“I want to continuously challenge myself and stay physically active for as long as I can.” ~Alex Lautenschlaeger, Athlete of the Month

alex, athlete of the month

Like many individuals, Alex started CrossFit looking for a new way to stay active during COVID. As a former collegiate athlete he wanted a challenging activity that also satisfied his competitiveness. He says, “The mental challenges that each workout presents always is a great way of proving to yourself that your mind and body are oftentimes capable of way more than you think.”

“Alex comes to each class ready to make that hour count. He stays very focused as he works on the proficiency of each movement, be it strength or the metcon. He is always receptive to coaching cues and eager to put them into practice.” ~Coach Erin

“Alex has been steadily improving since he began. He’s VERY coachable and moves extremely well.” ~Coach Scott

Congratulations Alex! Meet our May 2022 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I started at Salus in October 2020. I wanted to be more active and find a new challenge.

It was a combination of me missing the competitiveness of college golf and the desire to get into better shape and use the extra time I was gifted due to remote work (COVID).

It was also super easy to start and try a class, which was nice.

The intro class with Gino introduced me to all the movements and gave me confidence to start in a group setting.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

I am more flexible and stronger than I was before I joined Salus.

It’s great to see how my performance has changed when looking at Wodify.

The mental challenges that each workout presents always is a great way of proving to yourself that your mind and body are oftentimes capable of way more than you think. Aside from the physical aspect, I believe that the workouts at Salus are a great way to improve mental toughness.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

CrossFit and the programming at Salus forced me to work on my weaknesses.

I wasn’t able to do double unders or toes to bar before and my pull up strength has increased significantly. Learning how to kip has helped me string together multiple reps and complete larger sets.

Any gymnastics movement is especially challenging for me and being able to do pull-ups and toes to bar confirms that I made progress since I first started.

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

I gained a few pounds in muscle mass and my jeans fit a little tighter around the thighs 😀

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

The nutrition reset challenges that Salus offers have helped me and my wife identify healthy alternatives to certain foods, which still helps us to this day.

I overall make better choices when it comes to what I eat and how sleep and recovery affect my performance.

The team WODs on Saturday mornings also help me to make better choices on Friday nights 🙂

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

I describe Salus as a group of likeminded people who have a passion for fitness and support and encourage each other regardless of skill or fitness level.

The community is the biggest reason why I enjoy coming to class.

It’s great to see how passionate the coaches are and how they “walk the walk.” The coaches do the workouts themselves and compete in CrossFit and weightlifting events, which is cool.

Everyone at Salus is trying to become a better version of themselves and is genuinely interested in the success of the other members.

7. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

I am very fortunate to be healthy and I want to continuously challenge myself and stay physically active for as long as I can.

I also want to set a good example for my family and friends and hopefully inspire them to be more active and to maintain or develop healthy habits.

Seeing the ‘older’ members at Salus whoop my behind in every workout except Rowing and Rope Climbs (special shout out to Gino for programming that WOD!!) is also very inspiring to watch. I want to be in such great shape later in life as well!

8. Favorite lift or WOD?

Contrary to popular belief, it is not Wall Balls, Rowing or Running. I enjoy back squats and really any kind of Team WOD because I always find a little extra motivation when I work as part of a team.

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Just keep showing up consistently, don’t be afraid of stepping out of your comfort zone and listen to the coaches and you’re on your way to becoming the best version of yourself.

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

I want to move into the Rx workouts more consistently.

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

3 rounds for time

15DB snatches

30 wall balls

500m row

Finish the WOD with a single heavy clean

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Hanging out with the family and maybe sneak in a few holes at the golf course.

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Chicken, rice & veggies.

Splurge: Wiener Schnitzel, fries or potato salad and a good German beer

14. If you could be an animal what would you be and why?

I’d be a bat so I am more comfortable upside down and I can bang out more HSPU’s!

15. Favorite motivational quote?

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right”. Henry Ford

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

I worked on the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association) Tour as a professional Caddie for a while.

“I sleep much better at night, I eat better, overall I feel better about myself.” Matt Eaton, Athlete of the Month

All the Salus Coaches agreed that Matt Eaton was a great choice for the April Athlete of the Month! We couldn’t agree more with Coach Melissa, “He gives 110% at every WOD no matter the time of day!”

He makes it happen. Always showing a commitment to his health and rotating between the morning classes to be sure he gets his time in at Salus. As Coach Erin puts it, “He truly makes that time count by challenging himself with each workout.”

