Upper East Side Athlete of the Month

“Man of the Year goes to … Couldn’t think of anyone who deserves it more. We may be a bit biased, but considering how lucky we feel to have had him as a part of our community for almost 3 years, Jason Fleischer gets our vote.

Jason has also earned the May title of Athlete of the Month.

He’s always a positive prescence in class, trying to learn as much as he can and get better every day. Well deserved, Jason.”

— Julia

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How/when did you get involved in CrossFit? What has motivated you to stick with it?
My wife Melissa and I joined back in Oct. 2012. I had spent many years running marathons and triathlons but was a bit burnt out with them, and we were on a downward weight-gaining spiral. Friends of ours on Long Island told us about CrossFit. We were intrigued and got hooked immediately. It was going to be something new for both of us and something we could do together. So we signed up.

My motivation has changed since I first joined. At first, I was motivated with the change in my body and strength. I was motivated to PR every lift, every time. Not smart — led to an injury. I’m now motivated by a variety of different things. I’m still vane as hell, so working out to look good for my wife, fit into my clothes and stay healthy is a big part of it. I’m motivated to get better, the right way: being patient, disciplined and smart. That, oftentimes, is more difficult than the lifts themselves. Lastly, I’m motivated to get to a point where I can be as comfortable taking my shirt off as the other guys in the early morning crew. I’m getting there.

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What do you enjoy most about being a member at EVF?
I love the community we have. I’ve been around long enough to see a lot of members come and go, yet we continue to build a community of like-minded individuals who care as much about their own success as the others around them. Egos are checked at the door, everyone is a cheerleader and supportive. It’s nice to workout with your friends and family.

Do you remember your first workout? Looking back how did it go?
My first workout?!? I don’t remember yesterday’s workout! I do remember meeting Eric — he did our on ramp and was great. I remember thinking how weak I was and how out of shape I was afterward. I was coming from a place (marathons/tris) where most workouts were aerobic and this was anaerobic. Really different, but I survived (barely) and I’m sure if I look in my logbook I’d have a good laugh.

What were your goals when you first started? How have they changed?
When I first started this was all brand new and I was going full tilt all the time. The Olympic lifts, the WODS, etc. My goal was to get better and stronger, period. I was hooked to my logbook. I was an undisciplined athlete. My goals now are to stay healthy and injury free by being a smarter, more disciplined athlete. I’ve been very conservative these last 6 months, always going lighter than heavier and it’s paying off. I’m still getting stronger, setting PRs, but I’m listening to my body more and resting or de-loading more than I used to. I feel really good about that.

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How have you grown in that time — health, body, mind, etc.?
I’m no longer canceling workouts where I don’t like the lift or WOD. I’m working on my weaknesses. As I mentioned above, I’ve become disciplined and patient. I’m not in a rush to lift a certain weight or perfect a certain move. I’m not competing against anyone else in the gym. That’s easier said than done for a lot of us — so my mind has matured, I guess, when it comes to my approach each workout. A strong mind will always lead to healthy balanced body, so I feel like I’m in a really good place with all of that at this time.

Favorite lift and WOD?
Anything overhead. Strict press is probably where I’m strongest. WOD: Murph/Jackie/Fight Gone Bad/The Seven.

Least favorite movement and workout?
Least favorite move: thrusters. Workout? Fran.

What drives you through the door each day?
The opportunity to get better, to get stronger and more fit, to challenge myself physically and mentally. Meeting my friends bright and early. How many other people get to meet 15 to 20 awesome people before 6 a.m. multiple times a week?!

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Do you have any advice for new members?
Be patient and disciplined. The coaches we have are fantastic, but they can’t monitor every person’s weekly volume. These moves take years to perfect. When in doubt, go light and always listen to your body.

What do you hope to achieve in the coming year?
First and foremost, staying healthy. I’m old. In the short term, I’m looking forward to doing Murph this month. Last year, it literally shut down my immune system. This year, I’m hoping to get through it without hallucinating. It’s a great WOD, for an American hero. Sign up!

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