Getting to Know Coach Jay Alexander


Caring | Honest | Driven

These are the values we hold as a team.

Jay exemplifies “Caring, Honest & Driven” with authenticity and grace.
Jay started coaching at The Hill in May and he couldn’t be a better fit for our team. He opens the doors for our 6am crew and makes sure to have them ready to take on the day. Jay loves yoga, a good dance party and his rambunctious puppy. We are so lucky to have Jay coaching at The Hill!

Let’s get to know Coach Jay a little better…

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?  Olympic speed skater, but I probably should have learned how to skate to make that one happen.

Where did you grow up? Overland Park, KS

Favorite class or activity in high school? Broadcasting.

Voted in high school most likely to..? Most likely to change the world (high expectations, I know…).

Most interesting part time job? I worked as a camp counselor in northern Wisconsin one summer in college.

Got any hidden talents? I took a hip hop dance class in college, so I’ve got a few moves I can pull out if the right song comes on. And  I can rap all the words to Baby Got Back and HeadBands, and probably most other 2000’s hip hop.

What do you like about KC? BBQ, Boulevard, and the people that call it home!

Coaching: Your Job Title at The Hill. 6am Group Coach

How & when did you get connected to The Hill? When I moved back to KC after college in May of 2018 I knew I wanted to keep coaching and I instantly felt at home with the community at The Hill so here we are!

How long have you been coaching? Since May of 2017.

Why Coach? – what motivates you personally? CrossFit was the first thing that made me think I’m strong, and the physical and mental benefits of that realization have changed my life.

What do you love about your job? First and foremost, the people that I get to work for and with. Seeing people wake up early to work hard in the gym inspires me to be the best coach I can be for them that day. Also, I get to dance and listen to music during work, so that’s pretty awesome too.

What certifications do you hold and which are you most proud of? BS in Kinesiology, CF – L1 and RYT 200. Probably should say I’m proudest of the degree since it cost by far the most!

What continuing ed are you planning or currently doing? Currently completing my Doctorate of Physical Therapy at KU Med, and aiming to get my CrossFit Level-2 by the end of 2019.

How would you describe your coaching style? Laid-back, personal, and encouraging.

What’s something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness? I wish everyone knew that you don’t have to be the fastest or the strongest to fit in at the gym. No one is judging you because we’re all just trying to become the best versions of ourselves, and even just showing up proves that you’re already a badass.

What is something you are working on improving as an athlete personally? Focusing on weightlifting currently, and having a positive mindset going into every workout and lift.

Anything else you would like to share with The Hill family? I’m a new dog dad to a black lab, so if you have any tips on how to get him to stop chewing on everything please let me know.

 

 

Getting to Know Hollie Siegel


Caring Honest Driven
These are the values that we hold as a team at The Hill.

This month we are getting to know Hollie Siegel!
Miss Hollie is a ray of sunshine and encouragement. She is always caring for others in any way she can. Adding her to the team was an easy decision. Front Desk and Maintenance Maven, she does it all. Plus, she got us all lifting pumpkins at our first Boo Bash!

 

Let’s get to know more about Miss Hollie…

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? I wanted to work in a marketing department of a major movie studio.

Where did you grow up? Lenexa (KS)

Favorite class or activity in high school? Study Hall, hahaha! In all seriousness, I liked English because I enjoy writing.

Most known for growing up? Go my own way, be my own person — being an individual, better to be true to myself.

Most interesting part time job? I did an internship at a market research company and the owner (Gerry Cain) was a visionary, a genius, and a very good person. Great training for my future.

Share a movie or show you can quote… Movie: “Star Wars” (that’s an easy one!}; TV: “Seinfeld” and “Miami Vice”.

Got any hidden talents?  I am an expert party/event planner, master Lego video game player, voracious reader, and I can spend hours diving off a diving board and spending time in the deep end of a pool. And I know more about movie music/soundtracks than you can shake a stick at. Truth!

What do you like about KC? Really like the variety of people, parts of town and cultures. Love that it’s so easy to get around town, there’s lots to do, some special restaurants, and let’s be real . . . the barbecue!

