Melissa Smith & Kim Hemmert “Banker Buds”

1.  Tell us a little about yourself?

Kim- I grew up in the Allston/Brighton area of Boston with pretty much most of my extended family all living within a few blocks of each other.  As a result, I am an only child that feels like I grew up with multiple brothers and sisters.  Five years ago I ventured outside the box, and moved to the South Shore with my husband Brian.  Brian and I currently live in Weymouth along with our pride and joy, Louie.  Louie is a 1 ½ year old mini goldendoodle and anyone that is friends with me on Facebook, Instagram or just talks to me for 5 minutes knows that little guy owns my heart.

Melissa- Lifelong resident of Hingham and mom to two little girls who are equal parts fun and work!  I try to bring them to the Family WOD when our schedules permit but unfortunately that isn’t as often as I would like.  Also, I live so close to RCFBC I should probably walk to class, and I do feel guilty when I see Colleen running home and I am getting in my car!

2.  Tell us your CrossFit story (where were you before RCFBC and where are you now?)

Kim- Before CrossFit I was doing the typical gym thing, taking classes and being pretty bored with the whole scene.  I feel like I tried everything, but nothing really held my attention for long so I would eventually get bored and move on to something else.  I had heard a lot about CrossFit, both good and bad, and decided I wanted to see what it was all about for myself, but I wasn’t sure where to go and I was a little nervous to actually try it.  Brian came home one night, told me about the new CrossFit that opened next to Salsa’s and encouraged me to give it a shot.  So, I did what anyone else would do, I stalked the place.  I looked at the website, drove by trying to figure out where they were and what they were doing in there, trying to find out if everybody was super fit and muscular.  Finally, Brian convinced me to give it a try so I signed up for On- Ramp and was hooked by the end of the first night.  Every time I step inside I know it is going to be a challenge.  Sometimes you leave feeling pumped and exhilarated and sometimes you leave feeling a bit defeated, but you always leave knowing you will be back for more.

Melissa-  Running on my own and losing motivation, so a good friend of mine suggested I try CrossFit.  She joined the previous fall and she really enjoyed it.  So I listened to her and signed up for a free class and then On-Ramp, and I was hooked.

3.  What does being part of RCFBC community mean to you?

Kim- When I first started CrossFit, I honestly didn’t think much about the community aspect of it all, but you can’t help but be pulled in by it.  You have this amazing group of people consisting of all ages, backgrounds, sizes, and fitness levels that are empowering each other to be the best they can be, pushing each other past what you think you can do, lending a hand when needed, cheering each other on and even just having fun and being silly.  It is really great to be part of a place where everyone really does have everyone’s back.  The coaches here are the best; they truly have a vested interest in every single member.  They are knowledgeable, motivating and inspiring and it amazes me that they can remember on a person by person basis if you should in fact be adding more weight to that bar. I love when I am wearing something with RCFBC on it and someone happens to ask me if I like it.  They probably get more than they bargained for, because I can go on forever about all the reasons why I love it!

Melissa- I like working out as a group.  At first I didn’t think I would like the group dynamics, but I have to say after experiencing it, working out together does motivate you more and makes the classes fun. 

4.  What accomplishments are you most proud of?

Kim- Definitely competing in the Open and the Ghetto Games competition.

Kim- I didn’t sign up for the open until after I completed the first workout because I was sure I wouldn’t be able to do it.  I think I completed half the double-unders with my mouth open, I couldn’t believe I was actually doing it.  Then one week after the next for five weeks (except Toes to Bar week), I kept surprising myself.  I couldn’t believe I completed 14.5, it hurt like hell, but that accomplishment felt so good!  Melissa and I were teammates at the Ghetto Games and looking back now, I can’t believe how far we have come from those two scared girls wondering what in God’s name we were thinking by participating in this CrossFit competition.  We barely made it through the first WOD just trying to battle the nerves, but by the last WOD we killed it coming in at the top in that particular event.  We obviously didn’t make it to the leaderboard or the podium; but we were there, we competed and gave all we had to every WOD and for that I will always be proud of us.

Melissa- Getting up in time for the 5:30 AM class!

5.  What are your challenges and goals going forward?

Kim- ROPE CLIMB!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I will get up that rope no matter how long I have to work at it and of course I would really love it if my knees would just cooperate and stay OUT while squatting.   Seriously, everything is a challenge at CrossFit and that is why I love it, you just have to keep coming back and plugging away at it.

Melissa- If Mike could answer this I know he would say, “Squats….knees out” so I have to go with squats as my challenge.   Goals would be never to hear “no rep”  and losing my fear of overhead squats….it always comes back to squats!

6.  Has CrossFit changed the way you feel about fitness and health? 

Kim- CrossFit has definitely changed the way I feel about fitness, but most importantly it has changed the way I feel about health.  For as long as I can remember, I would live by the scale, stepping on it at least twice a day.  I was fixated on what that number was saying and of course how that number ultimately made me feel.  Since CrossFit, I think less about the number on the scale and more about what my body can actually do.  My quest for “skinny” has turned into a quest for strong and healthy.  I do still sometimes step on the scale, just to sneak a quick peek and it sometimes freaks me out for 5 minutes, but then I remember that I can deadlift more than that number and that helps to put it all in perspective. 

Melissa- I am in better shape and stronger than I was before I joined, and I try to  eat healthier.  I am not saying I  am always better at eating healthy, but I definitely think more about it.

7.  How did you two ladies meet? 

Kim- I met Melissa on our first night of On-Ramp at RCFBC.  I remember walking through the door for the first time and really just wanting to run back out, but I saw Melissa sitting on one of the boxes and thought, “she looks nice, I’ll chat with her” and the rest is what they call history.  Melissa has become a great friend inside and outside CrossFit.  Most people think we have known each other since kindergarten; sometimes I think we have too. 

Melissa- I met Kim during On-Ramp back in March 2013 and it turns out we both work at State Street Bank in Boston.  It is good to have a partner in crime, makes getting up for class easier and coming to class not as scary.   And she never “no reps” me!

These two strong, dedicated, and motivating ladies are one dynamite duo!  They have both gotten way stronger to the point that they don’t know what their own body’s are capable of.  Just like everyone else in the gym they have goats but with the drive they both share they will continue to break down walls! It truly is a small world the way these two ladies met and the fact that they work for the same company is pretty AWESOME!  Kim’s quote is the best  “My quest for “skinny” has turned into a quest for “strong and healthy”. I would have to say that’s the best goal to have my friends.  Great job ladies, and continue to crush it!!!! 

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