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Athlete of the Month for May 2021

The coaches chose the Athlete of the Month for May 2021 because she is a prime example someone who is truly humble and never gives up. When you first meet our Athlete of the Month, you would never imagine she is a multi-time triathlon winner in her age group, at the top of the corporate structure at her company, testifies in front of the United States Congress, and a mother of four boys. She is an example of making time in your life for things that are important to you. Oh, and she is perhaps the nicest most helpful person ever. The Athlete of the Month for May 2021 is:

Debbie Guild

1. Where are you from originally?  Born in Ridgewood, New Jersey.  Raised on a farm in upstate New York then when I was 10 my family moved to St. Augustine, Florida.   From there either Jacksonville, Florida or a short stint on the west coast when I lived in Santa Clara and worked for Intel.

2. If not from Pittsburgh, what brought you to Pittsburgh?  I relocated with my husband and four sons for a great job with a great company.

3. Where do you work? I run enterprise technology and security for a major financial services company.

4. What is your favorite hobby? Probably triathlon training, as an introvert it is a great way to get to know people.  I swim with a Masters team in Fox Chapel, ride at the Bud Harris Oval, and run the North Shore whenever I can.  Pittsburgh is such an amazing city and I am proud to be a part of the community.

5. How did you discover CrossFit? One of my best friends Chrissie Pattison talked me into a community class in Jacksonville.  Huge shout out to First Coast Cross Fit who still welcome me when I come home.

6. When did you start CrossFit? 2011.  Hard to believe going on 10 years.  I sort of feel like an OG for Industrial Athletics (with Jim!).  I’ve been going to IA since 2013.  I didn’t know they had just started when I moved here.  I had no car and a corporate apartment downtown, and I used to ride my bike to and from class on the North Shore. 

7. Why did you start CrossFit? I had no idea how to work out, and realized if I didn’t keep myself healthy I couldn’t be the person I needed to be for my kids.  The coaches taught me the importance of changing muscle groups and focusing on low weight while you learn the technique.  I love that the only mirrors are the coaches who are tirelessly (if not perhaps a little to enthusiastically!) spotting the flaw, calling it out, and helping me get stronger without injury. 

8. What is your favorite thing to do in CrossFit? I am probably better at the cardio, but I like the strength training because this is the only time I get to invest in building lean muscle.  Strength training is so important to maintaining bone density.  I had my first bone density test last month and it was off the charts good, so it pays off.

9. What is your least favorite thing to do in CrossFit?  Trip and fall running.  (IFYKY)  I am less skilled at keeping the bar in tight and anything overhead.  Which is silly because it only helps.  I’m getting better at it as my core strength improves though.

10. What is the number 1 thing you want to get better at? I think I am close to a Bar Muscle Up.  I have given up on Double Unders, which evade me probably because they require coordination. 

11. What is your favorite part about coming to CrossFit at Industrial Athletics?  I always walk out feeling better than when I walked in.  And it is such a privilege that my four sons can join me periodically at a WOD.  As they grew older, exercising together helps keep us connected. 

12. What is your favorite CrossFit WOD? Hero WODs.  Specifically Murph.  I feel so much empathy and gratitude for those who gave everything. It makes me work harder to honor them.