Not only that, but “Matt is very respectful of the WOD stimulus and works really hard in every workout,” says Coach Gino.”

“Matt is great, very coachable and listen to correction. His engine is crazy!!! Sometimes I blink and he’s done,” Coach Camilla.

Congratulations Matt! Meet our April 2022 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I started in September of 2021.  I moved to Middletown from Fanwood and needed a new gym. 

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

I have gotten much better at a lot of things, most notably handstand walks and overhead squats. 

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

Handstand walks. 

4. How have you changed since you started CrossFit?

CrossFit overall has changed my life drastically. Since starting everything above has gotten much better.

I sleep much better at night, I eat better, overall I feel better about myself. 

5. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

Since I moved in January I left a great gym with an awesome community. I dropped into a bunch of gyms around Jersey but couldn’t really find one that lived up to my previous gym until Salus.

Overall the coaches are amazing, the facility has everything you could want, the community is incredible, and the programming fantastic. 

6. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

I enjoy pushing myself and feeling good about what my body and mind can accomplish in the gym.

What I can accomplish in the gym sets the tone for the rest of my day.

I also try and be a good role model for my kids and hopefully they find their way into a healthy/active lifestyle sooner than I have. 

7. Favorite exercise?

I have a lot that I like. I would probably have to say bar muscle ups, rope climbs, and box jump overs are my favorite movements. 

8. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Listen to your body and your coaches, try to have fun and really celebrate all the PR’s even if they are small ones.

The accomplishments may not seem like a lot in the beginning (they are) but when you look back a few months or even a year or two you will notice how far, how quickly you have came. 

9. What is your next goal to accomplish?

Get better and more consistent on my hands.

Would love to get a 25 foot unbroken handstand walk. 

10. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

5 rounds for time

  • 15 box jump overs
  • 3 rope climbs

11. Favorite thing to do for fun?

CrossFit

12. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Healthy – Salmon and broccoli

Splurge – pizza

13. If you could be a superhero, who would you be and why?

This is a tough one to answer. I normally don’t think like this. I am happy with being myself. 

14. Favorite inspirational quote?

I have a few but this one fits with my precious answer. 

“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.” – Oscar Wilde

Bill May “Practicing a healthier lifestyle allows me to be a good example not only for my children but to my friends and family.”

Progressive improvements over time yield big results. And our next Athlete of the Month, Bill May, is a solid example of that.

“Bill has definitely shown a strong level of commitment,” said Coach Gino. “He has made a lot of improvement in his technique in a lot of the movements we do in CrossFit. Not only that, but he is always supportive of others in the class and doesn’t hesitate to make things fun with great dad jokes.”

Congratulations Bill! Meet our March 2022 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

My CrossFit journey started in July 2021. I had been working out at a local gym for years and lost my motivation. I was basically just going through the motions for years. CrossFit has piqued my interest for a while but I just never pulled the trigger until some friends that were members motivated me…. Basically The Crocker’s forced me to join.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

My strength, mobility, technique and stamina have improved significantly.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

Yes- Upside down push ups (aka handstand pushups), double unders and crab walks 🙂  . Honestly,  I don’t  think I could do a pull up without assistance when I started. 

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

I’ve lost weight and built muscle.

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

My energy levels have increased which has allowed me to keep up with my kids longer.

My eating habits and recovery habits have improved dramatically.

I’m more diligent about making sure I eat healthier and get enough sleep in order to live a healthier lifestyle and refuel for the next day’s workout.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

Fuc*ing Awesome!

It’s a tremendous group of men and women at all levels that come together as a community to support and motivate each other.

The coaches are fantastic and all have a ton of experience, knowledge and enthusiasm.

7. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

The gratification of overcoming the daily mental and physical challenge is something that I really enjoy.

I’ve seen an increase not only in my strength but my mental toughness and confidence which is carried over into other facets of my life.

Practicing a healthier lifestyle allows me to be a good example not only for my children but to my friends and family.

8. Favorite lift?

The Power Snatch

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Go light, work on technique, and keep going, it gets better!

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

Bar Muscle Up

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

20 Min AMRAP of:
40 Double Unders
20 GHD sit ups
15 Turkish Get ups
10 Wall Walks

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Hang with my family but I would say that’s probably not their favorite thing to do. Also I, love spending time and fishing on Lake Champlain.

