SouthWind CrossFit

Holly Rebel

Who are you?

I am Holly Rebel, originally from Ness City, KS and came to Fort Hays State University on a track scholarship where I was a sprinter for four years. I completed a bachelor’s degree in business and then later completed a master’s degree in education while working at FHSU. I married my high school sweetheart and we have two children who keep us busy constantly!

Why do you choose to workout at SouthWind CrossFit?

I choose SouthWind because the coaches are knowledgeable, compassionate, genuine, and top-notch! I choose SouthWind because I know every time I walk through the doors, I will be welcomed with a smile or a high five. I choose SouthWind because it feels like family. I choose SouthWind because I enjoy being surrounded by like-minded people. I choose SouthWind because of the constant encouragement and extra push from coaches and athletes. There’s nothing quite like celebrating a PR with the whole gym…literally, it’s the best!

How has CrossFit impacted your life?

CrossFit has impacted my life in ways I never expected. I am stronger now than I have ever been, both physically and mentally. I have learned that it is ok to have off days or an off week, it’s just part of the growth process. Most importantly, I have learned to recognize when I need to get back on track, stay focused, and be determined to reach my goals. The relationships formed at the gym are priceless. It’s hard to put into words the bond I share with the coaches and athletes, especially the “5:30 Rage Fest” crew.

What would you say to someone who is “on the fence” about starting CrossFit?

Try it, I bet you like it! The hardest part for me was walking through the doors for the first time. I was nervous and scared but little did I know, I had no reason to be. After my first workout in the summer of 2017, I received a Facebook message from one of the coaches telling me she was glad I came. To this day, that message still inspires me! Anyone can do CrossFit, every workout can be modified to your fitness level, just come in, and you won’t regret it!

Holly Rebel
Member

Dr. Erin Hemphill

Who are you?

I’m Erin Hemphill. I am a mom, wife, and doctor. I work at HaysMed as a hospitalist. When I am not at work, I am chasing around my 11 year old son and 9 year old daughter.

Why do you choose to workout at SouthWind CrossFit?

I workout at Southwind for many reasons. First, I get bored with workouts if there isn’t variety. At SouthWind, every day is a new and different workout. Secondly, the coaches are amazing. I was really nervous the first few times I went to class. However, the coaches put me at ease right away. They spent so much time making sure I knew how to do all of the exercises and made appropriate modifications for my fitness level. The last reason I choose to workout at SouthWind is the other members. Everyone is super welcoming, encouraging, and helpful. They push me to a level that I wouldn’t achieve on my own. It truly is one big community of people who want to see everyone succeed and grow!

How has CrossFit impacted your life?

I started CrossFit shortly after I decided to get my health back in line again. I had lost quite a bit of weight about 3 years ago and had slowly regained it. I was unhealthy and unhappy. I decided enough was enough and started working on my diet and my mind. About one month later I joined SouthWind. I have been able to push my body to do things I never thought were possible. I have come to love exercising again. CrossFit has become my stress reliever. I am happier and more at ease after a workout. I have now lost all the weight that I had regained and am gaining muscle. Most importantly, I have gained confidence that I have never had before.

What would you say to someone who is “on the fence” about starting CrossFit?

Just join! You will not regret it. The coaches will meet you at your fitness level. Every exercisehas modifications that can be made and soon you’ll find yourself having to modify less and less.

And, as a bonus, you will meet lots of great new friends!!


Dr. Erin Hemphill
Member

Grady Dixon

Who are you?

I am Grady Dixon. I work at Fort Hays State University as a professor and dean of the Werth College of Science, Technology, and Mathematics. My expertise is in meteorology and climatology, and I earned degrees from Mississippi State University, University of Georgia, and Arizona State University. My family and I moved to Hays in 2014. Prior to that, we lived in Starkville, Mississippi for 9 years. My wife is Melissa (Director of Hays CVB), and we have a daughter (Delia) in sixth grade and a son (Brooks) in third Grade. I will be 42 years old in January.

How has CrossFit impacted your life?

