We are so excited to announce the new Athlete of the Month!  Laura Scuffins has been a staple member at ODIN for over a year now.  She is consistent and always works hard.  The improvements she has made at the gym are undeniable and her progress is inspiring to all of us!  We asked her a few questions and here is what she has to say!

1.  What was your first CrossFit workout?  Tell us about what you remember about being new to ODIN.

My first workout was July 29, 2014.  I don’t know what the actual workout was, but I remember sweating an unreasonable amount.  As someone who considered herself fit, the workout was completely eye opening.  I have always been a competitive runner (high school, collegiate, and post-collegiate), and I figured starting Crossfit would be an easy transition.  While transitioning into the Odin community was a breath of fresh air, the physical demands completely surprised me.  I know Tia was my first coach, and she was very patient and reassuring.  I know what stuck out to me was how serious the coaching staff was about form and proper technique.  Throughout my 18 month run with Odin, I have not once been injured, and I credit a lot of that to the emphasis from the coaches on doing every movement, every time correctly (Even though I slip up sometimes.  Deadlifts! Front Squats! Ah!).  Most importantly, I remember from day one feeling powerful and strong.

2.  What is your favorite/least favorite workout/movement?

As an athlete, I’d have to say my least proficient movements are my favorite because they force me to push myself.  However, if I have to choose, I would say my favorite movement is the clean and jerk.  My least favorite movement is front squats.  I’m terrible at remembering actual workouts and names of WODs, but I love WODs that include double unders, 400 meter sprints, or anything completely gut wrenching like Murph.  The benchmark WODs are exciting (and also completely terrifying, let’s be real) because I love to track my progress. I hope to soon master pull-ups (almost there) and handstand pushups. 

3.  What do you do outside of the gym?  Tell us about your job/life/hobbies etc.

Outside of the gym, I am a ninth grade English teacher, specializing in special education instruction.  I am very active in my school community and have various leadership roles within my school (Linganore High).  I just recently finished a 5-year run of being part of my school’s track and cross country coaching staff, which gave me great insight about how I can be a better athlete.  Also, I absolutely love to spend time with Eamon, my boyfriend, our 4.5 year old Dachshund, Iverson (yes, after basketball great Allen Iverson), hiking, cooking organically, spending time with my two nephews, and traveling to new places (Colorado is next on my list!). A new hobby will soon include dog training, as we are are in the midst of trying to adopt another Dachshund :)

4.  Tell us something most of us don't know about you!

I’m pretty quiet at the gym, so you may not know I am obsessed with college basketball, and I willing to put my bracket up against yours this coming March.  Big Monday is a holiday in our home every week!  I am also a 3-time Maryland State 1A State Champion for the 2003 and 2004 outdoor track seasons, in the 4x400 and 4x800 meter relay.  Now if only I could figure out where all that speed went!

5.  How has being a part of ODIN changed your life?

 Plain and simple, Odin has empowered me to be my absolute best self.  I have noticed such a 180 in the past 12 months (since I’ve gone to unlimited sessions), and I credit a lot of that to the wonderful support from the Odin community.  Odin has been a place for me that has offered consistency and support.  Aside from physical changes, most importantly my mind frame has changed from second guessing myself to having confidence in my ability, both in the gym and in my everyday life.  I feel as if what I’m doing means something, even if it means I can carry groceries from the car without breaking into a sweat! Odin has become a second family for me, and I have made some wonderful friends along the way.  Thank you to everyone who has encouraged me these past 18 months, and I hope I have returned the support the way you have given it so freely.  Here’s to a million more WODS (and beers) together!