Yep… the workout everyone was afraid was going to happen during the 2017 Open. The Open weights we saw this year were 50/35. Our standard Rx is 45% of bodyweight. Use dumbbells that are on the heavy side for you, heavy enough that most sets are broken up.
Post time and Rx to comments.
Better Know a Member: Tori P.
It finally feels like spring, and we’re bringing back a fun feature on the CFSBK blog, Better Know a Member! You all love Underneath the Hoodie and Behind the Desk, and now, in a similar vein, we’ll continue to profile members from across the CFSBK community. To kick off this round, we interviewed Tori P., who trains at CFSBK to get better at her job…
Name (and any nicknames):
Tori Pierce, also know as T-Pain
Tori! You’re a professional dancer who has done some really interesting stuff. Can you tell us a little about your dance background and the performances you’ve done?
Growing up, I trained in my mom’s dance studio with her as my teacher. I was a competition dancer with hangers and hangers of rhinestoned costumes. I’d travel on the weekends to perform in different cities. I competed in jazz, tap, and lyrical, but after high school I started concentrating on hip hop and choreography in heels. Most of the work I do requires the girls to dance in heels, which is a technique you don’t know you have to master until you’re working as a professional!
I’ve been lucky enough to work with some incredible names in entertainment including Beyonce, Kanye West, Jennifer Lopez, Selena Gomez, and Madonna. My jobs can be anything from concerts and music videos to TV shows and commercials. It’s an exciting (and nerve wracking!) industry to be in, but it always keeps you looking forward to your next project.
Where were you born and where did you grow up?
I was born in Raleigh, North Carolina, but we moved around a fair amount while I was growing up. We spent some time in California and then moved to Wisconsin, where my family still lives. Once I left home, I went to Chicago for a few years and then relocated to New York! If anyone needs help strategically packing all of your clothes into two suitcases, I’m your girl!
How long have you been CrossFitting, and how’d you end up at CFSBK?
It’s been 4 years since I was introduced to CrossFit by my parents. When I would head home for holidays, I would go to classes with them. It didn’t take too long for me to catch the CrossFit bug and find a gym in New York. I instantly felt at home at CFSBK. I now live in Queens and travel to the gym every day, but the commute is well worth it! I just couldn’t stay away from the coaches and the members that made me feel so comfortable when I first joined.
How has CrossFit carried over to your dance career? What are you working on now?
When I started CrossFit, I was really just hoping for some upper body strength! I have strong dancer’s legs, but when I first started at the gym I couldn’t do a Push-Up to save my life. I knew that I wanted to be physically ready for whatever show I was cast in. There are days I could be asked to lift another dancer or carry heavy props. I also wanted to be able to do a 2 hour show with enough energy to sustain my performance. I’ve recently started working one-on-one with Coach Whit focusing on upper-body strength and gymnastic movements! Because she’s also a dancer, she’s been able to teach me using the terminology I’ve grown up with in the studio and already knows what my body is used to as far as movement and positions. Our sessions have not only helped me in group classes, but have helped me become a better dancer in the studio. There are countless things she and I work on together that stay on my mind regardless of where I’m training. From understanding the difference in posture and body alignment from dancer to lifter to how I can control my flexibility so it will help and not hurt my movements in the gym, she has been amazing to work with!
While CrossFit has definitely helped me in those areas, it has also helped me in a way I didn’t expect. As dancers, female dancers especially, we are always trying to establish a “look”—the color or style of our hair, how we do our makeup, how we dress—and while we want to stay unique-looking, we also have to adapt to the job or new trends. It’s extremely frustrating at times. and I have seen so many women (including myself) get wrapped up in this difficult task of constantly changing our physical appearance for the demands of the job. I have realized in these last few years at CFSBK that my value as a performer, and as a woman, does not depend on my height, weight, or hair color. Of course, that sounds like something I should already know. Those messages about what our bodies and faces should look like or what juice cleanse we should consider are often subtle in the rest of our lives. When working in the entertainment industry, those comments are told to us without hesitation or empathy. CrossFit has taught me that some days I won’t look perfect, and that’s okay. There are skills that I am still working on, but if I can’t do them today that does not mean that I won’t be able to do them in the future. If I show up to the gym and do all of the work, that is enough to be proud of and celebrate.
Where can we go to find out more about your work?
I try my hardest to keep my Instagram (@toriapierce) up to date with photos from past work or videos from class! Unfortunately, this industry is incredibly last minute! Last minute auditions, last minute bookings, last minute flights, last minute cancellations. There are some exciting projects coming up, but I’ll have to be patient when it comes to finding out the details!