Featured Athlete: Kev Smith

Kev came in one afternoon this summer and noticed that everyone working out seemed like they were having fun and smiling. Since that moment Kev has completely transformed his body shape by changing his eating habits and making the 6:30 PM Class a permanent fixture in his diary.

He LOVES the energy that he feels when he comes into in the gym and will never leave with a dry shirt.

“I was about to give up on ‘fitness’ and if it wasn’t for the fact that my 3 and 4-year-olds were starting to out-run me, I probably would have. The last 10 years have been an expensive and highly unsuccessful collection of fad diets, ‘new’ gym memberships, short-term fixes, long-term failure and ultimately frustration.

Having been a member at David Lloyd for the last 5 years, I was just going through the motions. I resented spending time surrounded by Stoney-faced members or being ‘encouraged’ by well-meaning but ultimately disengaged staff. I was almost resigned to being a middle-aged fat bloke.

One Sunday night in May, seven months ahead of my fortieth birthday, after a spectacularly average weekend of mediocre training and ‘treating’ myself to a series of bad food decisions, I decided to give it one last go.

I googled ‘CrossFit’, watched a few videos and read a few reviews. I loved the idea of community and competition - but was petrified at the thought of having to attempt a pull-up, or worse still, lift a barbell with an audience of super-fit athletes!

Out of curiosity I searched for boxes in Gloucestershire and saw that Glevum was 400m from where I worked. I sent an enquiry and Dan called me the next day. We were on the phone for 45 mins. The next day I popped round to see the facilities, we had another 45 min chat. This felt right - Dan’s enthusiasm and passion were infectious. The vibe in the gym was friendly and people were leaving clearly exhausted but buzzing!

This week I’ll attend my 50th session since the start of June. I’ve done things in the last few months I never dreamed of doing. I’ve been upside down, squatted with my body weight on my back and climbed a 15ft rope.

The improvement in mobility in my shoulders and knees is off the scale. I no longer creak when I get on the floor to play with the kids. My clothes fit me better (some of them are too big for me) but more importantly I’ve been able to align my nutrition and food intake. We’ve started prepping our meals at the start of the week and following the simple guidelines and it’s finally working!

By far the most enjoyable thing about the last 4 months has been the people. Dan talked about the ‘community’ during our initial chats but I had no idea how friendly, supportive and genuine a group of people I’d never met could be. I absolutely love the Saturday morning team sessions and try to get at least two evenings workouts in per week.

The support from the coaches is phenomenal. They are interested and invested in everyone’s personal goals. I look forward to every session as I know I’m going to be pushed out of my comfort zone every single time.

It’s early days, and I’ve got so much to learn but I’m loving the challenge. Thank you so much, Dan, Rosie, Walt, Coops, Louis, Josh and Liam, you guys are the best!

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