Athlete of the MonthJanuary

Eric Mattson

Quietly Determined

 Congratulations to Eric M, our January 2021 BSC Athlete of the Month!

Where were you in your fitness journey before BSC and where are you now?
Before I started BSC, I was just kind of doing my own thing in the gym. I had been exercising somewhat consistently, but the intensity of my workouts was nowhere near those here at BSC, and things had become stagnant with little variation and progress had stalled. Going to the gym was all very "chill", for lack of a more nuanced description. Now having been at BSC for a little over a year, I've seen notable changes in my cardiovascular health and endurance, improvements in my form and a better capacity to manage higher amounts of volume. Now, the act of going to the gym is not what I would describe as chill, but gives me deeper calm and satisfaction overall.
What were your goals when you started and have you achieved any of them?
My goals when I started were primarily to improve my cardiovascular health, learn new movements, and engage consistently in a program that would not allow me to adapt and become complacent. I can definitely say that, while these are ongoing and qualitative, I have definitely made progress in all of these areas and I am now starting to set goals that are more quantitative. Getting muscle-ups is going to be something to shoot for in 2021.
What about BSC makes you keep coming back?
Many things! First and foremost, the coaching has been invaluable for me in many ways, ranging from how to approach the WODs from day-to-day, to learning new movements and correcting and optimizing form. Second, I appreciate how positive the environment is, and how the programming is tailorable in such a way that it fosters sustainable progress, yet is relentlessly challenging. I've also come to really appreciate having my workouts dictated; I can tell that there is a lot of consideration that goes into making sure that the WODs have the correct balance of pushing and pulling, hit all major muscle groups, have enough variety to be stimulating and fun, invoke different energy systems, etc. Finally, the intensity of the WODs and the absolute focus that they require allows me to totally dissociate from any negativity I may be experiencing and spin it into something constructive.
When/what was your “ah ha!” moment?
I have little "ah ha" moments relatively frequently when I make incremental improvements to some of the more complicated or technical exercises and gymnastics movements that we do. A recent one involved a correction on my HSPUs that makes them feel much more efficient, and I can feel that I'm also on the cusp of a major breakthrough that will allow me to string together more that 5 DUs!
Does anyone in the gym (member or trainer) inspire you and why?
A lot of people at BSC inspire and motivate me. The coaches consistently inspire and impress me through their patience, positivity and technical knowledge. Huge thanks to Dawna, Derek, Jesse and Mike for all the effort they invest and knowledge they share. Many of my fellow athletes are also a major source of inspiration to me, and I'm always impressed and humbled by the level of athleticism, stamina and modesty that I'm exposed to coming to class each day. I was also moved by the generosity and extra effort that Mike, Christine and all of the coaches showed during the pandemic, particularly during the shutdowns- loaning out equipment, organizing zoom sessions, reaching out personally to the members, etc. These extras seemed to me like an enormous logistical challenge but showed a lot of concern for the well-being of the group and made a difficult situation a little more manageable for many. It was above and beyond the call.

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