Dan Jacobson aka VIPER
1. Tell us a little about yourself?
For me the sun rises and sets with my family. That begins with my three kids (1 girl, 2 boys all under the ages 7, 5 and 2. I was born and raised outside of Boston, the youngest of three kids. Other than a seven year stint in New York City I’ve lived here all my life which makes me a hardcore Boston sports fan. I don’t have many pictures of myself and my family was universally against a quick picture for this. Relatedly, I took my first selfie today I hear that’s what the kids are doing these days….It made me uncomfortable.
2. Tell us your CrossFit story (where were you before RCFBC and where are you now?)
I was 17 when I was slated to be drafted to pitch in major league baseball. At the time I was also planning to play college soccer as a keeper, which was all very good and that’s when I started lifting weights….. not so good. I had a few “trainers” designing workouts for me no cross-training, no real science behind my program. After 12 months of training I found myself on the operating table facing a 6 hour surgery to repair a damaged shoulder. Hart Lee Dykes was a first round draft pick for the Patriots and he had shoulder surgery the same day I did. I remember asking the surgeon when I could play again and he told me that compared to my surgery, Dykes’ procedure was a Swedish massage. After extensive rehab which left me with only 70% range of motion, I never played another out and real competitive soccer was out of the question. Needless to say, I stopped lifting weights.
I’ve struggled with being overweight most of my life, so I began running and that’s pretty much all I did. I liked the endorphins and it kept my weight down but after a while I stopped seeing the health benefits. In January 2013, I had a physical and my numbers showed I’d gained 25 pounds (not good), my cholesterol was 267 (really not good) and I was on the heels of having to take statins. Then my neighbors (Chris and Alissa Cole) told me about CrossFit. I had seen how fit they’d become and they explained a bit about the CrossFit philosophy. I went to On-Ramp and quickly embraced the program cross-training, scaling, mobility, nutrition, very good trainers, community. It just made sense.
Fast-forward to today. I feel stronger and more fit than I’ve felt in years. I’m as strong as I was 15 years ago. I can definitively say that my shoulder is more stable than it’s been since before the injury. I had a physical two months ago. I’ve dropped 15 pounds, and my cholesterol is down below 200. My PCP told me it’s as good a change in numbers overall as anyone could possibly expect.
My CrossFit story continues but so far I’d say it’s been pretty transformational.
3. What does being part of RCFBC community mean to you?
I can be freakishly competitive. When I first started at Bare Cove I competed against the other members for motivation. I’d actually pick someone out, imagine them as the opposing team, get fired up and do the workout. That stopped after a month or so when I understood that people were rooting for me, even those much further along than me. I found myself rooting for other members and that’s translated in other gyms (New York, Oregon, Florida, etc.) I miss team sports and being apart of the CrossFit community gives me that team.
4. What accomplishments are you most proud of?
The improvement in my health is a big accomplishment for me. In terms of movements being able to do a few bar muscle-ups felt pretty sweet!
5. What are your challenges and goals going forward?
I need to improve my stamina to lower my times. I want to lose about 10 more pounds at least. I’d like to do the paleo challenge in earnest. And I have to beat my nemeses, the double-under and the pull-up.
6. If you could describe RCFBC in one word what would it be?