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Healthy Dish: Salmon, Brussel Sprouts and rice.

Favorite splurge is any dessert …. I love my sweets

14. If you could be an animal, what would you be and why?

A King Cobra- their venom is powerful enough that a single bite could kill a Bull in under 3 hours. It can cause dizziness, blurred vision and often paralysis which is very similar to how I feel after most WODs.

15. Favorite inspirational quote?

“Everyone must choose one of two pains: The pain of discipline or the pain of regret.” ~Unknown

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

Hmmm, I’m pretty open but I would say for most of my life I thought I was half Italian but found out recently that I’m actually greek…’Opa!’

Sandra Andrews “The more I attend, the more I surprise myself with what I can accomplish.”

When the Salus Coaches discussed who should be our next Athlete of the Month, Sandra’s name came up multiple times. Sandra has come a long way over the past 6 months. “She is very coachable and willing to learn.” Not only has she made massive improvements in the gym by improving her lifts and body composition, but it has also positively impacted her energy and stress levels as well.

As a coach, it’s so inspiring to witness when people achieve PRs, but you just can’t beat the tears of joy over her 20lb clean PR back in January. You MUST watch the video we posted on our Instagram page. “She has definitely shown a lot of improvement.”

Congratulations Sandra! Meet our February 2022 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I started at Salus in late August in 2021. I decided to try this after seeing my friend Yuliya transform herself after having her third child. We did a Rugged Maniac together (I love these kinds of races with obstacles) and we were talking the whole time and she convinced me to try CrossFit.

The main reason is because the workouts are always different. I like that! So here I am!

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

I definitely have more stamina than I used to. I can definitely lift more weight (slow and steady) and I can actually RX some of the level 1 workouts.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

Yes, pull ups. I still need to work on kipping, but I can do a couple of pull ups when I used to not even be able to do anything close to that. And wall balls were my nemesis, but now they’re just annoying!! Lol!!

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

I am not stuffing myself in my jeans anymore. I don’t weigh myself ever, so I have no idea if I have lost weight, but I definitely feel like my torso, arms and legs are getting more toned, but I have a ways to go before I look like Angela!!

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

I definitely think a lot more about the food I put in my body! If I am going to spend this time exercising I don’t want to undo that with what I eat!

Also, I used to get a lot of migraines, but I think the stress relief I am experiencing is really helping reduce my headaches.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

I tell them that it’s crazy. I look at the WOD and I think, “ There’s NO way I’ll be able to do that, but I’ll give it a shot”. But the more and more I attend, the more I surprise myself with what I can accomplish. It feels so great to complete a workout. It’s always different and the coaches and participants are incredibly kind, encouraging and supportive!!!

sandra andrews

7. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

So many things!

  1. I desperately needed to do something. I was literally not exercising at all for years. I saw the path I was headed down and it was no good!
  2. My husband and I have this dream hike we want to do called the Coast to Coast walk across Northern England. It’s 192 miles of the most beautiful scenery. This is part of my preparation for that.
  3. I want to have energy to run after my grandchildren – my 20 and 21 year old kids need to finish college and get married first, but, you know, I’m planning ahead.
  4. But really, I just want to be like Elaine’s description of George Costanza: “ He can lift 100 pounds right up over his head.” I am slowly getting there!!

8. Favorite lift or WOD?

Favorite lift is the Bench Press.

I don’t remember the name, but I really liked the New Year’s Eve challenge of doing the two WODs, one right after the other.

I never thought I would ever be able to complete them, but I did.

I was so surprised and pleased! It was fun to do it with everyone.

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Have fun! Ask questions. Do not get discouraged, get determined! If you need a lesson in determination, just watch Yuliya work out!!! 🙂

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

I really want to get better at kipping for pull ups and toes to bar. I need a lot of help with that. Everyone makes it look so easy, but my body and my brain are not talking. There seems to be a disconnect.

But I know I will get it some day! Oh and DOUBLE UNDERS!! UGH!!

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

If I designed a WOD it would look a lot more like: relax on a couch under a comfy blanket: 20 min.
sip a cup of tea: 5x EMOM for 10 min. Ha ha!
So, I’ll leave the WOD design to the professionals!

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Hiking in the woods with my husband, traveling abroad (haven’t done that in a while), reading a good book, watching a good movie, and going to Maine in the summer! Oh wait, you only asked for one thing! oops.

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Spinach salad with grilled chicken, feta cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette – is that healthy??

