Member Spotlight: Chris VanLoon
What’s your name?
Chris VanLoon (aka CVL)
Describe your first time trying CrossFit:
Pretty much like getting hit by a freight train… and then the coach announced Round 2 would be starting.
Before starting CrossFit, when did you know something had to change?
I was very poorly attempting to do push ups and sit ups in my bedroom. I had wanted to get into fitness for a long time, and knew I needed something to REALLY push me.
Describe your most memorable CrossFit Experience so far.
Oh geez, this is almost as hard as picking a favorite movie. However, there is a memory I’ve always kept in mind from way back when. It was my first Filthy Fifty (Derrick was coaching at the time I think)… I went into it thinking I’ll go far as I can and see how I do, but no expectations of finishing it. I was either just getting to the burpees or like halfway through when time (limit) hit. Derrick came over to keep the clock going and see where I was at (to keep me going)… I was like, no it’s fine, I’m good. And just then Debbie had walked by with this sassy comment, “Well not with that attitude!” Which took me by surprise and about a second to process and realize, yep she was right, I had quit and given up. Norma (at the time) came over to do burpees with me and Derrick kept the clock running. For a long time though, I had Debbie’s comment in my head that kept me from straight up quitting many workouts. And she still gives me sass every class, lord knows someone’s gotta keep me on my toes 😉
Outside the box, what kind of work do you do? Give yourself a plug!
Post Production — currently I work with a variety of films and TV shows, many of which are of different languages which I never thought would be part of my skill set.
How has getting in shape changed your professional life?
There have been times when I start tackling a big project… and much like a workout… I’ve been able to set an expectation or goal to meet. You know, you find a steady pace and you just keep going until you hit that goal.
Tell us about an area of your life most impacted by your decision to join CrossFit:
This has given me a second family, within LA, and a second home to feel comfortable and always welcome. I’ve met amazing people I wouldn’t have met any other way.
When is a time you’ve been able to use CrossFit outside of the box?
Whether it’s moving equipment (functionally stacking big camera cases) or having the energy and strength to play with nieces and nephew who are quickly growing up lol.
Who is your most idolized fellow community member?
Gonna start with some honorary mentions: Will Nichols, Ally, Jeannette Valenzuela, and Logan Nash are some serious athletes (I use the phrase “power houses”) who are always super nice and humble. Just a few of the amazing members we have. With that said, I gotta give the spotlight to Andrew Worsham who has always been an amazing gym buddy and always pushes not only himself (how many PR’s a month is he at now? lol) but also pushes me to my best time and again. And now is a Coach which is no surprise as he’s constantly helping those around him.
What is your one year or next CrossFit goal?
Good question, well recently (alright, months back) I finally broke the 200# ceiling on Power Cleans… that’s been a long time coming. With that said I suppose the next goal would be to PR my Back Squat or Front Squat, those numbers have also been stuck for a long time now too, need to smash that barrier. For now though, getting back into the gym and back up to par.
What is your favorite & least favorite movement or WOD?
Favorite, not surprising… Power Cleans. Though an argument could be made for Deadlifts too. Least favorite, that’s easy… Wall Balls as a movement. Has ALWAYS been my kryptonite, downright hate them. That full lateral movement always kills me, seriously my soul feels it. Least favorite WOD? Raise your hand if you’ve tried Fran… I did it once Rx’d and it hit me like an Open WOD.
What is your favorite cheat meal?
Hmmm… Kbbq, pizza, burgers, beer, whisky… is there a limit?
If you had to describe CrossFit in one sentence:
CrossFit is a gym and a community that welcomes you everyday and pushes you to new limits.