Testimonials: CrossFit Athletes

Jake Diaz

Jake Diaz

Jake Diaz has been a member of Unbreakable Athletics Academy since 2013. Before joining Unbreakable, Jake started training for the mini marathon in 2011 to lose weight. Once the weight was gone, he got into bodybuilding to try and gain some muscle mass. In 2013 his cousin invited him to his first crossfit class. He loved it and never looked back. Check out those before and after pics! 👏🏻 💪🏼 Jake then became interested in Olympic lifting, and started doing weightlifting competitions. This has been his main focus for the last 4 or 5 years. Jake really enjoys “Heavy AF back squats” and Cindy is his favorite WOD. “UAA is full of really good people. I like to surround myself with the types of folks you can find here. Furthermore, when everybody is suffering together, it makes things suck a little bit less. I love being a part of that!” Jake’s current goals are to clean and jerk #315, and to put up an official muscle up.

Dawn Henderson

Dawn Henderson

UAA and Unbreakable Lifestyle & Nutrition client Dawn Henderson is our transformation Tuesday highlight this week! Dawn has seen great improvements in her strength and fitness including recent 15lb+ PRs for deadlift, bench press and back squat. Dawn was self admittedly “skinny but not fit or strong” when she joined. With a previous deadlift PR of 130 she now is easily lifting #135 multiple times in a wod! “In the last 7 to 8 months I have put more focus on the healthy eating aspect of my overall nutrition, and trying to create sustainable habits through the Unbreakable Lifestyle & Nutrition program. I try to stay consistent in my health by making sure that working out and eating healthy are a priority. Sometimes my work schedule makes it a little difficult to get into the gym but I have tried to push myself to make up some of that at home. Having my amazing accountability partner always helps. We text each other weekly to see what gym sessions we’re going to be able to get together on and it makes me look forward to going to the gym and being around her and all of the rest of the people that I love to work out with. The Unbreakable Athletics and Lifestyle and Nutrition communities are extremely beneficial to me. I love the people and getting to spend time with them. It’s great for my physical and mental health to have people who support me in every aspect. Having Jen as my personal coach on nutrition is amazing as well. She is holding me accountable and helping me find sustainable habits which has certainly helped in my nutritional choices.”

Inder Heran

Inder Heran

Inder Heran has been training with us for a year and a half. In that time his strength has improved in impressive amounts. In recent months he has seen an increase of 45 pounds conventional and 80 pounds on sumo deadlifts, and added 30 pounds to his bench press PR. 💪🏼 Last May he completed Murph vested, which is his favorite memory at UAA so far. His proudest accomplishment inside the gym is mastering rope climbs. Consistency and hard work is paying off! Inder is working towards his current goals of mastering a muscle up and increasing his over head squat PR to 185 pounds.
💥 No doubt he will achieve these goals.
Haleigh Spencer

Haleigh Spencer

Haleigh has been an Unbreakable member since July 2020. She is already making a huge impact on her own health as well as the fitness and strength of our student athletes. Haleigh worked in various roles in college athletics for ten years prior to her current position. Her passion for student athletes and health is evident when you talk with her about it. Haleigh’s fitness journey has been full of variety! Running was no longer providing the competitive outlet that she was seeking and was becoming more of a chore. She has always been very competitive and has played multiple sports her entire life. Her brother does CrossFit and after hearing of his experience she knew a gym like Unbreakable was exactly what she was looking for! Haleigh has been working with Unbreakable Lifestyle and Nutrition since December of 2020. With increased knowledge she is gaining and accountability from her coach, Kate, she is finding great success with the nutrition program. “The biggest success is having more knowledge about what I’m eating. I never would have thought I don’t get enough protein, but that has been the biggest and best change so far. I need accountability and Kate does such a great job of making me stay accountable and helping me find little, manageable tweaks to keep me progressing.” Haleigh’s favorite moment at UAA has been being able to do chin ups! She writes down her goals, so she sees them everyday. It is a constant reminder of what she is working towards. She would love to one day run the Boston Marathon, but in the interim is working on mastering kipping pull ups.

