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Jeremiah first reached out to us looking for a coaching position at Dogtown in 2017.  In the hundreds of resumes we have seen, he was one of the very few that actually matched what was on paper.  Over the past year, he has proven to be an honest, resourceful, motivated and communicative coach. When he was considering joining the Fire Academy, he wanted to make sure he was not damaging his position at DT. 
When Jeremiah graduated, we had hoped that we would get him to coach for some time before someone snatched him up, but anybody that knows him, recognized that was wishful thinking. The bottom line is we are losing a star but the world is gaining a human that is going to save lives. I mean look at the kid. He was born to be a firefighter!  
Jeremiah, you will always have a home at DT, homie.
Thanks,
Coach Dusty 

Q: What things did you get to cross off your LA bucket list while you lived here?
A: Oh man, so many things but also not enough. LA is kind of one of those places that you could spend a lifetime here and not do everything. That being said, I usually tried to do at least one truly memorable outing per weekend. So many local food joints, surfing, hiking, museums, Catalina, Beach Volleyball, Hollywood Bowl concerts, and more than my fair share of touristy stuff.

Q: What will you miss the most about LA (besides DogTown obviously)?
A: DogTown. But besides DogTown definitely the friends that I have made here and the fact that there is always something going on in LA. 



Q: How did CrossFit get you ready for that crazy intense academy you went through?
A: The academy was definitely physically challenging and there is no doubt that the programming here at DogTown helped me get through those long arduous days and the Biddle physical test, which is a physical agility test. Many Southern California Fire departments and academies use it to narrow down the pool of applicants to make sure they can do the job. It involves hose pulls, ladder raises, dummy drags, and multiple trips up the training tower with certain tools, all while wearing firefighting gear. The cut off time is 9 minutes 34 seconds I believe and I got 5:48 when we tested, which is the record for the academy. It was fun to see people get excited that I had broken the record and it felt like just another workout at DT.
The training I did before the academy allowed me to focus on the mental side of things because I was so physically prepared with DogTown. 

Q: What inspired you to be a Firefighter?
A: A good family friend of mine was a firefighter and he inspired me to start getting my education and training for it. Beyond that, I love helping people and that has driven me to keep after it. That’s one of the reasons I love coaching at DogTown too. You get to help people be healthier and develop good skills that they will keep with them for the rest of their life.

Q:  What are you most excited about in this next chapter you are about to start?
A: Getting into the Fire Service and being able to be there for someone when they may need it the most. Unfortunately emergencies do happen and it is a privilege to be able to help someone out of those situations.



Q:  Every class you have coached, you have shown up being so positive and encouraging. What has motivated you to always stay so focused on the athletes and to be so on point with coaching?
A: Well thank you for that compliment! Honestly, I just love coaching and I get a lot of motivation from all the members at DogTown. I’ve always wanted members to get as much out of each class that they can. When people come in ready to go, I get pumped because I know there is a good chance we can all get better and maybe even learn a new skill. The best feeling is seeing people have light bulb moments or finally get a skill that has been nagging them for a while.

Q: What has coaching and training at DogTown taught you that you will take with you to Idaho?
A: There has been a lot of behind the scenes mentoring that I’m sure some of our members haven’t gotten a chance to see. Adam, Dusty, and the rest of the coaching staff know their jobs in and out and I have benefited quite a bit from their knowledge and training with them. Members wise there is a ton of diversity at DogTown and being able to coach and be friends with people from all walks of life has been really cool.

Q: What are your CrossFit goals?
A: I want to be as healthy as I can for as long as possible. Talking the old age, not getting diabetes, always being able to take care of myself type of stuff. That’s the main goal.
Being able to do any physical task that I want to do, at any time. Obviously there are limitations to that (still working on the whole human flight thing) but any practical thing that comes up. Whether that is pulling people out of burning buildings or chasing after elk with a bow and arrow in the Rockies, I want to be confident in my preparation for all physical challenges.

Q: From your time at DogTown, what do you think separates us from other boxes?
A: The community and coaches. There is a reason DogTown is so hard for me to leave. The coaches are high caliber and the community is beyond friendly. When I first moved to LA, I kind of felt like the small town guy in a city of people that didn’t care too much about me. That all changed when I got to know the people at DogTown. Such a high concentration of genuinely good people.

Q: Any departing words of wisdom for your DogTown family?
A: “Be an athlete, bend your knees”.  Just kidding but I think a few Saturday morning folks will laugh at that. For real, just stay the course and keep all the get-togethers and events alive. Not only do those things keep us together and more consistent in coming in to the gym but they are also the fun parts of life.


