in by Lindsay
Can we all give a collective THANK YOU to Marci and Lori, for putting the pressure on and showing Damian the light. We're so lucky to have him as one of our members, and we've had the ultimate pleasure of watching him make some amazing progress since starting at Crossfit New Haven.
Not only is Damian kind and encouraging to fellow members, but he's so open and willing to learn and progress. Let's talk about how far he's come with his mobility since starting! I mean, come on, what an improvement! 2018 will be your year, Damian. We can feel it.
1. When and where did you start CrossFitting?
I started at CFNH February of this year. I was one of those people who teased my CrossFit friends consistently, so to actually finally give in and say I'll do it, took a little courage! My better half Marci Mitchell (fellow CFNHer), had bought me an on ramp and with a lot of peer pressure (thanks Lori Gill) and the fact that I was finding it harder and harder to keep up with my then six year old son Luke, I decided to put my pride aside and head to what was to become a life changer. Also the fact that I had a very small on-ramp group with super athletes like Andre Picard, Kristen an exceptional gymnast and Nate a young fella from Yale that simultaneously ran a 24 hour production line on his laptop while breezing through on ramp was slightly intimidating!
2. Tell us how your goals and/or motivations have changed in the last year? Since we're almost through with 2017, what are some of your new goals for 2018?
It’s funny if you were to ask me this last year my answer would have been to just show up at the gym, so my first real goal was to work on my mobility. I really hadn't worked out since I gave up playing rugby in 2002 and honestly, I was tighter than a pair of hipster jeans doing a 5k in the middle of summer. My squat was non-existent and I honestly laughed to myself every time Coach Haggerty had me try a pigeon pose or anything that required any form of flexibility. I also had issues with my shoulder (dislocated the previous year) and I wanted to build up strength so I could actually start to lift weights again. My goals for 2018 are too increase my strength and mobility and to start working on better meal planning.
3. What are some of your recent accomplishments of which you're most proud?
Before I started at CFNH, I literally ran/walked/crawled the Christopher Martins road race last year with Marci patiently rallying me to the finish, it took me over 48 minutes. This was the catalyst that made me try CrossFit and since then I have completed a few 5ks (running). I actually had a time I was very proud of at the New Haven Road Race this past labor day, and yesterday I finished the CMS road race in 31 minutes. I am very proud of the fact that I worked through my shoulder issues and finally can bang out a few strict pull ups.
4. Do you adhere to any form of daily/weekly diet regimen to power your workouts? What does your dream cheat meal/day look like?
I should pay more attention to this, but I'm lucky to get three daily meals in with my schedule. A friend of mine recently said, “I don't have time to go to the gym is the adult version of the dog ate my homework,” so sometimes I’m just lucky to get there (sneaking in a Quest bar on the way!). I still don't look at the workouts for fear I'll see something I don't like and I'll psyche myself out. I call it the Stevie Wonder WOD program. My ideal cheat meal would be a big bowl of curry fries and cheese followed by a few slices of Tiramisu.
5. Design 2 WODs: 1 that is your bread & butter, filled with your movement strengths; 1 that is all goats (movement weaknesses you feel you need to improve).
6. How do you spend your time when you're away from CFNH?
I recently got into the mortgage broker business so that takes a lot of my time. Anyone looking to buy a house let me know (Shamless Plug!) I also own the Rambling Inn which is a mobile Irish Pub that travels around doing private events and working with a lot of the liquor suppliers. The Rambling Inn is looking forward to seeing everyone at the CFNH Holiday party. Other than that, I'm happiest spending time with son Luke and my ever patient girlfriend Marci. I do enjoy a cigar now and again and when you see me power skip out of the gym on a Wednesday night while avoiding eye contact with coach Dags (Guilt!), I’m usually on my way to the owl shop for a whiskey and a cigar.
7. What is one fact that other CFNHers may not know about you?
I grew up in Ireland and all my family still lives there. I moved to the US when I was 23 and I was in restaurant business for years in New Haven (The Playwright, Keys to the City, Terminal 110, O’Tooles Irish Pub). To the youger CFNH’ers I probably got your parents drunk when they were cool! I was also a member of a hugely unsuccessful boy band called "Fruit Salad". Thank god it was before YouTube and social media.
8. Do you have any motivational thoughts or suggestions to folks just getting started at CFNH
Just show up, it's really the fastest hour of the day and you'll always feel great afterwards. Set your own goals and don't worry about what anybody else is doing.