CrossFit Sandpoint 5 Year Alumni Member Profile: Star Jensen
I love Star's story for a lot of reasons.
For one, there are a few initial reactions to CrossFit that I've grown accustomed to over the years. One is, "What about all the injuries?". Two is, "I can't do that (because of _____)". Star's story not only debunks those, but also dramatically reinforces the idea that through proper strength and conditioning training injuries can be made better and prevented in the future, and that makes me happy.
For two, watching someone develop from having a hard time doing a shoulder pass-through with a PVC pipe to having no limitations in here is just awesome. I grew up playing volleyball, so seeing her go from unable to participate fully in the sport that she really loves to being back at it full bore is what this is really all about for me. CrossFit should prepare us and make us better at the things we love (besides CrossFit). Star is the embodiment of that.
Third, Star is just a pleasure to work with. She is a lifelong athlete, so she has a natural inclination to know when to push and when to back off. She is also incredibly receptive to coaching, so selfishly, I really love that about her.
Thanks for being a part of the family Star!
Read here story here:
Crazy it’s been 5 years...although I did take about a 6-7 month hiatus when I was suffering with my hips/spine NOT staying in place and I had that TERRIBLE nerve pain running down my left leg thing and all I did was hot yoga until I finally said fuck it and just came back to CF...after about 3 months my nerve pain was subsiding and after 6 months I was 75% better...it took about a year for my left leg to recover (from the atrophy the muscle had accrued before I was able to even really perform normally again, but I made it!!
It’s AMAZING TO ME that I got through that most terrible (and painful) experience and to this day have not had a relapse...CF literally saved me...I literally couldn’t even walk through the grocery store without having to crouch down to the floor in pain. Jonah was about to dump my ass because all I could do was lay on the couch with ice trying to recover from whatever I had to do during the day...I lived on NSAIDS (which if you know me I have NEVER taken any meds!! I had a natural childbirth in a cabin in the narrows of Priest Lake for Pete’s sake)....I even took a steroidal dose pack at one point...spent thousands of dollars on Chiropractic, acupuncture, massage, to absolutely no avail....I am a firm believer that when your muscles are strong they hold your skeleton in place and as we get old we need our skeleton to stay in place because once that starts shifting, we are hurtin’ for certain...
What brought you to CrossFit Sandpoint?
My best girlfriend that I grew up with moved back home after living in California for many years. We started Mt. Biking together. She had been going to CF and told me I should try it. At that time in my life I was inhibited by a shoulder injury and really had only been doing physical activity that didn’t compromise or risk me dislocating it at every turn. (Spinning, Hot Yoga, Mt. Biking, Hiking, Skiing). Volleyball was my favorite sport and I had to completely give it up because I literally just couldn’t serve or hit a ball- that was something that REALLY depressed me and for YEARS I mourned not being able to play...
What do you remember about your first experience/class?
I specifically recall watching people rotate the PVC pipe from the front to the back of their bodies to stretch out their arms/shoulders and I remember cringing and thinking my shoulder was going to dislocate just watching them do that! I remember having ZERO upper body strength and mobility because I had avoided all use of my shoulder for so many years. I remember mentally saying “oh I can’t do that” (to practically everything) and having to scale SOOOO many things in fear of my shoulder....
On a positive note I remember the workouts being very satisfying/gratifying for me. Being a gymnast, playing multiple sports all through school, and being a wildland firefighter in my twenties, I am the type of person who needs full physical gratification when it comes to exercise....I like to push myself to my max both mentally and physically, CrossFit definitely does that...Oh yeah and how I can I ever forget my very first day; we did 150 Wall Balls! I was so sore for days! No matter how good of shape you think you’re in, you get humbled real quick at CF.
What is your favorite memory over the last 5 yrs?
I have a lot of good memories but hands down being able to hit and serve a volleyball again is the best! Being able to play on a fairly competitive level again is something I NEVER thought would happen unless I had surgery (and who has time for that?!) Crossfit was my cure!
Within Crossfit, a big standout was beating Val in a 5k row (ha ha it was only by a few seconds but still)...It’s Val! I have worked out with/next to her from my first day and not only is she just inspirational because of how incredibly strong and bad ass she is but she was always there to encourage, help, and push me beyond my own mental inhibition and she has helped me reach many milestones. Another standout was being able to RX some of the Ppen workouts a couple years ago. Specifically 55 deadlifts at 155#. Also being able to walk on my hands. That’s just cool! I never thought I would be able to that again at my age....
What are you most proud of over the last 5 yrs?
This is a tough one for me because I tend to be really hard on myself. I feel and am very aware of my own inhibitions and inconsistencies (whether it be with attendance, diet, sleep, work) and I see/feel how those hold me back and make me back slide...I suppose I am proud of myself for working through a couple of really tough injuries (non CrossFit related) over the years and being the strongest I’ve ever been in my adult life.
What keeps you coming back?
Personally for me, a large part of it is what gratifies my body and mind.
I’m busy, I’m a single mom, my work gets crazy busy and if I’m going to spend time doing something, I need it to fulfill me from head to toe. I don’t want to leave a workout and feel like I need to go workout.
I know that it’s an hour of my day. No more, no less and no matter what, I am going blow myself out, get pushed to my max and go about the rest of my day feeling not only satisfied but also proud of what I just accomplished.
The other thing that hands down keeps me coming back is the level of devotion I have seen Kenny (and the other coaches) put into Crossfit Sandpoint through furthering his own education to offer us more opportunities/avenues to better/further advance our physical and mental development as athletes and just simply living healthy balanced lives...When I see the level of passion put into it, I have huge respect for that.
Inspiration is important especially when doing things that are difficult and one of the coolest things about CF is seeing all of the different people who do it and how they function at their age, with their body type and I am just in awe of the differences, the strengths, the weaknesses that we all have....Strategy....I also love the element of strategy that goes into the various workouts.
The different layers that go on within my body and mind during each performance. The cards get dealt and I stack my hand in a way to hopefully maximize my ability without blowing out half way through and finishing the strongest I can...usually for me that centers around breathing and resting (ha ha)...sometimes it works out great for me and other times it’s an epic fail but it’s always a challenge and I love that!
What’s left on your list of things to achieve?
Linking toes 2 bars, becoming a better runner, every year I say I want to be able to RX workouts and every year I work myself up to it and maybe do a few for a while and then my inability to keep consistent bites me in the butt!
Diet: That’s a big one for me...not that I eat unhealthy per se’ but I know for my body type, in order to transform into what I would like it to be, I have to be SUPER diligent and that’s soooo hard for me...
So diligence and consistency are my key things to focus on I think....