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1604375_10100931193023535_954136330134831821_nRachael has been with SFCF for just over one year now and recently came back from knee surgery! She is a lover of fiction and pursues many outdoor activities. Making moves, not only across the country, but also across careers, we’re happy to have her as a committed member here at SFCF. Overseer Carly Rosin interviewed Rachael about those things here. (C: Carly Rosin, R: Rachael Holman)

C: Hi Rachael, Its great to have you back in the gym after your surgery and we’d like to feature you in next months newsletter. How’s that sit with you, good?

R: Great.

 C: Okay, Lets get started. Answer as brief or detailed as you’d like, and add anything you’d like! What happened? What kind of surgery did you have? How did you hurt yourself, and what does your recovery plan look like?

 R: I just came back from 4 weeks off following knee surgery for a torn meniscus. It’s my second surgery for the same knee in the past two years. The problem started in college when I was training for the Chicago Marathon and ended up with a stress fracture, which I never properly rehabbed. My left side has always been weaker as a result. Throw in some skiing over Christmas and that’s what did it this round.

C: What was it like to take time off from CrossFit? Was it difficult or easy for you?

R: I’d say I’m a bit on the neurotic side when it comes to working out (some days, you just need to lift heavy shit, am I right?). So I was worried about the down time, but it actually went by pretty quickly. Compared to my first surgery, where it was a good 6 months before I could run again, this was a breeze!

C: Which Netfix series did you watch while on bed rest?

R: Sundays were reserved for Game of Thrones and Silicon Valley, but in between weekends, I spent some time rewatching the second season of Orange is the New Black.

C: Did you read any books?

R: Vicodin and books don’t really go together. Mostly I slept. And ate ice cream. Lots of ice cream.

 C: What was the last book you read?

R: I have an ambitious stack of nonfiction books for work that I’ve collected recently… but I’d say I’m much more of a fiction fan. The last book I read was called Station Eleven, about what happens in the aftermath of a virus that wipes out most of the world’s population.

C: You usually come in to WOD in the early classes… do you have to be at work after? Where do you work? Do you like it?

R: Yep, I’m very lucky that my office is in the Presidio! I have just enough time to get my 6:30am WOD on and then go home and get ready for work. I work for an executive recruiting firm that helps to build leadership teams for some of the fastest growing tech companies in the Bay Area. It’s very cool getting to sit in on conversations with founders and CEOs from game-changing companies.

C: How long have you been CrossFitting?

R: A friend introduced me to CrossFit about three years ago when I was living in Washington DC. Since then, I’ve moved two more times (to Las Vegas, and then San Francisco) and changed careers twice (from strategy consulting to teaching elementary school and now tech recruiting). I guess you could say that out of quite a few life changes, CrossFit has stayed consistent!

C: Have you ever been a member of another CrossFit gym? What is it about SFCF that you like that keeps you coming back?

R: My most recent CrossFit gym was CrossFit 702 in Las Vegas – amazing spot if you are ever in Vegas and in need of a CF fix! I did try a few different places when I first moved to San Francisco, but given my history of knee issues, I think what I liked most about SFCF is that the coaches and programming are grounded in proper movement and mobility.

C: Is there anything you wish we knew about you that you haven’t shared yet?

R: I want to visit all 50 states (I’ve been to 40) and 59 national parks (I have only 12). Clearly I have some road trips to plan!


EPIC SERIES: Doreen DiSalvo & Jessica Bay Recount


On July 11th this year, the Epic Series was held in San Jose on a blistering hot football field. What was the draw for a couple of powerlifting chicks? Tractors. We wanted to drag some tractors.

So Doreen DiSalvo and I signed up for this race exactly 7 days before it was to take place. We didn’t train for it, and due to an intentionally vague website, we had no real clue of what we were getting ourselves into (except the tractor part – oooh,tractors).
The first section of the race was a straight-up obstacle course with a few strength pieces thrown in for extra seasoning. Burpee box jumps, wall climbs, atlas stones, tire flips, farmer’s carries, keg carries (mercifully empty) and army crawls to name a few. In between these obstacles were a couple of 400 meter laps, which I’m convinced they added just to keep us powerlifting ladies from embarrassing the competition.
The second part of the race was optional and was classified as elite. You paid an extra $20 to get your hands on a tractor to pull, 10 reps of 205lb deadlifts (female), weighted step-ups, heavier farmer’s carries, barbell death marches and rope climbs, etc.
Even though there was a 2 1/2 hour wait between events, I’m so glad that we stayed to do the Elite course. That’s where we felt most at home, and we had a blast throwing some weight around.
Overall, the race was fun and the organizers seemed passionate about getting things done right. And even though there was room for improvement, I’m looking forward to seeing what they can pull off the next time around.
Oh, and I really love how badass I look pulling a tractor.