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Mayor Greenlaw's Top Tips for Health and Fitness - RARE Crossfit Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, and Stafford’s premier CrossFit Facility!

We all know someone who struggles with health and fitness each year. We often hear people talking about how you need to workout six times per week in the gym. That's the wrong bar to set. In today's 5-Fitness Friday, Coach Adam talks with Mayor Greenlaw about tips we can all implement to be healthy and fit.


For reference, here's an audio file of this week's interview. Click on it to listen!

Audio transcription


Coach Adam: Question #1. So, being in this office and what you've accomplished Mary, I'm sure you're probably big on resolutions or goals, what do you do? Do you set new year's resolutions or any type of resolutions or goals?   Mayor Greenlaw: Well, I think we all have goals. Obviously I can't say that I sit down on New Year's day and write out for the year, but it's, you know, it's almost a habit to get into that mode of thinking. If you're a school teacher or associated with education, you tend to do it in September, but most people tend to do it at the beginning of a new year. Well now, what are we gonna do this year? So yeah, I have things I would like to accomplish, but I'm not organized enough that I write them down and check them off.   Coach Adam: Question #2. We just did an article last month and it was basically "how do you actually accomplish in New Year's resolutions" because a lot of people set them and normally when we set a start date, there's an end date. We don't want to do that anymore, we want to keep progressing, especially with health and fitness. So, it's kind of funny how our minds work. So, how do you stay healthy and fit and Mary?   Mayor Greenlaw: I'm always conscious of what I eat, but I have a lucky metabolism because I like to eat and I like to cook. Um, I am a dancer by avocation. I have danced all of my life. I once owned my own dance studio and I currently dance with liturgical dance group and I truly believe in and then there's more and more information coming out now as to the value of dance for a while. Even if you have a disease like Parkinson's, it's extraordinarily therapeutic. It's also considered one of the main ways to keep yourself mentally active because obviously everything in dance is memorized. I mean, you know, it's, you don't, you don't read a script. You have to learn it, so you have to operate the, you know, they head and the body. I truly believe in dance. I have all I have for 25 or 30 years, usually have a yoga or pilates or some kind of class I attend once a week. Right now I don't have one in my schedule. I have a treadmill in the house. I am 78 years old. And to keep myself heart-healthy. Um, I try to walk on my treadmill and I walk everywhere I possibly can. And living downtown, I'm able to walk a lot to where I want to go when I want to go and walking is the most perfect exercise. There's no two ways about it, but I use all the. I use chiropractors, I use massage therapists. I use rolfing, I mean it takes a lot to keep the body moving.   Coach Adam: Well that's the thing, keeping it moving, getting blood flow.   Mayor Greenlaw: Yeah, exactly. Exactly.   Coach Adam: Thank you for sharing that.   Mayor Greenlaw: But most people are surprised at my age and I've not had so far, any problems keeping going.   Coach Adam: I mean, I know so many people, not your age that can't even walk, so that's amazing. That really is something to be said about taking care of yourself. Lee, my fiance, it's funny, we were talking before Christmas, she's from England and we went back and saw her family and her two little young nephews over the holidays and before we left we went out with a few friends. And I'm forty three and I'll be forty four in March, but we started to notice some of our friends, late thirties and early forties. People who haven't been taking care of their health. It's almost like their hitting a wall. You're really starting to see the impact of what we've been saying, I guess for a long time, start young.   Mayor Greenlaw: Keep the muscle tone. Yeah, absolutely. I tell people about their children. You know, ballet for instance, you don't have to take ballet to be a ballerina, but the poise, the muscle tone, the strength that you develop at a young age will stay with you. So, whatever form of exercise it is. It's vital because you don't, you don't lose that unless you really get very, very sedentary and avoid.   Coach Adam: It's funny you bring up ballet, I like to use a lot of examples when we're training people, we bring ballet for the fact of foundational movements. I never did ballet, but I had some friends that did and one of the things is they're always on their toes. Strengthening their toes, and that's what we do with our gym. We let people know, you know, hey, like squatting is one of those base foundations because you squat to the chair. You squat to get into your car, you squat to the toilet, to dinner and uh, you know, we bring up the value of it. If you just did this every day.   