Viewing entries in
Sucess stories

Sean has taken this challenge in his stride and even started cooking

Sean has taken this challenge in his stride and even started cooking

Sean is our winner of week three for the 28 day nutrition challenge.

Sean has taken this challenge in his stride and even started cooking. Sean has given up his beloved fizzy drinks and even prepped energy ball snacks to give him that extra protein boost.

Sean wins himself some Dr Gus Bone shake to help him beyond the 28 day challenge and into the future. Sean is a bit of a joker and made us all laugh with a comment for international fried chicken day, but he’s proud to say he didn’t give into temptation and his will power was bigger then he previously thought.

Sean didn’t really need to lose weight, he wanted to lose body fat and build up muscle and I think it’s safe to say he’s been smashing them goals.

Well done Sean, Team Ulysses are very proud of you and all you’ve achieved in educating yourself in your new found healthy lifestyle.

Team work, makes the dream work.

Team work, makes the dream work.

A few weeks ago, a few of our awesome members took part in total warrior.

They worked as a team and worked their way around the obstacle course race together.

Team work, makes the dream work.

T - together

E - everyone

A - achieves

M - milestones

Having fun and getting very muddy in the process.

What an amazing day they had and Team Ulysses are proud of you all for competing together.

The picture tells a wonderful story. But there were other members who competed the day before who done just as awesome as these guys.

Well done to you all.

10 years younger.

10 years younger.

There is nothing more we love than sharing success stories.

Well here goes. Our 28 day challenge participants’ have been doing amazing.

Since the 15th June when they started they have all shared their highs and lows, they have been sticking to tracking their food, sharing recipes and even having tasting sessions of snacks and protein with each other. The groups chat is always buzzing with members sharing things from photos to inspiration and each one has contributed towards helping each other.

Great TEAM effort guys. Team Ulysses are so proud of each and every one of you.

But the most amazing thing to come from all this is, over the first week, their collective loss was over 15 KG. Their body fat percentage has been greatly de-creased and the energy levels the members have has shown in every WOD.

Another awesome added bonus, is the metabolic age of the participants’ that wanted a weigh in, has de-creased by 10 years. Yes, 10 years in just over a week of eating healthy.

Each one has a different goal, but over all, the weight loss throughout has been amazing. One has seen significant changes in her body, one has seen that her get up and go which left a long time, has well and truly returned. One has mentioned how much energy she has, one has told us how his love for fatty food has simply gone. But those are just a few highs, there were many, many more..

Not to mention the camaraderie among the full group.

Well done guys. We’re looking forward to what the next few weeks have in store for you all!

San has taken on mental clarity to his healthy lifestyle, even giving up his weekend beers

San has taken on mental clarity to his healthy lifestyle, even giving up his weekend beers

Were proud to announce our 28 day challenge winner for week two is San.

San has taken on mental clarity to his healthy lifestyle, even giving up his weekend beers.

He’s contributed a lot to the group this week, by sharing his highs and lows and his lunch meal prep picture for the week, which looked awesome. Hes taken on all advice and has made amazing progress. He’s been drinking lots of water and has adapted to this change in a healthy lifestyle with a positive outlook and we’re looking forward to seeing him achieve more.

San wins himself some DR GUS protein for all his effort and hard work for week two.

Week three is well under way and we’re excited to see who the next winner will be.

You’ve all done amazing guys. Keep up the great work and keep tracking your food, your goals, and most of all your amazing progress.

Team Ulysses are proud of each and everyone of you!

  Steven McDonald, Ulysses Member of the Month for June.

Steven McDonald, Ulysses Member of the Month for June.

It gives Team Ulysses great pleasure in announcing that Steven McDonald is our member of the month for June.

Ste was out illusive zebra.

White in flexibility and black in rowing for The Level Method.

Over the course of the few months he’s been with us, he’s worked really hard on his weakness’s and can now hit full depth with his squats.

Well done Ste, we’re all super proud of you and all the progress you’ve made.

