A bit about Charles
If you could have a superpower what would it be?
That’s an easy one, I’d be invisible. Then you could do whatever you wanted!
What would your specialist subject on mastermind be?
Breaking Bad Seasons 1-5
Favourite type of coffee?
One item of food you would never want to live without?
Sorry, got to be pizza. But not Hawaiian, obviously.
Leaving uni in 2017 I really didn’t have any idea what I was going to do with myself when it came to work. Luckily I knew there was one thing I loved. Fitness. I think from my background in sports I had developed a thirst for competitiveness, and also had a strange obsession with pushing myself to new limits. CrossFit satisfied both of these. I had started teaching myself how to olympic weightlift in a commercial gym near campus in 2016 from watching endless videos of Rich Froning.
After months of being asked to put my shirt back on, and being asked not to handstand walk up and down between the treadmills it was time to join a CrossFit gym. Because I was already relatively fit I walked into my first class thinking how easy it was going to be, I even remember thinking how I probably wouldn’t even need a coach. I couldn’t have been much more wrong…
So now I’ve graduated. I’ve moved back to London. I don’t have a job. I don’t have any money. I wanted to train in a CrossFit gym more than anything, but I couldn’t afford it. I spent my summer working random jobs trying to earn some money to get a month worth of membership at a gym when the idea dawned on me that if I worked in a CrossFit gym I wouldn’t need to pay membership and I could train all day. There and then I looked up “how to become a CrossFit coach”. Ah. I can’t afford that either. Next step, email every CrossFit gym in London asking if they had any job opportunities, asking to apprentice coach or even clean toilets.
I was lucky enough to get an interview at a CrossFit Gym in North West London. The job was for a reception job, which actually turned out to be the most valuable job I ever had. I learnt the ‘ins and outs’ of daily operations of a CrossFit gym. I placed orders for protein drinks and snacks, dealt with membership queries and also helped with signing up new members. After about 1 month on reception I had enough money to get my Level 1 coaching certificate but more than that I had spent all day every day listening to the coaches coach.
I learnt everything I could about the sport and how to be a good coach. I fell even deeper in love with the sport and as a direct result I wanted to share my new found knowledge to help others fall in love with training and fitness. I passed my Level 1 in October 2017. Soon after this I was given 2 hours of coaching a week on top of my reception work. I jumped at every opportunity for extra coaching hours. A few months later one of the main coaches left the gym. Luckily this opened up the opportunity for up to 25 hours of coaching a week. I jumped at the opportunity and slowly transitioned away from my reception duties. For the next 6 months I coached pretty much all day every day. If I wasn’t coaching I was training. CrossFit truly had become my life. During those 6 months I developed more than I could ever imagine. Both with my coaching and my abilities within the sport.
Only a year after working in a CrossFit gym I applied to one of the most renowned CrossFit gyms in London, with a great reputation for high quality coaching. Surprisingly I got accepted, and even more of a coincidence the person who gave me the job was Mario. Moving gyms was scary. I went from a relatively small gym to a completely different beast. An environment where if your coaching wasn’t up to standard you’d know about it. I learnt quickly. I had to. I spent the next year coaching and training all day every day. It was amazing. One of the best years of my life, meeting so many new people, developing great friendships and also becoming a better more confident coach. It was during this time that CrossFit Vauxhall came up for sale. I was only 23, still trying to figure out my path through life and this massive opportunity comes along. To go from a humble CrossFit coach with 2 years of coaching experience to an Affiliate owner was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down. And that brings us to now.
CrossFit to me is about more than just testing my raw fitness. Telling that to a 20 year old Charles wouldn’t have been received well. But I have matured since then. I don’t want to spend all day trying to create workouts which will destroy me. I want to be part of a gym community that is supportive. That wants everyone to be fit and healthy and more importantly to enjoy their fitness. I, along with Mike and Mario have the opportunity to influence the way people perceive exercise.