My journey at CrossFit Wheelhouse began the summer of my sophomore year. I was fortunate enough to have Coach Drew as my lacrosse coach at Salesianum my freshman year. Following our last game of the season, he pulled me aside and told me that if I could get my speed and power up, I had a very good shot at making varsity as a sophomore. I wanted that more than anything, and from that moment on I decided to change my life by joining the Wheelhouse. Before Wheelhouse, I had no formal training or first-hand experience in the gym, as I had been an athletic kid from playing sports in the neighborhood with my buddies. That being said, my first few months at the Wheelhouse were not easy. I got my ass handed to me by some workouts. I was intimidated by the fact that there were a lot of movements I could not hit. I did pull-ups banded. My max deadlift was 115 lbs. A muscle up was just a dream to me. But good things don’t come easy. Each and every person has their own battles to win, but Wheelhouse is a family, and we win those battles together. It’s okay to not have a movement down, to need to scale, or to not be the first one done with the WOD, because in the end you’re still in the gym doing more than the person you’re lining up against on the field. You want it more and that’s why you’re there. Wheelhouse has taught me more than I could learn in any other setting, sport, or classroom. It has shown me the value of hard work, community, and commitment. For a young athlete, it was all about patience. Just like any other sport, it’s about repetition, dedication and most of all hard work. There were plenty of days I got up and looked at the WOD and thought maybe I’ll skip today. Then I thought of the guys on varsity. They weren’t skipping, so why should I? Wheelhouse changed both my physical abilities and my mental approach to so many things; it really does become a lifestyle, but you have to be willing to buy into it. It paid off more than I ever could have imagined. I made varsity, but I also physically felt and looked better. I was ten times faster, stronger, and more agile. I received over 15 college offers from D1 and D3 schools to play lacrosse, and I wholeheartedly believe that each one was a result of my hard work in the Wheelhouse paying off. I ultimately turned them all down to attend the University of Notre Dame, where I am currently a sophomore. However, I walked on, made and started on the Club Lacrosse team as a freshman; again which I owe to the Wheelhouse. I know a good number of people have their respective feelings about CrossFit, claiming it’s bad for the body or you don’t get absolutely huge from doing it, but it’s not about them. It’s about you. It’s about how bad you want it. It’s about wanting to change your life, to be a physically, mentally, and emotionally healthier, happier and stronger person. And it pays off. The coaching at Wheelhouse is unmatched, because they aren’t just your coaches, they’re your family. They dedicate time to your individual technique, ability and progression so that each person gets better every time they step foot in the house. It’s a community you won’t find in any other gym. My progression through the Wheelhouse has been one of my favorite accomplishments in my career thus far. From hitting my first muscle up on the bar and rings, to PR power cleaning 185 and deadlifting 225, all the way to doing every CF Games workout in 2018 RX’d. It pays off. Hard Work Pays Off. Every semester break I’m home, I’m back in the Wheelhouse. Every day, anytime I can. Classes, partner workouts, or alone, I just want to be in there. Wheelhouse is a very special and life changing place, and I truly do and will continue to owe my successes to it. Struggle is the currency of success, and the Wheelhouse is where you cash in.