Member Spotlights: Blake, Kendra & Tim C.

Member Spotlights: Blake, Kendra & Tim C.
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Here's a quick snapshot of each.  Read more about each of them below...

Since joining the Combine a little over a year ago, we have enjoyed watching Kendra Gottlieb transform.  She has seen great body composition improvements: reducing her body fat percentage, gaining lean muscle by working on her diet, and significantly improving her body awareness. All of these improvements have directly correlated to remarkable progress towards power and Olympic lifts! Kendra competed in her first CrossFit competition in December 2013 at SantaFit and participated in our “in house” 35-Day Challenge with her classmates.  Outside of the encouraging body composition changes, check out some of her functional strength improvements and current Personal Records (PRs): 


  • Starting Deadlift:  155#                 Current PR:  200#
  • Starting Back Squat: 115#             Current PR: 135#
  • Starting Press: 35#                          Current PR: 75#


Blake Johnson’s humble, yet diligent, work ethic has been a positive influence on all his classmates.  At 40 years young, he continually makes remarkable improvements whether it’s his body composition, strength, or movement related.  Blake has lost 2% body fat and gained over 6 pounds of muscle mass to an already solid frame.  He has also represented The Combine and competed at a high level at The Athlete Open and The Fittest Games, finishing 192nd in the South Central Region in the 40—44 year old division.   Outside of the awesome anthropometric changes, check out some of his functional strength improvements and current Personal Records (PR): 

  • Starting Deadlift:  525#                     Current Deadlift:  540#
  • Starting Back Squat:  415#                Current Back Squat: 435#
  • Starting Press: 200#                           Current Press: 220#
  • Cindy PR: 17+3 Rd’s (a 3 round improvement)
  • Helen PR: 10:15 (1 minute faster than initial test)


Tim Childers has been walking into The Combine with a positive attitude and mind set to give it his all since June 2011.  Other members have nothing but positive things to say about him and love his high energy and intensity!  




How did you hear about the C.S.C CrossFit/The Combine?

We moved to Dripping Springs in early 2013, and I needed to find a CrossFit gym closer to where we would be. In looking and asking around, I heard good things about The Combine from others in and around the local CrossFit community. I came by soon after for a WOD, and the rest is history.

Why did you start CrossFit?

I originally started CrossFit in 2009. After years of the same basic gym and running routine most fall into, I was looking for something different. It had been sometime since I felt like I was really challenged. In discovering CrossFit, I found the challenge I was looking for, as well as, immediate and continued improvement in overall physical performance.  I have continued with CrossFit since and do not see myself doing anything else.

What has CrossFit at The Combine done for you personally, emotionally, health-wise, physically, etc.?

As of 2009, I was hooked on CrossFit. However, since joining The Combine, I feel like I am being challenged more than ever!  Now in my 40's, I'm still able to see improvements in many areas and maintain good overall physical health. As one gets older, this is paramount to add benefit to many specific aspects of life, as well as overall increased quality of life.

What do you like most about CrossFit?

Simply put, it just makes sense. When you look at all the various exercise programs or philosophies that are out there, this is the most effective. Additionally, it's fairly simplistic overall. It's far from routine, which is one of thing I like most—the unknown and awaiting the next challenge!

What do you like most about The Combine?

I really like the programming, which tends to favor the heavier side of things. I like the athletes at the gym, too! There is always someone to push you harder, make you chase them and/or cheer you on. All of which are crucial to helping me get better.

What goals have you set and reached since you started at The Combine?

Overall conditioning has always been my weak spot, and I am always trying to improve in this area. Since starting at The Combine, I have seen improvements in this area. This is a constant challenge, but the improvements in conditioning have also opened the door to improve in other areas also. I have seen gains in overall strength, both the basic barbell movements and the Olympic lifts. As for current goals, I would like to continue to increase my conditioning and reach 1,200 pounds in my CrossFit Totals by the year's end.

What are your three favorite exercises?

My favorite CrossFit exercises are the squat, press, and deadlift; however, I do like cleans and pull-ups as well.



I was intrigued by CrossFit for several reasons.  I have a friend who started CrossFit a few years ago and I literally watched her physically transform. She's in the best shape of her life and her transformation sparked my interest in CrossFit.  Last year I started a new job and my colleagues are avid CrossFitters. I would listen to their banter about WOD’s, mastering muscle-ups, their competitions, showing off their torn hands from pull-ups, etc.  Their excitement was contagious, and I decided it was time to make a change and give it a try – I wanted in on the action!  I’ve been a gym rat for eons and was growing tired of the scene and felt like I wasn’t seeing the results I should for the work I put in.  I also didn’t feel a sense of community at the gym, which I really wanted.

I heard about The Combine from a colleague who does CrossFit at another affiliate in town. She had heard great things about The Combine and suggested I give it a try. The Combine was the first place I visited and I immediately knew it was my new home.

