Meet Coach Ray

Sixteen. That’s how old I was when I finally had enough of being the little chubby kid everyone made fun of. I started swimming three hundred laps every night in the little indoor pool of the condo complex where I was living. I didn’t really know what I was doing, but I saw my dad had been super fit from swimming. I figured this had to be the secret so I became obsessed. Three months later I stepped on the scaled. I lost thirty pounds! I did it! People didn’t even recognize me and I had never been so proud of myself. Long story short, it lit something in my brain that proved I could do anything I set my mind to.

Years later, I set out on the journey to become the biggest body builder to walk the earth. I definitely accomplished that too. I mean, I’m sure you’ve seen how huge my arms are- just kidding. Through this process, I did fall in love with fitness and wanted to share that same mentality with others- that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to. In 2013, I decided to get my personal training certification through NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) and it was one of the best decisions I could have made for myself. Since then I’ve been continuously helping people believe in themselves, while also helping them create a healthier lifestyle. 

Why am I telling you all of this? Well, two weeks ago I finally decided to get my CrossFit Level 1 certification. For those of you who don’t know me, I’ve been heavily involved in the CrossFit community for years now. From competing at regionals, to qualifying for semi finals, to coaching and creating some of the best friendships with people from different gyms. When Katie offered the opportunity to become a part of the CFB team, I couldn’t pass it up. I always pushed off getting my Level 1 certification because I never technically needed it to train my clients, however, I am glad that finally did. It was, surprisingly, a really good time. The instructors were great- learned some new cueing techniques- and everyone cared about each other as if we all knew each other for a long time. 

Funny story from the weekend cert — one of the best parts was on Sunday morning before class. I wanted to hit some rowing intervals, so, I asked a classmate to join in. We finished about five minutes before class, and when he was sitting in class he was pouring sweat completely out of breath. Anyway, I want to give a huge thanks to Crossfit Bethesda and Katie for giving me the push I needed to make it happen. If I’m being honest, I’ve been to a lot of gyms in the area and CFB has been one of the most welcoming gyms I’ve attended. I am truly excited to share my passion with all of you. If you ever want to get some rowing intervals in before class with me, just let me know!

-Coach Ray


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