Coaching: Your Job Title at The Hill? Head of Facilities & Special Projects Coordinator. Front Desk Smiles. 

How & when did you get connected to The Hill? My husband and I met Brian “Z.” in May 2015 and then I met with Coach Joshy in October 2015 for my first “no sweat” session. I joined The Hill the first week of November 2015.

CrossFit goals? Completed my internship at The Hill in December 2017 and plan to take the CrossFit Level 1 exam by April 2019. After that, I am so excited to eventually join the coaching staff.

Why Coach? – what motivates you personally? I love helping people, I really do. It can be explaining a movement, but I really like to connect personally — I want to know what makes people happy and excited, I want to know about them. I am motivated to help people love their time at The Hill (keeping them safe, making sure they have fun and support, and that it’s the best hour of their day). If I can make one person smile, I’ve accomplished something special.

What do you love about your job? Everything! Seriously and really! I’ve found my tribe and there are so many opportunities to engage with both the great people that work at The Hill and all the fantastic members. I also love, love, love that I am being given opportunities to take on new projects that play to my strengths (marketing, writing, etc.).

Education: Masters of Degree in Journalism from the University of Kansas.

What continuing ed are you planning or currently doing?  I am studying for the CrossFit Level 1 Exam, which I will take in the first quarter of 2019. Best possible outcome is that I am coaching by end of 2019. So exciting!

How would you describe your coaching style? Enthusiastic, driven, positive — I want the best out of each athlete and the best for each athlete. I have their best interests at heart.

What’s something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness? It’s all about nutrition — that’s the key to everything. You can exercise all day, but it’s the fuel that matters. You can go run a mile and then eat a snickers or two cookies and you’ve negated the good work you did. It’s all about nutritious intake now, tomorrow, next week, next year, next ten years, etc. Consistency is crucial.

What is something you are working on improving as an athlete personally? I’m working on a few things — I am not a good runner (I would rather walk, lol!), so everyday I run/walk a mile, and then walk a second mile to improve my cardio endurance. I want to be able to run an entire mile with no breaks in 6 months, hopefully sooner.

Also want to get back to being able to dead lift 200 pounds, which is doable, and surpass my current back squat PR of 190 pounds. In 2019, I will take on learning double-unders, rope climb progression, and improving my burpee technique to get faster (and breathe at the same time!).

What are you looking forward to? So many positive, happy things — becoming a stronger runner, bringing more intensity to the daily WODs, continuing to learn French (through Duolingo), going on vacation with my husband (John), and finding ways to add meaning and value to everything I do at The Hill.

Anything else you would like to share with The Hill family? From the moment I joined The Hill almost three years ago, I knew this is where I wanted to spend the rest of my career. I found my tribe of people, a family where I fit in and am accepted for who I am. And The Hill is the place where I can maximize my skill tool set and continuously learn. The people are the difference maker — so many great, amazing and wonderful people that are a joy to be around. I love what I do. I love my husband. I love The Hill. And I love life.

Ashley Travalent Featured Athlete of November 2018


Coachable | Hardworking | Positive

These are the attributes that we look for in our athletes. Each month we like to Feature an athlete who exemplifies these core values.
Ashley is super consistent and always encourages others. She works really hard and is fun to hang out with and brings a super positive energy to the gym.

Thank you so much Ashley for being part of the foundation of The Hill, and for bearing with Scanny’s 90’s playlists.
Without athletes like you we would not have the awesome community that we know and love.

How long have you been working out at The Hill? 3 years.

What would your dream workout be? Running, hang power cleans, sit ups, push jerks.

What would you say to someone thinking about starting CrossFit? You don’t have to be an elite athlete to do it! CrossFit is infinitely scale-able for every person.

How is The Hill different than other gyms you’ve been to? The coaches here are dedicated to improving their skill set so they can pass those skills along to us. Whether it’s Bri with nutrition certification or Mindy with gymnastics, our coaches are driven to learn more – I love that!

What were some of the challenges you were having before you started at CrossFit Memorial Hill? My form before finding the Hill was awful! Fortunately the coaches here are all about integrity of movement, so I’ve been improving ever since.

