Check out all of our WOW Stories below!

Jen Thyssen

1) How did you start your Crossfit  journey?

   Actually quite a long time ago, 15 years about, I had done Crossfit for a little bit when FitElite was at the Festival Foods location. But then life happened and 15 years later I began again with Momentum Bootcamp Troop 001, in 2016 with my friend Denni Backstrom. 

2) What made you start your new lifestyle?

   I have been an athlete my whole life: high school I was a 3 sport athlete, college I played softball, and after that…

 Jen Thyssen

1) How did you start your Crossfit  journey?

   Actually quite a long time ago, 15 years about, I had done Crossfit for a little bit when FitElite was at the Festival Foods location. But then life happened and 15 years later I began again with Momentum Bootcamp Troop 001, in 2016 with my friend Denni Backstrom. 

2) What made you start your new lifestyle?

   I have been an athlete my whole life: high school I was a 3 sport athlete, college I played softball, and after that I became a Kickboxer(And she was a really good one too - runner up for a spot in the Olympics)! After my Kickboxing career ended (had to fuse her foot with metal plates) and my career in Nursing took off, I let life get in the way, and before I knew it I was 260lbs! I was still working out at that point at Gold's Gym with Denni, and I didn't really feel like I was as heavy as I was. I would look at pictures of myself and be like: "That isn't what I really feel like, I need a change". If you want to change what you are doing you have to be really honest with yourself. Coming home after a shift and being sedentary and eating food in front of the tv instead of being active catches up to you. My knees and back ached all the time, I was ready for a change. The way I was feeling was not me.

3) How have your eating habits and life habits changed? 

   You really have to be 100% HONEST to yourself about what you eat. You have to substitute bad habits for good habits. I know it is easier said than done, but you start by making small changes and then they pick up momentum over time. I gave myself permission to rid myself of stressful responsibilities at my job that were sabotaging my health and Bootcamp replaced my normal "snack hour(s)" with exercise. You have to be consistent to form new habits and having someone or many people to keep you accountable is important. I rely on my work friends (many go to Momentum) and coaches to expect me at the gym. When I was in Bootcamp I had Denni to keep me accountable (You go Denni!). 

4) What is one thing you have done here that you never thought you could do? 

   The first big deal that I can remember here at Momentum was getting my first Pullup. I remember I was barely able to hang/ hold myself on the bar for 5 seconds in Bootcamp. That was a HUGE deal for me because even when I was in tip top Kickboxing shape and what I thought was the best shape of my life, I could not do a pullup.  

5) What is one goal you have reached and another you are working towards?

   I just got my Butterfly Pullups and I am working towards Handstand Walk and Muscle Ups. I also just want to lift more and be stronger - basically be Amie Wing! As a long term goal I also want to someday compete as a Master's Individual Athlete at Granite Games. I need goals to drive me forward, I'm that person who needs to be part of something to thrive. 

6) What keeps you coming back for more? 

   An obvious one is my goals, if you don't work on what you want to get better at, you won't achieve them. Number two: This place - you can walk in here for 1-2 hours and escape from all the stresses of life and little/big things that are bugging you. From the happy accomplished feeling after a hard workout, awesome members, great coaching staff, and to all the friends I've made here - Momentum is the best part of my day. It really isn't hard to be inspired when you come here. Every single person here is inspiring in some way for different reasons. You have mothers with young children, athletes that are in their 60s and 70s, former athletes coming back from injuries, war veterans, members who are changing their lifestyles, members picking up a new sport after never being athletic in their youth - it's all inspiring here!   

 

Kelly Payne

) How did you start your fitness/crossfit journey?

 I started at Gold's Gym in May of 2013 with a Personal Trainer who is no longer there. When she left, I was on the hunt for a new trainer and I was recommended Jackie by Rachel Preston, who worked for me at the time. I organically switched to Jim over time and worked with him 4 days a week. I followed Jim and Jackie when they decided to purchase Momentum and fast forward to today: I am regularly in Crossfit classes and work with Jim every Wednesday. 

2) What made you start your new…

 Kelly Payne

) How did you start your fitness/crossfit journey?

 I started at Gold's Gym in May of 2013 with a Personal Trainer who is no longer there. When she left, I was on the hunt for a new trainer and I was recommended Jackie by Rachel Preston, who worked for me at the time. I organically switched to Jim over time and worked with him 4 days a week. I followed Jim and Jackie when they decided to purchase Momentum and fast forward to today: I am regularly in Crossfit classes and work with Jim every Wednesday. 

2) What made you start your new lifestyle? 

I think honestly I was tired of being fat and lazy. I needed to make a change and it has lead from just Personal Training to more self directed training in the form of Crossfit classes and open gym. 