Ste can now knock out double unders for fun and his flexibility has been made a lot easier with the progress he’s made.

You can see the pride he has, for achieving the things he though impossible when he started and Team Ulysses love it.

Ste is humble with his achievements and it’s inspiring for all our members to see!

Ste, you hero. You’re no longer the illusive zebra and Team Ulysses are proud of everything you’ve achieved and for what the future goals you have planned.

Amazing people doing extraordinary things.

Why not book a free intro and we see if we can help you achieve what you thought impossible.

Smashing out goals daily.   💪👊

Smashing out goals daily. 💪👊

All our 28 day nutrition challenge members have smashed it this week.  

Smashing out goals daily.   💪👊

However, Gemma has been picked for the first week's prize for her active involvement within the group. Posting messages and pictures of her food.  Sharing her highs and lows with the nutrition coaches and other members and she's also finally started to see results after years of plateau.

Gemma's goal has been to loose a fat %, and gain strength and muscle.  

Her end goal is in sight and she's super excited to see her results at the end of the 28 day challenge and beyond.    

Her smile is getting bigger along with her muscle mass and she oozes confidence. 

Gemma you've done amazing, keep up the great work and keep that end goal in perfect vision.  Ben was proud to hand over Gemma’s prizes. A bag of Natural Nutrients Chocolate Protein (to help Gemma’s sweet tooth} and of course the all important shaker to go along with it.

Thank you to Natural Nutrients and Dr Gus, for kindly sponsoring our 28 day Challenge.

Team Ulysses are proud of Gemma, all our members for the 28 nutrition challenge and all our CrossFit members too.  

Team Ulysses

Keeping people healthy, happy and confident since 2016. 

Why not book a free into and see how Team Ulysses could help you achieve your goals.   

Ben our leader and his partner in crime Dawn smashing out another comp.

Ben our leader and his partner in crime Dawn smashing out another comp.

Ben our leader and his partner in crime Dawn smashing out another comp.  

This time on the floor at the same time but in separate sections.  

Both amazing people with hearts of gold that just like helping people.  

Dawn, a great inspiration in our box for not just the females but the males too.  

Ben our leader, leading my example with his nutrition and healthy lifestyle and smashing out goals all over. 

Well done to you both competing Battle For Middle Ground.  On Saturday at Beingtinthorpe.

It's safe to say everyone at Ulysses, are as proud of you as you are of us.   

What do you do to inspire others? 

Why not book a free Intro and see how others just like these two can inspire you, to inspire others.   

A goal without a plan is just a wish.

A goal without a plan is just a wish.

A goal without a plan is just a wish.

Matty has been with us for a while now and he always has a goal. He wanted them Double unders and he mastered them, he wanted bar muscle ups and mastered them just in time for the open and now he's finally got RING MUSCLE UPS. Matty is focused and knows what he wants.

Goals without a plan are just wishes. Matty had goals. He's achieve them in such a short space of time and we cannot be more proud of him. He's now working on handstand walks and he’s wanting to get a few minutes off his 5KM run too and we know he'll smash them goals just like his others.

Ulysses coaches know Matty listens and takes on board everything that is said to him, he even stopped kipping until he mastered strict movements.

Matty you are awesome and we look forward to seeing you achieve your next goals.


Get your goals written down and lets get smashing them just like Matty did..

It's great to be acknowledged by other leaders.   😍

It's great to be acknowledged by other leaders.   😍

It's great to be acknowledged by other leaders.   😍

A great write up for Ben, our leader. By a leading fitness revolution.   The Level Method.

Big shoutout to CrossFit Ulysses 🙌

Crossfit Ulysses is founded by Ben Jakeman who has been a dedicated coach for over 6 years, but his love of sports began a long time ago as a 6 year old, playing football! Then fitness followed him as he grew up and became a soldier in the Britsh Army at age 21.

"My army fitness carried me forward for years" and he even started a football club,  then got into Personal Training.  Through the phases of his life, fitness has followed him, and no matter what he was doing he kept the passion to help others before himself.

