Dear CFK family, It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I must inform you that two of our longest serving coaches (Tat and Kerri) will both be stepping back from their coaching role at CrossFit Kingstowne at the close of this month. It has taken me some time and countless drafts over the last few weeks to try and come up with the right words to truly express my sentiments for these two amazing individuals and what they have meant to me over the years. I apologize for the delay but it has not been easy to find the right words. I am not sure any words will do justice to what I feel for them, but I will try.
Before anyone panics, please let me also assure you that they are not going anywhere. While they will not be actively coaching, they will still be active members of our community and if anything will be working out a lot more along side you now that they can focus exclusively on being an athlete once again. Both Kerri and Tat have given nearly 7 years of coaching service, more than anyone could ever have asked or expected of them. After six+ years they are both at a point in their careers where they are taking on increased roles and responsibilities that will take a great deal more of their personal time. It has also come time for both of them to take more of an active focus on themselves in both mind and body and enjoy just being an athlete once again. While being a coach is one of the most rewarding jobs, it can sometimes be a thankless one. It also requires a great deal of personal sacrifice which both of them have given in abundance over the years.
I think it is truly a testament to the strength of our community that we have had so many coaches who have been with us for so many years. Many of our coaches have been with us for 4+ years. There are not many other CrossFit gyms that can say that. While I would love to take credit for that, I can’t. I know that our coaches stay on largely because of the bond they share with their fellow coaches and for the sense of pride and ownership they have in helping to build the amazing community we have. Kerri was the very first coach we ever brought on at CF Liberation. She started with us before we had even opened the doors. She had no clue what she was getting into, but she charged ahead in helping us build our dream from the ground up all the while working a full day job and completing graduate school. Tat, along with his husband Scott, were one of our first members. He quickly stood out as someone who would make an awesome coach and he eagerly dove in giving it more than 100% . Bringing them on was by far and away one of the best decisions we ever made. Both have proven themselves time and again as outstanding coaches and mentors. Over the last six years I have regularly received private messages or feedback from members telling me how Kerri or Tat were their favorite coaches and/or stories of how they helped a member or touched their lives in some way. For six years they have selflessly coached, sometimes at the sacrifice of their own fitness pursuits, to ensure our CrossFit family was well cared for, motivated, moving safely, and pushing themselves beyond their perceived limitations. They have demonstrated time and again their passion for teaching and helping others, as well as their commitment to their own personal development and being the best coach possible. I was always comforted knowing that when they coached a class our members were in excellent hands.
What many of you do not know is the amount of personal time and dedication they have put in over the years to making our community what it is today. From coaching way more hours than they needed to, programming support, helping grow Cold War into what it has become, and helping to groom the many awesome coaches we now have. Throughout it all they have continually set an amazing example for our members and other coaches.
For me personally they are more than just a coach or a friend, they are like family. They stood by my side through one of the scariest and most challenging times of my life and continue to do so to this day. They stood by me when many would have said this is too hard and just walked away, and sadly many did. But they stayed and believed in me and what we were trying to build, and helped make CF Liberation and now CF Kingstowne what it is today. They have been by my side every step of the way as we have evolved over the years and their friendship, guidance, and personal counsel has been invaluable to me.
I just hope that each of them knows how much I truly value them and I hope they know that none of what we have today would have been possible without them. Again, there really are no right words to properly thank them for their guidance, love, support, friendship and loyalty over the last six years. I just hope someday I can find some way to repay them for all they have done for me. I have tried to express it personally to them, but I hope that others will now join me in telling them how much they have meant to them as a coach.
While it hurts my heart to lose you as coaches, I am excited to watch this next chapter of your lives unfold and support you as you pursue some of your own personal interests, as well as watch you return to the athletes you have wanted to be for a long time, but have had to quite often put on hold.
I hope you both know how many lives you have touched over the years, including mine. If for any reason you would ever doubt how much I appreciate you, please don’t. I may not show it well, especially in the chaos that is my life, but I have come to rely so much on your counsel and I will miss it very much. To be honest, I think I have been in denial over the last few weeks that you will no longer be coaching (lol). I truly don’t know what I will do without you, but I take comfort in having you both in my life and part of our family.
I apologize for the long post. As you can see I had a lot to say, and probably could go on. But ultimately there is nothing really more to say than just thank you from the bottom of my heart. I will be forever indebted to both of you.