All of us who work out here at Mission CrossFit SA train hard.  We are all on our own journey in pursuit of a higher level of fitness, health and ultimately, life.  It is not an easy journey, but it’s worth it. It requires hard work, sweat, discipline, and perseverance.  The journey is filled with challenges, obstacles, and sometimes-even setbacks.  And although every person’s road is unique, it is not a solo endeavor. We are in the pursuit of fitness together. Like a team, when a person is knocked down, the group responds by picking them up. Equally as important, when someone succeeds, their accomplishments are enjoyed and celebrated by the whole.  To that end, every month, one person will be recognized for their outstanding achievements in fitness, whether they are in or out of the box.

This page is dedicated to that individual who portrays what CrossFit is at Mission CrossFit SA.  It is someone who pushes hard, never gives up and wants to accomplish something each day they step foot inside our gym.  They are chosen by their peers and lead by example.  The athlete doesn’t necessarily lift the most amount of weight, or win every WOD, but instead they have passion and desire for what their individual goal is.  Work hard, everyone is always paying attention, and you could be next!

October 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to William Snowden for being named October 2017 Athlete of the Month!  Will started CrossFit just 11 months ago after a year of traveling with this wife.  He noticed he couldn’t do things as well as he would like, and didn’t like how he looked or felt.  He had always been active, and knew it was time to get back to that way of life.  He decided to start CrossFit, and the rest is history.  You can see Will at the noon class almost everyday where he will throw down at every class while being one of the first to arrive and last to leave.  For these reasons and many more he is very deserving of the title of Athlete of the Month.
Started CrossFit:  November 2016
Favorite WOD:  Nancy for the combo of focus/balance/stamina it takes to OHSQ each round after those 400m runs
Least Fave WOD:  Angie, death by pull ups!
Fave Lift:  Squats or Dead lift
Least Fave Lift:  Split Jerk (times infinity)
Story: Thank you so much, it is an honor to be chosen as an Athlete of the Month. I want to share this distinction with my friends and peers who attend during the lunch hour because you all are truly an inspiration for me. No matter if you are working through injuries, overcoming plateaus, or consistently crushing it – everyone has such a great attitude and it is clear that nobody leaves without giving it their everything. MCFSA coaches have done a great job cultivating this community, and I am humbled to be recognized from among such an amazing group of people.

I started CrossFit for the first time just 11 months ago. The year leading up to that decision my wife and I had traveled quite a bit. As I looked back at our pictures (and there were a lot) I was not happy with myself for the shape that I had fallen into. I recall during those trips I couldn’t keep up during hikes, had to forgo activities I wasn’t physically able to safely complete, was uncomfortable shirtless at the pool or beach, and most embarrassingly my gut was so big it would compress my diaphragm so that I had to hold my breath to bend over and put on my shoes. It was a far cry from what I always considered “my normal self” because I was always very active, even as as a child: dabbled in gymnastics at 5, then soccer in elementary thru middle school, football=life in high school, and all the while was also doing 15yrs of martial arts. In college I stayed active playing every intramural sport and joined the UTSA Cheerleading Team (GO ROADRUNNERS!!!). So nearly all my life I was agile, flexible, quick, and athletic. But as I transitioned out of college and got more career focused, the activity level slowly dropped until I was literally paying for a Gold’s Membership for 3yrs, yet I never stepped into their facility once after enrollment. Enough was enough and I went hunting for a CrossFit gym because I knew I needed that level of intensity and the constantly-varied programming. Lucky for me MCFSA is literally one parking lot away from my work. From Day 1 I told the coaches I am committing to a new routine, but truthfully I had no idea what I was in for! My very first workout was Fran- which I scaled with just the 35lbs bar + jumping pull ups and I hit the 10min time cap. I was sore for days after that. But now, here we are 11mo later: I’ve lost 40lbs and 2 pants sizes, nothing fits anymore (in a good way), my PR’s are way up from where I started, and I feel stronger and more nimble than I’ve ever been at any point in my life.

Again I want to thank all the veteran members of the noon class who immediately adopted me into the community, have shared their training tips and been so supportive every day. I also want to thank my WOD partner Tyler for making classes as fun as they can be and for always keeping me on my game. Lastly, I want to thank the staff of MCFSA for literally everything you do in class and behind the scenes to provide a clean, safe, supportive, and rigorous physical challenge in class every day.

