Athlete of the Month – August 2016

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Phil Williams is our Athlete of the Month for August! Phil started CrossFit in 2013 and has been one of our favorite members! He frequents the evening classes with his wife Gloria. The two of them are very active outside of the gym, with many obstacle course races and Spartan races under their belts! Phil has battled some tough injuries, coming back most recently from a shoulder injury. It was a slow road back to CrossFit, but he was diligent with his physical therapy and eased back into our CrossFit programming. He’s now back working hard, attending class almost every day! Except next week because he and Gloria will be on vacation in the Dominican Republic. Tragic, I know. So congratulations Phil! You earned this!

1) When did you start doing CrossFit?

Started CrossFit in November of 2013

2) Favorite WOD?

I don’t really have a favorite WOD. I’m still trying to get good at any of them. Hard to be good when you’re as injured as I have been lately.

3) Least Favorite WOD?

My least favorite WOD is anything with running or thrusters. That’s because I suck at both!

Phil and Gloria

4) Favorite Lift?

My favorite lift has to be cleans. It makes me feel strong.

5) Least Favorite Lift?

Least favorite lift I guess would be front squat. Again, probably because I suck at it.

6) Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I was born and raised in the City of Champions, Pittsburgh, PA. STEELER NATION!! I have a 21 year old son. He’s a senior at Arizona State University. I have a beautiful wife, Gloria, that keeps me grounded. Otherwise, I’d be out of control. I spend most of my days in the operating room, but when I have time I love to travel. I enjoy obstacle course races (even though that’s where most of my injuries have come from). I love to swim and if it weren’t for multiple surgeries on both shoulders I might even be good at it. I love beer, so I’ll never have a six pack (unless it’s beer). I’m also normally a smart ass, but it’s all in fun. I just like to have a good time.

7) What were you doing before CrossFit?

Before CrossFit I was just going to the gym and doing random exercises, riding my bike at Umstead with Gloria, swimming and doing obstacle course races. Basically, anything outside to try to stay in shape.


8) What were your thoughts after your first CrossFit workout?

My thoughts after my fist class were, “I love this shit!” I wish I had found CrossFit when I was in my 20s.

9) What were your goals when joining CrossFit?

My goals when joining CrossFit were to get stronger and in overall better shape.

10) Have you achieved any of those goals?

I’ve achieved small goals, but I keep getting setbacks by injuries ( outside the gym). I believe I’m getting back in the direction that I want to go now.

11) What made you come to CrossFit RDU and stay with CrossFit RDU?

Gloria and I looked at 2 gyms, CrossFit **** and CrossFit RDU. When I came in and spoke to Steve, I knew that this was the place for me. So I told Gloria, this is our gym.

12) Has CrossFit affected your life outside of the gym?

CrossFit has definitely changed my life outside of the gym. I put everything on hold so I can make it to the gym. If I can’t make it to class, I am not happy. I look forward to it every day.

13)  What are some of your best achievements in the gym?

My greatest achievement to date in the gym is being named Athlete of the Month! I thing this is a great honor. There are many very good, even great athletes here and i am honored to be named among them. I know I need to be stronger and more fit, but I am working hard at that now.

Phil and Gloria 2

14) Do you have any other special memories/achievements during your time here?

I love when everyone pushes you to do better, and cheers you on when you do.

15) What advice would you give a newbie trying out CrossFit for the first time?

For a newbie just joining the gym, I would just tell them to keep coming. The coaches and the community that we have at the gym are great! If you just come on a regular basis, you will get better. You will get stronger and you will get fit. Just pay attention to the coaches, they won’t steer you wrong.

16) Something you might not know about me is?

Owen is jealous of me. He wants to be like me. He wants to get on the STEELER NATION bandwagon.

I am probably the biggest procrastinator in the world. I’ll do better one day, but not today or tomorrow. LOL! I also love to go fishing.