April 2014 Athlete of the Month

April 2014: Little Big Man

Squats, Pullups and PBR…thats what Sprouse does!

sprouse1 Meet Matt!

Tell us about yourself (name, age, education, family, work, etc.)

Matt Sprouse and I’m 31 years old. I went to THE James Madison University. I have a beautiful wife (Gina) a super extraordinary daughter (Harper) that will be 2 in June and, the real pride of our family, an English Bulldog named Grace.

How long have you been doing crossfit?

Year and a half, started with Nate and Lauren in November ’12. Yes, I was one of the people at Gold’s doing those “crazy” crossfit exercises.

When/what was your “crossfit moment” or have you had one? (the one where you think you may actually die)

There have been multiple, but the worst would have to be the 2nd work out I ever tried with Nate and LC at Gold’s. I really can’t remember all of it, something with lots of movements and most notably hang cleans. There was a point that I literally blacked out for a split second. It seems like those few months at Golds was an exploratory time for Nate and LC on how and what would be a work out, and I was the new guy guinea pig. Not complaining, I loved it, but I learned real quick that I was either going to meet my fitness goals, or quite possibly and literally die trying.

What are your favorite crossfit movements?

This is a hard question. I love crossfit holistically but I’m not sure that I have any favorite movement. Every movement has its own set of challenges, and no matter how well you do it there’s always room to push it harder. I guess some of the things I’m least alarmed of when I see them on the board are squats, runs and pull ups.

What movement makes you look at the white board and want to walk back out the door?

Wow, a year, or 6 months, ago this question would have been a no brainer…Double Unders. However my outlook has started to level out. There really aren’t any movements that I’m excited to see, and there really aren’t any that I want to tuck tail and run over either. I know that everything on that board is going to push my muscles and leave me gasping for air, but I always channel my inner, “I got this” and know that I’m going push through.

What are your goals?

Be fit, live a healthier, happier and fuller life. Be someone that my daughter is going to be proud of.

What motivates you to continue coming back?

Crossfit has proven to be the perfect medium for me to obtain all of my fitness goals. Along the way I’ve met some pretty awesome peeps.

It has also given me a chance to feed my competitive side and I’m defiantly a competitive person. I’d say I am my own biggest competitor, but I could list off more than a few other names that are a close second.

What’s your favorite cheat meal?

I’m not really a sweets fan, unless you consider peanut butter a sweet. But I am a sucker for about anything else, especially fried food. If I could deep-fry a cheeseburger and wash it down with a PBR, that may be the best cheat meal ever.

In your own words what is Rocktown Crossfit?

Community. It’s the people that make Rocktown and Crossfit special. We’re not just gym buddies, we’ve all molded into a gang of real friends that just happen to work out together. It doesn’t matter where we do our work outs, when we’re together pushing, cheering and building each other then we’re rep’ing the Rock.

Free Write: (anything you want to say about trainers/facilities/other athletes/etc)

I was hitting up Golds at least 4 days a week before crossfit, but I was really starting to get burned out on it. The highlight of my work out was literally the 40 minutes I’d spend on an elliptical (puke). I knew I needed more so the next time I saw LC in the gym I asked when they were going to start doing, whatever it was they were doing, again (I actually didn’t even know the phrase crossfit yet). Man am I glad I took the opportunity to ask about it. The friends I’ve met though my crossfit experience are truly the best part. Cheering each other on, competing against each other, just the overall camaraderie of it, that’s what makes getting up at 5am everyday all worth it. Good people doing good things.

A Note from the Rocktown Staff:

Sprouse, I wish Chris Manning could see you now!  Some of my favorite memories are from our days at Gold’s, introducing Sprouse to double unders (one day ended with a toss of the rope, a few expletives, and Sprouse doing benchpress!), creating “momentum” for his snatches (you’ll have to ask him about this secret move of his yourself) and just some of the crazy stuff we would do.  Back in those days safety/concern for others was out the door so anything was a possibility but every morning he kept coming back…we’d tell him the plan for the day and he’d shrug his shoulders and say where do we start?!  All joking aside this guy has grown into a monster.  Very rarely does a workout come along that Matt doesn’t annihilate…case in point his 2:56 Fran last week.  And like most of our AOTM, as good as he is in the gym he’s even better out of it.  This guy lives for his wife, his brothers and his daughter and is a great example for young parents everywhere…you’d want your daughter to grow up and meet a guy like Matt Sprouse (at least the 2014 version of him haha).  Matt wasn’t blessed with the most height but what he lacks in size he makes up in strength and effort.  Congratulations on becoming the April Athlete of the Month…its been very deserving for a long time, welcome to the club. (photos courtesy of Sarah Thomas Photography)
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