Bob Traut has been a member of Momentum Sport Fitness since 2016. What many of you may not know about Bob is he grew up as a farm kid; bailing hay, picking stones, and heavy labor were all everyday activities in Bob’s life. Even with his physically demanding lifestyle, Bob still felt the desire to make himself stronger than he already was from doing chores. When Bob was thirteen years old, he ordered a set of fitness videos…
Bob Traut has been a member of Momentum Sport Fitness since 2016. What many of you may not know about Bob is he grew up as a farm kid; bailing hay, picking stones, and heavy labor were all everyday activities in Bob’s life. Even with his physically demanding lifestyle, Bob still felt the desire to make himself stronger than he already was from doing chores. When Bob was thirteen years old, he ordered a set of fitness videos called, “Get Muscular Video Set,” after watching a promotional commercial about them on television. The videos gave instructions on how to do bodyweight exercises using items common to any household, like a dining room chair to do dips on. Bob still remembers when the videos came to his house in a manila package—he also remembers getting scolded by his mom for spending sixty dollars on such an unnecessary item.
There is something to be said about farming and the work ethic it develops. Here in the North Woods, every one of us can call to mind a farm kid they went to school with, or knew—in most cases, these kids had a brute strength that an hour in the gym a few times a week could not create. Bob was one of these kids. In high school, Bob began strength training as part of the school’s wrestling program, and that is where a lifelong passion in his life would develop.
Bob continued lifting free weights after high school, mainly on his own at home. In the mid to late 1990’s, Bob joined a gym in downtown Eau Claire called Fitness Quest. It was here that he tried powerlifting and competed in a bench press competition for the first, and last time. You can tell from speaking with Bob about his fitness that its simply a way of life, not a pursuit to outdo anyone else. After he left Fitness Quest, Bob went back to lifting at home on his own, primarily due to his demanding work schedule. He wouldn’t end up back in a gym again until his daughter, Coach Alicia, dragged him to a class she attended.
The class setting appealed to Bob. Working the number of hours that he is accustomed to, it is much easier to get a good workout when there is a coach and others around to hold you accountable. When Alicia joined Momentum, long before she began coaching here, she ensured her dad joined her. In Bob’s words, “I got pretty hooked on it immediately because it made me feel so damn good.” Bob took to CrossFit right away; not for its popularity in the media, or its fad like growth over the last decade, but because he could feel the benefits that came from such intense and structured programming. “I went to the doctor for a physical, say six or seven weeks after starting at Momentum, and my numbers were the best they’d ever been,” Bob recalled. Fitness as a lifestyle requires a methodology that invigorates you physically and promises longevity. That is what Bob found at Momentum.
Recently, at 54 years young, Bob became a grandfather. He also found out he has a second grandson on the way. He is grateful that he maintained his physical health and strength all his life, and has now found an increased motivation to “feel as good as [he] can for as long as [he] can.” Bob loves playing with his grandson Knox and is already anticipating teaching him to ride dirt bike and how to do work around the house. To do that, Bob must maintain his health, and that is the biggest reason he is thankful he found Momentum Sport Fitness!
Written by Coach David
“I’d always heard it was a crazy cult,” Kelly Metcalf told me when we sat down totalk about this testimonial. She had also been under the impression that CrossFit was forpeople who were already strong and athletic. “I didn’t think it was for me,” she explainedin a very matter of fact tone. It was interesting to hear her misconceptions of CrossFit priorto joining Momentum in October of 2018. Especially since both of us were still sweatingthrough our gym clothes from the double under, wall ball, and deadlift workout we had justsuffered through at eleven am…
“I’d always heard it was a crazy cult,” Kelly Metcalf told me when we sat down to
talk about this testimonial. She had also been under the impression that CrossFit was for
people who were already strong and athletic. “I didn’t think it was for me,” she explained
in a very matter of fact tone. It was interesting to hear her misconceptions of CrossFit prior
to joining Momentum in October of 2018. Especially since both of us were still sweating
through our gym clothes from the double under, wall ball, and deadlift workout we had just
suffered through at eleven am class. Kelly is now a full fledged CrossFitter, navigating her
way through the variety of athletic movements and lifts each one of us spends endless
hours trying to improve—perfection in this case being the carrot we are all chasing, and
Kelly has fully committed herself to this difficult, but fulfilling process. So what changed?
Kelly has been a nurse for 16 years. It was her coworkers in the emergency
department at Mayo, Denelle Rietschel and Amanda Hahn, who finally convinced Kelly to
try CrossFit. Having friends already at Momentum helped to ease Kelly’s anxiety over
starting a workout regimen that came with so much hype surrounding it. Kelly was given
her intro to Momentum by Coach Rachel. “She seemed caring and interested in me as a
person. Like she really wanted to help,” Kelly remarked on her impression of the intro
It would appear obvious to most that being a nurse is a highly demanding
profession. Nurses do twelve-hour shifts on their feet, and for nurses in the Emergency
Department, those twelve hours are filled rushing from one crisis to the next. Kelly has
experienced positive overlap from CrossFit into her career. She expressed that there has
been a very noticeable difference in her strength at work, where she is constantly lifting,
bending, and pulling.
What interested me most about the benefits Kelly said she’s experienced however,
had very little to do with physicality. As we sat on the gym floor of Momentum, I could see
Kelly’s demeanor change when she began explaining the emotional toll of her job. “There
are a lot of sad situations, especially the one’s involving kids.” I could tell that Kelly
approaches her job with passion—that it is much more than a profession to her. But as
with all things that we devote ourselves to, the potential for emotional overload increases.
