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In 2012 Joe came to a crossroads in his career as a fitness professional and athlete. Like many others, Joe was bored and unmotivated with his usual 5-day routine, it became too repetitive and non-rewarding. So he started looking for something else and discovered CrossFit in November 2012 at a CrossFit box in Orleans.
While on an endless quest to find the best training methodologies and how to apply them, Joe began exposing himself to as many different learning opportunities as possible. He graduated with a diploma from Algonquin College for Fitness and Health Promotions, attended multiple fitness conferences and seminars, and completed handfuls of certifications since his inception into the fitness industry in 2006. He has since been a Fitness Coordinator for a nonprofit organization, a Senior Trainer for a large commercial gym, and has most recently spent the last 2 1/2 years as the Head Coach and Director of Strength and Conditioning for a CrossFit box in Barrhaven before opening his own, CrossFit Valeo, in 2018.
With his passion for Olympic Weightlifting, Joe has been able to develop an eye for great movement and has refined his skills as a personal trainer and coach to help motivate others. Being able to offer an arena where individuals can express their athleticism and competitive drive has been a dream of his since deciding to make fitness a part of his professional career.
“Limits, like fears, are often just an illusion” – Michael Jordan
Lee Ann was bored of going to the local globo gym and heard about CrossFit through friends. In 2015 she walked into her first CrossFit gym and hasn’t experienced a boring workout since!
Both Coach Joe and Coach Ralitza introduced her to the sport and quickly inspired a passionate approach to fitness. Lee Ann is a former competitive gymnast and has over 25 years of experience in coaching competitive gymnastics. It’s no surprise then that she really enjoys the gymnastics elements involved in CrossFit, but what Lee Ann values most about CrossFit is the platform it lays to allow physical, mental, and emotional development. There are not too many sports that will provide an opportunity for you to get fitter, push yourself harder than you ever thought you could, and make great friends all at the same time. The CrossFit community is a wonderful thing.
For Lee Ann, CrossFit has become a daily one hour journey that has improved all aspects of her life outside the gym. The strength she’s gained makes being a gymnastics coach that much easier and her cardiovascular conditioning helps her keep up with her two kids! The idea of being able to help others experience and maintain those major life changes is what inspires Lee Ann to coach and to share her lifetime of experience in gymnastics!
“Be where your feet are” – author unknown
Erika has always been the athletic type, trying any sport or endeavour that required athletic ability. She's also always appreciated the idea of overall fitness and before Crossfit she was a regular at her local fitness club, attending classes, and racking up mileage on the treadmill. She then trained for and completed a marathon in the summer of 2014. After realizing that running was not her forte, she decided to give CrossFit a try.
Her first few classes consisted of burpees, wallballs, etc. but quickly became exposed to and discovered the weightlifting aspect. It was love at first sight. She naturally excelled in weightlifting, and quickly became a power house when it came to tossing weights around.
Shortly after, Erika decided to get her Crossfit Level 1 Training Certificate. Originally, it was more as an advancement of knowledge than anything else. Soon after, she got her first job coaching Crossfit and has constantly sought out ways to expand on her fitness experience. Her most recent journey has been enrolling in Algonquin College’s Fitness and Health Promotions Program which she is currently in the process of completing.
What began as a quest for fitness quickly became the pursuit of a potential career change.
People walk through the door and say, ‘Hey, where’s all the machines?’
"We are the machines!”
Ralitza began CrossFit in 2013 after recovering from ACL surgery. When she started she didn’t know the difference between a dumbbell and a barbell and could only dream to do a pull-up one day. Fast forward four years and she now strives to be a competitive athlete in the sport.
Her humble beginnings in CrossFit make it easy for her to relate to other beginners, and she believes that anyone can achieve the same progress if they are willing to put in the commitment to their health and fitness. With a full-time job in the government and part-time studies at Carleton, Ralitza has been able to acquire over two-years of experience in coaching CrossFit. Her most recent experience has involved developing and delivering a beginner’s program for those new to CrossFit and a gymnastic skills program, with progressions and drills for all skill levels. She has also lead information seminars on goal setting and nutrition with the intention of providing athletes with an all-encompassing approach to reaching a healthier lifestyle, inside and outside of the gym.
Her passion in CrossFit has developed over the years to include a detailed approach to recovery and nutrition. She believes that every decision outside of the gym can be an incremental step, either towards or away from a goal inside of the gym.
“Stick to the basics and when you feel you’ve mastered them it’s time to start all over again, this time paying closer attention.” – Coach Greg Glassman, founder of CrossFit
Connor was first introduced to CrossFit in 2012 from a friend that he had played competitive rugby with. He then started following the programming and workouts that were posted on CrossFit.com. After several attempts at performing a variety of CrossFit workouts at his local gym, he decided to find an affiliate to be properly coached through the functional movements.
Ever since joining an affiliate he aspires to be competitive in the sport of CrossFit and continues to be a part of a great community where everyone actively strives to pursue their goals.
Outside of the gym, Connor has spent his time acquiring a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Ottawa and most recently finished the Primary Care Paramedic Program at Algonquin College. All while in school, Connor was able to complete his CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certification and acquire over 2 years of experience in coaching and programming strength and conditioning.
Connor's passion for CrossFit continues to grow as he begins his career as a Paramedic. He believes CrossFit is a well rounded training methodology that will help him reduce work related injuries and maintain a high degree of focus and energy while on the job.
"Failing to learn is learning to fail"