Spotlight Athlete

Congrats Matthew on being our next Athlete in the Spotlight.

Matthew SneckName: Matthew Sneck

When did you start doing CrossFit? I started doing CrossFit in July 2016. Coach Lacy and I were teaching a summer camp together when I found out that she was affiliated with Baydog. With my interest in trying Crossfit, she convinced me to drop in a class that Cynthia was coaching one Friday morning. My first workout included box jumps and wall balls. From that very first WOD I knew that I wanted to be an official “Crossfitter.”

What is your favorite WOD/Type of WOD? My favorite type of WOD involves various barbell and gymnastics-like movements, and running or rowing. Moreso, I like the WODs that make me sweat a lot and ache for several days after – both are telling signs of a great workout.

What is your least favorite WOD/Type of WOD? I absolutely hate wall balls. When I do them, I can’t breathe and fear that I am going to forget to catch the ball and that it’s going to hit my face and break my nose.

Tell us a little bit about yourself/yourselves (family, job, sports, military, interests, etc.): I am originally from Buffalo, New York (which means that I’m a pro at driving in the snow). I moved to Maryland in 2011 and I have been teaching Spanish at Severna Park Middle ever since. I always like to be “on-the-go.” When I am not working, I enjoy exercising. I feel that exercising is one thing that I can do for myself and not feel guilty about it. In addition to doing Crossfit, I attend cycling classes and run. Throughout the past several seasons, I have been playing with friends on a volleyball team through Baltimore Social.

What type of exercise or activities (if any) were you doing before CrossFit? It wasn’t that I became interested in exercising until I moved to Maryland. The very first gym that I joined was 24 Hour Fitness in Annapolis Towne Center. During my first several months there, I would only use cardio equipment due to the lack of familiarity with weight lifting. Sometime later after spending much time observing others use weight equipment, I developed my own little training circuit using different weight machines. I would spend 2+ hours several days a week doing cardio and lifting weights. The results were lack luster and I more or less hit a plateau. When I moved away from Annapolis, I acquired a new gym membership with Gold’s. There, too, I always completed the same exercise routine. The search for a more challenging workout with larger gains caused me look into joining Crossfit.

What were your goals when joining CrossFit? My biggest goal when joining Crossfit was and still is to never stop surprising myself with all the new things that I am capable of doing whether it be lifting a certain amount of weight or completing a particular movement. Shortly after joining Crossfit, I wanted to make it a goal to do kipping pullups. When I started, I had strict pullups and they would always slow me down in WODs. With much practice and help from different coaches, I was able to successfully learn kipping pullups.

Have you achieved any of those goals? I surprise myself almost every work out with my personal abilities as I become faster and stronger. While I am worlds away from being the Fittest Man in the World, I am able to see and appreciate my accomplishments and gains.

Has CrossFit affected your life outside of the gym (Community, Friends, etc)? I really enjoy the sense of community that exists in Crossfit. I enjoy working out with other athletes as we cheer each other on throughout a WOD. The Friday Night Lights workouts during the Crossfit Games Open have been my most memorable experiences. Crossfit has made exercising fun for me. It is something that I look forward to every day after I leave work.

Something you might not know about me/us is… I have lived and studied in both Spain and Mexico. I do not eat seafood and I have never eaten crabs or Old Bay.

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