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Gord: What a difference a year can make

image Everything I do right now can be summed up as a pathetic attempt. I have been attempting to coach, sometimes from a wheelchair, sometimes from my crutches, but can we really call hopping around recklessly on one foot, while verbally explaining how to do a technical movement like a snatch, successfully coaching? Can we call shaving one leg for the Christmas party, while the other leg festers under a sweaty cast, where hair [which isn’t blond] has been growing for two weeks, successfully shaving my legs? Can we call a Christmas gift excursion to the mall, where most of the time is spent in a wheelchair waiting in line for the elevator with babies in strollers, then tipping the wheelchair onto my face, and leaving without an actual gift, successfully Christmas shopping? Can we call dropping a jar of pickles in the grocery store aisle as I try to balance it in between my body and my crutch, successfully grocery shopping? I’m not trying to feel sorry for myself or be a drama queen about a foot injury, but after a couple post-injury weeks of successfully remaining on Positive Mountain, something hit me today and it was time for a primal scream. Just one scream and then I’d be ready to hop back on the happy bandwagon. I was about to primal scream. My hand was even on the latch of the window. It seemed like it would be more satisfying to yell into the sky. But I decided to check my e-mail instead. There was an e-mail from one of my clients, Gord, who has been CrossFitting for a few months now. (I have attempted to nickname him Cheeky because of the time his shorts split open and we may have caught a glimpse of his ass, but the nickname remains tucked under the radar). Gord came through our doors timid and shy, and for some reason he always apologized to me that he wasn’t more outgoing and open. I always wondered why he thought he should be more outgoing because, shy or not, it was always easy to see his character. He came through our doors for a reason, on a mission. He knew CrossFit would help his life, and he works his ass of everyday he’s there. His old nickname ‘240 Gordy’ is as good as dead now. Needless to say, Gord’s e-mail made my day, and my mood immediately 180 degree turned. I’d like to share part of it: image “Last weekend I was out with the Search and Rescue team doing avalanche training in the backcountry behind Whistler. This training is where we go out in teams on our touring skis, practice route finding, assess terrain, examine snow conditions and shred some powder. Last year I was totally out of shape and in the back of the pack. I was the fat kid: "Hey guys wait for me!" It was a long, tiring day of falling in powder and being completely exhausted - I went through 3L of water that day. That's where I earned my nickname ‘240 Gordy’. (During a snow stability test, the instructor asked how much I weighed to see how many jumps it would take to dislodge the snow slab). This year was a completely different story - I was up front breaking trail, keeping my HR nice and low. I had massive reserves of energy - I never felt exhausted. I drank at most one litre. I was in the front group holding my own. All with a 40 lb pack. My leg strength helped enormously with popping out of the powder with more snap. With the skins on, I had no issues with kick turns (which I attribute to the hip mobility gained). To top it off I managed to squeeze in an extra day of skiing in before the avalanche training and had no soreness at all. The only soreness I felt was on Sunday when I did "Christine" - after two long days of ski touring. I know this is just the start, and I still have a long way to go, but I wanted you to know what a difference in my life your coaching has made." When I read Gord’s e-mail, I couldn’t help but think, ‘This is what Glassman had in mind when this all began.’