Friday 141024

For time:
10 Muscle ups
100 Push press, 75# (55#)
Row 1000m

Post time to comments or BTW


My biggest love of CrossFit is the community.  People from across the world united through their love of fitness, and as it so happens, their support of each other.  Brittany Gill, the young lady from the video above, was a very close friend to one our Verve family members Shaina.  Shaina is very passionate about the Everyday Warrior Foundation that Brittany created and what it represents.  The following is a post Shaina wrote on her personal blog regarding Brittany:

It’s Not Heavy Anymore

A mother is not supposed to bury her daughter. A father is not supposed to bury his daughter. A thirty year old is not supposed to get cancer, not supposed to die, not supposed to leave behind a grieving husband, a young son, an army of loving friends. These are truths so fundamental that they go unsaid, and it is by their absence that the truth of these thoughts is certain. There is not supposed to be emptiness where things were always supposed to be full.

But here it is – emptiness, heartache, sadness, confusion, reluctant acceptance.

The intensity of those feelings in this moment, and all the other ones that no language can describe, is a reflection of Brittany’s intensity and passion.  Brittany and I became friends through crossfit, stayed friends for the competition, and became co-conspirators in life when she was diagnosed with cancer last year.  We shared an intimate friendship – her diagnosis came just a couple months after I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and together we faced the doubt, the struggle, the uncertainty that comes when a doctor says, “you have a disease, and there is no cure.”

The array of emotions that erupt in response to hearing such a thing is complex, and it’s lonely, and there is no roadmap anywhere that dictates how to navigate. Brittany had her matrix, I had mine, and together we walked through them. We got bounced around, knocked down, kicked over, and always always always stood back up. Together we learned that beating a disease is an everyday battle – to wake up, to get out of bed, to smile, to laugh, to lean on a friend, to dance (in her case), to talk (in my case), to hope, and to fight in every moment of every day.

In the midst of her battle, Brittany consistently beat people in workouts. Sometimes she would be crushing workouts just a few days after chemo – she really really loved beating people. There is a deep satisfaction in doing that which too many people say can’t be done. And I was so proud when shortly after she was diagnosed she planned to just “talk shit and lift heavy things.” We definitely shared pleasure in doing that.

Over the past 10 months, she and I didn’t have a lot of light conversation. “How are you doing?” was not intended as a greeting – it was an inquisition – another way of asking, how heavy is it today? What’s the burden really like? She and I used that a lot. We talked about the heaviness of things – of back squatting and lesions and chemo and cancer. We embraced doubt, acknowledged it as a foe, and always accepted it as a new challenge. In typical awe inspiring action, Brittany turned her own struggle into something that can help others – she created Everday Warrior to help other people with cancer.

Brittany had a predilection for leg warmers and 80s music, but in many ways she and I were cut from layers of the same cloth – one that is woven together with threads of passion, strength, resolve and resiliency. In one of our more sappy exchanges, Brittany said to me, “…not that you were supposed to be diagnosed with MS for me, but because you were you have been able to understand and offer support no one else really can.” And I think that she was right – that I was diagnosed to support her in a way that nobody else could. Without celebration and in the middle of her own struggle, Brittany gave my diagnosis a purpose – she was just able to do stuff like that. If all else in my own journey falls away, I am at peace knowing that I was able to make Brittany’s load just a bit lighter. She certainly did that for me.

Matt turned to me yesterday and said, “you know she’s always going to be with us,” and I said,”I know.” And if I had been able to find my words, I would have continued, I do not have a world in which Brittany does not exist. Nobody who loves her does.

To honor a fellow CrossFitter and help raise funds for her foundation, we are inviting all Ververs to participate in the Everyday Warrior Battle Series online competition.  The 4 workouts will be incorporated into regular programming so you can perform them during class.  You can find out all of the details and how to register here.

When: November 8th, November 15th, November 21st, and November 28th, though you are welcome to perform the workouts whenever you would like.

Where: HERE!!!!

How: Register here.  There is an Scaled, RX, and Masters division.  Even if you don’t register to compete, still show up and have fun!!

What else:  Brittany loved wearing leg warmers and listening to 80’s music, so if the feeling hits you, dress up in your best 80’s garb when you are doing these workouts!!!  Shout out below if you plan on competing.

battle series flyer


  1. Ali :

    Truly inspiring story and truly inspiring women. I love this. Thank you for sharing your story Shaina! So happy you are part of the Verve family. I am signed up!

  2. Shorty Jen :

    What an amazing piece on Brittany – thanks for sharing, Shaina. Welcome to the Verve family! (And count me in for this event!)

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