3) How have your eating habits changed? 

In the beginning it really did not change a lot. I still would eat my Erbs&Gerbs regular which consisted of a Puttor, 2 bags of chips and 2 Cokes. I realized in order to really change I needed to be more conscious of what I am putting in my body. I definitely pay attention now and try to be balanced (The coaches are pretty convinced his diet is 50% FitAid). 

4) What is one goal you have reached and another goal you are working towards? 

Muscle Ups were the ultimate goal for me. Once I got them and then I just wanted to be good at them. I work on them all the time and now I can say I am good at them (KP is in here multiple times per week working on his Muscle Ups). My ultimate goal I am working on now is a body weight Snatch.

5) What motivates you to get in the gym?

It is a part of my routine and if I want to get better I know that I need to be consistent; you have got to put in the work. My mindset is to strive to do better than I did yesterday. For me coming in here is also a mental thing. I am a scheduled person and I like to have a schedule to follow. Being here is the best way for me to release my stress. I have dealt with Anxiety issues and since starting Crossfit I have felt so much better. To have an outlet for that makes a huge difference. 

6) What are some things that surprised you since being part of Momentum?

The amount of friendships formed here. I just never expected coming to a gym could make me part of such a great community. Also, Overhead Squats - They are such a tough movement and I never thought I would reach the point where I would be comfortable with them. But here we are, 4 years later and I can do them, and comfortably too! 


7) What advice would you give people starting out? 

You have got to be consistent, you have got to stick with it. There is no magic pill that will suddenly reverse the damage that you have done to your body. In my case, 11 years of inactivity was not something I just reversed with a few months of hard work. You have to be in it for the long haul and be willing to work for it. 

Mark Rossow

1) When did you start your Crossfit journey?

March of 2017 in one of the Bootcamps. Before that I would play Basketball at the YMCA (still do) and used to lift sporadically. 

2) What made you start your new lifestyle?

My friend, MO member Dean Gobrect told me "Bootcamp starts tomorrow, you had better sign up!" -  so I did. I had never tried anything like it, so I was up for the challenge. I got such great results that I decided to sign up for a…

 Mark Rossow

1) When did you start your Crossfit journey?

March of 2017 in one of the Bootcamps. Before that I would play Basketball at the YMCA (still do) and used to lift sporadically. 

2) What made you start your new lifestyle?

My friend, MO member Dean Gobrect told me "Bootcamp starts tomorrow, you had better sign up!" -  so I did. I had never tried anything like it, so I was up for the challenge. I got such great results that I decided to sign up for a membership

3) What is one goal that you have reached and another you are working towards?

My goal that I achieved was to lose weight, I’ve lost at least 40lbs. It's the lightest I have been since high school, not to mention that I am now 12% body fat (Wow!). I didn't really think I had changed that much until people I had not seen in a while commented on how different I looked. I don't have any real intense goals but I do want to maintain my current weight and body fat percentage. I am able to do things that I didn't think I'd ever do and my friends at Basketball say I am quicker. 

4) How have your eating habits changed? 

I really went all in for the Paleo diet when I started Bootcamp. Now I try to stick to Paleo and more fruits and veggies, with less starchy carbs and processed foods. I feel so much better and my energy levels are great. I cut out starches during Bootcamp and now I try to avoid them for the most part.  Although with two teenage kids in the house, well, that can be a challenge. I do my best.

5) What keeps you coming back for MOre? 

I am fear driven I admit, I don't want to gain back the weight and feel the way I used to. I do enjoy coming here as well. The camaraderie between the members and the coaches is awesome. The coaches and other members here do a very good job of making everyone feel welcome. This gym is not like your typical gym where everyone is wearing headphones and no one talks to one another. The hardest part is just getting in the door. Once you are here, you can grind through a hard workout after a stressful day at work, then you will feel better and be a happier person for your family at home. 

6) What is something you have done here that you never thought you'd be able to do? 

The Olympic lifts - they were new to me and I would have never taught myself to do them or wanted to master them on my own. I also never thought I would be RXing the Box Jumps at 24 inches. 

7) What would you say to someone starting out with Crossfit? 

Stick with it, it gets easier. It is hard at first, especially if you haven't done it before, so don't overdo it. Also, enjoy the process and meet new people. 

Darren Dehnke

1) How did you start your Crossfit Journey?

Bootcamp .007, November 1 year ago!

2) What made you start your new lifestyle? 

Encouragement from Shannon (his wife) who knows a lot of members here that work with her at Mayo. I wanted to support Shannon in her healthy choice and realized this is something I could do. 

3) What has been your biggest challenge? 