How have you seen those challenges improve since joining The Hill?  Now that the mechanics of my movement are better I’ve been able to increase my intensity during the workouts.

How do you make working out fit into your busy schedule? When I was working full time I went to the 6 am class. I knew I would talk myself out of going to a later class, so getting in the gym early and getting it done was a priority for me.

What are some of your goals in or out of the gym? Personal Records or achievements that your proud of? I finally PR’d my back squat after 2 years of trying. 🤗

What keeps you coming back? And where do you find your motivation when the workout looks difficult? The coaches and the people keep me coming back. Our gym is d-bag free. I have to admit that when the workout looks difficult I think maybe I’ll take a “rest day”. Then I remember that I didn’t die during the last difficult workout so I probably won’t die during this one either. It also helps to know I won’t be suffering alone – we’re all in it together.

Anything else you would like to share with our #fitfam? I super duper love the Hill! And I love how inclusive our gym is. Between Legends, Build and adaptive athletes, we’ve got something for everyone. ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

Getting to Know Matt Scanlon


CARING | HONEST | DRIVEN
These are the core values we hold as a team. Part 9 of our “Getting to Know The Hill” series..

This month we are getting to know our owner Matt Scanlon.

“Leadership not about being in charge. Leadership is about taking care of those in our charge.”
– Simon Sinek

Scanny is always looking out for the best interest of his athletes and team. Eager to develop them into the best version of themselves, he creates space for people to learn and grow. A true entrepreneur, it would take all day to list everyone he’s currently collaborating with, and  everything he’s working on. Matt is always developing business tools at the 321GoProject to benefit other gym owners, but the thing that excites him the most, is developing the talents and skills of his staff team at The Hill.

We are all lucky to have such a leader.  Let’s get to know more about Matt…

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? An Architect.

Where did you grow up? Salina, KS.

Favorite class or activity in high school? Woodshop.

Most known in high school for..? Definitely being the class clown.

Most interesting part time job? Probably telemarketer when I was 15 or working as a horse guide in CO.

Most Quotable movie? “Tommy Boy” for sure.

Got any hidden talents? I initially went to college to play drums. I also play guitar.

What do you like about KC? KC definitely has an entrepreneurial energy amongst 30-somethings. I’ve really enjoyed watching the development of the city since we moved here 7+ years ago.

Coaching: Your Job Title at The Hill. Owner.

How & when did you get connected to The Hill? At its founding in 2011-2012.

How long have you been coaching? I think I started coaching my first 1-on-1 client 12 years ago.

Why Coach? – what motivates you personally? When I first started coaching, I was really motivated by helping people “get healthy.” Nowadays I’m increasingly more interested in the change that occurs in athletes’ minds; seeing them become better humans as they practice making positive choices, helping others, and developing delayed gratification.

What do you love about your job? 100% the people I get to work with everyday. Our staff are easily the best coaches in Kansas City (and arguably the country) but moreover they are some of the best humans I know.

What certifications do you hold and which are you most proud of? I have my CF L1, CF L2, and Movement and Mobility certificates.

What continuing ed are you planning or currently doing? I’m increasingly more interested in getting more education on what motivates people. 

How would you describe your coaching style? It really varies with the athlete. Anywhere from “super positive-everything is awesome” to being a real hard-ass. It really depends on how much trust we have built and the headspace they seem to be in that day.

What’s something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness? Health and fitness is the simplest thing in the world. It is also the most difficult thing in the world. Simple, not easy. Breathe hard, move weight, and stretch – several hours a week. Eat real food, lots of vegetables, and adequate protein – but not too much. There is no magic pill, no “30 pounds in 30 days”, no “secret workout routine” you’ve yet to discover. Just years of consistent work, that is best enjoyed with friends.

What is something you are working on improving as an athlete personally? Having fun. I’m really working on working out hard, competing with myself, and being grateful for movement. As I get older, I realize that some of my best Olympic lifts may be behind me – and that’s OK. I feel super thankful that my body works well, that I can carry big Costco boxes up the stairs to the condo. And that I wake up feeling great.

