Third isn’t so bad…



I’ve always been competitive.

You don’t grow up in a family like mine and not become aggressive and a little hard headed.

I mean I was the third child and obviously, the saying is true…

“third times the charm.”

But really, being the third made me this way.

They say you can tell a lot about being the third,

This is one article I found off of the oh so believable Google Search tool…

Tends to be the most free-spirited due to their parents’ increasingly laissez-faire attitude towards parenting. The baby of the family tends to be:

  • Fun-loving
  • Uncomplicated
  • Manipulative
  • Outgoing
  • Attention-seeker
  • Self-centered

I don’t know about all that nonsense; I don’t think I’m self-centered… I would classify it more like Im my own biggest fan.

Read this scenario and tell me what you think…

You’re going on a family road trip with your adult siblings. Which of these three scenarios sounds most like you?

  1. You’ve been planning it for weeks, secured the hotel rooms, made restaurant reservations, had the car’s oil changed and have a tank full of gas — and you’ve mapped out rest stops along the way.
  2. You’ve been rushing all morning trying to get things together, eventually throwing snacks and clothes haphazardly into your bags at the last minute. If you’re the one driving, you hope you can find a gas station and fill up your half-empty tank on the road.
  3. Family trip? Sounds like fun! You’re just along for the ride with no pre-planned contributions except your entertaining funny stories and jokes. You enjoy the snacks your older siblings have packed in the car, and you realize you might need to buy a weather-appropriate coat when you arrive to your destination.

If #1 sounds familiar, you are likely the eldest child.

If the second scenario describes you well, you are probably the middle child.

If you relate the most to the third scenario, then you are most likely the baby of the family.


Holy Moses guys, this is totally me.

Which you pretty much know because of my Australian Adventure, throw shit in a bag and letssssss goooooooo!


So with that being said being the baby in this chaotic and ever so growing family, I have kind of learned to love third. (kind of)

Last weekend, Sean, Jeff Morgen and I competed in our first family CrossFit competition.

It’s okay, you can laugh. I did and still do.

This whole CrossFit thing really turned me off at first. I’ll admit it.

Not that I didn’t think it was interesting I just didn’t like the idea of me doing it.

I also didn’t like how nutty and obsessed the people who did it were.

Okay bro, you lift heavy weight. I get it.

So when Sean called me a few years ago while I was living in Canyon and told me that he was going to start doing CrossFit, I about died.

I’m sure I said something along the lines of, “Cool Sean, You’re gonna be so buff. And we can’t be friends anymore”

Which wasn’t true, but I say stuff like that. (sorry Sean)

Another solid reason I didn’t like CrossFit was because my lower limbs are pretty much not reliable. 5 surgeries on the left knee, two on the right ankle

….and one on the girls upstairs.

That last one is honestly the one that affects me the most. Ha-ha

I didn’t lift heavy in college because of my knees and ankle, they just never felt good enough to hold up my weight plus more. Which is odd because I weighed like 185 my first two years of college. Wowawewa… we will talk about that in a later blog.

But after moving home last year, I could not find the motivation or will power to go to Anytime Fitness and use the membership I transferred from Canyon.

Also, if you have ever tried to get out of an Anytime Fitness membership it is basically equivalent to what I would imagine breaking out of jail would be like.

I had to answer more questions about where I was going, what I was doing, why I didn’t want to work out there anymore, they were more concerned about our contract break than my ex-fiancé was about our failed engagement.

After sending a letter, a gas bill and lying about where I was living I finally was free.

Thank goodness because every time I went to the gym I tried to get in the zone and I just couldn’t.

I couldn’t.

I couldn’t stand listening to my music, I couldn’t stand even 10 min on the treadmill.

I hated it. I was miserable.

So Sean convinced me to go try CrossFit.

At that point it didn’t take much convincing because I had already convinced myself that I was going to gain 50 pounds if I didn’t go.

I walked into Desert Devil CrossFit and fell in love.

I fell in love with the atmosphere.

I fell in love with the workouts.

I fell in love with the people.

But most of all I ended up falling in love with the way it made me feel.


