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CrossFit Aestus Spotlight Athlete: Thomas Gast

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Name: Charles Thomas Gast

Age: 27

Occupation: Engineer at AWNC

Which class do you usually attend?
I usually attend night classes either 6:30 or 7:30. Based upon my schedule those work for me best.

Favorite WOD:

There are so many of them, but the one that hits home for me is Murph. That WOD and other Hero WODs alike mean so much to me. After serving 5 years active duty in the Marine Corps, fighting is all I know. To push yourself beyond limits by give everything you got and then some. I’m constantly reminded of my brothers who didn’t return on the same flight as me. This workout in particular always takes me back to past memories and my experiences.
Long winded response. Tends to happen when I’m on this topic.

Favorite Lift:

DEADLIFT, but I’m really starting to like Cleans.

How long have you been Cross Fitting? :

At an actual box: roughly 2.5 years. I’ve starting my journey initially when I was in the Marine Corps. Learning the moves and doing the WODs.
Overall experience: 5 years.

What keeps you coming back?

I would have to say my goals. The will to hit those goals and succeed. Also the community here at CrossFit Aestus is great. The people here welcome you like family. A huge family of people who lift weights and get chalk everywhere! What more could you ask for. (I do not support illegal chalk activities)
How did you find CrossFit? : I first found CrossFit while I was in the service. Our workouts were all around functional fitness and efficiency. So it wasn’t too far off from the workouts we were doing already. Later I learned about the games and after that I was hooked.

How did you end up at CrossFit Aestus:

My girlfriend and I were originally going to a box in Indiana and when we moved we still wanted to continue what we started. My girlfriend started here a week or so before me. She told me all about it and after I went for my first time, I was hooked.
What is your athletic background? : I was a runner in HS (believe it or not) did cross-country and ran track. I didn’t start actually lifting until the Marine Corps. Once I was in the Corps nothing was off limits. Running, swimming, climbing, diving, hiking, more running, etc. I focused more on bodybuilding style workouts. Then later transitioned to powerlifting. Stayed in powerlifting throughout college until I joined my first box. Now I’m more focusing on CF/Oly lifting.

How has CrossFit changed your life, lifestyle and level of fitness? :

My level of fitness has changed drastically. I was able to move quicker, faster, and sustain that level of movement. I also achieved more mobility and overall strength.
What is the One Thing you have done here that you never thought you could do? : Muscle-Up! And not a struggle up.
What motivates/inspires you? : Honestly, I would have to say my girlfriend she’s been a big inspiration for me. I’ve had my down moments and she has always been there for me. She has been a big help for me along the way. Always pushing me and helping me reach my goals. Also, knowing that other people are stronger and faster than me motivates me to get to that level and smash it.
What is your proudest CrossFit achievement? :

Staying consistent and not quitting on myself.

Name one goal/personal achievement that you would like to achieve through CrossFit? :

Well I have a few, 195 BW, 315 Clean/Jerk, 225 Snatch. Learn the movements and get the form down. Those are my big ones, I feel everything else will come in time.
What goals have you achieved in CrossFit? : 185lb Snatch/ 255 Clean/ DUs! / Muscle-Ups/more to come.

Hobbies/interests outside of CrossFit?

Recreational target shooting/ Drag/Track Racing/ Working on cars/ Hiking and camping/ Trail riding/ attending rock concerts.
Tell me about your diet: Fairly balanced diet. I focused on moderate carb intake/ high protein intake. Each day varies depending on the needs of the day.

Any advice for new members? :
Have goals set and always seek to achieve them. Always be strive to be better than you were the day before. Never get discouraged by the things you can’t do, but have the courage to continue to fight for the things you wish to achieve. And remember, the only easy day was yesterday.

Coaches thoughts:

When I think of Thomas, I think of one word: “Driven”. Thomas is very goal oriented and each time he comes into CFA, he has something that he wants to accomplish. That is a great example for all of us. Even with his goals top of mind, Thomas is fun, funny and encouraging to the other athletes he trains with. His ethic is contagious and that is what makes him such a great member of our family.