What are you looking forward to in 2018? I’m excited to create opportunities for our athletes to begin to give back; to invest in one another and their communities. I feel that, through fitness and nutrition, people are learning real self-care for the first time. The continuation of that self-care is building up others along the way. I see great opportunity for that in our community.

Anything else you would like to share with The Hill family? The members at The Hill are the best people I know. I’m so thankful and happy to be able to see them on a daily or weekly basis. I don’t know of any other situation – ESPECIALLY in a “gym” – where each member would confidently refer one another personally or professionally without hesitation, and we see that everyday. 

 

Andrew Graziano Featured Athlete of October


Coachable | Hardworking | Positive

These are the attributes that we look for in our athletes. Each month we like to Feature an athlete who exemplifies these core values.

From the moment Andrew walked through our doors, we could tell that he was Our PEOPLE. It was love at first WOD.

Andrew is not daunted by anything we program. He happily goes for it with intensity and positivity. He is humble and easy to coach. Andrew encourages others so much, Miss Hollie recently made him our Deputy Cheerleader.

It’s also rare to see someone work so hard yet have fun and not take themselves too seriously. Andrew captures the essence of The Hill in this way- We’re not trying to set records or go to regionals, but we still give it our all and leave everything on the gym floor.

What’s your athletic background? I have been CrossFitting for about four years. Before that I was a lifeguard instructor and runner.

When did you start working out at The Hill? 24 May, 2018. It was a 5pm class on a Thursday.

What keeps you coming back? The community. Leadership at The Hill has fostered a community of positivity, support, and encouragement. This place and these people welcomed me when I moved to Kansas City where I knew absolutely zero humans.

Was this your first experience with CrossFit? My CrossFit journey began in Upstate New York at CrossFit Mohawk Valley. It was my first time picking up a barbell, attempting a pullup, and touching a kettlebell or rings. The coaches at CFMV were patient with me as my knowledge base and skill level grew. Never once in CrossFit have I ever been made to feel inadequate or weak. It is that mentality that I try to bring to every WOD I do. To make sure every human, no matter skill level, knows that they are putting in hard work and are adequate and amazing.

If you could write the WOD what would it be?

RUNNING
CLEANS
PULL UPS
DEADLIFTS

FOREVER!!!!!!!

What are some of your goals, fitness or personal- for 2018? I want to be able to clean over two hundred pounds. Also, I would be absolutely buzzing if I could get two or more strict ring muscle ups in a row.

Any PR’s that your proud of? One time Josh said he wanted us to go light for snatching one day. I PR’d twice. It was awesome.

There was a WOD where we had HSPUs, Bike, and Rowing. I was able to string all of my HSPUs together for each round. Which was a huge moment for me because I am very uncoordinated.

OH AND there was the day I PR’d C&J at 185. Everyone was watching because it was two minutes before class ended (obviously). Coach came up to me and said, “Get tall before getting under that bar.” And when I fired, something just clicked, and the bar was overhead. I screamed out MISS VANJIE and ran around the gym. It was a great day.

List one or two improvements you have seen in your life since starting CF? I gained ten pounds of muscle in two months. So that has been fun.

Also, I am more confident in who I am. Not in like a douche way, in that I am content with the person I have become. I am loud, and goofy, and HELLA awkward. But I know that I am kind. I encourage others. I make a concerted effort to bring joy to others. There was a time where I would be too scared or insecure to talk to people for fear that they would make fun of me or not like me. I am okay now being authentically me. Because I don’t think there are a lot of people out there that genuinely want to be kind and give life to others. CrossFit has helped me be authentically, transparently, unashamedly Andrew.

What do you like about KC? The Hill.
The people I have meet here at The Hill have accepted me into their lives. I cannot express how much this means to me.

Also, Tiki Taco is legit.

Why do you live in KC? And how do you like to spend your free time? I am a medical student completing three of my Third Year core clinical rotations at St. Luke’s Hospital.

When I am not at SLH or The Hill, I am hanging out with #fitfam from The Hill. Literally any of the members, I just turn up where they are. Like an awkward piece of furniture in their spectacular, beautiful lives.

I also read. Mainly Stephen King or YA fiction. 