3 years ago, he formed Crossfit Ulysses and opened the doors to  a massive 5400sq facility with the backing and support from his amazing wife Rachel, friends, and brother Chris and his sister-in-law Ingrid.  Through the challenges  of running his  gym and being a business owner,  Ben kept his belief in himself and his WHY fresh in his mind.

"The biggest gift I can give someone is posture, flexibility and giving knowledge and empowering members to improve the health of them, their family, and friends. "

When he reached out and was interested in using the Level Method, we were excited to unite with such a driven leader:

"I feel I’ve found my perfect team, starting Level Method and recently Two-Brained Mentorship have me more enthusiastic yet focused than ever."

Ben is a team player and strives to represent!

He lives by the philosophies like  "there is always room for improvement" and  "many minds are greater than one"

It's awesome to have you and your team onboard, Ben! 💪

Ben wants to help change the health of the people of Tees Valley.

Book a free intro and let Ben and his team help you to become the healthiest happiest version of yourself.

 I am not yet where I want to be but I now know that I can ‘trust the process’ and CrossFit Ulysses

I am not yet where I want to be but I now know that I can ‘trust the process’ and CrossFit Ulysses

Georgina has been with us since January and her journey so far is inspiring.   She is such a wonderful, helpful caring young lady adn has a smile for everyone she meets. She is an inspiration to all young females out there. Don’t procrastinate, chase those goals and achieve great things!

Read what G has to say below..

I started my CrossFit journey in January 2019 and I can honestly say I have never ever looked back. I was part of this year’s 28 day challenge and it has honestly changed my life completely. I lost over 10lb in the first month and have now lost over 22lb.

I have always struggled with my weight and the way I look. Back in school and throughout university I have always been the ‘bigger girl’ but CrossFit Ulysses is helping me change myself while also making me happier and healthier. Whilst studying at Teesside I have always tried to make sure I go to the gym and attend football training but never actually lost weight. Going on crash diets whilst living in student accommodation just never seemed to work for me.

Steph told me about CrossFit Ulysses back in 2016 when she first started and I never even considered it, which was a massive mistake. The atmosphere and the family feeling is something that keeps me going throughout class as well as outside of CrossFit. Ben and the team are so fantastic in what they do and each class brings me closer to reaching my end goal.

As I said, I am not yet where I want to be but I now know that I can ‘trust the process’ and CrossFit Ulysses will help me get there soon enough. I don’t want to have to wear baggy clothes and try and hide at the back of photos any more which is why I decided back in January that I was going to change my life for the better.

After completing the 28 day challenge I couldn’t not stay with the box, so ever so kindly my parents bought me a block booking for my birthday and CrossFit Ulysses is now stuck with me forever!

Being elected as President Welfare at Teesside university 2 years in a row is something that helped me gain and achieve confidence to start doing something that i enjoy. I see myself as a very happy, energetic and smiley person, but my weight does get me down more than anyone can see. I think about it all the time and when getting photos taken with my friends who are so much smaller than me it does really bother me. I often think, ‘I wish I could wear that dress’ or stand in a photo on holiday in a bikini, but I am so self- conscious I can’t. My personality makes me appear very outgoing, confident and loud but deep down my body and weight has always got me down, making me sad on many occasions.

It’s so nice now to have people who I see all of the time and people I don’t see often commenting ‘god G you’ve lost weight’ or ‘you’re looking really good G’. It’s so rewarding and that’s all thanks to CrossFit Ulysses. This is where CrossFit Ulysses is changing my perception and life day by day. I attend class at least 6 days a week and always come away smiling, the people I do classes with are now friends and I can’t thank CrossFit enough for that.

I can eat nice healthy things without starving myself and now enjoy what I eat after Ben and Damo’s nutrition advice.

If someone can take only one thing from this it would be to try CrossFit Ulysses and I can promise you, you will never ever look back.

I can’t thank you all enough, thank you for helping me start my unbelievable journey and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

Lots of love

Georgina xx

Copy of Abs of steel, but couldn't do a sit up!