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September 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Ryan Hayes for being selected as the September 2017 Athlete of the Month!  Ryan has put in a tremendous about of work to get better at his weakness since his start at Mission. You can find him early to class stretching to improve his mobility and you can always find him after class as well for a great chat. He goes the extra mile to improve, whether it be taking an extra Olympic lifting course or studying Mat Fraser stats!  Ryan for those reasons and many more, he is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.
Started CrossFit: April 2016 (On Missions 5-year Anniversary)
Favorite WOD: My first one…but since I cannot remember what it was, DT has all the best requirements: weights, skill, planning and engine.
Least Favorite WOD: Griff. Literally nothing but running…even backwards.
Favorite Lift: Snatch. Mine is a early stage work in progress, but when this lift is done correctly it is just awesome to watch.
Least Favorite Lift: Weighted Overhead Lunge. Nothing good comes from these.

Story: I really appreciate being selected. There are so many athletes in Mission that push themselves beyond what I am capable of and drive me to push even harder every day. In that crowd this is a big honor.My first experience with CrossFit was on Mission’s 5-year anniversary. My wife (Katie) and I pulled up to the parking lot and could not even find a space it was so crowded. I can recall wanting to turn around right then, but we went inside, met Junior, and have not looked back since. I remember completing the warm up and thinking that we must be almost done: I was wrong. I cannot even remember the rest of the workout, but after recovering I knew that I would be involved with CrossFit forever.

I have lifted weights in some fashion for most of my life, specifically focused on powerlifting, and I continued this through my time in the military. After leaving service I let work and school get in the way of working out, but I kept taking on new challenges looking for something to fill the void of pushing myself to achieve new goals. I had heard of Crossfit for some time, and was a fringe watcher as the sport grew, but was not sure it was the right fit. I mostly just felt not ready. I always knew that I would enjoy it, but I thought I would have to be in great shape before taking on Crossfit. I was wrong again, and wish I had started years ago. The scalability of the movements combined with the outstanding programming at Mission and the most excellent coaches allow for everyone to be successful. The competition side of the sport offers a goal that can be chased one day, one workout at a time.

I have no doubt that Mission is the best box in the area. Maybe the best period. For the reasons named above, but also because of all the athletes. Every class is full of people trying to do their best and cheering each other on. I have really enjoyed getting to know everyone and cannot wait to high five after a difficult WOD, or give a hard time to someone who missed a few days. I literally just hit my best hang snatch the other day, after missing the lift twice, because Ignacio said “I should just do it,” so I did. It is the people and the coaches that make Mission great. I travel a lot for work and visit a different box every day I am out of town and can honestly say the combination of Coaching, Programing and People make Mission the best period (I am sure Matt Fraser said the same thing when he visited and probably wishes he could work out with us everyday).

I look forward to each new challenge. Each day I am excited to see what the WOD will be, even if it includes lots of running, because no matter what else is going on in your day the WOD will make you forget. Thank you to all the coaches and athletes who make Mission awesome. Stay classy, be excellent to each other and always remember “Never half-ass two things, whole-ass one thing.”

