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June Upper East Side Athlete of the Month

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It’s been such a pleasure watching Amanda transform in her time at EVF. She always comes in with a smile and something sweet to say — and coffee. We love having you around, Amanda! Congrats.

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Amanda Barkin, Upper East Side

How/when did you get involved in CrossFit? What has motivated you to stick with it?
November 2013. I walked into EVF and down the infamous steps, house music blasting. James was there and I remember thinking that this was definitely the place for me. When I signed up for the On-Ramp with Julia, I was doing it more for the unlimited 360 classes and to learn about lifting technique, with no intentions of lifting weights on a regular basis. Regular gyms classes just weren’t challenging — they were boring. Also, I am not the type of person who can self-motivate to go to the gym every day. I needed the structure and push that the EVF WODs provide.

What do you enjoy most about being a member at EVF?
It is no coincidence that everyone comments here about the outstanding community we have. There are no words to describe how fortunate I feel to be a part it. Inside and out of the gym, we all push each other to be the best that we can. To be better people. (I’m looking at you, Jason Fleischer!) To challenge ourselves. There is no place I’d rather be then working out with all of you amazing, strong, funny, inspiring members of EVF. The support we have for each other is unparalleled.

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Do you remember your first workout? Looking back how did it go?
My first CrossFit WOD was 12 Days of Christmas. It went terrible, but I loved every moment of hurt. It was then that I “drank the Kool-Aid.”

What were your goals when you first started? How have they changed?
My goal was simply to find a way to stay in shape that challenged me and that I actually enjoyed doing. I always said I would never do a competition, eat healthy or get up super early on a Saturday morning to work out. That has all changed.

How have you grown in that time — health, body, mind, etc.?
CrossFit has taught me a lot about conquering obstacles I think may be impossible.The way I look and feel has transformed. If it wasn’t for EVF and the inspiring people I have become friends with, I don’t think I would have run a half marathon or participated in a CrossFit competition.

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Favorite lift and WOD?
Split jerk and anything that involves burpees. Favorite WODs are Murph and Helen.

Least favorite movement and workout?
Thrusters and wall balls. Period. The end.

What drives you through the door each day?
The fulfillment I feel after crushing a nasty WOD alongside my friends. Going up in weight or successfully completing a skill I wasn’t able to do in the past. Seeing my friends improving each class.

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Do you have any advice for new members?
Yes, it is scary and intimidating in the beginning. Just keep coming back. It gets so much better. The next thing you know, you will be going faster, heavier and doing things you never did before. Cheer each other on. Lastly, don’t say “I can’t.” I should really start following this last one more often.

What do you hope to achieve in the coming year?
Improve on my overall lifting technique. Conquer double unders. Have a little more confidence in my abilities as an athlete. Acquire less bruises.

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