Featured Athlete – Hazel “Lil’ Dragon” Choi

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1. When did you join CrossFit BC ?
In August of 2013.

2. Why did you choose CrossFit?
After high school, I was basically not doing any regular physical activity (for like 10 years!). Then one day in 2011, I decided I wanted to get a beach bod. So I joined a gym where I got to take various classes such as kickboxing, krav maga and CrossFit. I loved how much more in shape I felt…but unfortunately, the "CrossFit" program there wasn't really CrossFit. After 2 years, I had still never learned how to do an overhead squat, a kip, a snatch, a jerk, a HSPU, etc. I was talking to a friend (Cookie) who told me about CFBC and all the progress she had made there. So I decided to change gyms and boy, am I glad I did!

3. What changes in your health, physique and overall performance have you seen since starting CrossFit?
I've never felt as strong and muscular in my life! My cardio (although still sh**ty) has also definitely improved. Going to CF regularly has had a positive impact on my mood and sleep.

4. What advice would you give to someone with regards to starting CrossFit?
I always tell people not to be intimidated – we all have to start somewhere. In CF, you will always be pleasantly surprised by what your body is physically capable of! If you break down the exercises into sets that you can manage, no matter how small the sets are, you will always get through the WOD. My motto is: "CF is a game-changer!".

5. What is your favourite CrossFit exercise?
I don't have a single favourite exercise…but I do like double unders, box jumps, burpees, push ups, pull ups, power cleans and thrusters (just not in mass quantities haha). Really…if it's not ROWING, running more than 400 m, wall balls or OH squats, I'm usually happy.

6. What is your favourite activity outside of CrossFit?
Going to happy hour.

7. What is your proudest accomplishment at CrossFit?
Finally being able to do squat snatches, and PR-ing my thruster this year at more than my body weight.

8. Have you made any changes to your diet?
Not at all (see #9).

9. Is there something that people would be surprised to know about you?
I have pretty poor eating habits, to be honest. I don't enjoy grocery shopping and am generally lazy with cooking, so I eat out a lot. I do not like veggies and fruit (most of the time), so most of my diet consists of carbs, meat, seafood and dairy. A lot of times, I feel like I don't have much energy. And more often than not, right after a WOD I'll crave something bad like fatty pork ramen, so I'll just go for it. I know that if I want to step up my game in CF, I would have to make some changes…but it's just SO HARD for me. If anyone has any ideas that can help me get in the right direction, please let me know. (Think verrrry small steps, haha.)

10. What/who inspires you the most?
All of you at CFBC who push hard to achieve your training goals, whether you are new to it or a seasoned pro. I love seeing people achieve PRs or new skills. I am especially inspired by the strong women at our gym, who are not fazed by general society's view that "women should not get too muscly".