Eric Farley

Eric Farley

Eric began training at Unbreakable in 2008, the same year the gym was established. He became interested when he first saw the CrossFit games. Being a former college baseball player and well rounded athlete, he always sought out challenges and saw this as no exception. You can find Eric training at UAA every day of the week. It is rare if he does not make it to the gym. He works hard, is deliberate in his training, and is an amazing asset to all who get to train with him. He can often be found offering tips, advice, spots, sharing a laugh or leading a group in mobility/stretching after class. It also must be mentioned that he has the best playlists. Hands down. If you haven’t trained with Eric as the D.J. you’re missing out. Eric is passionate about coaching. It is evident when speaking with him about the athletes in his life. He coaches a travel baseball team, as well as Catching Camps that bring kids from all over the state to learn from him.  Eric is personally always looking for ways to continuously improve. When speaking with him, he spoke of his fear of failure and how it motivates him. Deep personal loss over the course of his life is also part of the catalyst that keeps driving him forward to become the best version of himself. The imprint he has on his own children as well as the young athletes he works with makes a statement about who Eric is as a person. There is no doubt that helping others brings him joy. Jocko Willink says, “Discipline equals Freedom”. Eric has found that living and training this way, achieves the outcome he desires. With structure and direction one will find themselves more productive, and able to focus their found time in other areas. One of the biggest lies people tell themselves daily is that they do not have time. You make time for what you want. If it is a priority, you find a way.

Most recently you may have seen on social media the “75 Hard” Challenge Eric has been taking part in. This challenge was suggested to him by a friend. Although they have not physically worked out together much during this challenge, they keep in contact several times a day to check in and hold each other accountable. As of today, Eric has successfully completed 73 days. This challenge entails:

  • Two 45 minute workouts a day. One of which must be outside. Rain or shine. Warm or Cold. Outside of training at UAA Eric uses running, fast paced walking, and biking to fill in for the second workout.
  • Following a diet: Eric has been following a keto/carb cycling diet that is working really well for him.
  • Take a progress photo every day.
  • Drink 1 gallon of water: Eric sets himself up for success by getting his gallon jug full the night before so he is ready to tackle the morning with his best foot forward.
  • No alcohol or cheat meals.
  • Read 10 pages. Eric has been reading “Atomic Habits”. One of his takeaways he shared was the idea of structure and habit stacking. Setting yourself up for success by associating one action with another. Creating successful, sustainable habits.

Eric admitted that this challenge could not have come at a better time for him. He struggles like many during winter in Indiana, and this forced him to get outside, keep moving and be even more intentional with his time and habits.

If you don’t know him, after reading this, it is evident that Eric exemplifies many of our core values at Unbreakable. Discipline. Teamwork. Enjoyment. Integrity. Kaizen. Always improving. Always working. Eric, you are a wonderful teammate. You are an inspiration to many.

Traci Hrbek

Traci Hrbek

Traci has been an incredible asset to our Unbreakable community for the past 8 years. She lives in Plainfield with her husband Paul and three boys Hunter, Harrison and Hayden, all of whom participate in the sports performance program. She is a Plainfield High School alum and a graduate of Purdue University.  She worked at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital for 18 years as a Child Life Specialist. While in school, Traci played softball and swam. Once she graduated, her focus shifted towards cardio, cardio and more cardio! She has always included running into her training and previously took group cardio-focused classes and competed in triathlons. It wasn’t until she started attending class at UAA that she became involved in strength training. Traci was introduced to UAA by friends and neighbors.  They talked her into giving it a try, and she hasn’t looked back since. When she started, she was self admittedly nervous.  She was unsure what the movements were, the rep schemes seemed confusing. It was all foreign to her.  Her first workout with us was “Filthy Fifty”. It didn’t scare her away. If you have trained with Traci, you know she doesn’t shy away from a challenge. Traci makes training a priority. Not only is she committed to the time in the gym, she uses every minute and often completes the Fitness, Strength, Metcon, Accessories, and more often than not can be found running with friends before she is finished. She is an excellent team mate and sets an exceptional example of hardwork, determination, integrity, teamwork, and enjoyment. She always has a positive attitude, is helpful, and amiable to everyone. During her time training at UAA, Traci has seen great success with barbell movements. While that aspect of training was difficult for her in the beginning of her journey here, she now finds that she is able to RX the weight for most wods and complete the movements much faster than several years ago. Her favorite movement is hand stand push ups. While upper body strength is Traci’s favorite, she has seen the most improvement in her deadlift. Her favorite WODs are  Annie, Unbreakable Wod and Murph, which she proudly completed with a 20# vest. If you know Traci, you should not be surprised by that. She just doesn’t stop. With that being said, Traci is always working and striving to improve.  In the near future she hopes to get better at some gymnastic movements. Getting a muscle up and handstand walks are on her list of goals. She also wouldn’t mind trying another sprint triathlon- anyone want to join in?!? When asked how the UAA community has helped her, Traci emphasized the connections she has made.  She looks forward to training with like minded individuals, everyone cheering each other on, and wanting each other to succeed. Traci says because of our community she has grown so much as an athlete in her 8 years at Unbreakable. There is no doubt that she has also left an imprint on others. Thank you, for being you, Traci!

