October Athlete of the Month: Rania Lutfi!!
I’m originally from Sudan, born and raised in the Middle East. I moved to Canada about 7 years ago from Dubai through work office relocation. I work in construction management and have been in this industry for about 15 years now.
I had been a distance runner since my university years. I live down the street from 416 and passed the gym daily on my runs. I’d always glance over to see what was going on and to be honest Crossfit has always peaked my interest but due to the volume of running I’d put in every week at the time, it didn’t make sense to try a new program, nor do I think it would have been physically possible for me.
It wasn’t until after a bad running injury a couple of years ago that I decided to take a break from distance running and try to take on a new challenge… enter CrossFit. After my first introductory classes, I was hooked. I remember Coach Hannah giving me a simulated 10min WOD and me feeling like I was at the end of a race. That feeling when you push till you have nothing left, it’s exhilarating.
To be honest I hadn’t tried any other box before 416, but during my first few weeks of joining, I could see how friendly and supportive everyone was from coaches to members. It didn’t matter where you were in your Crossfit or fitness journey, everyone showed up had the same mindset to work hard together and support each other in the process. Everyone is quick to lend a hand when needed, offering tips and tricks while coaches helped guide me through the technical aspects and proper form of lifting weights which was all new to me.
I think for any newcomer, it’s easy to see what a great community 416 fosters and I have made some good friends in the short time I’ve been here. The fact that I lived down the street was just a bonus.
I don’t believe my first impression has changed since I joined 416 almost a year ago. It’s been a great experience all round and that one hour of work every day is always the highlight of my day and one I always look forward to.
For me I feel like I have so many of those proud moments from building a back squat weight to my first hand stand push-up. But I think my proudest so far is my first strict ring muscle up. It’s something I thought I could never be able to do and the day it did it just happened and clicked. Which goes to show you those ring turnover drills we do in class really do help your body to get accustomed to certain positions which you can carry forward into a movement. Thank God for muscle memory.
I have a list of things I’d like to work on or improve on. Handstand push-ups is an obvious one from the open, bar muscle ups, snatches and kiping toes to bar. I have a lot of other things to work on but these I would say are at the top of my list.
Well knowing me, if I were to create a WOD, I’d pick a WOD with all the things I find challenging and call it something cheesy like “Killing Me Softly”.
It would consist of snatches, BMU, legless rope climbs and DUs and would be a 20 to 30min AMRAP.
I’ve been lucky to have taken part in two opens this year at 416. Whether Friday night lights or Sunday fun days, it’s hard to describe the energy when everyone comes together in a supportive and encouraging environment and see everyone giving it their all and hitting PRs. Those moments and being even a small part of it have been my fondest memories so far.