Mayor Greenlaw: The first thing you do at a ballet bar is the Plié. The very first thing.   Coach Adam: Question #3. Amazing, thanks for sharing that. When I say the word fit, what does it mean to you Mary?   Mayor Greenlaw: Able. Able to perform whatever you need to mentally or physically.   Coach Adam: I love that. And I love how you said physically and mentally.   Mayor Greenlaw: Well, it is just as important to keep the brain active as it is to keep the body active. And I don't know that we have any idea how or why we have so much Alzheimer's in today. We have people living longer, that's obviously one reason. Dementia has always been with us, that's another reason, but I find it hard to believe that you can't at least assist yourself by staying alert. You know, if your eyes don't let you read then listen to current events or books or whatever. But um...   Coach Adam: It's funny you say that too, Lee my fiance, her grandmother passed just a few years ago but she was 95 and she used to read the paper every single day, front-to-back and sharp as a tack. And I remember first meeting her and I'm like you're different Millicent. She cleaned the windows every day, always moving. Unfortunately one day she was around their town. They live in Stoke-on-Trent, Stone. A small town.   Mayor Greenlaw: I've been there.   Coach Adam: Have you?   Mayor Greenlaw: Uh huh.   Coach Adam: Yeah.   Mayor Greenlaw: Darling, wonderful town.   Coach Adam: Yea, very tiny. It's like a thumbprint compared to Fredericksburg, but there was a lip in the sidewalk and she tripped and went head first into the old style mailbox where you dropped the letters off. And I remember seeing her, seeing her, but here around her face like Batman, it was just all bruised. And it was crazy cause after that, like that shocked her system is when she started going downhill.   Mayor Greenlaw: Yeah.   Coach Adam: Question #4. I think within two years she had passed. But up until that point, amazing. Um, is there anything you'd do to sharpen your mind to stay mentally active besides the physical stuff?   Mayor Greenlaw: Obviously this job has helped, I mean there's a lot of reading, there's a lot of debating, there's a lot of discussion back and forth and deliberating about things. Um, that in itself. I love puzzles.   Coach Adam: Ahh...   Mayor Greenlaw: I work the double crosswords and the New York Times and um sudoko's.   Coach Adam: Ahh, yea that's right.   Mayor Greenlaw: And jigsaw puzzles.   Coach Adam: Question #5. It's so true. I mean, there's, there's lots of science behind that, about doing that challenging your mind, making you think it's fun, because a lot of people don't think of this as a muscle just like hurts. So yeah, thanks for sharing that. Do you have any thoughts on how people or how to keep working towards goals? We found a lot of people struggle to accomplish goals, whether they're health or fitness.   Mayor Greenlaw: My thought, or at least this is how to do it from herself, excuse me, is to take achievable small steps. Because every time you achieve something, it's spurs you on. But if you have only one lofty goal, like I'm going to lose 20 pounds. It seems so hard to get to. But if your goal is I'm going to lose a half a pound a week and I'm going weigh only once a week, and you achieve that half a pound, you're just spur it on, you know, you can do it. It gives you confidence. And I think that's so important with children. You know, we set a goal for them to go out and be the star player on the field hockey tape. No, you want to make that one tackle that one tackle in the next game. You want to make two good tackles. So if it's achievable, small steps.   Coach Adam: I love hearing that. A mentor of mine told me once, "how do you eat an elephant Adam?" I'm like, I don't know. One small bite at a time.   Mayor Greenlaw: That's correct.   Coach Adam: I love he broke that down to, you know, hey, half a pound a week like just this week and only weigh yourself once a week. Exactly. Don't jump on the damn scale every day.   Mayor Greenlaw: Yea, you get completely defeated.   Coach Adam: Yea, it's like checking email all day long. I wanted to say that too. Thank you. I was totally shocked when we emailed you and that you responded. So thank you. Because when I went to the government page, I'm like there's no way Mary's going to respond, so truly thank you for that.   Mayor Greenlaw: Well, you're welcome.   Coach Adam: That was very. I was like, that's amazing. That's awesome. It shows how much you care. And respond. So thank you.   Mayor Greenlaw: You know I'm going to bring this up now because it fits. I've got this for you and you can take as many as you want.   Coach Adam: Ok, yeah.   