Athlete Profile – Lesley Forrester
Fran: 5.38 Grace: 3.45 Fight Gone Bad: 297 reps Karen: 6.23 DT: 8.36
DeadLift: 130kg Back Squat: 110kg Strict Press: 47.5kg Snatch: 50kg C&J: 70kg
Not long into our second year, CrossFit 57 North has already seen considerable progress in terms of what we offer and the progress of our athletes. Having had teams represent in the Divided We Fall in Cardiff, the Inov-8 4 Nations in Manchester and the Wolfpack Dominance Series, we can now look forward to also seeing a 57N team at this year’s Tribal Clash and another 2 (possibly 3 at time of writing) athletes represent in the Scotland squad for this year’s Inov-8 4 Nations. For a small garage gym in the Highlands, we are certainly making some noise.
One of the athletes who has made such an impact, representing 57N in the recent DWF and just qualified for the Scotland squad, is none other than our new coach Lesley Forrester. Lesley was present during our first ever official workout at 57N having just transferred in the Fire service from Fife to Inverness. She cut her teeth originally at CrossFit Fife under the expert tutelage of Si Macauley and Raymond McAloon. Through her persistent hard work and performance, we were delighted when she embarked on her CrossFit Level 1 course and opted to join the coaching team here.
We recently sat Lesley down to tell us a bit more about her experience CrossFitting and in particular, competing at the recent Divided We Fall 2014:
Q. Lesley, you have competed in various CrossFit competitions, tell us a bit about your experience at this years Divided We Fall competition in Cardiff?
A. Having been at previous DWF competitions as part of the Fife team, I knew how amazing this event is and so was really keen to get teams involved to show those guys that are new to CrossFit and our box how great a community the world of CrossFit is! We got teams together and completed 3 online qualifiers with no visible leaderboard so we had no idea where we stood. We gave it our all and after several rounds of Cindy, Mary, lots of GTOH, box jumps and 600 wall balls later we scraped a place!
Q. The team came a respectable 75 out of the 100 who qualified; how did you find the team measured up against the rest? Was there a large gulf in class?
A. The team put in an immense effort! The workouts for Day One were released the week before the event so we had a chance to discuss our strengths and weaknesses prior to going and set up a plan of attack. Those 600 wall balls were in it again!!!! Given that we qualified at the bottom of the table, the performances given by the team were strong enough to bump us slowly up the leaderboard, with us finishing between 92nd and 35th in them all. A lot of the workouts were strength based, so athletes from a weightlifting background faired really well, but you never know what you will get! The top twenty teams were obvious from the outset as they destroyed the rest of us, but the rest of the placing’s were definitely for the taking and we were in there with the rest of them!
Q. What have you taken away from this competition?
A. Team spirit is everything to keep you going! We had fab support from the other guys from the box that made the effort to travel with us down to Cardiff, and to hear them shouting from the sidelines and to feel your pain was a great boost!
Q. Looking to the future what do you feel are your weaknesses which need to be addressed for subsequent competitions?
A. For me personally, nutrition was my major downfall in the lead up to, and during the event. Having blasted through the first workout, I was too busy watching the rest to eat! They altered the programme slightly too which meant it was 5 hours between my workouts, but by the time I realized this it was too late, so I had nothing in the tank and it showed!!! I got it all sorted out on Day 2 and it made a huge difference to my energy, focus and performance!
Q. You started CrossFit back in 2010; in what way has CrossFit benefited you both personally and professionally, if any, and what training were you carrying out previously?
A. Prior to CrossFit, I was a regular Globo-gym junkie doing body attack, body pump and spinning and also dabbled a little into triathlons and duathlons with relative success for an amateur! My friends were also keen runners, who raced for a club and found CrossFit as a way to complement their training. They dragged me along as they thought it would be perfect for me…and the rest as they say is history – I was sucked in! I’m fitter, stronger and healthier than I have ever been, it helps at my work and it has also shown me that with a little perseverance you can achieve a lot! Aside from all the practical stuff, I’ve made some amazing friends and love the social side equally as much!
Q. What advice would you have for those thinking of giving CrossFit a try?
A. Do it!!! But clear your diary and prepare to get hooked! You’ll plan your weeks around it, never stop talking about it and surprise yourself every day! Everything can be tweaked or scaled and no-one cares what others do/ don’t do…as long as they are doing it (if that makes sense!)
Q. What advice would you have for those looking at competing?
A. Listen to your coaches, train hard, eat well, realize the importance of rest days, enjoy the atmosphere that competitions create and plan ahead so you can tailor your training around them…and don’t be scared to ask for help or advice!
Q. Finally, you qualified for the Scotland team after narrowly missing out on last year’s 4 nations. After narrowly being pipped by Wales last year to 3rd place, how do you see this year going?
A. Its anybody’s game this year with some of the big names missing due to the Games…as much as I’d love to, I’ve tried to compete against a team with Sam Briggs in it before and it’s impossible!!! Hopefully, we can lead Scotland to a win but time will tell…its hard to guess when you’ve never met the rest of your team; hopefully some training days will bring us all together and we can see what we are made of!