What’s your favorite cheat meal? Probs Tiki Taco consisting of the Surf & Turf burrito, a chupacobba, and a steak quesadilla. Yes, I have and will eat that all. AND AFTER I WILL HOUSE A PINT OF BEN & JERRY’S CARAMEL CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE TRUFFLE

BECAUSE IT’S CHEAT DAY B*TCHES!!!!
🦄🦖🙌🏼🏋🏻‍♂️💅🏼🌈👏🏼🤸🏻‍♂️💅🏼😎

What would you say to someone thinking about starting CrossFit? This is YOUR journey. No one starts knowing this. We all have to learn and grow. Be patient with yourself and know that you will make progress. I am on your side. I know you can do it.

Anything else you would like to share with our coaches or the whole #fitfam? In all sincerity I cannot express how grateful and humbled I am. That all of you have accepted me into this beautiful community. I am very touched and thankful that you have let me be a part of your lives.

I must single out Coach Josh. You are patient and kind. You never get upset with anyone in class. Even when we get distracted. Even when I pull my clean too early. Or call you Dave Castro. I very grateful for your guidance, your example as a man of character & coach, and your friendship. Thank you.

Getting to know Dr. Heather of Unbroken Chiropractic


This month we are getting to know Dr. Heather Bourdon from UNBROKEN Chiropractic

It’s no secret that we are so lucky to have Dr. Heather at The Hill!

Heather doesn’t want to just crack, snap see you back. She finds the root of the issue, makes adjustments and gives you movements that help you actually heal. Not only does she take excellent care of her clients, (which include many members of our team and athletes) but when you are with Heather, you often find yourself smiling and laughing. In her calming and patient presence, you start to relax and feel that everything will be ok.  We believe this is the mark of a true Healer.

Let’s get to know more about Dr. Heather!

When you were a kid, what did you want to be? I wanted to be a Police Detective.

Where did you grow up? Duck Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada.

Favorite class or activity in high school? Science and P.E.

Known in high school for? Being strong and beefy.

Most interesting part time job? During my summers in college, my sisters and I worked as “beer cart” girls at a local golf course!

Favorite Movie  to quote: A League of Their Own. And I can rap along to “Ice Ice Baby”

Got any hidden talents?  When I was in high school I was a podium finisher for the Western Canadian badminton championships. This was a serious sport growing up in Canada. The competition was serious; only 4 out of 500 girls made the team (3 out of 4 were my sisters and I). We played in special clubs and badminton gymnasiums with special lighting and fan placement to not affect the flight of the birdie (shuttlecock). When I came to the United States and saw ya’ll playing it outside on the lawn at backyard BBQs, my mind was blown! LOL. As an adult, I’ve realized by this question, that I need to find a hobby.

What do you like about KC? I love that it is like a small town in a big city. You have the luxuries of the city but I don’t feel like I am a small fish in a big bowl! I love KC!

How and when did you get connected to The Hill? Very early on, I started seeing a few patients from The Hill, and one by one I began seeing more patients as the months/years went on. I established relationships with each of the coaches as we worked toward the same goals with their clients who would come to see me. After time, we began working more together from a coaching perspective and I realized what kind, generous, and determined individuals I was working with at The Hill. It has been nothing but pure motivation, and inspiration being a part of The Hill. I am SO happy to be here!

How long have you been a Chiropractor? I have been practicing for 5+ years. I was a coach and personal trainer prior to my chiropractic education.

Why Practice? What motivates you personally? I am motivated by seeing the drastic and vast improvements with patients. Seeing how it affects their lives, their relationships and friendships, and how they see their own bodies. I love to educate people on how their body works, and how to help them help themselves.

What do you love about your job? Working with self motivating patients, seeing excited (painfree) expressions on faces after treatment, working in a gym and seeing patients workout between treatment sessions (to gather more information on their care), and education.