Aaryn Finch

Aaryn Finch

Aaryn Finch has been an active member of UAA since September 2020. He played football and rugby in high school, and still plays Rugby now! To stay in shape before joining our community he did some power lifting and calisthenics for a year. He was looking for something more and his brother Anthony introduced him to UAA. In the short time Aaryn has spent training with us he is down 30 pounds and stronger than ever! 💪🏼 He often comes to train straight from working over night, but he consistently shows up and works hard. He has seen great improvement in his dead lift, back squat (400#s) and bench press (300#s). He pulled 480 for Sumo DL this quarter and his strength is consistently increasing. He says he loves UAA because “at the gym I challenge and push myself to get better with each work out. My Favorite thing about UAA is the people in the classes. The energy they bring to each work out and the help and encouragement they give to help you get that last rep or go a little heavier on the weight.”

Steve Helpingstine

Steve Helpingstine

Steve is 37 and is originally from Portage, Indiana. He went to IU (go hoosiers!) for his undergrad and his MBA. He now works for Cummins as the Director of Accounting Research and Policy. He lives with his wife Ashley and his two sons Ben (9) and Sebastian (6). Steve’s son Ben was participating in the sports performance training sessions during his baseball team’s off season. Steve would often bring Ben to UAA and stuck around to watch. He instantly thought, “This is great! I really should be doing this!” Steve joined before the shutdown, but became consistent in October 2020. Before coming to UAA, Steve solely focused on running as his means of training, and as a way to stay in shape. Steve ran cross country and track in high school and walked onto the track team at IU. If you’ve ever trained with Steve when there was a running WOD then you know, he is quick! Over the next 10 years or so, Steve would run regularly for fun and enter a local race here or there.  Then, he got the itch and signed up for a marathon and started seriously training again. During training for his first marathon, he started having Achilles issues.  During the third (and final) marathon training, he had a disc issue in his back, which then led to hip issues and months of PT and not running.  That final marathon was THE goal for Steve. Boston. It had been his training focus for two solid years.  Steve eventually did end up “jogging” it for the experience with the thought that he would be able to get back and race at a later time. That was four years ago, and Steve still can’t put together more than a few weeks of solid mileage without some type of injury popping up.  He then knew something needed to change. At first, Steve was apprehensive. He was afraid of injuring himself. Given his past training/injury history he was nervous about getting hurt. He had never really done much strength work before, so it was all new to him. He credits our phenomenal coaches for easing his fears with their constant support, feedback and cues. “When I joined UAA, I knew I was weak, inflexible, and imbalanced, but I didn’t know how bad until I started getting into it.  There were a lot of frustrating days.  Mentally, I thought I could power through it, but I didn’t have any base to rely on to actually do that and that was a struggle for me.  Once I realized the similarities with running and there is a progression/certain building blocks you need to hit, the gains really started.” Since joining UAA Steve has seen significant improvement across the board in his strength, mobility and endurance.  Lately he has spent a lot of time ringing the PR Bell. His favorite strength movement is box squats, and he recently split a pair of running shorts up the back while training. He found the humor in the moment, but it was also confirmation of the progress he was making. Steve is consistently getting stronger, he works to have good form in his movements, and he has a great attitude.  You can find him after class doing the accessories as well as extra work before and after class. Steve is committed to becoming stronger and healthier. Do you want to know the best part of it all? Steve has been injury free in 2021. That is definitely something to celebrate and be proud of.

Anthony Finch

Anthony Finch

Anthony Finch is 26 and has been training with us at Unbreakable Athletics Academy for ten months now. He began training with us to be better prepared for his upcoming rugby seasons where he plays as a winger. Wingers are usually the fastest players on the team, and are elusive runners. Anthony is a dedicated and disciplined athlete, and he works on being explosive at all movements. You can often find him after class doing accessory work, working on his speed and power. Anthony has been very happy with how his training at UAA has positively impacted his results on the field. While he has always been athletic and involved with sports, when he joined us Anthony was nervous about performing new strength movements that he wasn’t familiar with. He credits the coaching and welcoming family atmosphere with his successes thus far. “Everyone has shown me endless amounts of support.” Anthony has found that he has improved in many areas physically, but the most improvement can be seen in his endurance and cardio. He is able to complete most wods RX and even RX+ which motivates Anthony to continue training and working hard. “I am enjoying seeing how far I’ve come in my time with UAA and imagining how far I can go if I stick with it.” When asked what his proudest accomplishment is this far at UAA, Anthony responded that coming out of his comfort zone and trying new workouts and strength movements has been major for him. For example, today was Anthony’s first time climbing the rope. It’s not a lack of strength that held him back, it was the uncertainty. With additional help from a coach today, he has now accomplished a new skill. Anthony has said days like today keep him consistent. The love and addiction of positive results will keep him coming back and working hard. “The work won’t be easy, but the results are well worth it as long as you give all you got!”

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