Customer of the MonthJuly

Praveen Yallakara

Realizing the Value of Training, Nutrition, and Mobility

We are excited to announce Praveen Yallakara is the July 2021 BSC Athlete of the Month!

Where were you in your fitness journey before BSC and where are you now?
I started my CF journey in 2017 in the Bay Area, then fell out after a while when work and kids took priority. The CF gym also had transitioned to a 1:1 coaching model, and I dearly missed the community and the group classes. I was still working out on my own every now and then but nothing too crazy. When we moved to Portland in late 2018, it presented an opportunity to resume my CF journey and voila...I landed at BCF. The rest is history :)
What were your goals when you started and have you achieved any of them?
Where do I start? My first year at BCF was a big learning journey. The first few months were all about "surviving" the Metcons and the AMRAPs, maintaining form and posture in weightlifting and controlling my pace and breathing. I also sustained constant shoulder and back injuries because I was trying to lift too much too soon. I remember I couldn't do a single pull up , could barely Snatch an empty BB, and struggled with basic gymnastic movements. Fast forward two years, and I'm able to Rx most of the gymnastic and cardio workouts. PRs keep coming frequently and by incorporating mobility work and nutrition changes, I've made significant gains and stayed injury free(touch wood) as well. All of which is immensely gratifying thanks to BSC.
What about BSC makes you keep coming back?
The community. And I'm very grateful for every bit of it. I've been at BSC for a couple of years now and since my schedule is all over the place, I've had a chance to work with all of the coaches and got to know a lot of people. I love the BSC team events - Open workouts, hero WODs, holiday and the anniversary events. When you've athletes competing, cheering and trash talking (hah), it all makes it great fun. You combine that with the gains and the improvements over the years, there is no reason not to come back for more :)
When/what was your "ah ha!" moment?
When I realized the value of two aspects of a healthy lifestyle - Nutrition and Mobility. When I was new to CF, I had this misconception that I could eat my way to fitness as long as I show up to class 4-5x a week. After about 6 months, I hit a wall - PRs weren't happening and I felt I was regressing in my CF journey. That's when I signed up for BSC's nutrition program. Within a couple of months, I had significant fat loss and made real improvements in weightlifting, cardio, and gymnastics. 16 months into the program and I'm in the best shape of my life. Coach Sasha has been really helpful in this regard. Mobility is also something I incorporate 1-2x a week. Stretching, light yoga or a brisk walk have really helped me to keep moving and stay injury free. Getting a puppy during the pandemic also helped ;). I also listen to my body and go "light" on days when I feel I'm on the edge.
Does anyone the gym (member or trainer) inspire you and why?
I'll start with the coaches. I've learnt something from each one of them - be it simple weightlifting form and technique, tips on gymnastic movements, nutrition guidance or even Mike's dad jokes - they're all awesome and fun to work with. Also each and every athlete - from the elite to the beginner, has been an inspiration. The fact that everyone show up smiling everyday ready to go through the grind is proof enough of the strength and resilience of the BSC family.

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