Member Spotlight - George Smith

on Thursday, 23 April 2015. Posted in Member Spotlight

April Member Spotlight

I remember meeting George a little after we opened here @ 870 and thinking, man, this guy really loves what he's doing in CrossFit.  Here we sit almost 4 years later and George has been invited to partake in the 2nd round of competition in the Master's 55-59 year age division for the CrossFit Games.  Think of it as Regional's for the Master's division.

George has put in hundreds of hours of extra practice working his mobility, double unders, and muscle ups (and a lot of extra work as our not so official, official maintenance man!).  Watching his progress in each one of these areas has been nothing short of impressive.  Impressive for the sake of being steadfast, unwavering, and very committed to LONG TERM success.  It wasn't an overnight achievement, nor was it an easy process.  But he has enjoyed the journey, as you can see from his Q&A below.  

Thank you George for being a part of what we have done here for the last several years, you've made it fun for many people.  You've turned into a great pleasure to coach and to bounce ideas off of.  May you continue to be a bright spot for us and others and the consummate hard worker that you've been your entire life!  

-Tell us a little bit about yourself. Do you have a family? Where are you from, where do you work? Aside from CF, what do you enjoy doing?

I have four brothers, but I have been the only one from my family that has travelled around to different parts of the United States working and exploring life. I have been to England, Italy, France, Canada, Mexico, and virtually every state in the USA, except Hawaii; but I sent my wife there while I took care of the kids!

I have three children, two grandchildren and one heck of a woman (Betty). My oldest son and his family live in Florida, my daughter graduated from AState with Masters Degree in Business and is currently attending law school in Fayetteville, and my youngest son is working on getting his Bachelors degree at AState.

I work at Unilever in which I am responsible for the Maintenance Management of the 500,000sqft facility. My duties include maintenance and parts spending budget, utilities (gas, water, and electricity), managing forty-five multi-skilled professionals, and all operations from grass cutting, warehouse, bulk storage, twenty eight packaging lines and over forty processing mixing vessels with ancillary equipment.

My passions away from Crossfit include grilling on my ceramic grill and working in the yard. One thing I try to do every day is read something about nutrition and health.

-When did you start at crossfit870? What made you start?

I started Crossfit in July 2011. I was in bad need of knowing how to change my health without getting myself injured. I was at a point when I needed to either start doing health maintenance using medication or change my life naturally. I knew using medications had side effects and changing my health naturally would be a more positive approach.

-What did you used to do for fitness/sport before crossfit

Before Crossfit, I was like the typical person doing everyday things enjoying life thinking everything was going great. In my younger years I liked playing softball. But as my family got older, I would deer hunt with my oldest son, my daughter was my helper, and I fished a lot with my youngest son. Other than that I didn’t have a lot of physical activity; or at least activities that increased my heart rate.

-What’s your favorite crossfit move/lift/WOD? What’s your least favorite?

Since I have changed my life I love workouts with power cleans (when I do them correct), deadlifts, kettlebells, muscle ups (a few), and running. Burpees aren’t too bad, but Turkish getups stink.

-What is your favorite memory of crossfit?

My best memories are not of things when they happen, but when you notice someone that has made a paradigm shift in their level of fitness. I am so happy to see the people that have stayed with improving their fitness.

-What would you say to someone who is just starting crossfit?

 If you are one of those people just starting Crossfit or thinking about Crossfit; do it and stay with it. Take the scales and throw them away, because it’s about how your clothes fit and how fit your body becomes. Listen to the coaches and practice the techniques over and over. Work on flexibility and strength will follow. One thing I do every day now and have been doing for the past few years is reading my bible and reading something on nutrition. Everyone needs to be feed the proper substances spiritually and physically.

-What do you like most about Crossfit870?

 Being part of 870 and people you meet makes you feel more like family than sometimes your own family. Crossfit is more than exercise and getting into shape; it’s about helping others and building a community of people with similar goals.

-What kind of Animal would you call yourself in the gym?

 It’s funny when you really get to noticing people at how they act and behave toward people, but everyone has a personality that mimics some type of animal. I think I’m kind of like cheetah lying in the bush. I watch people at how they are doing on workouts and then I try to accelerate and increase my performance output at the most opportune moment. Sometimes I forget my age, but remember very quickly when I try to keep up with the young athletes.