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November ’16

November Athlete of the Month:

Carrie Barksdale 


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When did you start doing CrossFit?

I joined the Coyote family in the fall of 2013

What is my favorite WOD?

There’s not a single WOD that doesn’t still intimidate me. Seeing it posted is always jarring but I kinda love em all.

What is your least favorite WOD?

My relationship with running is pretty rocky. I’ll keep a smile on my face but if I’m running, I’m not having fun….. I’m working on it.

What is your favorite lift?

I hate to sound like Buddy the Elf but all the barbell work is my favorite.I’d never been exposed to the OLY lifts and have relished the learning process. Deadlifts fixed my lower back pain so maybe it gets the top spot.

What is your least favorite lift?

All the overhead lifts simultaneously terrify and thrill me, but I trust my coaches and as I get stronger I’m learning to trust myself.

What is your favorite cheat meal?

Anything crunchy, salty and cheesy tests my ability to make good decisions.

Tell us a little about yourself.

Ray and I have been married for 19 years. Our daughter Ginny is a sophomore at Madison Central. Jake is our middle son and is in 8th grade at Madison Middle. Our caboose is Alan, a 2nd grader at Madison Lower. They are all musically inclined, quick witted, quote Monty Python at the drop of a hat, look exactly like Ray and have all of his best qualities. It is only when they open their mouths that you can tell that they are mine. Large portions of my days are spent carting the offspring in different directions. Somewhere in the middle I manage to get to Coyote, practice yoga enough to keep me sane and get everybody fed. Our canine children are Rockett the rescued Jack Russell Terrorist and Gizmo, the World’s Tallest Chihuahua (don’t tell him he’s not a Doberman). We spend entirely too much of our time binge-watching British TV.

What were you doing before CrossFit?

Through the years I’d done a little of everything, but only goal was to stay in my skinny jeans. Strength training was never even on my radar. My baby sister had been coaching Crossfit for a couple of years and I could see how she’d grown. It just took me a while to see the big picture.

What were your thoughts after your first WOD?

“I’d hate to throw up all over Hunter’s shoes.”
“This is awful/awesome.”
“When do we do it again?”

What were your goals when you joined Coyote?

I was 44 years old and sending my baby off to kindergarten……something had to keep me from falling apart.
Crossfit was the answer.
I just knew that I just wanted to be better.

Have you achieved any of these goals?

It’s been fun to see how my body has responded/reshaped with the programming. Traps? Who knew?I always want to be coachable and receptive and on most days I think I am. Those mental toughness days don’t play and there is no doubt that those WODs have left me more emotionally resilient  As someone  who never once willingly participated in a team sport, it’s been odd to learn to think of myself as an “athlete” but I’m getting there. Keeping a written journal has helped me be accountable. Gains aren’t quick and that’s ok. I “just wanted to be better” and sometimes I’m almost pretty good at a couple of things. That fact never fails to shock me and I am grateful for every micro-improvement.
I’m also grateful that after a few years of nudging I’ve gotten my husband here too. Crossfit didn’t just stop the aging clock for us. We both feel better than we have since our 20s or 30s. What else does that? NOTHING BUT CROSSFIT.

Has CrossFit affected your life outside of the gym?

By sheer necessity I have to be selective in my food choices or I’m going to feel bad for the WOD. I do enjoy being able to thank kind strangers for offering help to lift bulky or heavy objects then respond with “I got this.” There have been a few times when somebody has said “you must lift.” That was pretty cool.

Do you have any special memories/achievements during your time at Coyote?

The days when the new parents cart their arm babies in the door always get me. I love seeing the generations of families on the floor. I love the fact that we never stop cheering for each other. There are honestly very few days I’ve shown up at Coyote and not been blessed.

What advice would you give someone just starting at Coyote?

Just show up and check your ego at the door. Every single person you meet in a box was once a beginner and we all want you to have a great safe experience. If you think you’re drinking enough water you’re probably wrong. Fish oil. Fish oil. Fish oil. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Mobility work is your friend. Trust your coaches. Give it 3 months.

Tell us something we might not know about you?

 I’m working on developing a yoga curriculum for athletic recovery and performance……if I can ever get Ray on the mat I’ll know I’ve succeeded.
Joyful tears come easily for me. If I was in the building when you hit a PR, finessed a new skill, or strung 50 double unders together for the first time…..I probably wept for you.
In 2 years I’ll turn 50 and we’re hanging a disco ball on that Big A$$ Fan and will party like it’s 1999!