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August 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Mary Ford for being selected as the August 2017 Athlete of the Month! Mary brings a smile, great conversation, and a killer work ethic to the gym every day. Mission has yet to hear a complaint from this calm and collected WOD assassin. Although Mary has a rigorous work schedule she makes the gym a priority and she comes to a variety of class times. Its always a pleasure and a bit of a surprise to have her in class. She’s just a conversation away from friendship, so what’s the wait? For those reasons and many more, she is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.
Started CrossFit: August 2012
Favorite WOD: the longer the better – preferably involving deadlifts, cleans and/or rowing! (I loved 16.4/17.4 – despite the fact that I didn’t get my first handstand pushup until the week AFTER 17.4)
Least Favorite WOD: Isabel
Favorite Lift: Deadlift!
Least Favorite Lift: Snatch
Story: First – thank you so much for this honor!! I started CrossFit back in August of 2012 with the main purpose of getting back into shape after joining the Army. I had taken an exercise hiatus of sorts since college (bad idea), and having grown up an athlete I was not comfortable with my low level of fitness. I had done some CrossFit workouts by myself at home (after much prodding from both my older brothers to give it a shot), but had never stepped foot into a CrossFit gym. Fellow Mission member Alex Ortiz and I joined CrossFit Bethesda together at the start of med school and I swear for the first six months I probably only showed up to classes because I had told her I would go! But that period of accountability got me hooked and now I cannot imagine my life without CrossFit.
When I moved to San Antonio during the summer of 2016 Alex, Adam and I had plans to try out several different gyms – however we only made it to two, because after coming to Mission we knew there was no gym that was going to top our experience there. Over the last year Mission has played such an important role in my life – I can’t imagine life in Texas without this amazing community. I also never would have thought that I could finish the first year of residency in significantly better shape than I was at the start – but I have Mission to thank for that! I am so grateful for the great friendships, coaching, and FUN that I experience every time I walk in the door. I truly mean it when I say that very often the best part of my day is getting crushed (as so often occurs) by a workout at Mission. So again, a HUGE and heartfelt thank you to all of you amazing coaches who push all of us to be the best possible versions of ourselves daily – I couldn’t live this life without you all!
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July 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Casey Whittington for being selected as the July 2017 Athlete of the Month!  Casey has put in so much work since his last shoulder surgery. We all know it’s not easy to take a backseat to the regularly scheduled programming, but Casey trusted the process, followed the plan, and is (as he later points out) better than when he started. Casey brings energy and a sense of humor to the gym. Along with being an awesome addition to class he is knowledge about local government, tasty red wine, and is the best at recommending a podcast! Ask him what he has going on, you are sure to learn something fun. He is always ready to sweat and compete in the blazing hot afternoons. For those reasons and many more, he is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.
Started CrossFit: Started in 2015-ish. I came and did a class at Mission and while I was bent over a trash can, Drew could be heard laughing.
Favorite WOD: DT
Least favorite WOD: Kalsu
Favorite lift: Deadlift
Least favorite lift: Anything overhead
Story: First off, I have to admit that I never thought I would be the guy who loves CrossFit. I used to make fun of it all the time.  After signing up at Mission to do the sport program after coming from a less competitive gym, I tore my the labrum in my right shoulder a mere two days into my membership doing some standard pull-ups. I was disheartened, having had five surgeries on my left shoulder all ready, but Drew was adamant that I would be back. Six weeks after surgery, Drew told me to not even think about touching a weight for six weeks and came up with a rehab plan. I am sure all of you saw me flailing around in the corner of the gym most afternoons with tiny dumbbells and cardio. However, after all of my surgeries I have done physical therapy, and this is by far the strongest I have come back. I cannot thank Drew and the Mission staff enough for being patient with my aging bones and helping me when I have to scale the workouts accordingly. Having been to a number of gyms, I can honestly say that Mission is by far the best.
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June 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Kiera Roberto for being selected as the June 2017 Athlete of the Month!  Kiera’s dedication to fitness was apparent during tax season. While working extra long hours, being a new wife and a mom, she continued to put in the work. Almost without interruption she showed up for morning and weekend classes. She continues to uncover new progress and PR’s in fitness journey.  For those reasons and many more, she is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.

Started CrossFit:
April 2016

Favorite WODs:

Anything with programmed rest!! AKA Dance breaks 😊😊

Least favorite WOD:

The ones I don’t make it to. ☹️ Also,  Running is the worst.

Favorite lift:
Cleans

Least favorite lift:
Snatch and overhead squat

Story:

Thank you for the recognition!! Was really shocked until I realized I must have won you all over with my sweet dance moves.  I joined Mission last April, with SO much anxiety about working out in a competitive group environment that I told Coach Meagan before my first class I’d probably throw up from nerves. So happy I forced myself to join!! I’ve found a type of fitness that I truly enjoy, that pushes me past what I thought my limits were. CrossFit humbles AND empowers me daily. On top of that, the community of friends and athletes I’ve found at Mission is, well, everything. I draw so much inspiration from the strength, and tenacity of everyone there, and can never get enough of the positive, hard-working, booty-shaking environment at Mission. THANK YOU to Drew, Meagan, and all of the coaches for making it happen on a daily, and guiding us to become better versions of ourselves! Love starting my day off with all of you!!!
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May 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Jake Gray for being selected as the May 2017 Athlete of the Month!  Jake brings amazing energy to the noon class as well as a can do attitude. He comes in everyday and works his butt off! You can always find Jake helping other with their equipment and after class to work on his mobility.  For those reasons and many more, he is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.

Started CrossFit:
First Class was “Fran” in August 2015; Commited and started “for real” March 2016

Favorite WODs:
Open WOD 17.4, then “Fight Gone Bad”

Least favorite WOD:
Any with running intervals – the runs zap my energy for the fun stuff and slow me down.

Favorite lift:
The Bear Complex

Least favorite lift:
Sleds

Story:
“CrossFit, where have you been all my life?!”