Todd was one of the very first people that ever trained with Adam and then ultimately with us at CrossFit Culver City (CFCC).  When the news spread quietly at CFCC that Adam and I were going to open a new gym, Todd was the one who decided he wanted to be our first client. 
I remember vividly, sitting at Versailles Cuban Restaurant down the street from where DogTown was going to be, with him and a couple other members excitedly breaking the news of DogTown CrossFit's birth.  His immediate response was, “I want to be number 1.”  Since then, Todd has been #1.  
We have seen him through career changes, relationships, a ton of Weightlifting and Gymnastics and to me, Todd truly embodies all that is great about this place.  He is a solid human who has enjoyed his hard work and contributed immensely to the community at DT.
Thanks,
Coach Dusty
 

Q: How long have you been doing CrossFit and what inspired you to start?
A: I’ve been doing CrossFit for just over 10 years now and actually fell into it by accident. I was interested in Krav Maga and noticed there was a gym opening up on Washington and Higuera in Culver City. A few days after that, I decided to pop in and see what it was all about. I remember talking to the co-owner, John, about the programming and he introduced me to his partner, Adam. Adam was building a CrossFit gym in the back and he showed me around the space. I had no idea what CrossFit was, but it honestly sounded way more interesting than Krav Maga. I wasn’t too into the mass-market gym model and Adam was a pretty good salesman haha. At this point, the gym wasn’t built yet, so Adam encouraged me to schedule some training sessions with him at his house (he had a whole setup in his garage). After a few intro classes, I was hooked and never really looked back.
 
Q: What was your fitness like before CrossFit?
A: I would wander around a globo-gym aimlessly, really not knowing what to do. I followed a few workout templates I picked up online, but the entire process seemed so isolated. I think I had always been looking for the fitness community that CrossFit eventually provided. 

Q: What changes have you experienced since starting CrossFit?
A: I lost a good amount of weight prior to CrossFit, but once I started things went into overdrive. There have been some gaps in my ten years where I took a break and decided to do more cardio (gasp!), but I eventually wised up haha. I feel great and I’m constantly sore, but you know, the good kind of sore. 

Q: What are you favorite movements and workouts and what are your least favorite?
A: Anything rooted in gymnastics has always been my favorite. Toes-to-bar, muscle-ups, handstands…it all takes a level of concentration and precision that fascinates me. My least favorite? Snatches ;) 

Q: When you are not at CrossFit, what are you up to?
A: I like to travel as much as possible, I’m a sucker for a good brunch, and I’m usually tripping around the city with my fiancé, Jacob, looking for new adventures: concerts, art shows, plays, new restaurants…we like to dive into it all.  

Q: What are your CrossFit goals?
A: I’d like to get back into the shape I was when I first started CrossFit. Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels haha. 

Q: What are two of your most proud CrossFit moments?
A: I would say the first time I got a muscle up is up there on the list. I’d been practicing after class for weeks until I finally got one. Second would be the first time we all competed together at UCLA (was years ago) for I think CrossFit Regionals? I mean this was back when cyborgs weren’t competing and we actually kind of stood a chance at being competitive. Doing things as a DogTown community in general has always been some of my fondest memories.  


Q: Can you share a more humbling experience you have had at CrossFit and what you learned from it?
A: I’m a decently confident person and CrossFit has a way of putting everyone on the same playing field and really just leveling things out. CrossFit has certainly taught me my weaknesses, both mentally and physically, but it’s also made me more in touch with my strengths…I love it for that. 

Q: What advice do you have for a newbie at DogTown?
A: I would say don’t get discouraged, come often, and have fun. If you aren’t having fun then what’s the point? Results will follow. 

Q: What 2 things can you share with our DogTown family that they may not know about you?
A: Although I don’t play as much as I’d like, I’ve been golfing since I was 5. 
I’m getting married in May 2019!

Q: If you could do a drop in to any box around the world, which would you pick?
A: I try and drop in to a CrossFit gym each time I travel, but if I could choose right now, I’d say some place tropical…Bali would be cool. 
 

Keston reached out to us for online coaching / programming in early 2015, and Coach Mike V started programming for her.  She then began coming to DogTown in September of 2015, while she worked in Long Beach at another CF Affiliate.  That season she qualified for the 2016 Regionals and afterwards made the move to LA and became part of our coaching Staff.  In 2017, she travelled and competed at the Dubai Fitness Championship and returned to the CA Regional.  This year is her third straight trip to Regionals! 