Filet mignon, garlic mashed potatoes and buttery green beans and an ice cold Kane Head High!!

14. If you could be a superhero, who would you be and why?

I would be Black Widow (from the Marvel movies). She is tough as nails, can kick some butt and looks great doing it! 🙂

15. Favorite inspirational quote?

For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.” Isaiah 41:13

Gets me through every workout!

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

When I was about 6 or 7 I knocked my two front teeth out by stepping on a metal rake. Yes, think of the cartoons where they step on the rake and the handle flies up and whacks them in the face. That was me! 🙂 I am a little more coordinated now.

Strong as a Mother. Lauren Bradshaw Athlete of the Month

Each month we bring you the stories of some amazing athletes in the Middletown, NJ area. Many of these athletes are moms! And this month we are featuring one of those strong moms.

Moms – on their own – are superhuman in their own right. CrossFit moms take it to a whole ‘nother level – they are willing to push past barriers, insecurities, and weaknesses, they bear it all out on the floor to show the rest of us that CrossFit moms are certainly STRONG AS A MOTHER.

Meet Lauren, new mother of Baby Bill. Lauren and her husband, Bill have been a part of the Salus family for many years as a drop-in but have been coming full time since 2020. Whether attacking Murph in the Sports Complex Parking lot, grinding through the cold winter days in the barn, or helping us move locations (preggers), she always arrives with a radiant smile, contagious laugh and inspirational grit. Lauren absolutely deserves to be featured.

Congratulations Lauren! Meet our January 2022 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I started Salus originally as a drop in back in 2017 for holiday weekends (when I was still living in NYC) and then joined full time in 2020. I chose Salus because I loved the coaches’ focus on technique and individual attention that was able to be given in class. Also- the coaches and members always made me feel right at home, even though I was only there a few times a year.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

My performance clearly had to be altered when I became pregnant last January however, it had enabled me to focus more on technique and safe movements, rather than hitting PR’s.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

Before CrossFit, I don’t think I could even do 1 pull up. Now pull-ups are one of my best movements!

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

When I started at Salus, I was in my best shape and then my body went through major changes becoming pregnant last January!

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

Being a part of Salus has helped me mentally get through my pregnancy and post-baby journey. It was very hard to go from being at your strongest, to training while pregnant and then building back even basic movements after my C-section.

I can’t say enough how much the support of the members and coaches at Salus have helped me in my journey.

From cheering me on with my huge belly to encouraging me to take it one step at a time post baby, the community has kept me motivated and mentally stronger.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

Salus is a community that makes you feel welcome, encouraged, motivated and included, all while receiving top of the line coaching from the staff.

7. What keeps you motivated to continue?

My motivation comes from achieving goals. Even though the goals have shifted throughout the years, the motivation from achieving those goals makes me keep coming back. Nothing like the feeling of hitting a PR!!

8. Favorite lift or WOD?

My favorite lift is definitely the clean and jerk and my favorite WOD is the hero WOD “Bradshaw!”

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

CrossFit can feel intimidating at first but give it at least a month of classes to see how you feel about joining. Once you start seeing the results and having fun in class, you won’t want to stop!

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

My next goal is to hit my pre-pregnancy lifts!

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

It would be something like;
20 min AMRAP:
250m row
9 Pull-ups
3 heavy clean and jerks

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Honestly, my favorite thing is CrossFit/working out with my husband. CrossFit is where we met so it is something that we always enjoy doing together!

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

My favorite healthy dish is grilled chicken and roasted broccoli…yummm!! There are so many splurge meals to choose from but I would have to say that pizza is my favorite!

14. If you could be a animal what would you be and why?

I would be a dog! Sounds cheesy, but I do enjoy putting a smile on people’s faces so I feel like as a dog I would be able to always do that! You can’t not smile at a happy dog wagging their tail at you!

15. Favorite motivational quote?

Years ago, one of my old bosses had said “Don’t think about how you can’t do something. Think about how you CAN do something” I always think of that saying because it changes my mindset going into tough situations or WOD’s.

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

I am ambidextrous! I write with my left hand but I can do a lot with my right hand!

Margaret Casagrande: Athlete of the Month December 2021

We’re excited to introduce our December Athlete of the month: Margaret. Margaret started just over a year ago – in the middle of lockdowns. Immediately we were inspired by her quiet determination and dedication. Whether that was consistently showing up in the middle of winter or grinding through a tough workout, Margaret has the grit we all aspire to have.