Copy of Abs of steel, but couldn't do a sit up!

Our Member of the Month for May was unanimously picked by all the coaches.

Andy has worked so hard during his PT sessions and in all the WODs and his progression has been amazing for us all to see.   Andy could, not and i’m being serious here, could not even do a sit up. He had abs of steel, but no strength. See looks can be deceiving!

  Andy had already wrote a bio, which we were going to post later in the month, but credit where credit’s due.

Here’s his story and just a few of the reason’s he was picked by the Ulysses coaches.

I’ve been training with Ben for about 3 months and without getting my tongue too brown I can honestly say it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made.

I came to CrossFit Ulysses thinking I had a pretty decent level of fitness from training at gyms for a couple years before... How naive I was 😅

After completing my foundations and having had more than one reality check along the way I decided to invest in some PT sessions with Ben.

I had a number of goals I wanted to hit and areas I wanted to improve on. After a full consultation Ben explained to me how we would work towards the goals I had set but also had his own recommendations for areas I would really benefit from improving on (For those who saw my struggle from day one it might have involved a little core work... maybe... 😂).

I’ve gone from not being able to do a single sit up to bar muscle ups (the best looking ones in Ulysses, right @damob15 💁‍♂️ 😜) and the other week I got my first ring muscle up (it wasn’t the prettiest but it still counts 💪 😂)

I really believe I wouldn’t have achieved these goals in this short time without the tips, progressions and advice from Ben. He is someone who really knows what he’s talking about and is passionate about what he does, it’s clear to see just from speaking to him and watching him coach.

Anyone reading this who has thought about coming along to see what it’s all about but hasn’t yet for whatever reason, just do it! And for people who might be interested in getting some PT I can tell you first hand it’s worth it.

I’m generally not a soppy or sentimental guy but finally I just wanted to say a big thank you @benjakeman and a massive thank you to everyone at @crossfitulysses, coaches and members, for making me feel welcome and a part of the tribe  #teamulysses ✌️

Member of the Month for May.

Member of the Month for May.

It gives us great pleasure in announcing our Member of the Month for May is Andy Curd.

When Andy first came to Ulysses he looked very fit and healthy with an amazing six pack, but looks can be deceiving. He lacked a core, literally, he did not have any core strength and couldn't even do a sit up without the aid of a band to help him up..

He’s proven that trusting the process and pushing yourself towards your goals, anything is possible.

Andy can now do muscle ups and has core strength along with mental and physical strength too. Not only that, to top it off he is a really nice guy with a great sense of humour and takes all the “plastic ab” jokes and teasing all in his stride, giving back as good as he gets an that’s why Uylsses is his perfect place to train. He loves the atmosphere and banter that comes with our community.

Andy Ulysses coaches picked you because of all the hard work and effort you've put into all your training an PT sessions. You've been committed and worked hard to get to this point. Team Ulysses are super proud of all your achievements so far. We’re looking forward to seeing what you can achieve next!

Working and looking after her husband, three children, and copious amounts of chickens and other farm animals, you’ll wonder where she finds the time

Working and looking after her husband, three children, and copious amounts of chickens and other farm animals, you’ll wonder where she finds the time

Kirsty has already told us her story when she was picked for member of the month for February (you can find this in an earlier blog), but since then, she’s made some amazing progress.

Kirsty is an inspiration to us all. She is a busy working mam and also has a little farm going on at home too. (if anyone has had some of her eggs from her free range chickens, they’ll tell you they are the best.) Working and looking after her husband, three children, and copious amounts of chickens and other farm animals, you’ll wonder where she finds the time. BUT SHE DOES.

Kirsty always takes time to work on her self. He inner strength is outstanding, her quiet nature is only on the surface and her total gusto for any WOD or Open Gym session she attends is inspirational.

Kirsty also looked deep into her nutrition and has made some amazing changes to her food habits. She often posts her food on instagram and they never look boring or repetitive. Proving once you get your nutrition sorted, the rest is easy!