I started doing CrossFit one year before we moved to Hays. At that time, I was 35 and 40 pounds heavier. I had not worked out regularly for 10 years, and my back was a chronic problem due to having such a weak core and poor posture. I began CrossFit with no plans of being competitive with anyone, and my only goal was to be functionally fit enough to avoid severe pain and to play with my kids. I was not trying to lose weight or look trimmer. I had no pride about my workouts. I started with weight that was lighter than most of the women in the gym, and I stuck with that low weight for the first 6 months or so. I was so impressed with people who could do hand-stand push-ups and toes-to-bar. I was terrified watching people do bar muscle-ups because I could not imagine doing it myself without falling and hitting my head. Ring muscle-ups were like watching a circus show…I could not relate to them enough to really be impressed. Heck, I could not do a single pull up. It took six months for obvious results, but they then started happening quickly. I was able to do 10 pull-ups, and I started doing some workouts as prescribed. I started hitting double-unders regularly, and I lost 30 pounds in about 6 weeks. I got my first bar muscle-up around the ninth month, and then I started doing rope climbs. At that point, I was hooked. It was so exciting to hit PRs and start searching for new goals. I looked and felt younger and stronger, and I was eating better to help with recovery.

Why do you choose to workout at SouthWind CrossFit?

I immediately sought out SouthWind when we moved to Hays approximately one year after I started CrossFit. I was impressed with the cleanliness, friendliness, and professionalism. I travel quite a bit, and I have visited more than 30 other CrossFit facilities across 13 states ranging from California to New York. SouthWind is among the best affiliates I have seen. We are very fortunate to have them in Hays. Joining SouthWind helped me transition from a person on a mission to “get fit” to someone who was establishing a long-term plan for physical and mental health. SouthWind plays a significant role in my quality of life. Even when I experience the occasional lulls in motivation or progress, I still enjoy visiting friends and seeing them have success. I never leave SouthWind in a bad mood even if I arrived that way.

What would you say to someone who is “on the fence” about starting CrossFit?

This is about you. It is not about anyone else. Do not let intimidation be a barrier. You WILL be intimidated, but only because of your own issues. Thankfully, the people at SouthWind will help you get past that quickly. You do not have to attend class every day. You do not have to be “in shape” to start. If you were ever going to get in shape on your own, it would have happened already. Having the exercise programming done by experts, friendly motivation of classmates, and the safe, watchful eyes of coaches makes this a more successful model for a lot of people. Leave your pride at the door. Ask for help, have some fun, and do it for yourself.

Grady Dixon
Member

Lance Hartman

Who are you?

My name is Lance Hartman. I am in my mid 30’s married to Emily and we have 4 kids! I have lived in Hays since 2005 and graduated from FHSU in 2008. For the last 10 years I have been on the road as a traveling sales representative covering most of Kansas and parts of Nebraska. I have been a member to SouthWind since September of 2019.

Why do you choose to workout at SouthWind CrossFit?

At the beginning, it was just about trying to get in better shape. After getting more consistent on going I started to notice improvements I was making and I value the great relationships with the Coaches and classmates. The camaraderie is the best! At SouthWind I feel all the Coaches want you to improve and do the movements correctly. It’s like having your owner personal trainer.

How has CrossFit impacted your life?

I was very busy and active growing up through school and college playing sports. Since I have been out of college I feel like this is the first time in awhile I have those competitive active juices flowing again. It feels good to go against yourself and others while having the community of SouthWind cheering and pushing you on! My energy levels, strength, and flexibility have all improved a lot from the first day I started.

What would you say to someone who is “on the fence” about starting CrossFit?

Absolutely come try it out! I was very nervous and slightly scared the first day I walked into quickfit classes. Coaches help you scale everything down if you are unable to do that movement at the time. You will really enjoy the people you work out with. We compete with each other and ourselves. For someone like me who walked in there completely out of shape and hadn’t done anything in years I would suggest the quickfit classes. After you get your feet wet you will want to think about advancing to the crossfit class. With quickfit you get a great workout in and you’re in and out of the gym in 30 min. They offer multiple classes like quick fit, get fit, legends, and crossfit.
Lance Hartman
Member