Whats On!



Megan Mee was a quitter. At least that’s what she told herself.

Twelve months ago, the 25-year-old sat in the carpark outside Huntsman South
and decided to turn her car around and drive away. What was she doing there in
the first place? She hated any kind of sport, she’d always been rubbish at it (her
teachers had told her so). She hated training at a gym, hated feeling like the fat
girl on the treadmill, hated the judgmental looks. Worst of all she hated her
body and hated herself. And if that wasn’t reason enough to turn the key in the
ignition and get the hell out of there, she could think of another one: this was
her third attempt at starting Crossfit. She knew exactly what the coaches would
think when they saw her: here comes the quitter.

‘I remember sitting outside that building knowing that I had already tried twice
and failed twice,’ she says. ‘I remember all the judgement in my head and being
convinced that others would be thinking the same things about me. And I
remember hating on myself over and over as I sat in the car.’

Then she remembered why she was there, remembered how she couldn't even
run around the park with her step-daughters.

Fuelled mostly by anger at herself, she got out of the car, went up to the door
and pushed it open. It’s one of the hardest things she’s ever done. It’s also one
of the best.

‘I walked in and was immediately greeted by Chris and I heard him saying how
pleased he was that I was there!’

And suddenly, just like that, she was pleased that she was there too. Twelve
months later, despite all the difficulties of 2020, she still is. We asked her why?

Why don’t you begin at the beginning?

I didn’t have a very typical Huntsman journey. I originally joined back in 2017,
just after I had moved from Leicester to Hertfordshire. I stuck at it for three
months then got injured at work and had to stop. A year later I came back and
after barely a  month I managed to roll my ankle and tore all the ligaments. It
wasn’t even in the WOD, but in the warm-up. Then last February I finally came
back, initially just to do the lunchtime WORK classes.

What made you come back to Huntsman?

The first Crossfit workout I remember doing was Murph. I just rocked up on a
random Saturday morning and had no idea what was going on. Little did I know
what I was about to experience. I’ve said that I will never forgive Chris for not
turning me around and telling me to start on Monday instead! I thought my
heart might actually explode and my lungs were on the outside of my chest!
Afterwards, I hurt for days – everything hurt. But I think that day is the reason I
came back to Huntsman. I was as red as a tomato, but nobody judged me,
everyone just kept cheering me on and high fiving me!

Why have you stayed?

The answer to that is the people. Most of the time I hate the workouts. I am not
fit and I am not strong, but nobody minds, as long as I try my best. You are
always welcomed at Huntsman – by everyone. The coaches don’t want you to be
the fittest, fastest or strongest, they just want you to try your best, put your
blood, sweat and tears into a workout. That’s all that matters. They want you to
do better than you did the week, month or year before. Huntsman has changed
my whole perspective around my self-image, and has made me so much more

What’s your best memory of the box before lockdown?

I remember doing a workout that was basically all cleans and front rack lunges.
We did it two weeks running. I didn’t get finished the first week – I had 15
lunges still to do. The second week I managed to finish just as the clock went.
Back in February, when I joined as a WORK member, I was only doing the half
an hour class at lunch. I could barely do a lunge then. So being able to see such
progress within a week was amazing.
I remember sitting in the car afterwards thinking how the only emotion I felt was
pride. I wasn’t embarrassed by being the last to finish, I wasn’t ashamed that
the whole gym had been shouting and cheering me on, and that shows how
much I had changed since I first joined. I used to hide in the back and always
choose the easiest option so that I wouldn’t be the last to finish – I was terrified
of everyone watching me. Now I feel able to push myself, even if I am still a
tomato, and still can’t breathe. I can do more now than I ever thought was

Do you have a favourite type of WOD now?

I never thought I would say it but I am really beginning to enjoy the longer
partner workouts. I usually start by apologizing to my partner that I will be
really slow, but I love the way it brings people together and the support we
show each other. I’m also really proud afterwards. I usually look at them and
think I’m never going to be able to do all that, so it often surprises me that I

So you’re glad you walked through that door?
I am incredibly proud of the things in life that Crossfit has allowed me to do.
Now I can cycle 20 miles up and down hills, towing my 6-year-old stepdaughter
on a tag-along bike, without it completely exhausting me. I am also proud of the
impact that Huntsman has had on my family. My mum hates the gym, and the
confidence that Huntsman has given me has inspired her to join one and get fit.
It has also made my brother start exercising, mainly because he hates the idea
that I can deadlift more than him!

A major milestone was being able to walk into a normal gym again with my
other brother. I was still overweight, and so still got the looks that said I didn’t
belong there. I was then able to show them all that they had no idea by PB’ing
my back squat. That was huge for me, because I was able to ignore other people
and know that I was good enough to be there.

How have you coped with lockdown?

The first Lockdown was hard. Really hard. I had suspected COVID at the
beginning of March. I was really poorly and struggled a lot with breathing. Once
I was better, I was terrified to go back to Crossfit. I was scared about how it
would have impacted my health. I truly believe that if I had not been going to
Crossfit before I got ill my COVID story would have included a hospital and a
Throughout lockdown I was furloughed, so Huntsman was sometimes the only
thing I had on all week. It was often the only reason I got out of bed. There
were times when I would sit crying and have to wipe away my tears before I
went onto Zoom. If it had not been for the Huntsman community and the
coaches my lockdown would have been a lot darker. I could have very easily
come out of it more unfit, fatter, and with crap mental health. Instead, the first
thing I had to do was buy a new pair of jeans because all of my other clothes
were too big! I had more friends and oodles more confidence!

I guess you still hate running? That’s ok, most Crossfitters hate running!

I am not a runner. I would rather do burpees for half an hour than go on a run
for ten minutes. I remember doing the 1500m in PE when I was 13, at the end
the teacher asked who had run the whole way, I put my hand up and she
laughed at me in front of the whole class. I haven’t run since. Well, until recently
that is…
During the second lockdown, coach Matty started RUN HUNTSMAN. The first run
was to do 5km for time as a base measurement. I messaged Matty saying there
was no way I could run 5km, but wanted to work on my running during the

lockdown. Was there another option? He said to just run for 16 minutes and see
how I got on.
So I went for 16 minutes – and then carried on. I ran my first 5km! I couldn’t
walk for a week afterwards, because everything hurt so much, but it was one of
the proudest moments of my life.

What’s next for Megan?

I’d love to be able to do a full push up. I wasn’t able to hold a plank at the start
of the first lockdown, so doing a full push-up was a no go. But I am getting
closer every day. I also want to keep going with my running and get a consistent
5k time.


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