After playing baseball and football in high school, then baseball and intramurals in college, my fitness/athletic pursuits tapered off until I trained for and ran the Houston Marathon in 1997. Though it was not my intention, I never trained to run distance again. From 2000-2002 I went to grad school in Austin while running my own business in San Antonio – think “very little sleep and late night ice cream and snacks”. I met my wife in 2002; we married in 2003, and I started a couple companies in 2006-2007. One of those companies was the primary reason that 2007 to 2011 were the worst four years of my career as an entrepreneur, with expensive life lessons, even less sleep, more stress eating, and virtually zero exercise. My daughters were born in 2007 and 2009 and represented the biggest blessings in an otherwise yucky time.

For years I paid the typical gym membership dues, played racquetball from time to time, jogged, cycled, but still, had no meaningful, CONSISTENT exercise.

Then in 2013 I co-founded with a friend of mine another company located one mile from Mission CrossFit. I would drive past MCFSA daily thinking “I should check that out.” It took me a couple years, but I finally did check it out, and early Google search results for CrossFit were intimidating and perplexing (the CrossFit brand could do without Pukie the Clown, if you ask me). Anway, it wasn’t until I realized that you can scale the workouts that the beasts like Froning, Bailey and Bignall were crushing that I finally ventured into MCFSA. Fran was my very first workout. I felt drunk afterwards – think “impaired…under the influence”. Not euphoric. In hindsight, I realize that I should not have driven back to my office that day.

Since then, I’ve logged more than 150 workouts at MCFSA, with no two the same. I LOVE the variety of CrossFit. I’ve overcome joint pain that initially kept me from regular class attendance, lost some weight and improved strength and mobility in ways I could not have imagined. Before CrossFit, I never lifted weights with any concerted effort or purpose, even in high school or college. I never rowed. I rarely did pull ups or push-ups.

Now, I think of the barbell and rig work that we do as “recess for big kids”. And I want to do fun new things and get better every day. We get to throw weights and wall balls around, do handstand pushups (or the scaled version for me), jump rope, climb rope, jump over boxes, row until our lungs explode and hang from the rig like it’s a set of monkey bars on the playground. My youngest daughter, Katie, points to the callouses on her hands and says, “Why did God have to invent monkey bars…because I just CANNOT resist them!”). I feel about Mission CrossFit like Katie does about the monkey bars. I just cannot resist it.

THANK YOU to coaches Drew, Meagan, Rebekah, Julianne, Junior, Roland, Mike and Amy who have shepherded me and my noon classmates. And THANK YOU to Stephanie and Chris and Caleb and the veteran members of MCFSA who have also given me coaching tips along the way. You guys are the athletes of the month, truly. CrossFit has been the best thing to happen to me in the past two years, and I am grateful to all of you for the community and CONSISTENT improvement you’ve welcomed me into here at MCFSA.

“CrossFit, where have you been all my life?!”

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April 2017 Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Paul Steinhoff  for being selected as the April 2017 Athlete of the Month! Paul has put in many early morning training sessions at Mission since 2014. He is one of the first ones to show up at 5am for the Mission Sport Program almost every day. He crushed the 2017 CrossFit Open and dominated 17.1 by posting the best Male RX score. Besides a 20min commute to Mission, Paul drives back up the same 20minute stretch plus an extra 30mins to get to work in Canyon Lake, true dedication.  For those reasons and many more, he is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.

Started CrossFit– July 2011

Favorite WOD– Any Chipper workout

Least favorite WOD– 15.5 (Rowing & Thrusters) I was sore for 2 weeks!

Favorite lift– Deadlift

Least favorite lift– Thrusters

Story – First off, I’d like to say thank you for selecting me. I’m not sure I truly deserve it, there are way too many expectant mothers kicking butt on a daily basis that deserve this more than I do. I first started CrossFit when my wife, Katie, bought a groupon for my birthday to try a random box for a month. My goal that month was to attend as many days as possible and write down every workout with the intention of repeating the workouts after that month and never joining a gym. CrossFit was too “expensive”. It didn’t take long for us to realize the true value of CrossFit, we were hooked after that month and haven’t looked back. Since then we have bounced around a couple boxes until we found our home at Mission in 2014. The coaching and programming were nothing like we had experienced, so it was an easy decision to join despite having a 20 minute drive. Since then we have been truly grateful to be a part of the Mission family. Not only has our fitness continued to improve year after year, but the care and support Katie was given during all 9 months of her pregnancy was remarkable. I am truly proud to say that I am a Mission athlete!
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2017 March Athlete of the Month