Congratulations Margaret! Meet our December 2021 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

October 2020. Salus saved me from boring home workouts in the lockdown. And, I had little experience with weight lifting and was interested to try it.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

My back and legs are stronger and that helps with carrying a backpack while hiking.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

I’ve gotten better at overhead squats and maybe pull-ups might be possible.
And, I like running more.

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

No aches or stiffness. Maybe working muscles hard is the cure.

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

I have more energy.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

Intense, but a workout where you can get strength, cardio, and stretching all in one. And inspiring, helpful coaches and fellow athletes make it exciting.

7. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

I was so impressed with the everyone’s abilities in the outdoor 9:30 class when I started. Especially the women who can lift so much weight gracefully.

Good form is so important and I’m hoping to achieve that and lift heavier weight.

8. Favorite lift or WOD?

I like the long WODs like Murph and the 12 days of Christmas.

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

While it’s a group class, you always get personal attention from the coaches. They are always watching and making sure you have good form.

And, there are different levels of the WODs, so you can build up to harder workouts.

It’s a fun, friendly environment and you’ll feel great after!

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

Pull ups-at least a few at a time.

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

Something with squats, push ups, running.

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Hike!

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Anything vegetable.

Pizza with lots of toppings.

14. If you could be an animal what would you be and why?

Mountain goat. It would be fun to run up mountains with little effort.

15. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

I have hiked 7 of the 8 Northeast hardest day hikes. 25-51 miles, 6,000-9,000 elevation gain.

Hoping to complete #8 this summer!

Gina Brownfeld: Athlete of the Month November 2021

Over the years, we’ve witnessed Gina gain strength to not only handle more weight in the workouts, but also in her confidence. Whether that’s strength to get upside down in a handstand or strength to be an active grandma, her determination to make some serious changes has paid off! In addition, she’s won multiple nutrition challenges and has lost 30 pounds in the process (scroll down to see her transformation!)

Congratulations to Gina, our November 2021 Athlete of the Month! Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful journey with us. You have worked so hard to get where you are today and should be proud. We are sure proud of you!!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I joined in July 2017 because I wanted to make changes in my body.

But, it was also because of listening to Scott and Meg talking about the WODs every night at dinner!

2.  How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

I have gotten stronger and fine-tuned some movements, but I have a long way to go.

Getting stronger from CrossFit has helped my yoga practice. I can get deeper into postures and hold them longer.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

I can finally do a few dubs. It took forever but I can sometimes string 4-5 together.

My biggest accomplishment is getting handstand push ups, with a riser but still big for me. When I started I was afraid to even go upside down.

Next are pull ups!!!

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

I have lost 30 pounds and gained muscle.

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

I have always been an all or nothing kind of person, which was challenging when it came to nutrition. Doing the WODs and working with Angela on nutrition has brought so much balance into my life.

I have a healthy relationship with food as fuel now, and I sleep better.

When I am doing CrossFit I can’t think of anything else which helps tremendously with my stress level.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

I explain it as an hour a day to work really hard surrounded by friends who are cheering so hard for you.

 And as a side note you get into really good shape.

7. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

It’s my sanity! Spending time with great friends that feel like family and staying strong as I age.

I am a grandma and I’m stronger than I ever have been in my life thanks to Salus!

8. Favorite lift or WOD?

I love overhead squats. I also love the ski erg, and bear crawls since I beat Scott doing them last time! I don’t get to be faster than anyone very often.

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Give it a chance, be patient.

Modify when you need to.

You have a room full of people pulling for you!

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

Pull ups!!!

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

21, 15, 9
Calories on ski erg
OHS
Strict sit ups

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Spend time with all our kids and grandson!

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Favorite healthy dish would be salmon with everything seasoning, steamed sweet potato and roasted broccoli.
Splurge would be Brooklyn focaccia pizza!

14. If you could be an animal what would you be and why?

I would say a hummingbird, the way they flutter their wings so quickly back and forth keeps them in one place in the present moment, an area I’m working on in my life!

via GIPHY

15. Favorite motivational quote?

May your day be full of magic and may you not be too busy to see it.

