Crossfit Blog

March Female Athlete of the Month

in Athlete Of The Month by Coach John D'Ags

Marie Hetherington has been slowly, but steadily putting the pieces of her Crossfit aresenal together this past year:  toes to bar, heavy deadlifts, and putting everyone else's dream cheat meals to shame.  CFNH's coaches are proud to recognize her for her progress and hard work as March's female Athlete of the Month

1.  When and where did you start CrossFitting?

I started in 2010 at Shoreline Crossfit in Branford where I was living at the time.  I moved to New Haven in 2012 and joined CFNH for a brief stint after I moved, but I wasn't consistent due to long hours at my job, so I stopped going soon after I started.  Fast forward 4 years and I started up again at CFNH in late April 2016, 8 weeks after I had my son.  Starting up again was one of the best decisions I have ever made!

2.  How have your goals and/or motivations changed in the last year?  What are some of your goals for 2017? 

My goals have shifted majorly over the past year.  At first I just wanted to not wear my husband’s clothes to the gym (that's all I could fit in after the baby), and be able to do a sit up.  That morphed into slowly increasing my weight so I could eventually try the workouts as prescribed.  Now for 2017 I want to keep slowly challenging myself with increased weight in the workouts to where I am consistently doing everything Rx and eventually trying out some Rx+.  I just need to let go of always trying to be speedy and instead be ok with not finishing workouts when i'm trying to go heavier.  The need for speed is a tough habit to break though. 

Another goal, sparked by the Opens workouts which have unfortunately brought into a glaring light my many weaknesses at the gym, is to work on the more challenging gymnastics movements like C2B, HSPU, and MUs.  I'm hoping if I work hard i'll be able to do these movements well for next year's Open. 

3.  What are some of your recent accomplishments of which you're most proud?

Being a happy mom!  It sounds silly because becoming a mother is a fairly common occurrence, but it was something I really struggled with in the beginning.  I was coping with post-partum depression, had a really hard time dealing with my new found loss of independence, and struggled to invoke any maternal instincts (I had never changed a diaper before...).  The struggle was real and the first 6 months were probably the most challenging of my life thus far, but having a supportive husband and an outlet at Crossfit where I could decompress for a few hours each week definitely saved my sanity. 

Crossfit-related accomplishments would include finally figuring out the technique for T2B; took me a while but once I got the technique down they became a favorite skill of mine.  Also, I'm not great with barbell movements, but at the recent throwdown (shout out to teammate Juliana!) I did a max deadlift that a few months ago I would never have even consider trying. 

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?

Unfortunately, my eating habits range from poor to abysmal.  Not only do I have an insatiable appetite (Kobayashi has got nothing on me), I also have a sweet tooth that prompted my dentist to ask me if I sucked on sugar cubes (yes...doesn’t everyone?).  So it’s not rare for my pre and post workout meals to include a couple cupcakes from Katalina’s.  Recently i’ve really been trying to improve this though (a wise person told me that if I ate better I might get stronger and do better in the workouts), so I started ordering meals from Kettlebell Kitchen to eat for lunch and using a meal service (Hello Fresh) for dinner.  It's a work in progress though; sugar is definitely a drug and it's hard not to give in to the craving!

Describing my cheat day is my favorite part of the questionnaire!  A lot of my days are cheat days, but my fave meals would be: breakfast at Donut Krazy (cinnamon bun and a dough boy doughnut followed by glazed donut cheeseburger, and by the way this isn't a dream, it has been a reality); lunch at Caseus (French onion soup, grilled cheese with blue cheese, side of fries and some greens); snack at Candytopia (jelly belly jellybeans and some Swedish fish); dinner at Pepe’s (fresh tomato pie in the summer), and dessert at Claire’s Cornercopia (Lithuanian coffee cake, extra buttercream frosting).


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).

I love body weight movements and a good chipper, so even though my push-ups need work, I would always be happy to do Cindy.  As many burpees as possible in 10 minutes would also be fun (but only if I beat Poz!). 

As I said earlier, barbell movements are always challenging for me, so my goat WOD would be:
5 rounds for time
12 power snatch at 75# (that may be too heavy, I'm not sure)
10 back squat from rack at 105#
8 cal on assault bike

6. How do you spend your time when you're away from CFNH?

I honestly wish I had more time to go to Crossfit, it is my favorite extracurricular activity!  But I have been lucky enough over this past year to stay home from work and spend time chasing after my very mobile 1 year old.  I also love music and sing in a choir, snowboarding, running, and going out to eat!

7. What is one fact that other CFNHers may not know about you?

I'm a really, really good whistler.  If whistling were a WOD I would be the Games champion...but it's not.

8.  Do you have any motivational thoughts or suggestions to folks just getting started at

When you are just starting it can be hard not to compare your times/reps or how much weight you are lifting to others in the gym, but try not to (easier said than done, I know).  All the coaches and members are just happy that someone else with fitness on their mind has decided to join the community and sweat with them for an hour.  Oh, and don't be afraid to put 100% of your trust in every single coach.  They are all incredible motivators that know how to push your limits but keep you safe at the same time.

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