When Kirsty was picked for MOTM for February she was slowly working on getting that first pull up. She was saying only two weeks ago she’d love to have it by Christmas! But oh no wait. She’s hit it. In May! Kirsty your smile at the end of the video says it all really. We are so proud of you and everything you’ve already achieved in the short time you’ve been with us.

Working her weaknesses and being committed to her goals has fast tracked Kirsty so much. From all the awesome guidance off our amazing coaches and the support of her fellow class members has made Kirsy shine. She deserves to be MOTM again and again, for all her hard work and determination alone.

I asked Kirsty what her next goal was. He’s what she said. Word for word.

“I’m still thinking about it at the moment as there’s an awful lot I need to work on. Possibly being able to do a handstand, Kipping pull up. Flexibility on my shoulders. Toes to bar. And still working on them pull ups so I can do more at a time. Ha ha”

And her reply just goes to show how committed she is to her goals and her lifestyle of health and fitness. Kirsty, Team Ulysses want to say congratulations on hitting your first pull up, just in time to level up on The Level Method and for all the awesome things you do to make us all smile on a daily basis.

What goals do you have? Why not book a free intro and let see if you can smash them with our help!

Reaching a plateau from the usual “gym bro” rubbish

Reaching a plateau from the usual “gym bro” rubbish

Matty tells us his story..

My fitness journey really started 12 years ago when I first set foot onto the rugby pitch with my cousin at aged 9.

Since then I’ve been in and out of gyms and S&C sessions but never with any consistency until the last couple of years.

After seeming to reach a plateau from the usual “gym bro” rubbish, I thought “why not give CrossFit a go”.

Ever since the first session I’ve really felt at home at Ulysses and feel I’ve made real progress with my strength and overall fitness.

It’s not only the coaches but everyone in the box that has given me tips and tricks to make this progress (now onto the dreaded ring muscle ups).

So far it’s been a blast, can’t wait to see what the future WODs hold x

I'm absolutely buzzing

I'm absolutely buzzing


I’m absolutely buzzing 🤣to have been picked for Member of the month for April and i’d like to thank everyone who got me to this actual point. Not just the coaches but the all the lovely members who pushed me on and made me push to points I never thought possible.    

First stepping into CrossFit Ulysses I had no idea of what CrossFit was and I didn’t know anything about Olympic weight lifting either.  I had a good level of fitness before i started, but nothing to what I have now.

I was nervous even though I had my uncle with me.  So after I completed my on-ramp I had my first session which I was also very nervous about but I loved every minute of it.  I also loved the friendly competitive side of it and I couldn’t think of a better place to train.

Since joining, whenever it was I did as i feel like i’ve been there since they first opened the door 🤣,  I now know I am much fitter and stronger physically and mentally. I also used all the training within Ulysses to get me where I am today with my career choice.

I went to catterick garrison in November last year and my only focus back then was running, but I failed which hit me really hard due to me wanting to be a paratrooper.  I thought my dream of being one was no longer and i was so upset, so my uncle advised me to join CrossFit Ulysses and since joining I have achieved so many things. Running with a weighted vest is now easy, i can do more pull ups and my strength with weight lifting is getting better day by day.

I have recently got back from catterick after attempting my tests again, knowing all my training has made stronger and I passed which I couldn’t be more happy about.   Ulysses coaches, staff and members have started me on my new journey and now i get to follow me dreams of being a Paratrooper and I am forever grateful. They all helped me grow and become the person i am today.

I used to go to a standard gym and didn’t have a clue or any understanding what I was doing, which you hear people say a lot.   But now I know I could step into any gym and create my own WOD and train effectively.

I wouldn’t recommend any other box to go to as Ulysses is THE ONE!  Never have i met such great people and all the members support each other no matter what.  The family atmosphere is one which you wouldn’t find in any mainstream gym, or anywhere else.  