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

I am a 500 hour yoga teacher and a Reiki Master Teacher🙏🏼

Gina Transformation

❝I began working with Angela because I wanted to lose weight and get toned. ɪ ɢᴏᴛ ꜱᴏ ᴍᴜᴄʜ ᴍᴏʀᴇ. I have learned that food is fuel to nourish my body. I’ve learned how to bring balance into my body by balancing macros, which then brought balance into so many other areas of my life. ❞
❝One of the biggest lessons I learned is that I cannot be perfect all the time, when I decide to splurge a bit it doesn’t have to mean a downward spiral. I can decide not to feel guilt and just get back on track with my next meal. Angela has always been available to help me navigate my nutrition and my workouts and so much more. 𝘐𝘵 𝘩𝘢𝘴 𝘣𝘦𝘦𝘯 𝘢 𝘱𝘳𝘪𝘤𝘦𝘭𝘦𝘴𝘴 𝘨𝘪𝘧𝘵 𝘐 𝘨𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘮𝘺𝘴𝘦𝘭𝘧.❞

Kaitlyn Mare Athlete of the Month October 2021

Kaitlyn Mare Athlete of the Month

In just under a year Kaitlyn has made some serious strides on the platform and in the kitchen. Through CrossFit, Barbell club and Nutrition Coaching, Kaitlyn has not only gotten stronger, but has transformed her mind and body along the way.

Congratulations to Kaitlyn, our October 2021 Athlete of the Month!


1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I started in January 2021. I had always had an interest in CrossFit, but in December 2020 I started a new job and moved to the area. I thought CrossFit would be the perfect opportunity to meet new people as well as exercise and challenge myself.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

I am able to do exercises that I wasn’t able to in the beginning. I also run half marathons and I have seen a significant change in my pace.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

When I first started I couldn’t even hold on to the bar for more than a few seconds, now I can do assisted pull-ups and my goal is one day to do an unassisted pull-up.

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

I have seen a significant drop in body fat and I’m starting to see some baby biceps show.

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

I have a different and more positive mindset. CrossFit has taught me that there are no limits.

I am also able to focus better at work and I’m able to sleep better at night.

I have much more confidence overall.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

The best hour of my day – it’s my time to think about nothing but challenging myself, but also getting to spend time with inspirational people (and laugh at the crazy things Gino says at 6am).

7. What keeps you motivated to continue? What’s your “why”?

I continue to be motivated by seeing the changes in my body as well as the shift in my mindset.

The cheers from fellow CrossFitters and coaches are also a great motivation.

8. Favorite lift or WOD?

Squat cleans

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Just try! You never know how strong you are and how much you can do until you try.

Kaitlyn Mare Weightlifting NJ

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

An unassisted pull-up is my long term goal, but I would like to RX as many WODs as I can.

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

600m run
21 cleans
21 sit ups
21 pull ups
400m run
15 cleans
15 sit ups
15 pull ups
200m run
9 cleans
9 sit ups
9 pull ups

Running, cleans, and situps are my favorite exercises, but I have to include pull ups since they are difficult for me.

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Other than CrossFit or exercising, my favorite thing to do is take my dog for walks on the beach or read.

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

My favorite healthy dish is anything that involves salmon or some sort of seafood.

My favorite splurge meal would be pizza from my favorite pizza shop.

14. If you could be an animal what would you be and why?

I would be an octopus; I think they are fascinating. They are extremely intelligent and highly adaptive.

15. Favorite motivational quote?

“Only you can stop you.”

It’s more than just exercising or CrossFit, it’s the mindset that nothing is impossible.

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

I love all things steampunk!

Brady & JT, Teen Athletes of the Month September 2021

athletes of the month middletown nj

Meet Brady & JT. They both started in our CrossFit Kids class back in 2018, and have now advanced to our CrossFit Teens class and are absolutely killing it!

These boys have become such well-rounded athletes and have experienced the benefits beyond the box. Brady shares, “It has made me more mentally focused.” And when asked about what keeps him motivated to continue, JT said, “Staying healthy and getting to workout with friends.”

We couldn’t agree more! Working out with friends is definitely much more motivating!

Congratulations to these strong teens: Brady & JT.


Please meet the September 2021 Athletes of the Month: Brady & JT

1. When and why did you start at Salus?

Brady– I started at Salus in June of 2018. I wanted a new workout experience.

JT– I started at Salus in 2018. I wasn’t interested in typical sports so my mom thought I should try CrossFit to get exercise.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

Brady– When I started CrossFit I could barely lift 25 pounds. Now I can lift 25 pounds and even heavier weights.

JT– I have gotten much better at doing all of the exercises.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

Brady– I could not do deadlifts when I started and now I can lift my body weight.

