Simon recently won the Vets category of the Castle Games, but his real claim to fame is that he can teach anyone double unders! Form an orderly queue.
How old are you, Simon?
I’m 45 years old
How long have you been doing CrossFit and where do you train?
What are the other commitments in your life?
I work full time as a sales manager for an electrical wholesaler. I also have two wonderful children and a beautiful fiancée, Linda Wales (also a CrossFitter), who I am lucky enough to be marrying later this year.
What keeps you coming back for more?
It’s an addiction I can’t seem to shake off coupled with a need to prove to myself what I am still capable of as the years go by.
What achievements are you most proud of?
That I have been able to introduce my eldest son into CrossFit and he has become as passionate about it as I am.
Recently finishing in 1st place in the vets category of the Castle Games was very satisfying as well. Oh, and I also claim to be able to teach anyone double unders – I’ve not failed yet.
How has the Open / Qualifiers been for you?
I was really looking forward to the Open as it was my first in the 45-49 category, but an injury ruled me out after 17.1 which I’d done quite well in!
What are your strengths?
Definitely bodyweight movements and light / mid weighted cardio. Bar and rings work, burpees, double unders and running.
What are your weaknesses?
When stuff gets heavy – 1 rep max work. It’s something which has let me down in numerous competitions over the years, but I am still working on it and improving with age.
What are your goals for 2017 now the Open is over?
Who does your programming?
I follow the class programs set by the coaches at both gyms I go to. They are certainly varied and intense enough. Anything else which needs work I’ll try and do at home in the garage.
Can we find you on social media? Who do you follow on social media that you’d recommend to others?
What supplements do you swear by?
AM Sports Creatine tablets, Magnesium and Aminos are all excellent. I’m big on Omega 3’s and Vitamin D plus a regularly use the Kratos Amino Rx’d.
What’s always in your kitbag?
Wodies are an invaluable hand protector and my number 1 item. Also kneesleeves, tape and the spikey roll out ball are always on hand.
What advice would you give to a Master just starting out in CrossFit?
You might feel mentally like you’re in your 20’s and physically you may want to prove to yourself that you are as well, but the recovery time for an over 40 is far greater than that of a 20 something. Competitive CrossFit as a masters athlete requires a level of conditioning which takes time to achieve. It also requires careful, consistent training to maintain that condition. It doesn’t happen overnight either so plan far ahead, set short and long term goals for yourself to hit – but above all, enjoy what you’re doing!
What’s the key to effective recovery for you?
I have two active recovery sessions a week – one is 40 minutes on the stationary bike and the second is Friday’s WOD, which I always do at 75% effort (or weight). This has been invaluable in terms of a steady recovery rather than balls to the wall every workout. Once you can ‘get over yourself’ for not going RX you realise that you’ve done yourself a favour by keeping the muscles and mobility active without over stressing them in that session.
‘You never know how strong you are – until being strong is the only choice you have’
What would you advise CrossFitters to stop doing? What should they start (if they aren’t already!)?
Don’t count your No-Reps as good reps in class WOD’s when no one’s judging you. You won’t get away with it in competitions so get in the habit of scoring properly from the off.
If you don’t do it already you must stretch out every day (even if 10 minutes is all you have time for then do it). And have a deep tissue sports massage at least once every three weeks. This is just as important a part of your training as your workouts and nutrition are.
What is your sporting background?
I was Kirklees junior doubles badminton winner back in the 80’s, I was also a category 2 road racing cyclist – something I am getting very interested in again. I am also a reasonable road and trail runner with a 40 minute 10km time. I also love swimming and bouldering.