Congratulations to Emmalind Aponte, known to us as Emma, for being selected as the March 2017 Athlete of the Month! Emma has been a loyal member for the last 2 years. As a busy working mom you can find Emma at a mixture of classes, as early as 6:30 am to even the 6:30 pm. No matter the class time she still makes it in to crush the WOD’s.  Even through a small shoulder injury you still found Emma at Mission modifying the WOD’s.  For those reasons and many more, she is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.
Favorite WOD: Omar and anything with double unders
Least favorite WOD: Karen ( only time I wish I was taller)
Favorite lift: Thrusters ( Always kick my butt but I love the challenge )
Least favorite lift: Overhead squat
Story: I’ve never played a sport but the truth is that I’ve worked out most of my life; mostly cardio oriented because I never liked the ‘machine circuits’.  I would enjoy a training discipline for a while, get bored, then move on to something else.  Five years ago, I would never have imagined myself moving a barbell and relishing it.  I got into CrossFit about 3 years ago encouraged by my husband, he thought that I would like it but I was full of doubts.  I had no experience with barbells, kettlebells, or wallballs, and the movements were so intimidating. Nevertheless, my thirst for something new was the other push that I needed.
I did my first WOD and have never considered stopping.  I’ve had my ups and down but never gave up. I feel  stronger than ever in my life and I am no longer intimidated by the barbell. I love that any work out can be scaled and still be a challenge. I never get bored because every WOD tackles a different set of skills.   CrossFit has all the elements that I enjoy: it challenges me, it is fluid, and it keeps me healthy.
When we moved to San Antonio two years ago, we tried other boxes and it was Mission that I felt could become my box.  My intuition was right because I do not see myself anywhere else, I love the community at Mission.  I think all the coaches are great. I admire how Megan and Drew always strive to make Mission the best box in town. I never thought that I would say this but I know that I will be doing CrossFit till the day I stop breathing.

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2017 February Athlete of the Month – Mike Loveall

Congratulations to Mike Loveall for being selected as the Febuary 2017 Athlete of the Month! You can always find Mike being one of the first ones to arrive for the 5:30am class. You can count on Mike to come in and give 110% on every single WOD.  Most importantly you can hear him encouraging on his fellow athletes to finish the WOD. For those reasons and many more, he is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.

Started CrossFit: August 2013 @ Garage 23 Crossfit, Leesville/Ft Polk, Louisiana
 
Favorite WOD: Hero WODs, Annie and Grace.
 
Least Favorite WOD: Anything with handstand push ups or muscle ups.
 
Favorite Lift: Deadlift, Back Squats, Overhead Squats, Front Squats, Cleans, and Snatches.
 
Least Favorite Lift: Bench Press, Strict Press.
Story: My CrossFit story is similar to many others. I was on my own fitness journey and had been for many years. I was a high school athlete and was experienced with functional fitness from my time in the Army. With work and life, my fitness journey was more of a unguided stroll. I had been familiar with CrossFit and finally decided to join in August of 2013. Like many others, I was immediately hooked. As I continued down this path, the philosophy, connection of the distributed community, and the accountability of the local box community really appealed to me. I appreciate the dedication and efforts of the affiliate owners. Drew and Megan, and my previous box owners, have invested their personal time and money in our personal development and to foster a supportive community. I appreciate the 5:30 a.m. crew that help keep me accountable. Tucker, Eric, Lee, Veronica, Lina, Dr. G, and the other people that show up before dawn make the early morning much more bearable. Of course my favorite Mission athlete of all is my wife, Ellie, in the 8:30 crew. The best part of my Crossfit journey is that it grows every day, with every workout, with every movement of life. Let’s continue our stories, Team Mission.
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January 2017 Athlete of the Month – Wes Weissgarber

Congratulations to Wes Weissgarber for being selected as the January 2017 Athlete if the Month! We couldn’t think of a better way to kick of the new year then selecting an athlete like Wes.  Since he joined Mission, he has been a regular at the noon class, rarely not seen during the week.  He has recently kicked his skill work into high gear by staying after class every time he attends to practice his pull-ups, muscle ups and any other skill he’s working to develop.  He never packs his gear up before the last person finished the WOD and continuously cheers others on around him. For those reasons and many more, he is definitely deserving of the title for Athlete of the Month.

Started CrossFit: 2011
 
Favorite WOD:Fran
 
Least Favorite WOD: Anything with double-unders
 
Favorite Lift: Snatch
 
Least Favorite Lift: N/A
 
Story:  I’ve always been an active person.  Throughout my life I’ve competed in many sports, team and individual; all have required different levels of training.  Of all the athletics I’ve done, none have shown me the gains and physical improvement that CrossFit has.  The drive for competition and self improvement creates an addictive environment that I look forward to everyday.  The workouts are always intense, the coaches are knowledgeable, and the friends keep it chipper!  As long as I’m able, I will push myself at MCF and enjoy the time with my friends here.  Cheers!
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