I’ve always been an active person—work, play, and working out hard is how I roll. Running has been my sport since middle school and as a result, I have destroyed the meniscus in my knees.  I have lived with chronic knee pain, and ate NSAIDS like they were candy.  Since starting CrossFit, my chronic knee pain is virtually gone, and I rarely take NSAIDS.  I attribute this to strengthening the accessory muscles in and around my knees and not running as much. CrossFit has pushed me beyond my mental and physical limitations, and I feel myself getting stronger, leaner and healthier on a daily basis.  Over the past year, I’ve noticed my physique change, muscles pop up that I never knew I had, and am wearing clothes I haven’t worn since my pre-pregnancy days.  I’m much more health conscious about what I put into my body and plan my day around my workouts. 

I love the challenging and always changing workouts. It embodies not only the physical component of working out, but nutrition, health and camaraderie—the whole person.  I also love the intensity of the workouts and healthy sense of competition!  My three favorite Crossfit excercises are kettlebell swings, cleans, and split jerks.

The Combine is a special place because I love the people, camaraderie and sense of community. I’ve meet some amazing people at The Combine and no matter the class, there is always someone I enjoy talking to and working out with. Everyone is so supportive of each other. I also love the coaches and programming.  I didn't receive the same level of detail at the gym. It makes a difference having someone notice that my left knee pronates, my back is arched too much, or my foot supinates on certain movements.  This attention to detail not only prevents injury, but helps me improve and get stronger.  I never feel bored with the workouts and always feel like I’m being pushed to work harder and smarter.

In the beginning, my goal was to just do it and not get injured! I’ve dealt with a few nagging and minor injuries, but out of it has come better attention to form, performing more mobility exercises and listening to my body.  My overall goals are to be healthy, manage my stress, and live without chronic disease.  My hope is to continue doing this for the next 40 years—looking good is just an added bonus!







Tim C.

How did you hear about the C.S.C. CrossFit/The Combine?

Daniel Seeley walked into the Trigger Point office to tell us about the Grand Opening party. 

Why did you start CrossFit?

Fitness had always been a big part of my life.  I was spending a lot of time in the gym doing a typical bro style split program.  There was lots of mirror abuse, lots of bench, hammer curl drop sets, and abs! My workout clothes were pretty shameful. I would run for cardio, although I hated it. 

It had become so routine, something I did out of habit.  There became less and less variability.  I eventually stopped seeing improvements in strength and was just trying to maintain.  There were moments when I thought to myself, "I'm 30 years old, married, and might just be cool with getting fat."

My work brought me to the 2011 CrossFit Games.  That was it for me. I knew CrossFit is what I needed to be doing.  I got back to Austin and started doing workouts at the globo gym.  That's when Daniel Seeley showed up at my office wearing hospital scrubs and told me about the Combine.

What has CrossFit at The Combine done for you personally, emotionally, health wise, physically…?

CrossFit at the Combine has improved every aspect of my life.  The workouts alone put me in a better mood.  Both strength and flexibility have improved dramatically.  I began paying more attention to the quality of foods I was eating, not just calories and macronutrients.  I have made great friends. I get a daily lesson in humility. Hero WODs every Friday have helped shape my outlook on life, because I know that when things feel overwhelming, by staying determined and focusing on the task right in front of me, I will get through it.  There is something rewarding in pushing through pain, it builds confidence.

What do you like most about CrossFit?

Learning new skills, the challenge, competitiveness, and there always being room for improvement is what I like most about CrossFit.  The Combine introduced me to training with a purpose.  Prior to CrossFit, I spent a lot of time in the gym doing basic hypertrophy training: chest & tri’s, back & bi’s, shoulders & arms, and legs.  Each set was 8 to 12 reps with some cardio thrown in as an afterthought.  My goal was to look good, which I realize now is pretty vague and not really a goal.  Working out became boring, and I was spending too much time in the gym on what was basically a maintenance program.  I had lost the motivation to push myself because I wasn’t working toward anything.

What do you like most about The Combine?

The Combine is a training program that provides tangible results.  I am excited to see the workout each morning, and the workouts are challenging, rewarding, and often humbling.  We train the 10 fitness domains of CrossFit and we track results by regularly testing performance.  I found a whole new motivation through the competitive nature of the sport.  When I complete a workout as prescribed under the time cap, I feel pretty good about myself.  Additionally, I met a bunch of friends here and we push each other to get better through encouragement and competition.  

What goals have you set and reached since you started at The Combine?

My goals now are all related to performance.  Specifically strength, power, speed, and work capacity.  These are things I track constantly and strive to improve upon.  I continue to get better because training is something I look forward to, it is fun, and I love it.  I am 33 years old and more fit than I have been at any point in my life.  In the process, I learned that looking fit is just a bonus that comes with actually being fit, and there is always room for improvement.

What are your 3 favorite exercises?

My three favorite CrossFit exercises are snatch, hang squat cleans, and HSPU.




posted 4/29/2014

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