Every now and then a guy walks into our gym and says, “I want to go to the CrossFit Games – can you get me there?”. At that point John and I usually roll our eyes and say, “Yeah, sure, you willing to work for it?.” Their answer is always a resounding “Yes!”. But if you have kept up with our story and our blogs over the past few years you may know a tiny bit about what it takes to make it to The CrossFit Games. If you’re curious, read this: https://crossfitodyssey.com/the-making-of-a-champion/.  Let’s just say, it ain’t easy – and that’s putting it mildly.

But every now and then a person surprises you, and that is why Garrett Quinn is July’s Extraordinary Athlete. Garret was a senior at Highland Park High School and is now about to head to college – more on that later. Garret joined CrossFit Odyssey last August wanting to get in better shape to be a better Golden Gloves boxer. (Disclaimer – I may have a soft spot in my heart for kids who want to be Golden Gloves boxers due to my daddy). What John and I as coaches found were a few major strength issues which stemmed from his previous physical activity. Before boxing, Garret was a Triathlete – and a rather successful one. The high cardio had prevented a lot of muscle gain. He was extremely low in body fat and he desperately needed to work on his core strength. The boxing also had produced rounded shoulders and spine – the rounded, defensive position of a boxer, which further weakened his core. Now, don’t get me wrong – Garret was strong – especially for a 17-year-old high school senior. But he needed to increase his strength dramatically and so we set to work. Garrett was religious with his workouts and quickly gave up boxing for his newfound passion for CrossFit. He spent hours in the gym every day, showing up early for mobility work, doing extra work prescribed by John, and asking questions to get better at everything he could. And he did. He got stronger, his Olympic lifting got better, and he got faster in many areas. In February he entered the SouthWest Ergometer Amateur Tournament here in Dallas. He had never competed in any kind of rowing before and he had not trained for it but he finished first in his heat and 26th in all out of 62. He also competed in the CrossFit Open 2019 and finished 3rd in our gym (behind two coaches).

Before and After – A Strong Back

Toward the end of the school year, Garrett was trying to decide where he was going to college. He had to choose between Colorado, Boulder and The Citadel (where his brother goes to school). The Citadel found out about his athleticism and offered him a position on their Cross Country team, so Garrett went with the Citadel  – and once again had to completely change his programming. The 20 pounds of muscle he had built started to fall off as he increased his cardio and decreased his. lifting. Until… Garrett got an offer from Texas Christian University – an Academic Scholarship! You see, Garrett not only excels at fitness, but he is a very smart boy in school. So now, Garrett will be heading to TCU this fall and he will be working out with a friend of our in Fort Worth, Dutch Lowy with Black Box, who used to train us!

Finally, Garrett has been a great friend to everyone in the gym. Interestingly, he chose not to workout with the kids his own age, but preferred being challenged by the older crowd. He held himself well and earned the respect of the men and women with whom he trained and challenged himself daily to be as good as the best. So for excellence in Triathlons, excellence in CrossFit, excellence in rowing and excellence in school, we chose Garrett Quinn to be July’s Extraordinary Athlete. Congratulations Garrett on what is surely just the beginning of your Journey to Extraordinary! Don’t forget us when you’re famous!