Stephanie Edmunds joined CrossFit Queen Street over 3 years ago, and ever since has been a shining star in the community. Steph seems to always balance fun, thoughtfulness, and intensity in her training. She is leaving Kingston this summer, and we are sad to see her go, but know that she is going to do great things! Steph has kindly shared with us some thoughts about her training, nutrition, and goals, as well as some of her favourite memories of CFQS.

How has the gym changed in the time you have been here? The first time I went to CFQS, Callum and I did a workout in a concrete basement with no paint, a few barbells, and a small rig. Since then, it has changed to become such a high-quality training space filled with an amazing community. There have also been a lot of culture changes. Transitioning from a "3-tiered" structure to all-inclusive classes with so many opportunities for extra work has really brought people together. It gives everyone an opportunity to show off their strengths and hone in on what challenges them.

How would you characterize your growth as an athlete since joining the gym? My perspective on CrossFit has changed a lot since I first started. I used to have a more serious attitude, trying to train twice a day, keep track of my goals, and spend a lot of time at the gym. Now, I train a lot less, and love it a lot more. I give 100% effort when I'm at the gym, but no longer beat myself up for skipping a day or for choosing another activity. CrossFit brings me a TON of joy, and I think I've grown to better appreciate my time spent at the gym and to be thankful for the cool stuff my body can do!

What does a day-in-the life look like for you these days? My life is a little bit all over the place these days! I'm in physiotherapy school, and am graduating this summer (yay!). I rotate between school semesters in Kingston and clinical placements in other cities. Right now, I get up every morning to join the badass 6:30am crew for a morning WOD. I sprint (literally) to class directly after, and spend my days at school. In the evenings, I keep up to date on my school work and relax. My priorities right now are passing my national exams, so I spend a lot of time on school work!

What do you eat on a typical day? What are your nutrition priorities?

Pre-Breakfast: granola bar / banana / power ball 
Breakfast: yogurt + protein + oats + fruit 
Lunch #1: stir fry / curry / salad 
Lunch #2: meat + potato + veg 
Dinner: eggs + toast 
Dessert: cottage cheese / yogurt with honey 

Sometimes I count macros if I feel like I've been neglecting my diet just to get me back on track. Otherwise, I just try to eat 4 meals a day. My biggest priority is to cook all of my meals from scratch. I spend a LOT of time meal prepping! But I love to cook, and it is important to me to know what is in my food.

What improvements have you made in the past 6 months that you are most proud of? I am proud of the consistency with which I've been able to maintain my exercise and nutrition habits despite an ever-fluctuating lifestyle between school and clinical placement. Over the past 6 months I've lived in 4 different towns, attended 4 different gyms, and adopted a new lifestyle every time. Just maintaining a balanced, healthy lifestyle hasn't been easy during physio school, but I've worked really hard to make time to care for myself!

What would you consider to be your greatest strength as an athlete? I'm not sure if this is a strength or a weakness...but I can push myself. Like really hard. I often surprise myself in what I'm able to accomplish during a workout. Some would argue that I push myself too far sometimes, but I love the feeling of knowing I left absolutely everything I had out on the line during a workout.

What are your current training goals? What are your current life goals? The thing I value beyond all else in my life is balance. Every day, my goal is to balance the things that mean the most to me: friendships/relationships, fitness, education, and FUN. I actively work to make time for these things- all of which make me really happy. 

My specific training goals are currently on hold. Right now, I do CrossFit simply because it brings me joy. I will continue to work as hard as I can during WODs, maintain good attendance, and always bring positive energy to class. There are things I know I could work on, but for now I'm just happy where I'm at. 

Eventually, I want to work towards a big race of some kind, but I'm not sure what that will look like yet. Stay tuned. 

Life-wise, my focus is on becoming the best physiotherapist I can possibly be. My goals are to pass my looming national exams before moving to the Northwest Territories with my boyfriend.

Do you have a particularly memorable or challenging workout to share? My first, and most memorable workout at CFQS was during the Open. Callum and I knew each other from school, and he convinced me to come check it out. I didn't know anyone there. I was so nervous to go that I don't think I slept the night before. I did a scaled version of 15.2, and it was SO HARD. At one point during the workout, I heard people cheering my name. I didn't know ANYONE there and yet somehow, people were cheering for me!! It was the best feeling in the world, and I haven't stopped coming to CrossFit since.