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Fit After 40…Armando’s Story

My name is Armando Garcia-Besne, I am 57 years old and have been doing CrossFit for 2.5 years. My journey began with my wife taking a beginner CrossFit class. She invited me to come and watch her first workout so I stood on the sidelines wearing jeans ready to observe. Her coach suddenly asked me to join in and I quickly found I wasn’t as fit as I thought. We had a blast training and I was hooked instantly.

CrossFit has certainly improved my level of fitness and eating habits but the stress relief has been invaluable. I own a business, and as any business owner knows, the hours, pressures, and general stresses are a serious challenge. CrossFit helps me sleep better and keeps me focused. It also provides an outlet for my competitive side that has been really enjoyable.

I would even go so far as to say it gives me the sense of “getting lost in the game.” Remember that feeling most of us experienced in our childhood playing around the neighborhood!? It’s like playing “kick the can” (we didn’t have video games back then) except that now I’m getting my can kicked! 🙂

The support and encouragement I receive from my community at Left Coast CrossFit is so important. My coach Stephen Gizzi and my friend/training partner Mike Wiekamp, as well as other members drives me to do my very best… especially during the open and regional season!

The down-to-earth, unpretentious environment at Left Coast CrossFit makes me look forward to each WOD even if it includes burpees.

Many men and women at my age think that CrossFit is too difficult to attempt. I have found the opposite to be true. CrossFit is the best way to stay young and healthy and the key to safety is scaling the movements to appropriate levels. As a matter of fact, I still scale most of my WOD’s.

Feeling this great has had a spillover effect into other aspects of life. I think it’s important to respect and take care of the bodies we’ve been given.

My CrossFit buddy Mike Wiekamp and I do 5 WOD’s per week which include lots of jokes and high five’s, but we skip the chest bumps because we’re old school 🙂 We keep each other accountable and recently won a local team competition at CrossFit Tustin!

As mentioned above, my main goal in CrossFit is to stay in shape and when I signed up for the 2014 Open competition I was shocked and pleasantly surprised by my placement.
I thought to myself: Gee, this CrossFit thing really works!
I just kept going, gave it my best shot, and ended up qualifying for Regionals.
At this point I was really fired up and realized that I might have a chance to make it to the top 20 and possibly go to the Games.
I placed 24th in my age group (55-59) which I’m very happy with.
Who knows what will happen in 2015…..suffice it to say that I will not be resting my laurels.

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