What certifications do you hold and which are you most proud of? “D.C. Chiropractic, B.S. Kinesiology, DACBSP (Certified Sports Physician), Associates in Religious Studies :), Rock Tape, Kinesiotape 1-3, FMT1, Several Nutrition Courses.
Of course I am very proud of all the certifications I receive. I think  education is an integral part of being a professional. However, the certification I am most proud of is actually a certificate I received by my educating body while in clinic. I received the “”Clinic Service Award”” which is an award given to an individual who provides great care to their patients, their patients like them as a provider, they show respect to other students, clinicians and the institution. I am most proud of this award because of what it states about my goals of being personal and professional in providing patients with great, quality care. That is my main goal.”

What continuing ed are you planning or currently doing? I plan to take the next steps to work on my Diplomate for my Chiropractic Sports Physician degree. Dry Needling/Acupuncture. I am also extremely interested in female hormone regulation.

How would you describe your coaching style? I practice with a mindset of being efficient, direct and understandable with a chill and easy going vibe behind the surface.

What’s something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness? You don’t have to live with chronic pain! We should live WELL into our older ages feeling vibrant and pain free!

What is something you are working on improving as an athlete personally? The seasons of my training are ever evolving. My practice has always taken precedence over my own training goals since I have started. My biggest goal in this season is to stay active most days of the week (if not all 7), by doing CrossFit, or other forms of weight training, cardio, swimming, biking, and walking (occasionally with a 20 or 40lb vest on) for overall health.

What are you looking forward to in 2018? Personal and Professional growth. I feel like moving to the Hill has given me new perspective on life. Professionally, it’s incredible to be surrounded by such self motivators. Its infectious! How can one NOT grow in this environment. Personally, learning what balance truly is in life, setting realistic goals for myself, not beating myself up about achieving every single goal but letting life happen and learning to adapt!

Anything else you would like to share with The Hill family? My experience here thus far, has been incredible. I enjoy coming to work everyday, and EVERYONE is friendly. There motivating people surrounding me which gives me this safety net to lean into if need be. As I get to know more and more of the members, I am intrigued by their stories. What makes them who they are, what they do for their job and hobbies and what motivates them. Which motivates me. I am just so happy to be a part of this gym and I am proud to call it home!

Follow @unbrokenchiropractic

Featured Athlete of September: Megan Sheeley


Coachable | Hardworking | Positive

These are the attributes that we look for in our athletes. Each month we like to Feature an athlete who exemplifies these core values.

Megan “Hot Pants” Sheeley is one of our head cheerleaders and the original “Woo-Girl” at The Hill. A natural leader, overcomer and an encouraging voice during difficult WODs. Loyal to her family and friends she loves her tribe and we can’t imagine ours without her.

What’s your athletic background? I played some high school sports, and ran a couple of marathons in my younger days.

When did you start working out at The Hill? October 2014

What keeps you coming back? The community is great. I love the people I work out with, I love the energy I get from being around like minded people. It keeps me healthy and happy. The coaches are amazing and continually strive to make working out fun and challenging at the same time.

Was this your first experience with CrossFit? First time ever doing CrossFit! I tried it once and am staying for life.

If you could write the Workout Of the Day what would it be? Back squat, cleans, maybe some wall balls. One of my favorite WODs was one where we had 30 rounds. It sounds awful but it was fun to do and you just had to keep going. The great thing about CrossFit is that as much as I don’t like the idea of doing some of the WODs I love the way I feel at the end of it!

What are some of your goals, fitness or personal- for 2018? One freaking pull up!!! One of my goals is to increase my endurance. I just finished the endurance class with Mindy and it was just what I needed. Hard as hell, but I did it and finished the workouts every time. I am always working to find the best side of me. I do this with my interactions everyday. I think the people I meet at CrossFit Memorial Hill reflect a lot of positivity and courage towards me and I can see that as I work towards my perfect me.

Any PR’s that your proud of? I just got a 15 pound PR on my clean- I don’t know where that came from but it was amazing!
I can also do 2 double unders!!! What? What?????

List one or two improvements you have seen in your life since starting CF? I love that I can feel so many muscles in my body. I remember driving shortly after CF and think.. Whoa! There is a muscle there!!! I am able to manage my stress so much better! My posture is much better since starting CF.

What do you like about KC? I am born and raised, so there really isn’t much about KC I don’t like!

