Dani’s your Wednesday warrior coach, and you can always see her in the box on the Weekend’s – but did you know she was a competitive dancer growing up? Or what she expect’s from her athletes? Take a read and get to know a little bit more about Coach Dani!
What is your athletic background?
Growing up I was a competitive dancer and soccer player. Through High School, I played soccer, lacrosse, and even attempted to run indoor track (this didn’t work out well being a short white girl..) My soccer career quickly took precedence over all the other sports I played by the time I was a sophomore in high school. I was playing on two travel teams and for the Pennsylvania state developmental program (ODP). I continued my soccer career at the collegiate level playing for the Lycoming College Women’s Soccer Team for 2 years and then transferred to West Chester University where I continued playing for the West Chester University Women’s Soccer Team. After fighting a plaguing back injury for several years and graduating from college in 2009, I spent some time focusing on my career, occasionally playing in adult co-ed leagues, and running A LOT.
What made you get into CrossFit?
A friend introduced me to crossfit a couple of months after I graduated college, it immediately peaked my interest but being a recent college grad, student loans kicked in and paying rent was my focus. My career brought me to Lancaster, where I swore I would never stay long term (we all see how that worked out… lol) I worked during the week and drove home to West Chester just about every weekend to see friends and family. In February of 2013, I came across a Groupon for Crossfit Uncompromised, I was sick of running in the cold and figured it would give me something to do during the week. I remember sitting in the lobby prior to my first class and being so nervous that I almost left. But I didn’t… after that first workout, I remember laying on the floor thinking I was going to die and wondering when I got so out of shape. The truth was, I didn’t know what being “in shape” was until I walked in those doors. I had never done a workout that combined gymnastics, weightlifting, running, rowing, etc. because working out for me was cardio/abs and an occasional shoulder day and/or leg day.
While I could not do half the movements written on the board and certainly couldn’t lift the weights, being the athlete/competitor I was, I was determined to learn how. It was the constantly varied aspect of Crossfit that hooked me from the beginning, but it was the community that kept me coming back. That first workout, when I was the last one to finish, they were right there by my side cheering me on. No one had cleaned up their equipment or walked out the door because I was taking to long, they were right there, telling me I could do it, motivating me to pick up that weight once more, and better yet, giving me a high five while I was laying on the floor dying. This didn’t happen just once, every time I walked into those doors, there was cheering/high fives, excitement and celebration when others hit their goal, and just this amazing sense of community, it wasn’t every person for themselves.
What are your personal athletic goals?
Build on my weaknesses – get stronger!
Continue to build on my “strengths” – anything gymnasty 🙂
Maintain a balanced, healthy lifestyle – eat clean and fuel my body
What is your personal coaching philosophy?
“The magic is in the movements, the art is in the programming, the science is in the explanation and the fun is in the community.” – Greg Glassman
This quote basically sums up everything “CrossFit” – when I enter that box, my goal is to:
- help our athletes move efficiently
- program effectively to keep it varied and functional
- explain the movements thoroughly to keep our athletes safe and help them progress
- ALWAYS have fun!
What do you expect from the athletes you coach?
Be truthful – be honest with yourself and your coaches about how your feeling and what you can or can not do.
Listen – 99% of us do this for fun and personal achievement. Be smart, learn how to do the movements efficiently and effectively (before throwing on all the weights). If your not efficient, your movement will not be effective and you will not see the gains you are looking for.
Trust the process – we all started somewhere! It takes time, just like everything else…but if you do the work, you will see the results!
What can an athlete do to stay motivated if they are feeling stuck?
Take a step back, BREATHE, re-evaluate what you want, set new goals, be patient. Most importantly, don’t forget you have an amazing community behind you, cheering you on!
What has CrossFit done for you, outside of the box?
It has changed my lifestyle and mindset completely. Yes, I have always been an athlete, but stretching, working out, running, etc. used to be as fun as doing chores…. Since I walked into this box, I LOVE working out now and look forward to it, even when I am on vacation – we look for the nearest box to drop into. I am far more conscious of what I put into my body (food, beverages, etc.) and I have met some of my best friends that have become sisters!
What is the most rewarding part of coaching?
Watching your athletes accomplish their goals and putting in the work to get there. This Wolfpack is so inspiring and our athletes have so much heart!
What are you most proud of?
Where I have come in the past year – I married the love of my life and best friend, we bought our dream home, I got a promotion at work, and have still managed to get my butt in the gym (not as regularly as I would like but it’s about balance).
“Progress not perfection”
Best WOD music: Anything with “Twerk” in the title 🙂 (i.e Twerk Radio, Twerk out work out…)
Go to mid-day snack is: Cucumbers/carrots and jalapeno pineapple hummus
Favorite movie: Pitch Perfect 1, 2, and 3 (Yes, super girly and cheesy!)
Least Favorite Workout: Anything with Thrusters
What’s your perfect pizza? Buffalo Chicken