 I’m going to miss my Ulysses family while i’m away on my training, but i’ll be back. Where else would i want to go when on leave?  🤣🤣 xx

Cottrell family gainz

Cottrell family gainz

In January 2018 I decided to take up running. Don’t ask me why – I have no idea! I’m often impulsive so maybe it was that? I’d spent the last 40 odd years avoiding exercise. I came last at every school sports day and did no sports out of school. I was large, I was clumsy, I was at best awkward! It turned out though with a bit of effort, a few blisters and a bit of sweat (ok a lot of sweat) I actually managed to do the couch to 5k programme (with a little help from my friends at SRDI).

I decided to continue with my midlife exercise crisis and signed up for an 8-week Hiit style programme. The 8 weeks flew by. I was a stone lighter; I’d picked up a few injuries (hiit does that) but felt great.

I signed up to more classes…but there was this one little voice in my ear, this thing over my shoulder- it was my mate Caz telling me to try CrossFit Ulysses. “Just try it once” she’d say “honestly Vic you’ll love it” over and over again!

So, I tried it and I hate to say it…she was right (it’s the only time it's happened Caz) and I’ve not looked back.

The coaches are really bothered about form, about you not getting injured, about you being the best version of you on that day, about you pushing yourself to the maximum. They have your self-belief for you, for the times when you don’t have it yourself.

There’s a real sense of being part of a community in the box. Everyone pulls together, everyone encourages no matter their level of fitness, no one gets left behind.

In the last 6 months my body has transformed. Years of terrible posture had left me unable to squat properly?!?! I hadn’t even realised this was the cause of intermittent lower back pain and knee niggles, all due to tight hip flexors.

So here I am now squatting like a boss, no back pain and knees that don’t niggle. Thanks to the sneaky workout routines my running has improved! I’m now able to run 12 miles on a good day downhill with the wind behind me.

This is not the best thing about Crossfit for me personally though it’s the change I see in others, more specifically my children.

My eldest son Max joined Crossfit, he was 15 at the time. Football was never his thing and he wasn’t exactly what you would call an exercising loving kid. His only exercise was a 10-minute bike ride to school and school PE. In the last 4 months the change in him has been dramatic; confident, strong, capable. He really enjoys Crossfit (especially when he beats me at stuff) the varied workouts stop anyone getting bored. He’s gone from struggling to move on a bar to doing 7 toes to bar in one go. I am so proud of the young man he is becoming and Crossfit has played a huge part in that. So many lads his age are up to no good, my lad is mixing with hard working absolute Teesside gems and hanging out with such great community minded role models, I know he’ll go far. CrossFit has been a welcome break from GCSE revision and trust me teenage angst can easily be chased away with a WOD. I totally treasure the time in the box spent with Max, working out together, laughing (usually at my expense) not all mums get to spend time with their children like this and you can’t beat a mum/son rowing battle (coming soon).

You might think this is the happy ending (probably hoping it is, this write up has turned in to an epic) but it gets even better now my daughter Molly has joined CrossFit and already she’s biffing out more press-ups than she ever could and her confidence is growing. Crossfit really is for everyone and now with the youth level method and the over 55 one there’s no excuse. Old people, young people, fit people, unfit people, tall people, short people, if you’re any sort of a people just try it like that wise guru Caz said “just try it once” – who knows what you and your family might achieve in 6 months? x x x

Fist bump's all round!

Fist bump's all round!

Our member of the month for March Jonny tells us his CrossFit journey below. Jonny is having to leave us for pastures new and we know his next CrossFit box is gaining an amazing team player. All the coaches and members wish you the best of luck with your new job and hope to see you soon.  Keep smashing them goals and keep being awesome.

Firstly I’d like to give a massive thanks (and fist pump obviously) to all the coaches for bestowing me with this honour!! 

Last September, when I first went down to Crossfit Ulysses for my “taster session” with Chris I didn’t really know what to expect.  I had heard varying views of CrossFit and I had my own ill conceived notion that you had to be incredibly fit in order to take part.  Chris did a great job of introducing me to Crossfit and after that first session it was abundantly clear that all the work outs could be scaled to anyone’s ability.  I’m not sure how everyone else found the taster session but I did plenty of sweating!!!