“The stuff would eat away at you,” Kelly said, commenting on the death, sadness, and
violence she witnesses on a daily basis. Kelly then went on to explain that CrossFit has
become her release. By coming into the gym and “barbelling it out” (Kelly’s words), she has
been able to release the negativity that seeps in, by doing something that is healthy. Most
importantly, Kelly recognizes that CrossFit gives her the opportunity to sweat the
negativity out, allowing her to return home as the loving mother and wife that her family
knows her to be.
A ways down the list of benefits Kelly says she has enjoyed since starting CrossFit,
but still something that put a smile on her face, was the fact that others were noticing
definition in her body. With all the seriousness of her profession, and the vital role gym life
has played in mitigating those stressors, I am happy to hear that Kelly is able to enjoy some
of the superficial, yet very rewarding results of CrossFit. When we are able to tell that our
outward appearance accurately reflects how we feel inside, it has a reinforcing effect on
our identity. Kelly also realizes the example she is setting for her children, especially Leora,
her youngest daughter, who you will oftentimes see accompanying her to class.
Five years from now, Kelly still sees herself being a member of Momentum. She is
anxious to conquer some of the Olympic lift techniques that she has had difficulty with.
Fitness has become a major staple in Kelly’s life, and she is looking forward to applying it to
some of the activities that have fallen to the wayside, such as biking and kayaking. Kelly
credits much of her rapid improvements in fitness to Coach Rachel, who has helped her
construct an effective diet regimen.
Hearing stories such as Kelly’s reinforces my belief that fitness is paramount in
being an effective person—that effectiveness being projected all the way into the lives of
those that are influenced through Kelly’s example. There isn’t a scale to quantify the
positive impact Kelly is having on everyone she comes in contact with, either through work,
at the gym, or in her personal life. But it is safe to say that our community is made that
much better due to the efforts of people like Kelly!
-Written by David Carlson
Aaron Kiraly’s legs burned as he attempted to keep his pace at one-step-per-second.The seventy-five pound weight vest strapped to him sunk into his shoulders with each step,making it difficult to breath, and limiting the oxygen his body was supplying to his legs.The burning sensation he felt with each step on the stair climber machine chipped away athis will power, he had no idea when this test would end, and therefore no way to set asidethe pain caused by this portion of the firefighter’s Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT).Before Aaron was able to complete the three minutes…
Aaron Kiraly’s legs burned as he attempted to keep his pace at one-step-per-second.
The seventy-five pound weight vest strapped to him sunk into his shoulders with each step,
making it difficult to breath, and limiting the oxygen his body was supplying to his legs.
The burning sensation he felt with each step on the stair climber machine chipped away at
his will power, he had no idea when this test would end, and therefore no way to set aside
the pain caused by this portion of the firefighter’s Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT).
Before Aaron was able to complete the three minutes and twenty seconds required
exercise, he gave into the voices in his head telling him to quit. Aaron had failed the CPAT.
Aaron was born and raised in Stanley Wisconsin. He was a farm kid, early to rise in
the morning to complete chores, and late to bed at night with another round of chores to
finish after school and sports. Aaron was accustomed to hard work in the same way that
kids are accustomed to playing with friends—it’s just a part of life. After high school, Aaron
moved to Chippewa Falls and lost most of the physical routine he’d grown up with. It never
fully occurred to him that his active way of life could be lost, because it had been all he’d
known. While attending the Chippewa Valley Technical School’s Fire Medic program,
Aaron worked out sporadically. Soon he would find out that this small amount of
ineffectual training would not be enough for the demands that faced firefighters.
Two years ago, Aaron found himself on a call to Lake Hallie for a fire that had started
inside a garage. He was working for the Chippewa Fire Department. After dismounting the
fire engine, fully geared, Aaron pulled the fire hose from the truck to get into position to
begin extinguishing the flames. The explosive movements we make as human beings when
we are under intense stress and adrenaline, may seem like slow motion, but we are actually
taxing our nervous system, musculature, and cardiovascular system while under this
extreme pressure. Out of breath, Aaron thought to himself, “what if I needed to pull
someone out of this fire.” This feeling of vulnerability scared Aaron—a testament to how
seriously he takes his duty.
Aaron began working out on his own to become more prepared. After he failed two
attempts at the CPAT, Aaron knew he needed to find a training regimen that would be
effective, and just as importantly, keep him motivated. Brett and Dawn Klonecki, Brett, a
member of Momentum and Eau Claire firefighter, and Dawn, a Momentum coach, as well as
Isaac Hahn, a firefighter and Momentum member, recommended CrossFit to Aaron. He
joined in January of this year. Aaron retook the CPAT after a couple months of CrossFit,
and this time he passed! As the two evaluators watched Aaron on the stair climber, he
gazed out the window at two geese in the distance. His three minutes and twenty seconds
were up before he knew it. He then went on to crush the hose drag, ladder raise and
extension, the dummy drag, and the sledgehammer drill. “CrossFit taught me how to cope
with the discomfort caused by physical exertion,” Aaron expressed, especially in domains
that aren’t necessarily trained for.
Preparation is what makes heroes stand out in times of emergency. The drive Aaron
felt to get his physical conditioning above standard is exactly what will push him to be the
person needed when chaos ensues. The staff at Momentum Sport Fitness are honored to
have been able to participate in that readiness, and we look forward to more great things to
come from our Momentum family member, Aaron Kiraly!
-Written by Coach David Carlson
Friday Night Lights 2017
Momentum Fitness strengtheded ACASD today with a powerful donation to our Homeless Program! Thank you to everyone involved ion sponsoring, coordinating, participating, and donating during their awesome Friday Night Lights crossfit competition events in March. The energy and encouragement during the events was amazing! What a great feeling of family and togethernesss. As alwasy, 100% of your donations will provide direct services and necessities to the students we serve! From everyone at the Eau Clarie Area School District, thank you!