10th August 2017
Kids then CrossFit with Denise and Hannah.
Ben ‘Would you guys reveal your ages please?!’
Ben ‘So how long have you guys been crossfitting for?’
Hannah ‘5 years this month!’
Denise , ‘5.5 years now! It was just after you opened so I am one of your originals! It was very raw in here!’
Ben ‘How would you describe yourself before you started? So, fitness level, attitude towards yourself or your own fitness?’
Hannah , ‘I would say, not happy with my body at all. I was just swimming at the time and eating whatever the fuck I wanted! Drinking occasionally but I was eating my feelings most of the time. I just love food!!
Denise ‘I was just a really busy working mum that ate the left overs of children’s meals. I would just live on coffee throughout the day and binge on excess shitty carbs at night. We would get a bottle out almost every night. I couldn’t go to bed without my glass of wine! I was just permanently tired.’
Ben ‘What is the hardest thing about walking into the box and how did you get over it?’
Hannah ‘Well I kinda knew what it was about because India (her daughter) used to come with the swimming group. Every single part of the session would reflect my anxiety. The workout, other people and not being able to complete anything. I feared that I would be judged by others that were ‘fitter/better’ than me and although I still fear that, I now have got over that a little bit more and can deal with it within myself. Everyone is so cool and supportive there and no one is judgemental.
Denise ‘In the early days it was always about, how I felt about myself. I use the analogy of the film, Monsters University. The young monsters come onto the scare floor and stare in amazement at the older scream collecting monsters!! I was always worried that no one would say hello to me but actually the feeling of what it was like after we worked out was enough at the time to keep coming back. And that is why it’s really important to me to make sure I say hello to everyone.’
Ben ‘Did you know each other before hand?’
Denise , ‘I think we did but very briefly.’
Ben ‘So how long did you train before your very first competition?’
Hannah ‘So I think it was about 2 years.’
Denise , ‘I don’t remember but I remember the moment that I knew I was going to compete and it was when we went to the copper pot arena for the London Throwdown. You (Ben) said to me that I thought I should compete and I was ready. I thought ‘SHIT!’ You actually entered me into the next qualifers so I had no choice! You saw something in me that I still don’t see in myself!’
Ben ‘Do you see age as a problem or a hurdle?’
Hannah ‘No, but I would say that its just the recovery and the unknown. I haven’t come from a sporting background so I’m just always learning all the way.’
Denise ‘Yeah hugely about the recovery. I have to take care of the details so much more now in regards to diet and getting regular sports therapy. I have to really look after any niggles which will always arise.’
Ben ‘What is the hardest thing about training?’
Hannah ‘I think for me its massively mental. I’m way harder on myself than anyone else could possibly be.’
Denise , ‘For me its my own programming for training my weaknesses. Sometimes I feel that its just a week of training my weaknesses! Sometimes I think I’m not progressing and then I look back and realise how far I’ve come.’
Ben ‘What’s the hardest thing about competing together?!’
Denise , ‘The hardest thing about competing together is the amount of energy you use up watching your best friend! It’s just so emotionally training! For me its harder than competing.’
Hannah ‘Exactly that!’
Ben ‘So what’s the best thing about competing together?’
Both ‘The buzz that you get from each other!’
Ben ‘Do you have a true sismance… Like a bromance but for girls?!’
Ben ‘What is your biggest CrossFit accomplishment to date?
Hannah ‘The first French throwdown was such a turning point for how I viewed what I was doing and how I viewed myself. I knew it was the biggest challenge I’d ever faced but you (Denise) sent me a text that said ‘fuck it, just do it!’
Denise ‘Although I’m still not where I want to be with my body, I can now look in the mirror and be completely confident that I can change whatever I want. That is the biggest thing for me since having twins. I now have control over myself. When you go to any competition you see people of all shapes and sizes and you cannot judge anyone for it.
Ben ‘What do you love about White Cliffs CrossFit?’
Both ‘The community!,
Denise ‘It doesn’t matter where you go you end up living everyone’s moment on the competition floor. You’re completely there for them and they are for you.’
Thank you Hannah and Denise!