I got through my foundation classes and about a months’ worth of full classes before a new addition to the family arrived.  Training took a back seat for the next 6 weeks or so but by that stage I was already hooked!!  The coaches and members in the box are awesome and there is always plenty of craic and great atmosphere to help push you through the work outs.

I got back  into the swing of things in the new year (after plenty of indulgence/weight gain over the festive period) and decided to enter the Open to keep me focused.  I thought the way that this was organised by Ulysses was great and I wish I could have made some of the Saturday sessions as they looked awesome craic!!  The Open workouts definitely pushed me to the limit but also made me realise that CrossFit is something that I wanted to work and improve at.  I would like to think that I have made a substantial improvement since starting but at the same time I have a long way to go.  I find it’s the small wins that help keep you enthusiastic though – things that might seem insignificant but I was delighted when I held myself over the bar for 15 seconds or got my nose to the wall on a wall walk!!  I’ll keep working at the headstands Chris!!!

To sign off I would like to say that the all coaches and members have made CrossFit an awesome (life changing) experience for me and I only wish that I had given it a shot earlier!!  If I ever find myself in Teesside you’ll have to make room for me in one of your classes because I’m definitely dropping in!!!


Jonny Martin

Why not book a free intro and join an amazing tribe of awesome team players who will support you no matter what journey you're on.

He had a goal and knew what he needed to do

He had a goal and knew what he needed to do


He had a goal. He knew what he needed to do for his future, for his career. He pushed himself to achieve it. This is why our coaches unanimously picked Keaton for our member of the month for April. 

Keaton joined us in February after his decision to join the Paratroopers. He knew he needed to up his game and get fit strong and healthy after falling one of his tests. He worked his weaknesses and over the few short months his strength and stamina has skyrocketed. He's done a variation of CrossFit classes, alongside strength training and gymnastics. He even started running with a weighted vest. When Keaton joined us he struggled to get one pull up, last week he done 8 strict pull ups without any effort. We are so proud of you.  

Keaton has his Para tests this week and we already know he's passed the one he failed. He trusted the process and the process worked for him. Keaton, everyone here at Ulysses wishes you the best of luck for all your adventures today and in the future. All our members are rooting for you and are with you every step of the way. Go on son, go follow your dreams.

If you have a goal, why not book a No Sweat Intro and see if we can help you follow your dreams.  



Strolled down the garden like an absolute boss

Strolled down the garden like an absolute boss

I'm an old(ish) bloke and like all blokes I still think I'm 23. And as my kids will testify (because I've been going on about it and boring them stupid for years) I used to be a good runner, used to be a good triathlete, used to be a (half) decent footballer etc etc, yaaaawn.

I've tried many times over 20 years to get back into running but always broken down with some injury or other, so it was a cycle of run/get injured/get fat.

I stumbled upon a programme on Amazon Prime called 'Killing the fat man'. The more I watched it the more I thought "This is me this is". I searched  Google for a local CrossFit box and found CrossFit Ulysses. Anyway...

The first time I walked into CrossFit Ulysses I was REALLY nervous but at least half a dozen people said "Hiya" and they weren't meatheads looking resentful that I might have the audacity to use their bench or something. Even the ones that looked like they 'might' be meatheads are just really strong, really helpful guys.

The foundations were both brutal and brilliant. My running, rowing and all the cardio stuff was OK but god my weedy cardioman arms were totally creamed. My wrists and back wouldn't bend and I was in all sorts of hellish pain trying to squat with an empty bar. All the coaches said it'd be fine.. I didn't believe them.. Not then anyway.

As everyone knows, the first rule of CrossFit is to go home and talk about it non stop even though you might at first think that you can't hack it. My daughter Ellie suffered the verbal diarrhea the worst, I was watching the 2017 games on telly and she decided to try it which was great obviously, because which competitive Dad doesn't want to get whupped by his kid? 🙄 No really, I love it. And now we've been joined by her boyfriend Kurt,  two of her mates and her mates Mam, which is testament to the family vibe at the Ulysses box.