4. How have you changed since you started?

Brady– I have become a lot stronger and have more endurance.  And, it has made me more mentally focused.

JT– I have gotten stronger. It’s made me healthier by having exercise as a regular part of my week.

5. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

Brady– A place where you can put your strength to the test and you will be cheered on.

JT– It helps you to get better and stronger at certain exercises.

6. What keeps you motivated to continue?

Brady– The thing that keeps me motivated is I want to get stronger every day.

JT– Staying healthy and getting to workout with friends.

7. Favorite exercise or WOD?

Brady– Deadlifts

JT– Murphy

8. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Brady– I would tell them to take it slow.

JT– It gets easier the more you do it.

9. What is your next goal to accomplish?

Brady– 15 minute AMRAP:  15 kettle bell swings; 10 deadlifts; 200 m row.

JT– Double unders

10. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Brady– Healthy dish is fruit salad and splurge meal is tacos!

JT– Meatballs and pizza

11. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Brady– Play my Xbox with my friends.

JT– Video games

12. If you could be a superhero/animal who/what would you be and why?

Brady– I would be Iron Man because he is not only strong but very smart.

JT– I would be a lion because they are strong.

13. Favorite motivational/Inspirational quote?

Brady– “Push yourself because no one else is going to do it for you.”

14. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

BradyI love playing tennis.

JT– I have a big family with 20 cousins and I collect retro video games.

Richard Crocker Athlete of the Month August 2021

Like so many of us this past year (plus), finding a place we can go to escape the worries of the day, relieve some stress and connect with other like-minded people has been so important. Although Rich joined the Salus community this past April, he was getting involved at home with is wife. In his words, “It got my mind off of what was going on in the world even if it was just for an hour.”

Congratulations Rich, you are an inspiration and we love having as part of the community.


Please meet the August 2021 Athlete of the Month: Rich Crocker

1. When and why did you start at Salus?

I started Salus in the beginning of April. During COVID, I was doing the WODs with Cherie (my wife) and I really enjoyed our workouts together.

It got my mind off of what was going on in the world even if it was just for an hour.

2. How has your performance changed since you started at Salus?

I have given myself the award of “Most Improved Athlete.”

My first couple weeks were really tough on me, but I could see the progression each week. In the beginning I was taking breaks in what seemed to be every minute but now my endurance is off the charts from where I started.

I find myself finishing off the workouts stronger everyday.

3. Are there exercises you can do now that you couldn’t do before?

It took me a while but I’m finally able to do cleans, snatches and get on the wall for handstand push-ups.

4. How has your body physically changed since you started?

I feel fitter overall. My arms are more defined and abs are starting to show.

5. How has Salus changed you in other ways?

This has been the biggest benefit of Salus. It starts with falling asleep quicker and sleeping straight through the night.

My mood has been great in the morning, which sets the tone for the day.

I feel that I’m not overwhelmed and I’m taking care of one task at a time instead of overwhelming myself with all the things I have to do for the day.

6. How do you describe Salus to your friends?

“The best hour of my day!”

7. What keeps you motivated to continue?

The physical changes are always great, but it’s seeing Coach Gino and the group I get to workout with everyday.

It’s a mentality that we are all in this together while trying to push our body’s to the limit. I just love completing the WODs and seeing the improvement on my time or lifts each week.

8. Favorite WOD?

Any WOD that involves a run/rower into a lift.

9. What advice would you give to a newbie just joining Salus?

Everyone started where you are today. And remember that everyone is here to motivate and help.

10. What is your next goal to accomplish?

I have two goals:

Handstand Push-ups and Kipping Pull-ups.

11. If you could design your own WOD, what would it look like?

3 rounds for time
500 meter row
10 deadlifts
15 box jumps
20 push-ups

12. Favorite thing to do for fun?

Besides CrossFit? Movie nights with my wife and kids.

13. Favorite healthy dish….and favorite “splurge” meal?

Lean steak and broccolini.

Splurge: Burger and fries.

14. If you could be a superhero, who would you be and why?

Superman because he can do anything.

15. Favorite motivational quote?

“The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullsh*t story you keep telling yourself as to why you can’t achieve it.” – Jordan Belfort

16. Interesting fact not many people know about you.

I sold storage units for Manhattan Mini Storage, Cable TV for RCN NY and garments that prevent blood clots for CTC before I got into the Restaurant business.