By Kristin Steinmetz
You have every excuse in the book as to why you can’t exercise. There are so many things that are more important, that take priority over your physical and mental health. You have a pre-conceived notion as to why CrossFit just wouldn’t be for you. I have a list of people that would prove you wrong. But for today, meet our athlete Jason Fontanez:
“As I sit here on my couch crying because of the pain I'm in, thanking god for the strength he bestowed on me today, I find myself wondering if I made the right decision this morning. Today, I ran my first 5k…I chose to do it for everyone suffering from this vicious and relentless illness, myself included.
Roughly 4 months ago, January 5th, I decided that I wasn't going down without a fight thanks to a friend of mine, Amy Maloney. It all started when she forwarded me an article about a young woman by the name of Gabrielle Andrews who is a sufferer of lupus, but she's also an elite CrossFit athlete. And it inspired me!!! It gave me hope!! So I joined CrossFit too!!!
While I'm not an elite athlete, I am no longer a broken shell of man!!!! A man that contemplated suicide every single day because of the constant pain and suffering. But I didn't give. And now I struggle everyday, but without the struggle there is no progress!!!! I've embraced my pain because really I'm gonna hurt regardless and I might as well get used to it. So today my pain is my fuel!!! I'm getting stronger everyday. For those of you that chose to read this short story, thank you- embrace the pain and don't go down without a fight!!!!!
And while I sit here with ice on my knees and ankles I know I made the right decision this morning!!! It lead me to this moment and if I can inspire or enlighten one person then it was worth every painful gut-wrenching step I take. Remember as long as you feel pain, you’re still alive!!!!!”
Jason has been suffering with the daily pain of Lupus for several years. And he made the decision to not give in, not give up. He has a full time job, two kids, and a potentially debilitating disease and yet he shows up every night. He’ll walk in and shoot us a quick assessment of how he’s feeling that day so that we know how hard to push him. But it doesn’t matter because nobody can push him farther than he pushes himself. Sure he’s sore, but he rationalizes that he’ll be in pain either way. The lupus will not surrender, but neither will he.
We believe that everyone deserves a personalized program according to their goals and limitations. And we know that when an athlete comes to us with certain medical backgrounds and limitations, they just want to feel better and to feel normal. So next week, Jason will fall back in line with the rest of our athletes, each with their own stories, issues, and triumphs. But this week, in celebration of his bravery and accomplishments, we use Jason as an example. An example of what you could be, what you could achieve, if you just decide to take the first step…whatever that may be in your journey.