Feb 2017--Alex Harpe

Alex Harpe—February 2017 Athlete of The Month

1.Tell us about yourself, your family, your occupation, hobbies/interests.  
I was born in Michigan and we moved to Kansas when I was eight. I am a Graduate of St. Mary's Academy. I married my lovely wife, Nicole, 16 years ago (she also now does CrossFit :) We have nine children ranging from age 14 to 3 months old. I am an Electrician and currently working at Jeffery Energy Center. My hobbies are: everything that involves my kids, fishing, hunting, martial arts, sports, and an occasional movie.

2. When do you start CrossFitting? Why did you start? Why do you continue now?
I started CrossFit in January of 2015. I started because I needed a change in my workout routine/regime. I was losing  the motivation to workout on my own. I continue to do CrossFit because it makes me stronger,  it gives me more stamina,  and I have NO more lower back pain! I also love the camaraderie and it drives me to keep coming back.

3. Do you remember your first WOD? What were your thoughts after your first WOD?  
Yes! My very first WOD joining the group was 'Fight Gone Bad'. When I was done with the WOD, my only thought was 'BREATHE!!'...Later was 'What the ____was that!' and 'I will not be able to move in the morning!'

4. What do you enjoy most about CrossFit?
I enjoy the gains!...Of strength, of stamina, of endurance, and most of all the friendships.

5. What is your proudest CrossFit moment?
My proudest moment was when one of our members asked me for help on a technique that he was having trouble with and I was able to give him the advice needed to help him and see him accomplish it.

6. What is your favorite movement or lift? What is your least favorite?
The snatch is my favorite lift. Double-unders are my least favorite movement!

7. Have you had one or two challenging CrossFit goals that you've achieved recently? What are your current goals and how close are you to reaching them?  
I have made it into the 200 lbs overhead squat club, with a 205 lbs PR lift. I am currently working on muscle-ups and double-unders.

8. What makes CrossFit different from other fitness programs that you might have tried in the past?  
CrossFit is more intense than other workouts. CrossFit WOD's are always different and seem to not only keep the body guessing what could possibly be coming next, but also begging for more! It pushes your body to its limit both by your coach and by the guys around you. I hesitated joining CrossFit because I was afraid of the weightlifting part of it. Just out of high school, I had hurt my back by improperly doing a back squat. When I came to Doc's house to watch my first CrossFit WOD, they were doing 1 rep max of back squats...immediately I was looking for a quick way to get out of this! I don't know whether Doc saw the hesitation in my eyes or not, but it was at this time that he announced to one of the guys that I had committed to joining the next bootcamp. 'What? ME?? I did?' Were my exact thoughts! There was no going back from there...I couldn't tell Doc 'No' and I couldn't back out now in front of the guys! But I'm glad now that I didn't because Doc was able to show me that weightlifting is only a very small part of CrossFit.... there is a much bigger picture of what CrossFit has to offer.

9. What impact has CrossFit Benedictus had on your life, in and out of the gym?
This program has made me stronger, faster, has given me more stamina/energy to keep up with my kids, and, best of all, it has taken away the back pain that I had before.

10. Tell us about your nutrition and how it has changed, if any, since starting CrossFit?
I had done a couple of weight loss challenges prior to starting CrossFit so I was almost to my goal weight when I started. For the most part, the secret was eliminating sugar from our diet! I am motivated to keep it off not only for myself and my wife and family, but because I don't want to have to lift any more than I have to when we do body weight lifts in a WOD!

11. If you could write a WOD for the classes to do, what would it look like?
Row 2000 meters and then 21, 15, 9 of deadlifts and snatches.

12. What advice do you have for others about the importance of the dedication of taking care of yourself, of investing in yourself?
Taking care of yourself not only allows you the opportunity to enjoy physical activities with your children, but it also allows you to function better with less leg, back, and neck pains in old age.

13. What advice would you give to someone new to CrossFit or who is thinking about giving it a try?
It's a WIN! WIN! situation. You will see the benefits almost instantly! If you are looking to better yourself, no matter what your ailment might be, CrossFit will help. Physical or mental or spiritual, it doesn't matter. CrossFit will give you the strength, endurance, stamina and overall better well-being that you are looking for. If done properly, with the right intentions, CrossFit can get you 'fit' enough to handle any 'cross' that God has chosen for you!

14. Open Forum:
I thank God for having giving me the opportunity to be a part of this group!

I thank my wife for supporting me in my CrossFit journey!  
I thank Doc (and Cindy!) for everything he does to make this Box exist! I also thank Doc for having given me the chance to join BPT.
Last, but not least, I thank the fellow members and athletes who workout alongside me because I definitely wouldn't do this by myself!

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