May Athlete of the Month: Simone van Gaal!

Last year at the end of March we moved from the Netherlands to Toronto for my husband’s job. We always said if we had the opportunity to move to Canada or America we would do it. And then came the opportunity to go and we decided real quick but without any doubt because my gut immediately felt it was good.

It wasn’t always easy everything was new and it was a whole different country. But it is an adventure and we love it. Canada is such a beautiful country, the people are very nice and helpful. So much to see and explore.

After a few months getting settled down I was looking for a job in retail fashion . I have worked all my life in retail but as a manager of small and bigger companies. I didn’t wanted to work on the weekend because we want to explore and go hiking and enjoy everything Toronto brings us. So, it took me a while but since March I am working in a high end store of women’s clothes in the financial district. They are closed on the weekends, I can walk to work and I can work with people. No big responsibilities but I get to do something I love.

I learned a lot about myself the last year and still have things to learn. I always set the bar very high for myself and am a perfectionist. These things have brought me a lot in my life but sometimes they can also stand in my way.

Crossfit is something I love and has been part of my life for quite some years now. I did it in The Netherlands and the first thing I said to my husband when we landed was that we have to find a Crossfit gym. There it was Crossfit 416. I saw Dan, Rachel and Hank (I thought they were a couple lol) and even though I am not really comfortable with dogs, my gut felt ok. In the beginning I thought that everyone was a born athlete. OMG everyone is so good. I remember asking Dan if I was good enough to work out with these guys.

I love it so much I go 5 days a week at 7 am. I can get really nervous by looking at the WOD but it is funny to see how you can challenge and push yourself each time.The programming and coaching is very professional and good, what a joy to be a member here. Thank you all for pushing us an make us get stronger in a good and safe way.

Healthy food and living is a big part of my life but doing the lifestyle challenge was still an eye opener. As a gluten-free pescatarian I wasn’t eating enough protein. So with some adjustments and help from the coaches it has made a big difference.

Joining the Open was very exciting. Never in my mind I would have thought I would do it but I did, of course scaled. I was very proud of my first strict pull up.

I really want to learn kipping pull ups and double unders. So that is something I want to work at.

If I had to create a WOD, difficult to say there a couple of things I like.
It would contain Deadlifts/ airsquats/Push ups/ and maybe 2 strict pull ups because that is what I can do lol. I would call it “determined”.

I am really proud of being chosen as athlete of the Month always hoped that it might happen one day but I am not the youngest but here I am.

Big hug,
Simone

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