CrossFit has changed my life.

That sounds extremely cheesy and super cliché. But it’s the truth.

It saved me.

After going for around 5 months- I finally convinced Morgen and Jeff to jump on fitness train.

They had been working out at 9Rounds which is a 30 min kickboxing and circuit training gym. They loved it because they could take Shelby and be done fast.

But they decided to try a few CrossFit classes to see what they thought.

Again, love at first lift.

Jeremy and Julie who own Desert Devil, are hands down amazing! They agreed to let Shelby hang at the gym and that was it.

We were now an official #FitFam.


Seeing them every morning at 6:30am with the other members who are pretty much family too is what I look forward to everyday.

From watching Shelby do the workouts with us and teaching her to tell her mom “Drop that kitty mommy.” To Morgen (sorry for that)


To seeing Jeff swing from rings to rings, and jogging around in circles.

To Sean being the most patient and gentlest power lifter in the entire world.

To Sean and Jeff convincing me to do the most outrageous things.




Cool guys.

Every morning is such a blessing.

And honestly, a shit show because its 6:30 am and nobody knows what’s going on.

So when we heard about the 4 person, 2 girl 2 guy, CrossFit competition that Bear Canyon Crossfit was putting on it couldn’t have been more perfect. It was pretty much made for the #FitFam.

We signed up and it was set. We were going to compete in the scaled division along with 19 other teams.

We got up to Albuquerque Friday night to stay at my Grandmas house.

Our first event of four started at 7:15am at the Sandia High School pool.

We arrived and kept laughing because we had zero expectations for this whole competition.

Let me break some things down for you all:

Morgen started CrossFit like 3 weeks before she found out she was pregnant with Cooper. So she has been doing the majority of her workouts pregnant and scaled, no full burpees, no box jumps, she had to modify the workouts but has always pushed herself to do the most she could. It really was insane to see a 38-week pregnant lady out squat a lot of people.

So after having Cooper she took the mandatory 6 weeks off and then literally started working out the first day she could. I am so amazed with this woman and the attitude and persistence she puts forth. Every day I always tell myself that I know that Erin is up in heaven just smiling and loving Morgen getting fit and fancy!

So this competition was a real push for morgen, she was only 3 months’ post-partum and still trying to relearn how to lift without a baby in her belly.

Jeff hadn’t been working out for the last month before the competition, because he was diagnosed with pussyitis and sciatica. He walks with a limp, can’t bend over, can’t jump, cant even get in and out of his truck without feeling a lot of pain. But he promised us he would still do the workout with us. Thanks dude.

And Sean and I were fully capable other than me being 3 months’ post-Australian biscuit eating. Which hindered me with the fact that I gained like 10 pounds and 2 love handles.

So you can see why we were not expecting much other than a fun weekend without leaving hating each other.

Workout 1:

10 min 2-part workout.

As a team of 4- you must complete 50 synchronized burpees clapping together at the top.

If the clap is off, it is a no-rep and must be completed again.

Chest must touch the ground at the bottom and hands and hips must be fully extended at top.

Once all 50 are completed you will use the remaining time of the 10 mins to individually swim 25 meters.

Okay guys… 50 burpees is a shit ton of burpees. 5 burpees is too many I think. So doing that many and having to do them at the same time with the same rhythm is actually pretty stupid.

But we decided on a plan that consisted of this- Morgen will set the pace. We will go slow and make sure that we don’t get any no reps.

So before we knew it we were going up down at a steady pace, it took us 6 min and we only had 5 no reps.

As soon as we hit 50, Sean bolted to the pool, he didnt wear shoes for the burpees so he stripped off his shirt and was in the pool before I even had time to understand that I was next.

So Sean is flying and I’m still struggling to get my shoes off, then my socks, then my shirt and then boom. It was on.

Every event you had to go Boy, girl, boy, girl. Or the opposite but it had to be every other.

So for the next 4 min we just took turns getting our Michael Phelps on.

After that event we had 30 min to walk to the High School track to start

Workout 2:

2x400meter run

Every person must run 400 meters in every other gender order, twice, for time.

