Member Spotlight - Wanda Lynn
July 12th, 2016
Each month we will feature a different member of our CrossFit Nashville community in our 'Member Spotlight'. We will ask them to share part of their life with us as well as their CrossFit story.
How long have you been a member of CrossFit Nashville?
I have been a member of CrossFit Nashville for four years.
What do you do outside of the gym? Tell us about your life:
I grew up on a farm in the small town of Union City in the very northwest corner of Tennessee. I went to Freed Hardeman University for three years, and received a degree in elementary education from the university of Tennessee at Martin and a masters in education from Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. I have been teaching for 39 years, everything from high school home economics, first grade, and second grade.
What are your favorite things to do outside of the gym?
I like to garden and dig in the dirt, read, take naps, and cook. I love the beach and collecting shells.
My favorite movies are Out of Africa (when Robert Redford washes Meryl Streep's hair...) sorry I went off for a minute, Father of the Bride, and Harry Potter.
My favorite books are The Mitford Series (Father Tim is my boyfriend), Harry Potter, and I like to read cookbooks.
What is your favorite music for the gym? Outside the gym?
I love music. Some of my favorite bands are U2, Coldplay, Journey, and One Republic. From the past I loved the Doobie Brothers, Eagles, and Three Dog Night. I will admit I have seen Celine Dion in concert three times (dont judge me). I do NOT like rap music and do not like to work out with it at the gym. Sorry if that offends anyone.
Why do you do CrossFit?
One day I was at Whole Foods and I saw an elderly man ride up on his bike. I followed him inside and he was buying fruit and vegetables and fish. He checked out, got back on his bike and rode away. I said to myself that day...I want to be like him as I get older. At that time I was overweight, had high blood pressure, and suffered from rheumatoid arthritis. The only thing I did for exercise was walk. I heard about this "back yard gang" of people doing something called CrossFit. I found it very interesting. My son was part of that and after they moved to a gym, he gave me a little nudge to come see what it was all about. I don't know what ever came over me but one day I decided to go to an intro class. I couldn't run from the front door to the street. I couldn't jump rope or jump with both feet off the ground. The word athlete and Wanda Lynn are not two words that would ever be in the same sentence. I lived,(barely) through the intro classes. The best part is there is always something I can do. Every movement can be modified to my ability and that makes me feel successful. I like how every class starts with instructions to remind me of proper form. For the first time in my life, I feel like an athlete. That is a wonderful feeling. I will NEVER forget the feeling I had when I ran 400 meters without stopping. Or when I deadlifted 135 pounds, or did one double under.
What, if anything has surprised you about CrossFit since starting?
The thing that has surprised me the most is that I never get tired of the gym. Talking about it (its possible that I may be a little bit obnoxious). I have stuck to going three or four times a week, and I just celebrated by 4th year. After I did the intro classes I had to hold my toothbrush with both hands and could hardly go up and down stairs. The only exercise I ever had prior to CF was walking. I used to have a sick stomach driving to the gym and now I can hardly wait to get there. I also find myself watching videos on how to do squat cleans and push jerks. How many almost 62 year old women do you know who watch a video at 4:30 in the morning on L-sits, and turkish get ups? What have I become?
What have you enjoyed most about CrossFit?
Walking into a community where I feel like I belong. There is electricity in the air inside the gym. People are happy to see each other. They encourage each other and challenge each other. CFN has a strong feeling of respect, morals, and values. I feel special when all the young people treat me like an athlete, they high five, encourage, call me Miss Wanda. I love when someone says...I just want to lift as much weight as Miss Wanda or at least beat her time. Our CrossFit community brings together husbands and wives, children, dogs. We treat each other as family. I like being part of that family. I got a funny email from one of my parents at school. He wrote...I remember being afraid of being paddled in elementary school. I never imagined that as a parent I'd be worried that my son's second grade teacher could dead lift me or subdue me to the ground. At school we take brain breaks. I do some CF moves with my class, stretching...even burpees. My children love it and their parents do too! I like when my parents start packing healthier snacks and lunches because of me. I had a mother tell me her child will never eat another hotdog after being in my class. Sorry all you hotdog lovers.
What is something that nobody at the gym knows about you?
Something that nobody knows about me is that I sang for a president of the United States (George W. Bush).
What are you most proud of in your life?
The best thing that has ever happened to me in my life is having my son and daughter and being their mother. What a joy they have been to me.