The opening of CrossFit I35 is the culmination of a journey that began more than 50 years ago. While I still feel very blessed to be able to train with heavy weights at a high intensity, my age and experience makes me feel far more comfortable in the role of coach than athlete.
My interest in sports began in middle school. This was due to my problems with coordination and speed in elementary school, maybe because of my big feet or getting too tall too fast (I’m 6′ 7″). So I spent my early childhood developing a strong sense of curiosity that has driven both my professional and athletic career.
My real athletic career began in 8th grade, as fate would have it, completely by chance. During a track and field meet, my coach pulled me aside and asked me to throw the discus. My team was down by many points, and the coach saw an easy opportunity to get ahead by entering in the discus throw. Nobody was entered in this category, so it would be an easy 1st place score for our team. Being a team player and always up for anything, I said, “sure,” and threw the discus as best as I could. Not thinking anything of my performance, I later learned I broke the 8th grade school record on my very first ever try. Of course, from then on, I was hooked.
Even as a kid, I was always searching for a way to improve upon my skills so I could be the best at what I loved. What really made the biggest difference in my career was going to see the movie “Pumping Iron” with a few friends. For those of you who haven’t seen this 1976 documentary starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Franco Colombo, Lou Ferrigno and many other great bodybuilders of the era, it brought hardcore training out of the underground and into the public light. What amazed me was seeing how insanely hard these guys trained. I had never seen anything like that. After the movie was over, my friends and I immediately ran to the gym and never looked back. Many of my training partners from those days went on to become nationally ranked powerlifters, Division I football players and even NFL athletes.
Over the 15 years that followed, I attended three Olympic trials in track and field, won three Division I All-American awards, and an appearance is the US Olympic Festival as a heavyweight Olympic Weightlifter. What I learned from these experiences, is that anything is possible when you combine powerful desire and the type of super-hard training you can still find at Xtreme Strength and Kettlebell.
Upon retiring at the age of 28, I spent the next four years on what I like to call “my highly successful national quest for the coldest beer and hottest wings.” In other words, I got horribly out of shape and soft. One day, after taking a hard look at myself in the mirror, I got a pass to a Bally Total Fitness in St. Louis, MO, where after three minutes on a stair climbing machine, I sat down and cried: “How could I let myself get so out of shape?!?” Right there, I had an AHA moment. I learned that my original value for athletic competition had only been about being the best, and not at all about being healthy. It was in this moment that being fit and healthy began to define my walk and purpose in life
From there, I knew that I had to share my knowledge and experience by becoming a trainer to help others achieve their goals. I got involved in a multitude of disciplines, from Pilates to Crossfit, all which have had a positive influence on who I am today.
In the end, I came came full circle. Once I got back into Olympic weightlifting, and discovered kettlebell training, I felt I was finally home at the gym that I was meant to be in.
I’m very proud to be part of CrossFit I35 and the CrossFit community, which draws from multiple disciplines of fitness, athletic performance and mind body movement, to provide what I believe to be the ultimate fitness experience. I’m sure you will discover the same.
Scott Lofquist RKC
Scott Lofquist RKC is a RKC Certified Kettlebell instructor, SFG Certified Kettlebell instructor, NASM personal trainer, CrossFit Level II Certified, CrossFit Kettlebell instructor, CrossFit Powerlifting, CrossFit Mobility, USAW Level I Olympic Lifting Coach, Rock Tape Level I and II and is also a fully trained Pilates Instructor from Stott Pilates and AFFA Certified Group Fitness Instructor to name a few.