Success Stories

Name: Courtney Bella Chasson

Age: 31

Occupation: Passenger Services Coordinator but soon to be changing (I hope my boss doesn’t see this.)

What is your athletic background? I was one of those kids that tried every sport, but nothing really stuck. Soccer, surf, dance, swim, gymnastics, softball, track, tennis. You name it, I tried it.

What was your workout routine prior to CF Spero? I started doing yoga 13 years ago and that was my main workout prior to CrossFit. I also love to go hiking.

How much weight have you lost since you began? I haven’t lost any weight, but I’m the strongest I’ve ever been in my life and there’s a lot less jiggle going on.

What was your first experience with CrossFit? I had been wanting to try CrossFit for many years but was far too intimidated. It eventually first came about from a place of healing. I experienced some devastating life events in a short span of time and I just really needed an outlet for my emotions. I had to find a way to channel my grief and pent-up energy. Yoga was too calm and quiet for that. I needed something loud, gritty, and all-consuming in the moment. One day I was at a BBQ and someone was talking about how CrossFit had affected their life. I just finally got the resolve in that moment. I got up, walked out the door, called up my first box back in California, and signed up for the on-ramping.

When did you start CF? I started CrossFit in 2017. It’ll be two years in June!

Why did you choose CF Spero? I did a bit of research before moving here and emailed a few places in the area. Dave was immediately very responsive and welcoming. Once I came in for my first class I knew it was the right place.

What keeps you coming back? The people. The way it makes me feel. The progress. The need to continue challenging myself.

Why do you live in Oak Park? My family moved out here in recent years, so I followed suit.

What do you do for a living? I currently work in the luxury travel industry but that’s coming to an end. In the fall I’m going back to school to get my master’s degree in higher education.

How do you like to spend your free time? I love to travel and explore new places. I also enjoy reading, seeing live music, finding good coffee shops and food in the city, freaking out over cute dogs, and spending time with family and friends. I love anything involving the outdoors, especially hiking. Before moving here last year I did a 10-day solo trek through the north of Spain on the Camino de Santiago. I’m aiming to get back on that trail soon to do a 1-month trek.

What do you like about Oak Park? I like that it’s close to the city but there’s easier access to green spaces, nature, tranquility, etc. I also like the open-mindedness and friendliness of the community.

What are one or two improvements you have seen in your life since starting CF? I have so much more energy. I also have more confidence and belief in my capabilities, both in and out of the gym.

What are your goals for 2019? Double unders by the end of the year. And to overcome my fear of box jumps. It’s purely in my head and there’s been that mental block there since I started. Time to tackle it.

What would you say to someone thinking about starting CF? That you can absolutely do it. I’ve heard people say they will try it once they’re “fit enough” or when they “lose the extra weight.” It doesn’t matter where you’re at, it can be scaled to any ability and still be dynamic and challenging. Sure, it’s hard as hell and sometimes makes me want to puke or cry, but there’s a camaraderie in that. Plus, it really is fun!

What’s your favorite and least favorite CF movements?
Favorite: deadlifts, jump rope, dumbbell snatches, back squats
Least Favorite: running, wall balls, bike, box jumps

What’s your favorite meal? Potatoes. Anything involving potatoes. Love ‘em. Want to know the way to my heart? A breakfast burrito the size of my face with extra potatoes jammed in there, onion, eggs, chorizo, loads of hot sauce. If you ever catch me zoning out after a morning workout it’s probably because I’m daydreaming of exactly this.

Anything else you would like to share with the Spero family? You all inspire me every day at Spero. Your energy and spirit keep me going when it gets tough. And for that, I thank you.

April 2, 2019

Success Story-Courtney Chasson

Name: Courtney Bella Chasson Age: 31 Occupation: Passenger Services Coordinator but soon to be changing (I hope my boss doesn’t see this.) What is your athletic background? I was one of those kids that tried every sport, but nothing really stuck. Soccer, surf, dance, swim, gymnastics, softball, track, tennis. You name it, I tried it. What was your workout routine prior to CF Spero? I started doing yoga 13 years ago and that was my main workout prior to CrossFit. I also love to go hiking. How much weight have you lost since you began? I haven’t lost any weight, […]
February 28, 2019

Success Story-Jason Jaffrey

Name: Jason Jaffrey Age:  Holding on to 45 for just another couple weeks… Occupation:  Metro Market Sales Manager for GOLF Business Services (Golf Channel) What is your athletic background? Extremely active growing up – baseball, basketball, martial arts, volleyball (court and sand), and passionate about snowboarding. What was your workout routine prior to CF Spero?   Aside from the occasional park workout and run with Jess, it was sparse, and lacking.  Glad to be back doing CrossFit again. How much weight have you lost since you began?   About 12 lbs How has CrossFit influenced your mental health?  It’s certainly an outlet. When […]
February 1, 2019

Success Story-Paula Zdziarski-West

Name: Paula Zdziarski West Age: 57 Occupation: Veterinarian What is your athletic background? Competitive swimmer and softball player until college What was your workout routine prior to CF Spero? I worked out at the Y about 3-4 times a week. I would run on the treadmill for about 45 minutes and lift weights about 30 minutes. I also cycled and ran outside on a regular basis. How much weight have you lost since you began? 10-15 pounds How has CrossFit influenced your mental health? CrossFit always pushes me to do more, so I feel good about myself when I’m done. What is probably more […]
December 31, 2018

Success Story-Charlie Yingling

Name: Charlie Yingling Age: 41  Occupation: Nurse Practitioner/ Nursing Professor What is your athletic background? For most of my life I have kept all things athletic in the distant background What was your workout routine prior to CF Spero? Running to catch the Blue Line How much weight have you lost since you began? I have lost a significant amount of shame and guilt as well as a pants size. I actually don’t know how much that weighs on the bathroom scale because I’ve decided that number has been distracting me from my primary goal of feeling healthy and strong. How has CrossFit […]

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