Athlete Focus – Holly Gehlcken
One half of the face behind Reebok CrossFit Connect in Hove, we speak to CrossFit addict, Olympic lifting champion and all round supermum, Holly Gehlcken
Hi Holly. You’re a Head Coach at Reebok CrossFit Connect. Give us a run down to how you got here
After becoming a Personal Trainer in 2007 I was introduced to the CrossFit way of training through someone on the PT course. I was instantly hooked and blown away by how challenging and rewarding it was. I instantly started training this way myself and shortly after went and completed my Level 1 CrossFit Cert in San Diego, USA. Over the next couple of years I taught CrossFit to my clients and larger groups. The results both they, and I achieved were amazing!
Were you familiar with Olympic lifting when you started CrossFit?
Not at all, it was something completely new. But at the same time something that came incredibly natural to me. I worked with my own Lifting Coach to help improve my technique and to make sure that I could teach Olympic lifting other people.
When did you get into competing in Olympic lifting?
I started competing in 2010, spending a good year beforehand training solidly for my weight category. In 2010 I came first in the Southern, British and World Masters. In 2011 I chose not to compete in the WM due to other commitments, but did come first in the Southern and British Masters. I then came first in the 2012 Southern Masters. For the rest of this year I’ll be training in preparation for 2013′s events.
Tell us how you launched the CrossFit Connect Box in Hove
CrossFit Connect launched in March 2011 after I met David Draper at a local gym I was teaching at. He came along to a few of my classes and was also hooked on CrossFit. Together we decided to open our own Box. David and myself are two of four Head Coaches at the Box.
Why do you think your members get better results than people who attend a regular gym?
We provide constantly varied, functional movements performed at a high intensity. We’re constantly changing everything so you’ll never hit a plateau, and make sure that things are always kept interesting so that people keep coming back.
Now that you’ve recently affiliated with Reebok, how do you see things growing for yourselves and CrossFit in general over the next year?
CrossFit is set to become HUGE within the UK with the Reebok brand behind things. As a Box, we have some great plans including running more courses and specialist classes, similar to our Olympic Lifting class. We’ll also be launching CrossFit Kids this September after I complete the required certification, and shortly looking to expand into a larger premise to cope with our growing numbers.
What would you say to anyone sceptical about giving CrossFit a go?
When you go into a regular gym, the weight lifting area can often be a very intimidating place to be. We open up weight lifting to all fitness levels in a friendly and sociable environment. It’s not all about weight lifting though, and all our workouts are scalable. We have a large number of men and women of all ages currently enjoying the benefits of CrossFit. Come down and give us a try to see for yourselves!
The South Island Showdown takes place in August. Are we going to see more of these CrossFit competitions over the next year?
Without a doubt, CrossFit competitions will be popping up all over the place. The great thing about the competitions is that they bring all the Boxes together. CrossFit thrives on a community spirit. Having these get-togethers makes the community even closer, and sets us apart from other gyms. Everybody loves it!
You can find Reebok CrossFit Connect at Unit 9, Hove Enterprise Centre, Basin Road North, Hove, BN41 1UY. Call 07791 474 780 / 07850 139 401 to book your FREE taster session today!