February Male Athlete Spotlight - Doug Duncan

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When did you start CrossFitting? Who/what got you started?I started CrossFit March 2017, so coming up quickly on a year. As for what got me started, it was on a complete whim that I decided to check it out. I kept seeing advertisements on Facebook about places looking for guys to come do a hardcore kick your ass and leave you bloody 6 week challenge (more or less what it said) and then watched the little video that was intimidating as hell. Kept spouting off about doing an interview and only wanting the most dedicated people who were willing to die in the middle of it (again, more or less what it said). So I decided to check it out and it was for 913. I walked in expecting this hardcore thing trying to scare me off and there was Ben, all smiles and friendly. He showed me around and told me about the challenge and 10 minutes after walking in the door asked if I wanted to join the challenge (only question I was asked btw, so much for my expectations). Did that and have stuck with it ever since. I think I’m 1 of 4 dudes (of 50ish) that went through that particular challenge still at 913.What is your favorite/least favorite WOD?I’m not sure I have a favorite WOD but I do like any of the ones that are shorter and quicker. I’m more of a sprinter than a marathoner. Though if I had to pick a favorite, it might just be Murph since I did it (in my own way) after starting just a couple months prior. As for least favorite, that spot is currently occupied by Kalsu. That one kicked my ass so hard that I can legitimately say that in the middle of that WOD I had no idea what was going on or what I was doing. I think there’s a picture somewhere that gives a good glimpse of exactly how I felt in the middle of that…

What is your favorite/least favorite movement?I have a handful of movements that I really like: pullups (constantly getting better), rowing, running (shorter distances), cleans, and squats. A decently lengthy list but there’s just sooo many to choose from. As for least favorite, that would be pretty much anything that requires stuff overhead: snatch, presses, jerks, overhead squats, etc. I feel like it’s almost obligatory to put the assault bike on the list of least favorite but I won’t. Not saying I like it. I just don’t hate it. It’s still not easy (doubt it ever will be) but it has gotten better!Tell us a little bit about yourself (family, job, sports, interests, etc.)I graduated from K-State and work as a structural engineer. So those steel columns and beams the ropes are hung from, that’s me (well not those ones in particular…). I claim KC as my home despite growing up most in California. My family is originally from the KC area and my parents live here and my brother is down in El Dorado (make sure you say it correctly or they yell at you!). I’m an avid sports fan (college football and basketball, NFL, MLS, and MLB) and love to support the local teams, Royals, Chiefs, and Sporting KC. I even have season tickets to Sporting. Aside from that, my other interests include reading (mostly sci-fi/fantasy), games (video, board, and card mostly), and disc golf. I’m always up for a round or two of disc golf and would be happy to have anyone come out with me. I’ll even teach you how to play!What was your workout routine before CrossFit?<This question was intentionally left blank>But seriously, does thinking about it count? I hadn’t really done anything structured for a long, long, long time. I dabbled on and off with some of the home workouts, P90x and P90x3. Those worked when I actually got the motivation to do them and not just skip it for the day (the more likely scenario). So effectively, nothing.What did you think after your first CrossFit workout?I’m not sure I can put that on paper without it being heavily edited…during the 6 week challenge we didn’t even do full “CrossFit” workouts and I remember cursing quite a bit. I remember the first 400 m warm up just about killed me…What were your goals when joining CrossFit? Have you achieved any of those goals?I’m still in disbelief that I actually started it in the first place. So as for what my goals were, I don’t think I really had an idea for the first bit. My first goal was to get my money’s worth from the 6 week and not just drop out. So I hit that one (and then some)! In reality I wanted to lose weight and get in better shape. I’d say that I’ve hit those goals but that they will be standing goals (at least the better shape part).

Has CrossFit affected your life outside the gym?The biggest thing would be that people have noticed and say something about it. Frankly, I’d always been embarrassed of my appearance and it still throws me off when people say something. Though my favorite was a coworker saying “you’ve reduced” and I was confused at first but then laughed afterwards. Aside from that it’s the little things. Like being able to go up the stairs without losing my breath and the like. Oh and spending all of my money buying a whole new wardrobe…but that’s supposed to be a good thing right?Do you have any other special memories/ achievements during your time here?All the people! It’s like I have a whole new family and it just feels weird when I don’t see people. So I’ve loved being able to get to know everyone and hang out with them (inside and outside the gym). I still remember people introducing themselves (Steph Strong especially) on my first Saturday when I clearly had no idea what was going on. As for achievements, doing and completing Murph (don’t think I could have scaled it anymore…) only a few months after starting but most recently doing the in house competition (with Zack Schopper, also from the 6 week challenge) and having a ton of fun! Just might do more in the future! Oh oh! And PRs of course but that goes without saying yeah?What advice would you give to a newbie just joining CrossFit 913?Scale the WODs. My favorite thing I heard from a friend was “the women will out lift you.” It was so true and I quickly realized it was a good thing and not something to be embarrassed about. Scale the WODs. Keep at it, know it will hurt, know it will get better (sort of), ask questions, scale the WODs, laugh at yourself, laugh at others, injuries happen (yay for missed box jumps!), take time to recover, scale the WODs, but despite how it appears (especially right after a WOD) we’re having fun, so have fun with us!One other thing that I found incredibly helpful is to find someone who you can use as a barometer and push yourself. *cough* Kellyn *cough* I’ve used her to improve and pace myself and it’s great. Now it’s a bit of friendly competition (or at least I think so).Something you might not know about me is?I’m an avid escape room fan. I’ve successfully gotten out of 11 of the 13 rooms I’ve tried. They’re so much fun and I plan on doing many more. Oh and one of my dreams is to open up a mini golf course with a brewery (or would it be a brewery with mini golf? Priorities…). I have an awesome name for it picked out already but you’ll have to ask to find out what it is!

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