March Featured Athlete - Gina Giambattista

1. What brought you into CFP?

I was looking for a gym and a community. I had been working out at a different facility that had a limited workout schedule which eventually stopped meeting my needs, and I was encouraged by several of my closest people to check out CFP. As a "Masters" participant and lifelong athlete, my fitness goals are more towards holistic wellness with a competitive edge.

2. What's your workout or athletic background?

I played basketball and ran track in high school, tried being a heptathlete in college, and eventually settled as a long-slow runner as an adult. I followed my dad into marathons for a decade, running seven with him and my brother, which was great family fun! When I moved to Ithaca, there were so many other options... as a water-lover, I soon found StandUp Paddleboarding and all of the fun that goes with it. SUP yoga, SUP time trials –on the inlet, right outside the door – and bigger races up and down the east coast and Canada. Along the way, I’ve enjoyed the Finger Lakes Triathlon, solo and as part of a team (TeamDeBoerBBQ #eatmorebrisket), and I have a long-time running group of amazing women and one dear guy, who have kept me running, humored, bolstered and nourished for many years. I’ve been very lucky and rather blessed to be parts of some amazing communities of athletes and friends!

3. Where are you from?

I’d say I’m from Harrisonburg, Virginia... we moved there as a family when I started high school, and I also went to college there (James Madison University *go Dukes!). I moved around quite a bit growing up –my dad was in the Navy when I was very young, then we moved overseas with Kimberly-Clark International for most of my youth. I lived in Mexico City and Sao Paulo, Brasil before moving back to the states for high school. All that said, I’ve lived in New York for longer than I’ve lived anywhere else! But my roots... def still in VA!

4. What do you do for a living?

I’m an administrator at Cornell. Officially I am the Director of the Office of the Assemblies,

(the shared governance groups on campus); which have been very active, given the national and global political climates. I’ve been doing that for about four years, and I’ve been at Cornell for almost eleven.

5. What’s your favorite sport other than CrossFit?

SUP!! (in any form...) Come on and give it a try!

6. What's your favorite breakfast food?

I love breakfast! I try to love eggs and veggies in the morning, but I actually love BearNaked granola, Wegmans Frozen berries and icy cold almond milk. I know, I know... it’s like dessert for breakfast. But you asked.

7. If you are a cookie eater, what's your favorite cookie?

I am a cookie eater, and I LOVE oatmeal raisin cookies. I have a family recipe that calls for molasses and blanched raisins that I make only once in a while, because I have been known to eat “most” of them.

8. What do you like to do outside of the gym?

I love spending time with my son who is a sophomore at St. Lawrence University; we go up almost every weekend in the fall to watch him play football; and I cook a lot when he’s home, (he’s an O-Lineman… my baby!) And I’m so fortunate to have fallen in love with an amazing man; he loves the water as much as I do, so we spend time on his boat or SUPping when the weather permits. I also enjoy running, theatre, yoga, shoes...

9. What do you do for self care?

Oooh... Yoga, massage, pedicures, laugh, walk on the Waterfront Trail, hang out with nurturing souls...

10. What's your favorite movement?

Well, I’m still learning them all... but so far, I’d say either the deadlift or the push-press.

11. What's your least favorite movement?

Outside of the ones I just can’t do? Box-Jumps! I don’t trust myself enough to not trip, so I psych myself out... I’m determined to embrace them though.

12. If you could write a WOD, what would it be?

Oh gosh... I don’t know all the short-hand and acronyms yet, but my WOD would be a 14-minute AMRAP which includes some number of:

ERG Rows

Feet Up the Wall (is that a thing?)

Kettlebell Swings

13.What are some goals you've accomplished at CFP?

·      I did three sets of Box Jumps one day! (#20inchsoftbox)

·      I signed up for the Open and did the first workout! (and up until late Sunday night when the rest of the world entered their scores, I was in the top 80% for my age group!) 

14. What are some future goals you have?

I really want to do a legit pull-up. I’m working on it and will ring the bell when I do! (N.B. There should be a whole lot more bell ringing in my opinion. In fact, I’ve never heard the bell rung yet. Ring. That. Bell!!!)

15. If you could bring one piece of gym equipment to a deserted island, what would it be?

Ooh... hmmh... I think a kettlebell. Although I could probably find a couple of coconuts to do the same thing... How about the rowing ERG? That way I’d be in super great shape to row off the island in my hand-made dinghy.

16. Do you have any animals?

Not currently.

17. What's your favorite Ithaca area restaurant and what's your go-to meal?

Agava, and their Black Bean Burger with hand-cut fries. And a Zing (or two)

18. What would you tell someone that's hesitant about starting CrossFit?

Jump in!! I think CrossFit is intimidating for many because its forward faces are ultra-toned, solid-ab’ed, amazingly-fit looking folks. I was hesitant because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to keep up, or be fit enough, or have to eat kale... and then I came in! I did my Foundations course with Darrin, and joined the 6:00am crowd with Janessa and Tim –and all of those anxieties faded. It really is fine to set my own pace, and everything is scalable. I’m often not the fastest or strongest in the class, but I am always supported for doing the most I can do on any given morning. The group energy is amazing... and at 6:00am through the winter, the community is what really makes a difference. (plus, deltoid definition).

Tim Paulson