Members of the Month... Double Trouble!!
Dan & Rachel have been a staple to our morning crew at Vic City since 2020, they were mid-pandemic joiners and never looked back. They have become such a strong part in our community, and not just physically. They are both very strong! I remember people in the afternoon classes that hadn’t got a chance to meet Dan yet ask, who is the guy that crushes everyone on the Assault Bike haha and same with girls being like whose Rachel?! She’s so strong!
They have fit right in right from the beginning. Between the two of them, they have 5 kids, aged 10-16, a
golden retriever, a cat, a hamster, and two geckos. How Dan puts it, “Our house is basically a zoo. Three of the kids play soccer, one plays box lacrosse, and one is in girl guides, so we are constantly running them around to their various activities.” As a family they like camping, skiing, family bike rides, and hiking whenever they get a chance.
Rachel is the manager of a group home in Sooke for special needs boys, and Dan is the manager of an engineering team at a tech company specializing in telecommunications network design. To say they are busy is an understatement! Yet, even with all this, they still make it a priority to get to the gym, and not miss a workout. They are a great example to everyone and their kids of how important health and fitness is. Read more below to get to know them!
What is your background in Fitness/sport?
Dan: My biggest passion has always been Freeskiing/extreme skiing/Freestyle skiing. I used to compete in big air and slopestyle contests, and was sponsored by a ski company at one point. In the summer I’ve always loved mountain biking, especially downhill mountain biking. I love riding all types of bikes, even the assault bike! I started weightlifting about 10 years ago, which began as an effort to build some strength while rehabbing a back injury, and turned into something that I enjoy doing almost every day.
Rachel: I was a homeschooled, farm girl. Team sports usually involved catching a loose farm animal.
When did you start CrossFit/At Vic City?
Dan: Rachel convinced me to try CrossFit with her in Courtenay 4 years ago after we met. I thought I was going to impress her. I’m still trying, and I don’t think she’s impressed with me yet.
We joined VicCity together when Rachel moved to Victoria mid-2020, deep in the pandemic.
Rachel: I have been doing CrossFit on/off for 7 years. Can’t you tell?!?!?
How many CrossFit Opens have you done?
Dan: This year was my second Open, and I’m happy to have done significantly better than last year.
Rachel: Three for me!
Favourite memories in the gym?
Dan: I don’t think I’ll ever forget the period when we had to work out on the sidewalk in front of the gym because Covid shut down all gyms province wide, especially in the snow. I’m thankful that Cam was innovative enough to make that happen!
Rachel: For my first open, my entrance song was “eye of the tiger”. That was a very magical time in my life.
What is your favourite movement?
Dan: I really like heavy barbell stuff, especially deadlifts. I’m also a fan of rowing, running, and the assault bike.
Rachel: Push press and bench are my jam.
Dan: Bench press. I’m not very good at it, but Rachel is the bench press queen! My only goal on the bench is to try to avoid embarrassment by lifting more than her. If she benches more than me, she’ll never let me live it down!
Rachel: Running, skipping, box jumps are not OK. Basically anything cardio. It’s too hardio.
Favourite WOD or type?
Dan: I like really long workouts, so chippers are my favourite. I’d rather workout for two hours than do a 7 minute AMRAP.
Rachel: WODS with breaks and the possibility of a charcuterie board.
What do you enjoy the most about CrossFit?
Dan: A few things: I really appreciate the social aspect and getting to know everyone. Shout out to the 6am crew!
I also like the constant variety of different WODs and movements, and not knowing what you will be doing next week. It never gets boring.
I enjoy that as a result of CrossFit, I’m now in the best shape of my life, which is not something I ever expected to happen in my 40’s.
I think most of all, I enjoy working out together with Rachel, and the rivalry that we have together in the gym. Sometimes I’ll win, and sometimes she kicks my ass, haha.
Rachel: I love a lil friendly competition. And I love being told what to do…..most of the time.
Most recent achievement that you are proud of?
Dan: Within the past ~4 months I’ve finally figured out a number of movements that I was never able to do for years. These include stringing together double unders, stringing together toes to bars, stringing together kipping pull ups and chest to bars, handstand push ups, and my snatch is getting stronger too.
Rachel: Not dying?
What goals are you working towards right now?
Dan: My daily goal is to not be late for class in the morning because of Rachel!
It would be pretty cool if I could figure out how to do a muscle-up. I’d also like to build a bit more upper body strength in general.
Rachel: I need to improve my DU’s, pull-ups, TTB, box jumps, technique on ALL of my lifts, cardio and my terrible attitude. P.s. screw you Dan!
I don’t get a chance to coach them regularly, but when I do, I can say it’s always a pleasure to have them in class. They are always pushing themselves, each other, and their classmates, and cheering everyone on. Since I don’t see them every day, I also love when I see them and can see their improvements on gymnastics skills and their strengths. They are always asking for tips for the workouts and the skills, and always looking to get better. They’ve recently also started coming multiple times a week, bumping up to unlimited memberships and taking their CrossFit to the next level. We love to see it, and they again are a great example to many on how putting in the work pays off, and showing up consistently you will see improvements.
Thank you to both of you for being so awesome, fun, and a great part of our CrossFit family, we love having you in the gym, and can’t wait to see you both keep getting stronger and reaching your goals!
Be sure to give Dan and Rachel a high five next time you see them!