Why do you live in KC, and how do you like to spend your free time? I live in KC for my family and my job. I like to spend time with my family and friends. I love to laugh so anyone that makes me laugh is a good time to me.

What’s your favorite cheat meal? Mexican Food! I love nachos!!

What would you say to someone thinking about starting CrossFit? You can totally do it!!! You don’t have to be a star athlete to have fun and get healthy in CF. You just have to be willing!

Anything else you would like to share with our #fitfam? I want to thank everyone that is in classes with me. I am so grateful that I have this wonderful community in my life. Every coach is amazing. They are so talented and care so much about the people at the gym. Joelle is amazing- always smiling and welcoming to everybody. It’s just a great place and I wish I could bottle the energy I get when I walk in the gym and carry it around with me all day. I am forever grateful of CF Memorial Hill. It has changed my life for the better. I am eternally grateful for all the people that walk into the gym every day with me and work towards a healthier and better version of themselves. You inspire me to be a healthier person and strive to be the best I can be.

Getting to know… Laura Wheeler


CARING | HONEST | DRIVEN
These are the core values we hold as a team. We are so fortunate to have such highly skilled & passionate Coaches at The Hill.
Part 7 of our “Getting to Know The Hill” series..

Laura loves to connect with people. She is a lifelong learner and believes the best in people. She loves playing board games and having fun with friends easygoing and loves her two dogs.

Let’s get to know more about Laura…

Your Job Title at The Hill:  Director of Corporate Partnerships.

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? Bad A$$ Business Woman/Boss Lady.

Where did you grow up? Sweet Home Alabama.

Favorite class or activity in high school? Volleyball.

Voted in high school most likely to…? Or known for ? Most Athletic.. heck yeah!

Most interesting part time job? Lifeguard.

What’s a movie you can quote? I have probably watched the movie Bridesmaids a zillion times.

What do you like about KC? KC has everything you need from a City (culture, arts, food) without all the bad stuff like traffic or high cost of living.

How & when did you get connected to The Hill? I joined CFMH when I first moved to KC in 2012 and have remained connected ever since.

How long have you been working at The Hill? May 2018!

Why is developing Corporate Partnerships important to you personally? I want to change the way our society thinks about health and wellness in the workplace. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your customers and your business will take care of itself. It’s time to shift the paradigm!

What do you love about your job? Do you guys have all day? No seriously, if I had to pick one thing it would be the people of The Hill KC. It doesn’t get any better. 

What certifications do you hold and which are you most proud of? Certified Personal Trainer.

What continuing ed are you planning or currently doing? Currently working on my Behavior Change Coach certification through ACE.

How would you describe your coaching style? Trial and Error. lol

What’s something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness? “Small changes lead to lasting change. Don’t try to do too much at once. You could be setting yourself up for failure. Forget about everyone else. Are you doing better today than you did yesterday? That’s all that matters. “

What is something you are working on improving as an athlete personally? Listening to my body.

What are you looking forward to in 2018? Getting The Hill KC Corporate Wellness Program off the ground and running like a well oiled machine!    

 

Featured Athlete of August: Patrick O’Day


Coachable | Hardworking | Positive

These are the attributes that we look for in our athletes. Each month we like to Feature an athlete who exemplifies these core values.

Patrick is just good people. Generous, patient, kind and super hardworking; Patrick puts the P in Positive! He helps shape our culture into the welcoming and go-for-broke everyday #fitfam that we are all so proud to be a part of. There’s nothing more satisfying than to see an athlete come eager to learn and improve with such consistency. Plus he’s quick to encourage and include others, and always willing to do the extra work.

Join us in Celebrating Patrick this August and let’s get to know him a little better…

What’s your athletic background? Nothing really. I didn’t do much organized fitness/athletics until I started doing CrossFit when I was in pharmacy school.

When did you start working out at The Hill? September of 2017.

What keeps you coming back? It’s cliche, but the people! If it wasn’t for the awesome members and coaches it would be just another CrossFit gym!

Was this your first experience with CrossFit? I started back in pharmacy school at Crossfit 864 in Clinton SC! It really started as a way to de-stress when my school workload was getting heavy.