We are very proud of Keston's growth as a human, a coach and an athlete.  We are looking forward to seeing her crush her third trip to Regionals for the 2018 season.

But first, a few fun facts you should know about our little Keston:

Nickname: Dozer as in “Bulldozer”

Middle Name: Mary Catherine

Favorite Meals: Chicken Nuggets and cheeseburgers

Also, sometimes you might think she looks upset, but really she is just squinty from not wearing her glasses. Or she might just be super fired up.


Q: How did you get into CrossFit and what has been your journey that has lead you to Regionals?

I randomly discovered CrossFit through YouTube. I was watching gymnastics videos, and in the suggested video about CrossFit popped up. It looked like something I would enjoy, but because I'm from a smaller town in Texas, I didn't think that there were any boxes around. Then, one day when I was driving, an ad for a local CrossFit gym came across the radio. I called my best friend at the time and insisted that she go check it out for me (I couldn’t get there myself). After going, she reported back that, "Yea, there's crazy people yelling and sweating in there so you'll like it."

The first time I made it to the gym my mom actually had to go with me because I wasn't 18 yet. From there I just started working out and taking class every day. About two months later I was talked into signing up for my first open. I then did my first competition with a team, but had no idea what I was doing. I was filling in for a girl that dropped out.

To give you a perspective on how much I knew at the time, I remember being at the athlete briefing and someone asking if it was okay if they did butterfly pull-ups. I turned to my partner and asked, "What's a butterfly pull-up?" He just laughed and told me not to worry about it.

My fascination with competing didn’t really begin until I went to go watch my first regionals in 2013. I had no idea that there were girls that good at this stuff! I felt like I had been living under a rock my entire life.

From there the rest is history. I moved off to college and was surrounded by more competitive athletes. Fun fact about myself, I'm very zero or one hundred. I'm in it or I'm not. So my obsession with competing just took off. I knew I wanted to move to California to work with the best coaches and athletes, so I did. I competed in my first regionals in 2016 with the help of Dusty, and my second in 2017. Now we'll see what 2018 has to offer. It's been a challenging adventure, but also a very rewarding one.


Q: You’ve talked about how you want to not take the Regionals so seriously this year that you lose sight of enjoying it. What is your mindset and
how do you maintain that on those rough days that challenge you mentally?

Last year going into regionals, I put a lot of pressure on myself, so much so that I ended up wanting to just get through it as fast as possible to get it over with. This year, since I put so much effort into enjoying my training again, it's important for me to remember why I'm doing this. I don't want to get caught up in all of the pressure and lose track of my love for training and competing. My goal is to take regionals one workout at a time and do the absolute best I can in every single workout.

This year I also took a different approach with programming and decided to program for myself. It is forcing me to live everyday with integrity. I am responsible for my work and my effort. When I am out on the regionals floor, there is not going to be anyone holding my hand. I have to compete, and I want to know that I did everything that I could to have to best possible outcome that I can provide for myself. If I mess up, or didn't focus on something enough throughout the year, then it's on me.

Q: What are you most excited about and what makes you the most nervous about Regionals?

I'm both the most excited and the most nervous for event one, right when the start buzzer goes off. After that moment I get to prove how hard I have worked all year long to myself for the rest of the weekend.

Q: What advice do you have for the athletes at DogTown?

If you have an attainable goal, know that with enough hard work it's possible to reach it. Even if it takes you 10 years to get there, keep working for what you want and do not give up.

Q: What are two common mistakes you see people making when they CrossFit?

For one, lifting technique is definitely a common area where everyone can always make improvements on. The most common mistake I see actually happens outside of the gym. Most people, not everyone, put a lot of work into working out but eat like poop outside the gym. They become discouraged because they aren't seeing any changes in their body. If you want to lose weight or lean out, nutrition is key.

Q: What is life like for you outside of the box?

My life outside of the gym is very similar to my life inside the gym, especially during competition season. I seriously have a pretty boring life. I still have to constantly watch what I eat and can't drink or go out and party. Usually on the weekends, I go down to long beach to hang out with my friends and binge watch TV shows. Seriously. Boring I Know. Life of an athlete.

Q: Last question: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

This is such a hard question. I seriously think about this all the time and I still have no idea. I would like to say I hope I'm still training and enjoying CrossFit! If I wasn't competing anymore though, I would probably be back in school finishing my degree and enjoying the journey with my doggo!

GO GETTEM DOZER!