The Weekly Dose of Awesome

I don't know if I have ever shared with you my favorite part of the job.  What gets me excited to go to work each day, above all the rest, is helping people achieve things they didn't think were possible.  Seeing the realization of a new skill, the accomplishment of a vigorously sought after goal.. that is what takes any day at UB from good to great.  I have had the honor in playing some small part in this moment with many athletes at UB over the years.  However, once in awhile, a story sticks out.  A person overcomes a limitation and gets to live life that much more fully. 

Pat E. recently shared his story with me.  This man is the epitome of a dedicated, eager, coachable athlete.  Watching him push to expand whats possible has been a joy.  Awesome is just the tip of the iceberg.  But instead of describing it, I will let the man speak for himself.....


I was first introduced to CrossFit back in 2008. Since that first WOD I've been fortunate enough to have been a member of a number of fantastic CF communities and a 'drop-in' guest in many more across the country. Because of these experiences I feel qualified to state that United Barbell is truly unique in how it supports and enhances it's member's physical capacities.  I'll explain: 

I'm one of a handful of people that's affected by Parsonage Turner Syndrome. For those unfamiliar with this condition it can be defined as the unexplained case for muscle atrophy in the shoulder. Any overhead movement that requires prolonged stabilization has been near impossible because of the complete lack of muscle to support the shoulder. Overhead squats, snatches, handstand push-ups, etc. should be avoided according to my doctor. Every since the diagnosis I quickly substituted these movements anytime they were prescribed during a given workout.

After years of avoiding these situations I sought the help of the UB staff. I was hoping to find away around my circumstance and to truly push myself to my physical limit. To be fair I asked for help at other CrossFit gyms but I was advised to avoid the issue rather than address it; the UB team, thankfully, took a different approach. 

Jenny, Olivia, Trent (miss you bro!) and Nikki taught me the importance of accessory work--build up the muscles around the shoulder--and to work towards small movement goals. Plans were quickly put into place for me to follow. That was 4 months ago. 

Today a quick look at my workout log shows the completion of a number of workouts that have called for handstand push ups, overhead squats, snatches and muscle-ups. Not only am I able to perform these lifts but I've been steadily adding weight to each week after week. I'm literally doing movements that I couldn't do before because of the coaching and support of the folks in this gym. 

CrossFit has grown so fast in recent years and unfortunately many of the gyms are becoming commoditized. Fortunately United Barbell is not one of them. Whether you're looking for a new 'box' to join or just seeking a place to drop in I couldn't recommend UB enough. Come join us.

Thanks for sharing your fantastic story with us Pat, and thanks for being an awesome role model for our community!