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Sunday, September 22, 2013 – Athlete Profile: Ronnie Rackley

2013 September 21
by bk

Athlete Profile: Ronnie Rackley


1. In general what’s your background?

Cincinnati, born & raised.  Yup, I’m from Ohio and I’d like to keep it that way!  I joined the US Navy straight out of high school and got my first taste of Charleston thanks to Navy Nuke school back in 1998.  From there I traveled Europe and the Mediterranean on USS Hartford out of Groton, CT.  I spent my final 2 yrs in Guam where I traveled the Pacific side of the world from Japan to Australia.  When I got out I pursued my bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering back home at the University of Cincinnati graduating in 2008.  I then accepted a short lived job in Baton Rouge but finally ended up back here in Charleston in March 2009.

2. Age, occupation?

34 yrs, Mechanical/Design Engineer @BAE Systems Inc.

3.  How did you get to know about CrossFit and why did you start?

A good friend of mine introduced me to CrossFit while in college and I did a few main site wods at the University Rec Center but never really had a clue what I was doing. My form was horrendous and I was vastly uneducated in the fitness/nutrition world; I could barely do 3 pull-ups.  But, what kept me interested was the competitive nature of the sport along with its camaraderie and that feeling of leaving it all in the gym after a good WOD; it was everything I loved & missed most about military boot camp!

I always thought I was fairly active but the combination of unhealthy eating habits (eating too much), drinking, and being laid up for months after 3 knee surgeries, my weight slowly started creeping up.  While in Baton Rouge I hit almost 200lbs; up from 155lbs coming out of boot camp.  After returning from a cruise I was going through pictures and realized how big I had actually gotten.  That was my turning point, when I decided to get back to healthy.

As much as I hate running, I started running off the weight and controlling my portion sizes as I didn’t exactly eat horribly (just too much).  I started out slow and steady eventually working my way up to running 5k/day and I began reading more about proper form and Olympic lifting (Starting Strength).  Finally, I got my weight back down to a more manageable 160lbs after about 6 months then, coincidentally, a group of co-workers and I found a Groupon to join a local box near our office.  I went almost every day M-F during my lunch break and here I am almost 4 yrs later.

4. How has CrossFit changed your life, lifestyle, level of fitness?

CrossFit has helped me become lighter, stronger, faster and put me in the best, overall shape of my life (ask to see my before/after pic; I’m extremely proud of it!).  I just feel all-around healthier and, best of all, my knee barely gives me any pain or problems at all (since I learned to squat properly.)

I’m usually fairly quiet & reserved until you get to really know me but walking into almost any CrossFit Box you immediately feel like family. So, CrossFit has made me come out of my shell a bit more. I absolutely love all the screaming and cheering for each other! It definitely helps especially during the Open this year!

5. Name one goal and/or personal record you would like to accomplish through CrossFit.

My biggest goal is to get all of my Olympic lifts above my body weight. Right now, my Strict Press and Power Snatch are holding me back but I’m getting really close!  Oh, and I wanna deadlift 500#s eventually!

6. Favorite CrossFit moment so far?

Getting my Level 1 Certification last January for my birthday AND participating in the CrossFit Open for the first time this year were by far the most exciting and humbling CrossFit moments of my life.  By gaining a broader & more in-depth education in CrossFit and to see how I ranked among the rest of the world have made me very proud.

7. What do you like most about CrossFit Integrity?

Being a member of a family of one of the top CrossFit Box’s in the SouthEast Region and being recognized by strangers whenever I wear my Integrity t-shirt.  Everyone I’ve met there is extremely friendly and the coaches are very accommodating and always willing to help.  I felt welcomed from the first day I visited.

8. Favorite WOD?

Hero WOD: Josh

The Girls: Angie, Linda, & Amanda

9. Least favorite WOD?

Any WOD with over a mile of running.  I’ve done the bridge run and felt like I was going to die (but I absolutely love mud runs!)

10. Favorite movement?

Definitely muscle-ups, butterfly pull-ups and anything involving handstands! (it’s a 3-way tie)

11. Least favorite movement?

too much running (I’d much rather row twice the distance)

12. Favorite place to eat in Charleston?

It took a while to get here but… by far I’ve missed Chipotle since I left college!

CrossFit Integrity, Charleston, SC

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2 Responses leave one →
  1. Vanny permalink
    September 22, 2013

    Great profile Ronnie! Thanks for all of your help during the open! You’re an awesome addition to the CFI family! Can’t wait to see you lift more than your body weight!

  2. Will C. permalink
    September 22, 2013

    Ronald! Love getting in a WOD right beside ya dude!

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