This one was pretty self-explanatory, just run your ass off for 400 meters, 2 times.

We had Morgen start, then Jeff, I went third and Sean was our solid finish.

Jeff could barely walk the day before so seeing him run was pretty amazing. Morgens been getting back into running after the baby and she did so well.

I can run, I just don’t like to.

And good ol Sean… Sean is basically good at everything so that was that.

We didn’t do well in our heat, but we figured that was okay, I mean we didn’t expect much. We were just out there having fun! And after the burpees we knew we were probably in last place. Ha-ha

Actually after checking our ranking out of 20 teams:

we got 14th in the burpees

4th in the swim

And 8th in the Relay

Yes, Yesssssss. Please be shocked because we were.

What in the shit was happening?

After workout 2 we had a few hours to get Bear Canyon CrossFit and hang out before our work out 3.

We did a little hanging out, mostly just relaxed and Sean read a book which is weird. Again if you don’t follow me on snapchat then this statement doesn’t make sense.

Workout 3:

20 min time cap

Each person completes full workout one at a time, all four partners need to finish within the 20 min.

500-meter row

30 thrusters (women’s weight 55lbs, men’s 75lbs)

30 knee raises

Alternating male/female

This was by far the most intense workout. Luckily Julie our coach came up to watch and help us out so she decided to change up our plan for this workout.

Originally, we planned to have Sean go first, then me, then Jeff and then morgen last because to get it under the 20 min time cap, we would have to do the whole workout in under 5 min each. We figured that it would be best if the three first people got it done fast then morgen would have more time to complete it.

But with little hesitation, Julie said no. After watching the first heat go and none of the teams make it through she decided to mix it up.

I went first. It was hard. I mean really hard. I was the 3rd person off the rower and then had to break up my thrusters into tens.

That’s the thing with CrossFit workouts, it’s a mental game for me. Before every MetCon or workout I always make a plan as to how I’m going to get through it. I like to find a rhythm and stick with it. If not, I end up doubting myself because I go balls to the wall and hate myself for it. But when I find a rhythm, and I count reps in sections everything is doable.

That’s what life is like to. When you look at life, your future your past and your goals. Sometimes it seems unattainable. Like how are you going to finish grad school, or how every week you wake up and can’t wait for Friday. When you look at your future and can’t seem to fathom how your supposed to get there you can get overwhelmed.

I do. I do it all the time. I think of the future and I have no idea what I want to be. I don’t know what I want to do. I don’t know what I even want to be when I grow up, even though I am a grown up.

But if my past has taught me anything its taught me to be patient. To see the good in everyday and to never get caught up in being bitter, angry and unhappy because of a situation you have no control over.

I think life is a funny thing, you have these dreams and plans and a set vision of how you think your life will be. And without much concern with your plans, they go on and are completely destroyed.

If you would’ve asked me 5 years ago, that I wouldn’t have my sister and mom in my life. I would’ve told you to go home.

But I also wouldn’t have ever imagined I would solo travel to Australia and be the person I am today without those two by my side.

So just like this workout, just like every day. Break your days into moments. And give that little moment everything you have.

That’s my pace. It’s a race against myself, and when you think of it that way, you can never be disappointed.

So I started thrusting, and oooohhhhh baby I thrusted hard.

First ten, okay.

Second ten, pretty miserable.

I got to the last ten and could only do five.

Then I shook it off and picked the bar up and did the last five.

With my legs, arms, shoulders and wrists numb, I stumbled over to the pull up bar. Chalked up and held on for dear life.

10 knee ups.

Shake it out.

10 knee ups.

Look at the clock

5 knee ups.

Shake it out.

5 knee ups.



As I crumbled to the floor with no more energy and no feeling left in my body the only thought I had was thank god I don’t have to do that again. And oh my gosh I feel so bad for the rest of them.

But Sean, busted ass and got through it, then morgen, then Jeff with less than five minutes had to go.

I have never seen him like this. He zoned out, closed his eyes and pushed.

With two seconds left and his hands slipping off the bar, he finished.

