I love my family. Yeah, them too: mom, pop, my brother, my sister, my kids, and all the rest of them. But I’m not talking about a group of persons of common ancestry. I’m talking about “a group of people united by certain convictions or a common affiliation.” I’m talking about all of YOU; the membership of CrossFit Midland. Most of you know my story, my “why?” – transforming from a middle aged, overweight, pill popping, Diet Coke addicted, insurance co-payment poster boy to a slightly over middle aged, much leaner, macro loving, kettlebell craving, muscle-up obsessed, CrossFit coach. A very large part of that transformation was a direct result of YOUR encouragement, YOUR help, YOUR drive, YOUR passion, YOUR stories. When you put that into context of a family, the persons of common ancestry, didn’t your family offer you the same? Encouraging you to be the best paper airplane builder ever, asking you to help with the dishes, cheering for you from the stands, telling you that you were the prettiest, most handsome, smartest kid in school. Yes, YOU all did that for me. YOU are my family. Look across the realm of social media, read all the posts and watch all the videos of why people love CrossFit. Aside from the working out, everyone comments on the same “why”; they love the people. They love the sense of community. They love their families. I love my family.

Over the last few months, we’ve seen tremendous growth at CrossFit Midland. We’ve had additions to our corporate group, women’s challenge participants, additional Fit Campers, drop-ins and people changing boxes. My family is growing. Our family is growing. As our family grows, we have to be careful that we don’t lose sight of what makes them our family. It’s not the common ancestry. It’s the common convictions; the unity in affiliation. Just as quickly as YOU welcomed me into YOUR family, we need to take the steps to welcome them into ours. We need to encourage them. We need to help them put away their weights when they’re finished. We need to keep the house clean for them. We need to show off our desire to get faster, stronger, better. We need to share our stories with them. We need to be passionate about them and their “whys?”.

When I talk about CrossFit, I inherently talk about YOU. Okay, so maybe not individually, but as a whole. I cannot disassociate the two. YOU are all a big part of my story, and for that, I will always be thankful. I am convinced that my family, our family, will continue to become part of someone else’s story as they walk through our doors. Let’s forget about the lack of common ancestry, and show them our affiliation by being united in our convictions. Family is family, either way you look at it.

by Coach Stephen Martinez