Courtney Skelton is a very determined young lady. She has been weightlifting and training at Southwest Strength in Melita for about 2 ½ years and at the start of 2019 she also started training crossfit.
“Through the weightlifting training we dabbled into some crossfit (DF) or cardio workouts once in a while but I only seriously got into it (crossfit) in January,” said Skelton.
Skelton says her coach (Nathan Corrigal) always encouraged her and insisted she would be good at CF and it was fun to do the odd cardio workout. It was just a natural progression to add CF to her training, which led to signing up and prepping for an online CF “qualifier” called Crossfit Open. At the time Skelton was too young to enter but she found the workouts were fun and she enjoyed the training, so it was added to her regiment.
Skelton says strength-wise, weightlifting has really helped her with CF. “Lots of important things in CF would have been very difficult for me if I didn’t have the background of lifting. Crossfit is more of a cardio and endurance based test with strength and multiple different movements such as gymnastics, weightlifting and aerobic work while weightlifting is just mainly the two Olympic lifts; the snatch and the clean and jerk. So, they are two different sports, but weightlifting is a part of crossfit,” she added.
For the past two years Skelton has competed in WL (weightlifting) at the Manitoba Open and Manitoba Provincials and she also qualified for junior nationals. “My favourite thing about WL is how confident it makes me. It’s pretty cool to be able to say that I can lift the weights I do.” Her next step in WL will be to have fun training for those same competitions. “Also to hopefully keep getting stronger and become better at the two lifts.”
There are many benefits of CF and Skelton says one huge plus for her is how much it has changed her mind set and the way she lives her life – in the best way possible. “It proves to me that I can continuously learn from my mistakes and I can overcome anything that is thrown at me. It has made me confident, happy and very healthy. My favourite thing about CF is the way it makes me push myself and how it feels after a hard workout, so rewarding. I do know that if it wasn’t for CF and my coach Nathan I wouldn’t be the person I am today and wouldn’t be in this same position physically and mentally.” She said when reflecting on all these positives, she sobbed happy tears.
Many people train for their individual programs at Southwest Strength (SWS). Training beside them and having good rapport with them is a big part of why Skelton loves training at SWS. “The community at SWS is so amazing and supportive, it would for sure be a lot harder to train without this family!”
Training for the CF competition has a huge physical and mental learning curve and even though there were many brutal workouts, Skelton insists it’s fun for her. “The motivation from my coach and the competition helped a lot through the hard days! Knowing that I was at peak performance and all my hard work was paying off was and is the best feeling ever! The competition went so well for me and crossing the finish line on the last workout was like nothing I have ever felt, very emotional!”
This type of training is not for the “weak of heart” so to speak. One must have grit, determination and focus. However, Skelton encourages people to try it out. “If you are super passionate about it and have always wanted to do it – just go for it! The health benefits and lifestyle changes the two sports make is incredible and super rewarding! Hard work and dedication never fails! You have to have a lot of drive and motivation to train and compete in either WL or CF. It’s not easy and if it was, everyone would be doing it. My main goals are to enter into more CF competitions and continue to train and work hard while still having fun and enjoying the journey!” concluded Skelton.