Athlete Profile: Josh Billigmeier

Josh Billigmeier

If you don’t already know Josh….you’re missing out. This guy came to us back in January, pumped up and willing to do whatever he needed to do to create a solid habit of pursuing fitness. Tons of mobility and strength work later, this guy is PRing everything he attempts, and moves like such a supple leopard. Talk about dedication. Catch him in early morning IDP classes, and give him a high five!

What’s your athletic/fitness background?
Mostly just neighborhood sports growing up, and then just running, recreational tennis, cycling, and a little wrestling. I’ve struggled with some nagging injuries over the last couple of years, and I decided I needed something drastic to get me in shape. I ran across crossfit while looking for gyms in the area, and I did an intro course at a different crossfit gym and really liked the philosophy and challenge of crossfit, but I just didn’t feel like I was ready for the grind. I spent a year dieting and doing my own exercise regime, and came to DCF in January this year to give crossfit another try. I went straight into the IDP class and haven’t looked back.

What was your first CrossFit workout and what did you think of it?
Some running, then wall balls, sit ups, kettle bell swings, burpees, then rowing. I hated the burpees with all my heart, and it took me forever to get through only 30 of them. I remember thinking crossfit was impossible, and while the theory resonated with me, the practice sucked.

What’s been the biggest change for you since starting CrossFit?
It has had a positive impact on almost everything I do. My posture is better, my back doesn’t hurt, I can toss my kids in the air without any effort. My performance in sports has improved also, with my movement on the tennis court more explosive, probably from the gazillion lunges and squats I’ve done. But my favorite thing is that I feel healthy and confident, and I believe I am laying a good foundation of exercise habits for the rest of my life.

What’s been your favorite DCF moment up to now?
During my assessment in January, my 1 rep max back squat was 225. In May I did 225 for 55 reps during a 10-9-8 sequence. And then two weeks later I broke 300 on my back squat, so it was exciting to get such big gains in a relatively short time.

Least favorite CrossFit movement/WOD?
Right now it’s the blasted 30 seconds max, 30 seconds rest rowing for 20+ minutes. I’ve tried to go to a happy place while rowing, but it just doesn’t exist.

Favorite CrossFit movement/WOD?
Deadlifts, but anything with a barbell brightens my day. Except front squats.

When did you know you were hooked?
Making progress is very addictive. I can do workouts now that I never imagined were possible just a couple of months ago. And going to a conventional gym on vacation was jarring. Where is my unlimited supply of barbells and bumper plates? Where do you keep the chalk? I can’t function without my lacrosse ball and battlestar people!

Any advice for people starting out?
I love the IDP, and the best part for me has been the individual coaching. Don’t be afraid to ditch the workout plan if one of the coaches wants to work with you on a movement. I think starting out I would be hyper-focused on completing the workout as prescribed, and anytime Jonathan would want to give me some much needed coaching on my movement, I would be like “yea yea, sounds good, l can only rest for 10 more seconds before my next round so thanks make it quick because I have a workout to finish…” Now I’m not afraid to ditch my workout and spend the 20 minutes getting my movement right.

Describe your favorite part about DCF?
My favorite aspect of DCF is the coaching. I started at ground zero with the weightlifting, and after doing my best air squat during the assessment, Jonathan was like “Hmmmm, well I’m gonna have to think for a second on where to start…” From there it was a loooong several months where a lot of the class was him working with me continually to get the fundamentals correct. I’m forever grateful for the patience all the coaches have, and I’m glad to have them around as I continue to learn more movements.

A close second is the larger DCF community. The primary reason I came to DCF is because I was failing to get active by myself, and I needed to be part of a group that was supportive and that could provide encouragement. I love my IDP class, and it’s great to have other people to cheer on during test week or complain about the 10x10s with. And it always makes my day when Evan goes around singing the Friday song!