Without a pause or any second thought we all jumped in the air and started screaming. I have won a lot of soccer games and been in a lot of close games, but this was one of the most exhilarating moments I have ever been a part of.

After workout 3 we checked the scores and no fucking way we were in 4th place.


Guys, 4th place. What?

This event boosted us tremendously because only 4 teams finished in the time cap.

In the 500-meter row we finished 3rd.

And the 30/30 we finished 3rd.

So let’s just say we were feeling ourselves and couldn’t help but laugh because we looked dysfunctional but basically killing it.

Workout 4:

3 min to find your 1 rep max squat snatch

After a full day of working out the last workout before the finals was a max effort snatch. A snatch is when you pull the bar from the ground all the way above your head with straight arms into a squat.

Morgen went first and hit a PR (personal record) of 85lbs!

That’s huge. Like so so so badass.

Then Jeff went and hit 145.

Then me and I hit a previous PR of 100lbs.

Sean ended the workout with a PR of 175lbs which brought our total max to 505lbs.

That kept us in 4th place and brought us into the finals with the top 5 teams.

I’m not even joking when I say that this was not expected. We all just kept laughing.



4 completely different workouts with a time cap of 20 min.

First workout Diane had to be a girl.

21-15-12 (reps) of Deadlifts and hand release pushups

Second workout Elizabeth had to be a guy.

21-15-9 clean and ring dips.

Third workout Grace had to be a girl.

30 clean and jerks

Fourth workout Amanda had to be a guy.

9-7-5 (reps) of Snatches, hand release pushup and ring rows.

I decided to start us off with the first workout.

The deadlifts were at 135lbs and it was fast and furious-

Unfortunately, I hate deadlifts because I always feel like my knee is going to blow out.

But I picked that weight up and put it back down 45 times with 45 pushups.

I kept us at 4th place, when I tagged Sean he rocked through the second workout.

When he tagged morgen we were still in 4th.

Morg seriously killed it. Oh my gosh. She got us into 2nd place and blew passed the other girls.

Jeff was our final leg and by far he had the hardest workout.

With pain in his eyes and a limp in his step he grinded through it and we finished in 3rd.

Not only did we finish the finals in third but that put us one point ahead of the previous third place team.


Holy shit.

I wish I had other words than holy shit. But that pretty much explains it. Haha

We had the best time and got some fun swag along with a banner to hang in our gym.

I think one of the most incredible things is being able to see a different side of these people that I care so much about.

During this competition it occurred to me how much I loved working out with them daily.

One of the workouts specifically I remember watching all three of them in amazement. I had done the rowing 30 30 workout first, so I got to witness them go through the insanely horrible yet exhilarating workout I just pushed myself through (while lying on the ground unable to move.)

Each one pushing themselves to the point of tears and possible pooping your pants was a real threat.

I am not even joking, when nerves, protein and the lack of control of your body hits things get really weird.

But when I watched I couldn’t help but to feel bad that they were going through the pain I just went through. But through every rep and every set.

I watched their eyes focus on a certain spot. So that the rest of the world was a blur.

I saw their breath slow and their body take over.

I saw their hands shake and turn red, but with no hesitation; picking up the barbell to do another rep.

I saw them doubt their bodies ability, but convince themselves otherwise.

I watched in amazement that these people are my best friends and I saw so much determination, power and soul in them.

If you ever want to fall in love with someone, I suggest you watch them do hard things.

Watch them struggle and fail, to then watch them go back after it and succeed.

It’s such a surreal and astonishing view.

So no, being third isn’t winning. And in some aspects it’s not good at all.

But growing up being the third child taught me so much. It made me who I am today.

And ending up third place in a competition with my best friends taught me so much more than I ever expected.

And I am so happy to be third. (Kind of)

“The shit that makes your heart beat faster and your eyes glow when you do it or talk about it. No matter if its hiking, yoga, gardening, yoga, sex, meditation, working out, photography, going for walks, helping others- do that. Do it as often as you can. Because that’s what life is about. Creating as many passionate, happy moments as possible. Don’t let anyone stop you from doing the things you love- not even yourself.”

for today and always,

Choose love,



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