I love  being outside. We recently got kayaks so we have been doing that often on the weekends.

Tell us a fun fact that we might not already know about you.

When I was a kid I used to clog dance! Yes, yes that is right I was a clogger, which is folk dance! Like River Dance.

 

July Athlete of the Month

Tisha Grant

Meet our athlete of the month for July, Tisha Grant!

Traditionally, we choose a member (not a coach) as our athlete of the month, but this time, we chose Coach Tisha. Her hard work and dedication to health and wellness cannot be ignored. You’ll see Tisha in the box working on her weakness (Hey RomWod)  and building strength 6 days a week. She’s a shining example of what setting and achieving personal goals can look like. Over the past few years, Tisha has made huge changes to her nutrition, as well as how she spends her time in the gym and it shows. Congrats Tisha! We’re so proud you’re leading the manatee muscle by example. Below is a before and after of Tisha. CrossFit and changing daily habits can change your life. Tisha is a shining example of that.

 

Tell us about yourself.

I was born and raised on a farm in Southeastern Ohio, moved to Bradenton June 2015. I work as an occupational therapy assistant at a local Nursing and rehab center. In my youth I played basketball and softball, but didn’t really do much after high school and during college. Started running a little after college, eventually got into 5Ks, then onto P90x and other home workouts.

How did you get started at CrossFit Manatee?

I started as soon as I moved here. I had been doing crossfit for 2 years in Ohio and couldn’t wait to get back in the gym after moving. I did creep CFM on Facebook for a few weeks prior to moving through.

What has been your proudest athletic moment?

My proudest athletic moment was when I did my first strict pull-up!!

What is your favorite and least favorite movement/lift/drill?

Favorite is the snatch.

My least favorite?Front squats!!!!!

What do you think makes CrossFit Manatee different from other gyms that you’ve tried in the past?

The community is awesome!! Everyone is so supportive and encouraging. I love the monthly social gatherings too!!

What do you like to do when you’re not training at CrossFit Manatee?

I love the beach and being outside. I recently bought a paddle board so I’ve been doing that lately. I also like to shop, and I love to read.

Tell us a fun fact that we might not already know about  

People are sometimes surprised by the wide variety of song lyrics I have memorized.

June Athlete of the Month

Stephanie Woodcock

Meet our athlete of the month for June, Stephanie Woodcock! 

Stephanie came to us a little over a year ago. You could tell right away that she was an athlete with a ton of potential. Fast forward a year and she is really starting to hit her stride in CrossFit. The more hard work a workout involves the more she seems to enjoy it. It is also a lot of fun to see her competitive side come out in wods from time to time. 

Tell us about yourself. 

I am from Harpursville, New York. I moved to Florida a little over 3 years ago to escape the snow and I fell in love with the beaches. I am a Pre-K teacher for the school district of Manatee County.  

How did you get started at CrossFit Manatee? 

After playing sports all through high school and college, I began running. I completed many 5ks and 4 half marathons. I enjoyed running, but I was looking for a change and another athletic outlet. I wanted to strengthen my shoulder that was damaged through old sport injuries and push myself to try something new.

What has been your proudest athletic moment?

My proudest athletic moment is when I completed my last half marathon in under 2 hours.

What is your favorite and least favorite movement/lift/drill?

My favorite is anything that includes running and pull-ups.  

My least favorite? Any movement to “Sally Up” and snatches.

What do you think makes CrossFit Manatee different from other gyms that you’ve tried in the past?

What makes CrossFit Manatee different is the atmosphere. The owners, trainers, and athletes have created a place where anyone and everyone is encouraged and accepted. You are there to better yourself and challenge yourself with the support of the entire gym. You are exhausted when you leave, but you can’t wait to go back for more.

What do you like to do when you’re not training at CrossFit Manatee?

When I am not at CrossFit Manatee I love to complete obstacle races, read, be with family and friends, and visit the beach.

Tell us a fun fact that we might not already know about you.

My bucket list includes swimming with sharks in open water.

 


Meet our Member of the Month for April–Alex Kilby!


Why we think Alex earned this!

Alex came into our box with a few big goals. His biggest was to get his body in shape for his wedding. Let’s just say Alex has been crushing his goals in a big way. His strength numbers are way up, his cardio keeps improving, and if you have seen Alex recently you can easily see the transformation his body has taken. Awesome results from a guy who comes in early to mobilize and always puts in the work. Earned…Not Given! 

About Alex

I’m originally from a small town in central Illinois named Virginia. I graduated with a class of 33 from Virginia High School and attended college at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. I am currently engaged to my fiancé Jacki, and we are getting married at the end of May. We have a four-legged dog child named Luna. I work as a consumer banker for Suntrust Bank in Bradenton. I was a three sport athlete in high school, and played a few intramural sports in college. After college I got away from athletics, but getting into crossfit has really brought back that competitiveness.

How did you get started at CrossFit Manatee?

Before moving here I was doing crossfit for about 10 months. After the move though, I took a year off. After getting engaged, I realized that I needed to get back into shape for my wedding, and also be healthier in general. I started searching for boxes to try out. Crossfit Manatee was my first box I tried, and after Coach Julie worked me so hard the first day I almost puked. I was instantly hooked again! I have been coming almost every morning at 545 am since!

What has been your proudest athletic moment?

One of my proudest athletic moments so far was when I strung together my first set of strict pull-ups. I know it doesn’t sound like a big deal to some, but I’m not a small guy and getting that first couple was such a great feeling of accomplishment.

What is your favorite and least favorite movement/lift/drill?

My favorite lift is probably any of the shoulder-to-overhead movements, especially split jerk. It’s such a great feeling when you have great form and the bar feels weightless for that split second.

My least favorite would have to be overhead squats.

What do you think makes CrossFit Manatee different from other gyms that you’ve tried in the past?

Crossfit Manatee is different because the coaches and other athletes truly care about you and your well-being. They push you to be the best “you” that you can be and cheer you on the whole way.

What do you like to do when you’re not training at CrossFit Manatee?

When I’m not training you can most likely find me on the golf course or sitting poolside with my fiancé, my dog, and a good book.

Tell us a fun fact that we might not already know.

I am about to start working toward my career goal which is to be a firefighter. I start the first step this fall.

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