Say hello to this month's member spotlight - Holly Carmichael. Holly is a dedicated 5:30am-er, though she does a good job of getting to evening Barbell Clubs and Weekend WODs, so chances are...you have seen her around the box! But if you don't know her, you need to meet her.
Holly joined CrossFit Tay Ho at the beginning of 2020, and hasn't looked back since. She is game for just about anything, and jumps in head first to any and all fitness challenges - running, biking, swimming - you name it! Holly is goal-oriented, and has spent this last year at CFTH making incredible gains in her fitness and nutrition. She joined Rico's Mission Nutrition where she not only saw fitness gains, but an improved sense of self. And she works 1-1 with Rebecca to work on her other fitness goals.
Holly is a genuine good soul. She is happy and caring and friendly and motivated. She is proud of her own success and growth, but even more proud of the success and growth of others. When asked about what her most a-ha moments in CrossFit have been, she goes on to list the accomplishments of other members and friends!
Holly is a force to be reckoned with, both inside and outside the gym. We love that CrossFit Tay Ho has been a place where she has been able to grow and improve as an athlete, and we know she is only going to continue her upward trajectory. Read on to find out what CrossFit Tay Ho means to Holly and to learn a bit more about her.
In her own words...
CrossFit Tay Ho is a place you can go to completely switch off from any worries. As soon as you step into the box, there is an immediate sense of warmth and positive energy. You always leave feeling energized, even after a busy day at work. CrossFit Tay Ho has become like a ‘second home’, where I am part of a supportive, motivating community. "
What was your very first class at CFTH like?
My very first experience of CrossFit was at the Grand Opening on 8th February 2020. My first taste of CrossFit was kettlebell swings and box jumps. I remember thinking how high the box was! The energy on that morning was great and everyone was so welcoming. The following week I signed up for the essentials course!
What are some of your recent accomplishments/a-ha moments/or something you have been proud of in the gym recently?
It would have to be my progress in my pull ups. After setting myself the goal of being able to do a strict pull up and a kipping pull up, I have recently been able to achieve these goals with the help of Coach Rebecca! I also recently completed Rico’s Mission Nutrition challenge and I am proud of everyone who also took part in this, as we all worked hard to make changes and achieve things, we didn’t think were possible. I am also proud of my best friend Emily for making it to triple figures and deadlifting 100kg!
What are some goals you are working toward?
I am continuing to work on my gymnastics skills with Coach Rebecca. I want to be able to do a continuous set of kipping pull ups and try and improve my strict strength and do more than 2 reps of a strict pull up without a band! I am also working on my handstand push ups. After completing the 8week Mission Nutrition challenge, I am now working on continuing to implement the things I learnt and make it part of my lifestyle.
Favorite movement/WOD and why?
I really like the Chipper workouts! I get great satisfaction ticking or crossing each part of the workout off and making it to the end! The Saturday team WODs are great fun too. Apart from that, I am really enjoying all the gymnastics movements I am learning to do and having been nervous about how high the box was one year ago, I now love box jumps! Rico told us that his favourite open workout was 11.2 and that was a good one!
Favorite CrossFit Tay Ho moment (doesn’t have to be during a class, just any favorite moment at CFTH)
It would have to be the West Lake Throwdown, as it was my first experience of a CrossFit competition. The energy in the room was electric and the support that everyone gave each other was amazing. After the Throwdown, I felt very proud to be part of such as supportive community.
Something positive CrossFit has taught you?
CrossFit has taught me that anything is possible if you put your mind to it.
Any advice for someone just starting?
Don’t be nervous, as everyone is so friendly and welcoming as soon as you walk through the door. Attend classes regularly to find your routine, in terms of which class times work for you. Ask questions if you need to, as all the coaches are incredibly supportive and want to help you on your journey of getting fitter and stronger.
How has your health/fitness/mindset changed since starting CrossFit?
My overall fitness has improved since joining CrossFit one year ago and I am noticing the positive impact that CrossFit has on other areas, for example my running speed has improved this year. The 8week Mission Nutrition Challenge has had a positive impact on my health and well-being, as I have now become more nutritionally aware. I feel more motivated in different aspects of my life and my self-confidence has definitely improved since joining CrossFit.
What do you do out there in the real world?
I am a teacher and I work at the British International School.
How long have you been in Hanoi?
I have been living in Hanoi for almost 2 years now!
Favorite thing to do in Hanoi (outside of CrossFit)?
When I am not in the box, I like to visit the many cafes that Hanoi has to offer and enjoy a coffee or 2! Also, eating all the delicious food that Hanoi has to offer!
Favorite Hanoi restaurant?
Oooooo this is a tough one, as I love ALL food! One of my favourites is Bao Wow, I have recently got into the baoless bowls and they are tasty! If I was going to pick street food, there is beef pho place on Truc Bach island that serves up a delicious, steaming bowl of pho!
What is a fun fact that would surprise us about you?
During the Summer of July 2020, I cycled on my trusty Triban bicycle a whopping 2168km from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh. This included scaling the challenging Hai Van Pass!