Congratulations to Kyle Beilke, CrossFit PAX athlete of the week! Kyle joined in January of 2014 and has been consistently attending and quickly progressing since, despite his busy work schedule and two baby girls under age two! Kyle is a super husband and dad, great athlete, and committed teammate to his fellow athletes at CrossFit PAX. He has managed to change his diet and make exercise a regular part of his week by working out with the 11:30 class a few times a week. Kyle has been to class well over one hundred times and enjoys watching his friends at the Bunker progress as well. He completed his first CrossFit Open this year and set a few personal records, got his first muscle up and kipping handstand push up over the challenging five weeks of workouts! He and his wife Kelly have made this a family affair and we look forward to seeing their little ones grow up and love burpees, too! Kyle has some awesome, practical advice for us all and is living proof that a few small changes can yield big results.
Why did you start?
My wife, Kelly, was interested in joining, as she had previously done Crossfit-type workouts in California. I wanted to support her, plus try it out for myself. I was interested in the Olympic lifting, which I had previously enjoyed in college, but found impossible to do in normal gyms with all their machines.
What was it like starting out at CrossFit PAX?
We attended fundamentals in January 2014. There was definitely a Crossfit lingo that took time to understand. Also, that first month you had to figure out the exercise and an appropriate scaling technique so it was a bit of a two-fer challenge each day. What has changed in your life since starting?
I am definitely stronger and leaner, but I really like that my back has stopped hurting when I sleep. I think the year at TPS, hunched over a computer and sitting four hours in class did a number on my mid-back. The workouts have strengthened my midsection and loosened everything back up. Additionally, the improvement in my physical conditioning have driven home the fact that I am in control of my progress in life. There is no-one else to blame for being flabby and weak, its not my genetics, the grocery store or restaurants’ fault. Just take action and life will be better than yesterday.
How has your diet changed? What does your current diet look like? What foods do you rely on most?
Kelly and I mostly completed the Whole30 back in January 2014 when we first started. That really solidified my distaste for unnecessary sugar in my diet. I’m down to one soda every month or less, mostly due to the fact it makes me feel terrible an hour after I drink it. I’ve been more aware of empty carbs as well. The biggest change has come from just being aware of how different foods make me feel and if they keep my hunger pangs at bay. I’ve loved the change to healthy fats and how they sustain you throughout the day. I also started a little breakfast and lunch system for both convenience and health. It consists of a smoothie and homemade egg muffin in the morning and a salad with chicken for lunch that I’ll make in bulk one day a week. Saves time and tastes better than my usual turkey sandwich for lunch. I’m still a sucker for a good pizza and a juicy burger and those aren’t going anywhere!
What have you accomplished and what are you the most proud of?
Went from a couple dead hang pull-ups to 10. Somehow completed a muscle up and figured out kipping hand stand pushups during the Open. Clean and jerked 195#, which is a little more than my current bodyweight. Most proud of just showing up each day (by each day I mean 3 days a week), continuing the process of getting stronger and staying healthy. I have two LONG term goals that I’m working towards. First goal is to keep getting stronger so I can threaten and beat up my two daughters’ future boyfriends if necessary. I have a 12-15 year time horizon, since Elsie is the oldest at 1.5 years old. Second goal is to be a spry and active 85 year old who isn’t stuck to a chair watching TV. Short term goals are a strict muscle-up and 20 dead hang pullups in a row.
What do you enjoy most about CrossFit PAX?
I appreciate the size of Crossfit PAX, not too big but has everything we need. It allows for consistent coaching with a personal touch and you usually see the same people in class at least a couple of times a month so you can see them improve too. My favorite part of class is always the mobility at the end. I’m guessing that not every affiliate does the mobility, and while it hurts in the moment I always feel great walking out the door. I also appreciate watching Coach Jen call out an unsuspecting victim for going too light on their barbell weight for the workout. They usually argue for about 10 seconds and then reluctantly give in to the future pain.
What advice would you give to anyone starting CrossFit?
Just show up and follow the process. Your primary goal should only be to show up X times a week. Results will follow. There is no need to set a weight loss goal or strength goal in the first year, those are just distractions and have potential to disappoint. Instead, commit to showing up and let those deadlifts work their magic. I started Crossfit trying to go 4-5 times a week and I just couldn’t sustain it so I would skip a whole week or more sometimes. In 2015, I decided I was going to go 3 times a week and no more. That helped me manage expectations and better stick to the process since it was more attainable. I am still making strength progress at 3 times a week and I expect that progress to continue for a least another year.
Keep up the great work, Kyle! The best is yet to come for all of the Beilke Family!