It's hard to start(something like Crossfit); also dedicating time and making it…

 Darren Dehnke

1) How did you start your Crossfit Journey?

Bootcamp .007, November 1 year ago!

2) What made you start your new lifestyle? 

Encouragement from Shannon (his wife) who knows a lot of members here that work with her at Mayo. I wanted to support Shannon in her healthy choice and realized this is something I could do. 

3) What has been your biggest challenge? 

It's hard to start(something like Crossfit); also dedicating time and making it a priority in my daily routine was a struggle at first. What I mean by that is I tend to be the person that gets consumed by work and I could work all day! I needed to see it as something that I do for one hour for my health. I reframed that hour of working out as a benefit to my lifestyle and work day. I go workout, reduce my stress caused by work, and then go back to work refreshed and able to get more done. It's a win-win when you look at it that way! 

4) How have your eating habits changed? 

Well since starting Bootcamp I have lost 70lbs total! I weigh 210 and the last time I weighed that was 17 years ago!  I definitely completely changed how and what I ate. I started out by counting calories and measuring everything, and I don't go out to eat very much anymore so I can control what I am eating. When I started educating myself further with the Coaches at MO I learned I needed to focus on my Macro Nutrients and getting the right amount of them.  I worked with Rachel on her Eat To Perform plan and working on consistency and eating the right amounts of foods. I have been doing well and dropping Body Fat and feeling stronger. 

5) What keeps you coming back to MO for MOre? 

I have a slightly addictive personality. I am a workaholic so I try to apply that to my consistency here and my thirst for progress in my health and strength. I have seen the results from this lifestyle and I don't want to go back to where I was before. I have lost the weight and now looking to continue to gain strength. With all the members here at different levels of their Crossfit journey I can see what I can achieve if I stick with Crossfit. It motivates me to keep coming consistently. I also love the members and coaches, the social aspect of this place; it's not as intimidating as you would believe. 


6) What is one thing you have done that you never thought you could do? 

Toes to Bar - I have just started to link them!  Also running - I ran 1 mile without stopping in a WOD. It's not something I thought I'd ever be able to do.

 

7) What is some goals you have?

I want to be able to get to a Muscle Up next year. This is a long term goal so I am focusing on the progressions to get there right now. I am looking at just being able to do 1 Strict Pullup. After that I would like to get Kipping Pullups and then on my way to Muscle Ups. I have seen people take this route so I know that if I stick with it, I can get there some day. Also I want to improve my overall mobility so I can master the Snatch. 

Amelia Roemer

1) How did you start your crossfit journey?

I started out in Bootcamp Troop 003 the summer of 2016. I had been running a little bit, inconsistently; I had ran a few 5k races. I had dabbled around doing cardio and the elliptical here and there. Nothing stuck or gave me results like I wanted. Pam Branshaw dropped a Bootcamp flier off in the work break room. I don't really know why I decided to try it, I just did! 

2) What is one goal you have reached and one goal you are working towards? 

When I did the Nutrition Challenge I…

 Amelia Roemer

1) How did you start your crossfit journey?

I started out in Bootcamp Troop 003 the summer of 2016. I had been running a little bit, inconsistently; I had ran a few 5k races. I had dabbled around doing cardio and the elliptical here and there. Nothing stuck or gave me results like I wanted. Pam Branshaw dropped a Bootcamp flier off in the work break room. I don't really know why I decided to try it, I just did! 

2) What is one goal you have reached and one goal you are working towards? 

When I did the Nutrition Challenge I had a specific goal to get in better shape and lose weight I did both! My current goal: Pullups. I could do them in high school and I want them back! 

3) How have your eating habits changed? 

I definitely pay way more attention to it. I look at labels and ingredients when it comes to deciding what to eat, not just whatever sounds good like I used to. I have reduced my carb intake since it used to be all I ate. I try to eat more protein and more of a balanced diet.


4) What keeps you coming back?

The people and the environment here! I don't plan really when I can workout, I just go when I can. Sometimes it's in the morning and sometimes in the evening, just depends on my day. I enjoy classes because I will push myself harder than just going in on my own. I enjoy being with the wide variety of other members, the community is amazing. 


5) What is a struggle you have had to overcome?

Not knowing what to do - like the movements and lifts. The coaches are there to teach and coach, but it is still intimidating at first. I have dealt with a knee injury as well and it is frustrating when you can't do a lot of things you could do before. I always struggle with internal competitiveness - we all want to be the best, to win. You have to learn how to compete against yourself and don't compare your success to others. 


6) Favorite Lift?

Hang Snatch!


7) Advice for people starting out?

Stick with it and don't get discouraged! You will improve and surprise yourself!