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Melissa Nyman: Fighting for Mental Toughness

Melissa-300x300Brief personal history and journey towards beginning your CrossFit journey:

I lost almost everything I had on February 29th, 2012. I was leading a very unhealthy lifestyle and it caught up with me. I had to ask myself, do you like where you are, do you like how you feel? No? Then do something about it. The only things I had left were myself and my dog. We started walking a lot to pass the time, to think, to get fresh air and to get some exercise. One day I tried running and it felt pretty good so I kept at it. From there, my body and my life started changing for the positive. I wanted more of that feeling so I did some research and decided to try weightlifting. Again, more change for the better, not only for my body but how I dealt with everyday stress. Now I wanted to be more than an exerciser, I wanted to try to be an athlete. I would go to the gym 3 hours a day but I was not making any progress. One day a doctor at work saw me watching “how to squat” videos on YouTube and he told me to go to CrossFit, where they teach you how to squat.

What brought you to CrossFit Oshkosh?

One day while I was in the middle of a workout I saw a girl half my size lifting twice the weight I was.  I put my weights away immediately and drove straight to CrossFit Oshkosh.

Your first impression of CrossFit Oshkosh?

My first impression was, there is nothing here, I don’t get it. Where are all the machines? Then I did the introduction body weight workout and I was completely exhausted. I loved it!

What has been your biggest hurdle since starting?

I had a hard time trying to learn the snatch and the clean.  I told myself that maybe I’m too old to learn these movements so instead of talking to my coaches I left CrossFit and went back to traditional weight lifting. I was in the same place as before, no progress. I started doing more research and came across how good whole body compound exercise was and realized I was just at a place where I was learning these, so I went back.

What is your favorite aspect of CrossFit?

My favorite aspect of CrossFit is how you test the limits of your body and mind in every workout. You are pushing your body so hard your mind is questioning whether you can continue, but then your coach or fellow athlete encourages you and you prove your mind wrong. Some people may consider this risky, but I think it’s more dangerous to never see what you are capable of.

What are your current goals in CrossFit?

#1 drop some weight so I can move faster

#2 increase my endurance

#3 perfect my form on Olympic lifts

What is something we don’t know about you?

I was born in Montana, went to school in Wisconsin and then was a trauma nurse for 10 years in Florida before returning to Wisconsin.

I love live music and I love to decompress by listening to very loud heavy metal music, I am partial to the girl bands.

My favorite word is mediocre. I worked with a doctor who would use that word when situations were not going as well as they could. At the time, it didn’t mean much to me until I came across synonyms for the word such as uninterested, ordinary, average, uninspired and forgettable. That is a word that I try not to be associated with anymore.

I have a reoccurring dream where I am hiding, and a bad guy puts his gun down. I get to the gun to save the day but then I don’t know how to use it. This drives my dad crazy because I’ve always been around guns and everyone else in my family owns and shoots guns but me.

 

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