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Five Years of Fitness

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CrossFit Algiers is turning five this month.  This gym exists because of the power of community, and of friends who believe in you, even – maybe especially – when you don’t believe in yourself.

In the summer of 2014, I sat by the Maxwell Air Force Base swimming pool in Alabama with two dear girlfriends. We were office mates. They saw me in heels and suits most days, running a strategic communications program for the Air Force and sneaking off to work out at every opportunity.

Something I’d thought of, but never said out loud, made its way out. “I wish I could just move to New Orleans and open my own CrossFit box,” I said. I kept my voice casual, figuring that if I didn’t sound serious, they wouldn’t know how badly I really wanted it.  And if they laughed, it wouldn’t be so bad. But they didn’t laugh.

“Jodi, you should totally do that,” Mary Evelyn said. “That would be perfect for you.”

“For reals, Jodi Lynn,” Jenn said. “You love doing CrossFit, and you love New Orleans. That would be the perfect fit.”

Hearing people I cared about believe in my dream gave me the courage to start pursuing it.  That simple conversation gave my heart the courage it needed to begin. Before a year had gone by, I’d quit my job and moved our family to New Orleans. It was not easy. It was really scary and really hard. What made it possible, though, was having great people around to lift us up, even on the hardest days.

We bet everything on the power of community, and it paid off. It paid off in having a space where people can support and be supported, where people are humbled and lifted up, where something magical happens because we all showed up to do this thing. Our gym began in the spirit of friendships where you can say your crazy dreams and have people believe in them, and that spirit continues today.

Our birthday party is Feb. 8. We’ll have a workout at 10 am, and bubbles and cake at 11 am. I hope you’ll join us.