Mayor Greenlaw: I'm very proud of the work that our council is doing right now and what we did about a year and a half ago was when we went on retreat led by our new city manager and set a vision of Fredericksburg in the year 2036 and there are eight future states described in there, but under that we set priorities and the staff took it, all the department heads had their own retreat and set and you'll see it posted around here. You'll see a great big poster in the hall. They set objectives and the three year timeline and deadlines for objectives to get toward reaching the priority and the vision. And then ultimately the vision.   Coach Adam: Amazing.   Mayor Greenlaw: So talking about baby steps. We broke it down with what the staff considered achievable, um, goals and they report to us quarterly on how were coming.   Coach Adam: Very nice. Ok, if you don't mind I'll take all these and I'll share them around with all our employees and staff as well.   Mayor Greenlaw: And if you go on the city's website, you can see the more, the more detail, the priorities, and you can even see the staff reports if you want to read them.   Coach Adam: Sure, and can I just look up on the website the vision statement?   Mayor Greenlaw: Uh huh, it should show up, now our website is not the most user friendly in the world. We have a whole branding exercise going now, when we get out, you know, a brand and they'll look all set. We're going to work on the website.   Coach Adam: Yea, that would be great thank you.   Mayor Greenlaw: But any rate, talking about goals and talking about making them achievable, that's how the city's working at it.   Coach Adam: Well, I love hearing that, thanking you for sharing that. That's something I realized again, running our business over the last 10 years. It took a long time for us to realize how important a vision statement, your core values.   Mayor Greenlaw: What do you want to look like when you grow up?   Coach Adam: Exactly. And so many people struggle, which I think including with health and fitness too, but it's so important and I mentor a few people and a lot of people I know struggle with. One of the biggest things I say is, "when do you give yourself permission to think or time to think?" Like what are you talking about, I'm so busy? I'm like , you as a leader, you have to sit back and like for 15 minutes a week or an hour to sit back and say, what are we trying to accomplish? What's our vision? And uh, that was really hard for us in the beginning. So again, thank you that is awesome. How fit do you overall see Fredericksburg's population Mary, do you have an idea?   Mayor Greenlaw: Well, we certainly have a lot of gyms who seem to be doing well. I never go by the trials that I don't see people on them of all ages. We've spent $12,000,000 on walking trails.   Coach Adam: Wow.   Mayor Greenlaw: In recent years.   Coach Adam: I did not know that.   Mayor Greenlaw: I mean, that's the city's commitment. That's how committed we are and we plan more. I mean, we haven't finished.   Coach Adam: Awesome.   Mayor Greenlaw: We plan to hook them up. We hope to be all up and down the river front and to hook up, um, you know, where... we'll hook up Idlewild going, getting across 95. And if Spotsylvania will hook up with us, there's an old railroad bed that'll go all the way to Orange.   Coach Adam: Really.   Mayor Greenlaw: You talk about a destination for bikers and hikers.   Coach Adam: That's awesome. Yeah, that would be like inline with what Charlottesville has done with their Rivanna Trail, like that's 22 miles or 23. It's so amazing.   Mayor Greenlaw: Right.   Coach Adam: And then with that everything that develops around it.   Mayor Greenlaw: That's right.   Coach Adam: Just following the vision. That's awesome.   Mayor Greenlaw: That's right.   Coach Adam: Wow, I never knew that. Interesting.   Mayor Greenlaw: We really want to be a walkable city. So we have where, where ever a new road, for instance, the new Chatham Bridge. Every new plan now includes more space for bikes and walkers. So, of course we were an old infrastructure and we a town that was built when there were no cars, but you notice we have the bikes on the city streets and painted on the city streets to remind people that the bikes have right of way to.   Coach Adam: Yea, we love that.   Mayor Greenlaw: And so, but I, I think because I think the city's interest in those things is a reflection of what our citizens want.   Coach Adam: Question #6. Very nice, I couldn't agree more. The um, what's your opinion of helping Fredericksburg get healthy and fit? What would you like to see? The size of the trails?   Mayor Greenlaw: Well, the trials. Making them walkable, um and encouraging outdoor activities.   Disclaimer: Our microphone cut out and the Mayor’s interview ended 5 minutes early.

Friday 8 February

Warm up

Lung Rotation length of rig

Backwards lunge length of rig

2 Rounds

5 Air Squats

5 Box Step ups each leg

5 KB Swings

5 Wall Balls

5 Back Squats with 45/35


A.) Elizabeth


Clean 135

Ring Dips

*14 min Cap


B.) Power Snatch


0-3 Heavy Triple Hang Power snatch

3-6 Heavy Double Pos 2

6-9 Heavy single from the floor


C.)  Midline

30 Strict toes to bar

45 GHD sit ups (weighted sit ups)

60 Abmat situps

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