June Athlete of the Month - Cheryl Broom
Published June 3, 2020
Hi! I’m Cheryl Broom, a middle-aged mom (43!!!) with two boys (Dylan and Jackson), and a demanding career that, until recently, allowed me to travel around the United States helping community colleges better serve their students and community. I have a master’s degree in communications studies. Prior to my current job, I was the director of marketing, communications and government relations at MiraCosta College. And, prior to that, I served as the public information officer and chief of staff to the Butte County Sheriff. I actually wore a uniform to work for five years of my life, but left law enforcement when I moved back home to Encinitas. Once upon a time, right out of college, I was also a television news reporter and anchor for KRCR, an ABC affiliate located in Northern California.
I first came to Oceanside Crossfit in the summer of 2016. My youngest son was just about to turn one, and I had hired a personal trainer to come to my house and help me get back in shape. She was a CrossFit instructor in San Marcos and invited me to her gym. I found the workouts frustrating….and fun…so looked for a place closer to home. Plus, there was a Groupon!
I’ve been active since I was a little kid; my dad was an outdoor enthusiast and we spent the summers surfing and waterskiing and the winters snowboarding. In high school, I spent a year on the swim team and spent most afternoons surfing. In college, I took ballroom dancing and became hooked on a dance called Lindy Hop (fast-paced, 8-count swing) and began competitive dancing. I ended up teaching Lindy Hop for a couple of years. I’ve also ran countless half marathons, which I find completely boring and I hate every time I do one, but I somehow get talked into doing them by friends.
I never had any weightlifting experience. I remember in high school we had a weigh lighting club and I thought it was weird. Back in the 1990s, us girls wanted to be skinny, not fit or strong. I think that mentality has followed me my entire life and I’ve spend many years obsessed with my weight on the scale. It is something that I really have loved about Crossfit is that is doesn’t matter your size—the focus is on building strength and endurance.
My first three months I spent walking sideways down my stairs. I was really intimidated by the weightlifting, and I am not a naturally cool person, so I remember feeling very dorky and making a lot of mistakes. I had done some of the movements with the personal trainer I worked with, but others I had never even attempted before. I remember watching some of the other women in the gym and being amazed. In fact, I remember seeing Jess workout and being blown away by how fit and strong she is. It was very motivating to be with other moms and it gave me goals to work towards.
I found myself oversharing the workouts with my husband, Chris. To his credit, he listened to me recap every workout! I’m hoping after four years of listening to me that he’ll join the OCF once it is allowed to reopen. He lost 28 pounds on the nutrition challenge working with Jordan and OCF gave him a 10-pass. I’m super excited for that!
I really love tracking my workouts and comparing my progress. I set a goal to be able to do a pull up the first year I joined the gym and now I’m up to 4 strict pull ups (on a good day) and can do about 10 kipping pull ups without dropping! I’ve also struggled with double unders and have been working on those for years. The other day I did 33 in a row, and I made my older son come watch me to celebrate. He loved it. LOL.
I also really love the Crossfit Open. I am a naturally competitive and analytical person and love to beat my scores and analyze results, and the Open is a fun way to see if I have made fitness progress. This past Open Jason judged me on 20.4 and it took me 8 minutes, but I hit a one-rep-max of 115 on the Clean and Jerk. It took all my self restraint to not cry during that 8 minutes (plus I dropped the bar on my head because I was so fatigued), and when I hit the lift it was exhilarating!
My favorite thing about OCF are the people. I’ve gotten to know some amazing men and women over the years, and I love that we support each other’s fitness goals. I love the atmosphere in the gym and having people cheer each other on.
I completed the nutrition challenge in the beginning of the year and lost 5 pounds in four weeks. I felt really good during that period. I also set a bunch of PRs right after the end of the challenge, and I know it’s because I was paying attention to both the quality of my workouts and the quality of my eating. So, short-term, I want to resume eating healthy. My healthy eating habits went out the window during the quarantine and it’s time to refocus on fueling my body well….and make it a long-term habit.
Long-term, I’d love to get stronger on my weakest lifts, particularly thrusters and front squats. I struggle with weight on those two movements in particular, and need to figure that out. I’d love to get up to 5 strict pull ups and 50 double unders.
I think OCF has done a great job keeping us fit and focused the last couple of months. I really appreciate being able to borrow equipment and have enjoyed keeping in touch via Zoom workouts. Thank you!
LIFTS (that you know) – past/ current/ goals:
back squat 55/160/175
snatch PVC pipe/85/100
clean and jerk 75/115/12
front squat 85/120/140
bench press 65/120/135