CFB Member Spotlight: Jen Taiariol
There are a lot of ways you may know Jen Taiariol – hockey mom, the woman who always works out in the back row, the member most welcoming of new people, the “Jen T” on the whiteboard who is always posting amazing times – but did you know she also earned her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Wayne state University WHILE working full-time and consistently working out?
Did you know she’s also the most tenured member at CFB since joining in 2008?
She credits the CFB community for developing in her the endurance and stress management needed to be a busy, full-time working mom to Jake 22, Nick 20 and Joey 19 while also serving as a school psychologist and the Director of Student Services for Livonia Public Schools.
What motivates her to keep going?
When did you get started with CrossFit and why? What were your initial feelings?
CrossFit Brighton used to be known as “Sticks” when it started in the old location. My oldest son was involved with hockey and trained there while I sat in my car and read a book for an hour. After watching him workout, I decided that I could and should also attend the sessions. I started in the fall of their opening year (2008) when they only had 45 lb. bars, we ran ALL the time and when Keely Tamer was the trainer, watch-out! It was intimidating at first, but once you got the hang of the lingo it was fun!
What was it like back in those early days?
In the early years we had some days when it was only you and the trainer and they HAD to work out with you then. I always hoped I wasn’t the only class member. They also used to have WODs that consisted of games such as a two-person team and you started the WOD with a full cup of water. The team who had the most water left in their cup after the WOD, won.
There are so many options when it comes to gyms and training, what’s kept you at CFB this long?
I absolutely love the people at CFB. It doesn’t matter which class you attend, at what time of the day: you will find a friendly face. I enjoy welcoming the new members and reassuring them that they too will learn to love CFB. I keep coming back year after year because of the family environment created by Chris and John (and Jen, Alex, Jess, Darin, Jodi, Jill etc…)
How do you make time for it given your busy schedule?
You have to make yourself and your health a priority. I could not perform my job without the strength and endurance (both mental and physical) developed at CFB.
What have you learned about yourself since you have been at CrossFit Brighton?
I have learned that I can only work out in the back row, never the front, maybe in the second row!
What has inspired the biggest impact on you during your time here?
There is nothing that inspires me more than new members coming in, working hard, and surpassing what they thought was possible. CFB does that for all of us.
What else would encourage people to give us a try or keep them coming back?
I think word-of-mouth is really the best way. Some people have a misperception of what CrossFit is and therefore won’t take the time to try. If they do join, you’ll find the people at CFB keep you coming back.
Thanks for sharing your story Jen, keep up the great work!