The coaches were bang on by the way. My wrists stopped screaming, I went to a couple of weightlifting classes to work on technique. They were invaluable because any newbie WILL get psyched out in their first couple of classes, you're just staring around lost, like you're 4 years old and you've lost your mam somewhere in Skegness market.

OK so we mentioned I'm old(ish). Yes, I get aches and pains most of the time, but you get them anyway when you get past 50. Where I used to get an ache because I'd slept funny, or stretched too far to turn the bath taps off I now get an ache because I've done 105 x 24 kg kettlebell swings and 105 wall balls in quarter of an hour (Tuesday 6am). Or alternatively thrown about 3000+kg of weights around in a heavy session, which is well worth the aches I can tell you.

You want a practical example of what CrossFit can do for you? I have a big garden, I used to carry a 50 litres bag of compost (22kg in weight) from my car up to the top of the garden hugging it like a baby and having to rest thanks to my weedy arms. Last week I chucked a bag on each shoulder and strolled up the garden like an absolute boss. And seriously, I was genuinely buzzing.

The fact is that you either use it or you lose it. Whatever your age CrossFit will definitely make you use it and even 8 months on I still can't get over feeling my guns after a workout, 40+ years of running and biking never gave me these babies. 💪🏻

If you've thought about CrossFit, stop thinking and just have a bash, it's just great fun along with the pain and I promise you that the people at CrossFit Ulysses are equally as awesome.

9st5lb down but Ulysses where I can keep improving.

9st5lb down but Ulysses where I can keep improving.

Ulysses, where I can keep improving.

Stacy’s journey so far.

I first decided to try lose weight when I was finishing Uni, having realised how unhappy I was. I lacked self confidence, always felt uncomfortable and I was fed up of being the biggest girl in my group of  friends. I went on to lose 9.5 stone by eating well and have maintained that loss over the last couple of years. Having gained some confidence from my initial loss, I started to exercise, soon getting into a routine of working out a few times a week by doing mainly cardio. I was happy doing this but felt I needed a bigger push, so I started spinning classes with my dad and loved them. Through spinning I saw my fitness levels as well as my leg strength improve massively so I started including other popular group classes like Body Pump, Kettlebells, Combat as well as weight training and this is where I found a love for lifting weights!

I maintained this routine for a couple of years but last year I felt like I needed a change.. I had seen crossfit workouts on social media and made a point of watching the games each year after seeing documentaries on Netflix, the women looked insane and I was jealous of their abilities.. Goals! It wasn't until I saw an Instagram post about Ulysses that I realised how close the box was to home, so I thought why not give this a go... For moral support I asked my partner George to come with me to a taster session in September last year and after only one session I was hooked.. I walked out of the box that night and I instantly wanted to go back the next day. Having been to many gyms, there is no comparison to Ulysses. You could walk into a standard gym, do your workout for an hour and not one person would talk to you. At Ulysses that just doesn't happen!

I quickly realised my strengths and  weaknesses and have been trying to focus on these each week. The feeling of wanting to give your all in each WOD is infectious, it pushes me to challenge myself, do things I don't particularly like doing and get out of my comfort zone.

Shortly after joining crossfit, I signed up for the 3 months free weightlifting and found my love for lifting heavy barbells again. I've learnt so much since attending these sessions and have seen a big improvement in my technique and my strength so far. With crossfit and weightlifting, the coaches are always there to encourage, help and offer advice, pushing you to challenge yourself. I love this because if I'm having a day when I'm doubting my abilities, that little nudge spurs me on to go hard in the workout or lift heavier.

Having been the 'bigger girl', I still struggle with the balance between losing weight, gaining muscle and feeling fit, but knowing that I'm able to go Into each WOD and try my hardest is an awesome feeling. I've been working at improving myself and my fitness for a long time by losing weight and building up my confidence, which has paid off massively - I wouldn't be able to do  what I can now if I hadn't started this journey, and I truly feel that I have found a special place at Ulysses, where I can keep improving.