My Dad would have been 61 today. I always knew how old he was because he was born in ‘50. It’s easy to do that math.
It’s anything but easy to face his birthday without him.
Joe Kelly was a GREAT athlete. CrossFit would have been no match for his speed, brute strength, strategic mind and mental toughness. He was an all-star Bellmawr Purple Eagle and standout at Bishop Eustace Preparatory School. He played football in college at now Weidner University. As an adult, he lacked a passion for traditional working out but never lost his love of sports. I know he would have loved CrossFit—what many often refer to as the team sport of fitness.
The competition aspect would have turned him on. He took pride in beating my beasty brothers in wind sprints on the beach well into his 40s. I remember wondering at 15 years old, “How the hell can he still run like that with such a round belly?” His mind could tune out all that was around him and his natural ability took over.
In the end, that same mental toughness led to his demise. He ignored a painfully infected appendix, which soon ruptured and caused a massive infection that sadly his body could not conquer. Post-emergency surgery, he was unable to come off the ventilator as a result of weak lungs caused by smoking and the extra weight he carried around his heart.
At CF1F, we have a few members in their late 50s early 60s. That’s just so freaking awesome. Coach and I believe it’s never too late.
Until it is.
Death is the only thing that can keep us from living a better life. And much like my brothers chased my old man, death is chasing us everyday. We have to keep running. I don’t remember the specific summer my old man stopped challenging BK and KK on the beach, but bet the bank I’d do anything to turn back the clock and organize a family WOD, right there in the sand.
Giving up is not an option at CF1F. You can cry, you can puke, you can scream, but you can’t quit. Your health is just too important.
Looking good? Well, that’s pretty cool too. But in the end, it’s about living your best life, working real heard in the gym and spending the other 23 hours in your day giving yourself what you give your job, children and significant other so freely everyday. Your very best.
Often you will hear me say, “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.” If you don’t squat, bend, pull, push, run, throw, catch, lift and drag—you will quickly lose the ability to do so. Many of our members have already lost a touch of these abilities, and we are proud to help you get them back. Cause its never too late.
Until it is.