Schedule Change Notice for Santa Clara
Sat 27 - Sun 28th - GYM CLOSED 
Endurance Running Class 8:30am with Coach Cheryl 
Location: In Front of SC
Bring your running shoes and game faces! 










Posted on May 13, 2014

NorCal CrossFit May. 14th 2014

Athlete Recognition - Santa Clara
Michael Leonard (AKA Leonard)


Leonard has been a loyal member of the 6am morning class since 2012 back when I taught his one on one :) He is a combination of smart ass, humility, and hard work all in one package. Leonard each day pushes himself on every front: technique, positioning, and increasing load. He implemented supplemental squat programs in order to improve his strength on top of regular classes and would even show up twice in a day to complete the work. Leonard is a silent leader: his hard work during class to finish a workout to the best of his ability pushes the others around him to do the same. Even if he finishes last, Leonard ALWAYS finishes. That sort of determination will take him a long way with his future endeavors. 

When did you join NorCal CrossFit?

March of 2012

Why did you join CrossFit? 

A good friend and mentor, Jana, gave me the encouragement and challenge to join CrossFit after I complained to her that I was unable to get in shape after turning 40.  I was worried about the difficulty of the WODs but she educated me that all WODs are scalable and if she can do it, so could I.  

What changes in your health, physique and overall performance have you seen since starting CrossFit? 

The 2 highlights I would like to focus on is flexibility and quality of life.   I’m not a super-limber individual but I have improved over my time at NORCAL.  My first few months, I was unable to put my foot in a band while standing on a box at the pull-up structure without a coach pulling it down for me.  The other is quality of life.  By attending class in the morning and doing the WOD, the rest of my day is low stress and it’s very rare I get upset.  It’s a completely different story if a I skip the morning WOD.

What advice would you give to someone with regards to starting CrossFit? 

The hardest part is coming through the front door for the first time.    Conquer your fear or find a friend and come in for an introductory class or on-ramp.   And remember to not judge yourself against others…we all started in on-ramp as beginners.

Favorite CrossFit exercise?

It’s definitely not gymnastics or running, so I’ll go with Olympic lifting.   Luckily no one has my split snatch attempts on video when I first started.   

Favorite activity outside of CrossFit? 

Bicycling or hiking with my wife Shirley.   Our favorite is a 10 mile walk from the San Francisco Ferry Terminal across the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito.  We then eat some ice cream at Lapperts and catch the ferry back to SF. 

Proudest accomplishment at CrossFit? 

Something that most CrossFitters take for granted: kicking over into a hand stand against the wall.  It took me over a year before I even attempted to kick over and another month to become proficient.  Finally, no more wall climbs.

Favorite place to eat a paleo-ish meal? 

Doh! I’m a carbivore.  My cheat meal is a paleo-ish meal, and I never cheat.  My advice:  Enjoy life - Eat dessert first sometimes.   Look me up when you want to talk about good desserts and treats like dark chocolate covered oreos or fried Twinkies with ice cream.

Something that people would be surprised to know about you? 

I was a walk-on for a Division III swim team with no high school experience.  The culmination of my swimming career was qualifying for Nationals in the 200 meter freestyle relay.

What/who inspires you the most?

I can’t provide just one name but it’s all the people at NORCAL CrossFit, from the coaches to the fellow classmates at 6 and 7am.  The challenges and WODs we face together while continually pushing each other offers a great exercise experience and environment.  And I really enjoy the post workout stretching sessions in which we sit in a circle and socialize.


Work up to Heavy 1rep Back Squat


30 Back Squats (225/155)

1km Row

* Scale weight

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Schedule Change Notice for Santa Clara
Sat 27 - Sun 28th - GYM CLOSED 
Endurance Running Class 8:30am with Coach Cheryl 
Location: In Front of SC
Bring your running shoes and game faces!