If you could write the WOD what would it be? Pull-ups and sandbag work! Maybe throw in some moderate weight cleans to cycle for kicks.

What are some of your goals, fitness or personal- for 2018? For fitness I’d really like to get stronger in my Olympic lifts. I’m also a pharmacist at KU hospital, and I’m trying to get more involved in our residency programs and some research!

Any PR’s that your proud of? I hit 195 lbs on my clean and jerk! And I’ve done a few competitions with some other awesome Hill members, which have been a ton of fun.

List one or two improvements you have seen in your life since starting CF? I’ve started being more health minded. Before I started doing CrossFit I didn’t really watch what I ate or work out much. Now working out and cooking are two of my favorite things to de-stress.

What do you like about KC? KC is the perfect sized city. It’s big enough to always have something new to do, but small enough that it’s not overcrowded. There’s tons of awesome places to eat, and there’s a pretty awesome sand volleyball league (always looking for players!).

Why do you live in KC? And how do you like to spend your free time? I moved here to work at KU hospital. When I’m not at work, or The Hill, I’m usually playing volleyball, looking for tacos, or hanging by a pool.

What’s your favorite cheat meal? Cereal…. If there’s a box in my apartment it will be gone in 12 hours.

What would you say to someone thinking about starting CrossFit? DO IT! It’s the most supportive group of folks I’ve ever met! Wherever you are in your fitness level, all of the movements are modifiable, and the coaches and members are super helpful in getting you to your goals.

Anything else you would like to share with the whole #fitfam? #fitfam is the best way to describe you guys for me. At this point this is the farthest I’ve lived from home, and I didn’t know anyone when I moved here. All of you guys have been super welcoming, and KC would not be the same if I hadn’t joined The Hill!

Getting to know Coach Matt Phillips


CARING | HONEST | DRIVEN
These are the core values we hold as a team. We are so fortunate to have such highly skilled & passionate Coaches at The Hill.
Part 6 of our “Getting to Know the Coach” series..

Matt is patient thoughtful and has a 100$ smile. He’s a team player, super hardworking and very kind. Matt studies each movement and helps our athletes make those detailed improvements every day. We are so glad to have Matt coaching at The Hill!

Let’s get to know more about Coach Matt…

Where did you grow up? Blue Springs, MO

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? Astronaut.

Favorite class or activity in high school? Science.

In high school I was most known for…? Being an identical twin with Nick.

Most interesting part time job? Construction high school summers with my friends’ family business.

TV show you can quote? The Office.

Got any hidden talents? I can salsa dance, and I am learning to play the guitar. 

What do you like about KC? It has a little bit of everything and you don’t have to worry about tsunamis. 🙂

How & when did you get connected to The Hill? In November of 2016, my mentor challenged me to look for an internship and The Hill was just launching the program. I know God had a hand in connecting me here. 

How long have you been coaching? 1 year.

Why Coach? – what motivates you personally? Getting to help others realize their potential. Sometimes God gives me the ability to see something in someone they don’t yet see, and there’s nothing better than being able to encourage them. I love helping people do things they didn’t think they could do.

What do you love about your job? I work with one of the best teams around. They constantly challenge me and help me grow. I love to compete, be challenged, and fitness. I get all of that here. 

What certifications do you hold? CF-L1 and planning to get my CF-L2.

What is something you are working on improving as an athlete personally? Rehabbing my right shoulder and Olympic weightlifting. 

What are you looking forward to in 2018? God has been doing a lot. It’s been a season of rebuilding and solidifying that foundation. 

How would you describe your coaching style? Relentlessly fun! 

What’s something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness?

Two things. First, it’s a lifestyle, not just a goal. Just like all areas of life, we tend to work from the outside-in. But when you focus on who you are, and then what you do, the results follow. 

Secondly, I believe there’s more to health and fitness than just the physical aspect, and that Jesus is the ultimate source of fitness. We’re more than physical beings. If you’re struggling mentally and emotionally, it will affect your body. Fitness applies to the whole person. Body, mind, soul. You can’t separate them.

Anything you’d like to share with the whole #fitfam? The Hill is an amazing place and I am grateful for each of you!