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The Athlete of the Month awards don’t necessarily get given to the athletes atop the scoreboard. Most often, the award goes to the athlete that worked the hardest, and experienced the biggest change relative to their abilities. The award also goes to the people who, above the rest, contributed strongly to developing the atmosphere and community we have.

You can’t miss Roxanne Allen or Dhiren Naidoo at the gym. Dhiren because you’re either being smothered in his shadow or one of his hugs. And Rox because “You had better pick that bar up!”

The coaches and the rest of the community are proud of your accomplishments, Rox and D. You’re an inspiration to all. Keep keeping on – you’re only just getting warmed up!

How did you discover CrossFit?

Rox: I Googled it when I started looking to mix things up a bit. I was very into my spinning but I felt that gym, whose name we don’t mention, was missing something.

D: I made the decision to get into shape early last year and went the “Hire a personal Trainer” route. I used to drive past the sign to the old box every morning en route to the gym. The first time I googled CrossFit Jozi I actually searched for “Rebel Homeworxx Crossfit Jozi” because that’s what I thought it was called… that’s what the sign said! (Dhiren, they are three separate signs!)

What were you doing sport/exercise wise before CrossFit?

Rox: Spinning and running. Mixed with some Zumba type classes (how embarrassing for me LOL)

D: Dragging myself to gym a few times a week and making very slow progress.

How long have you been training at CrossFit Jozi for?

Rox: 10 months now! Wow time flies when you are having fun!

D: Officially completed my jump up on the 16th of November last year, but because I went on two holidays quite quickly after I always count my start date as January.

Favourite CrossFit exercise?

Rox: Any shoulder to overhead stuff but push/strict press are the bomb diggity!!! Also running, box jumps and recently overhead squats! I like all WOD’s that are long and need endurance.

D: The rest in the WODS… second favourite would be any of the press progressions.

Most disliked CrossFit exercise?

Rox: Thrusters! I actually struggle with most squat movements. I have knee problems that have resulted in me never using my “squat muscles” LOL

D:Anything bodyweight related, being a big guy does that…

What changes in your health, physique, performance and mental wellbeing have you noticed since starting CrossFit?

Rox: I was supposed to go in for surgery on my knees when I first joined CFJ. 10 months of CrossFit and it is sorted. I also love my new muscles. My whole outlook on what a woman’s body should look like has changed. Strong is the new skinny! Can’t wait to come home and bench press Rob *grrr*

D: How do you answer this without writing a full essay?
Physically, in terms of health, physique and performance – I have never been this combination of strong, lean and fit. I definitely could be more of all three, couldn’t we all, but it is a very good mix. Most importantly I am proud of what my body can do. Onwards and upwards – one meal and one good rep at a time.
Mental wellbeing – I feel a little saner than I did in Jan, does that count?

What advice would you give to someone with regards to starting CrossFit?

Rox: Patience!! In fact, my first three months at CrossFit I was frustrated and angry 99% of the time. Hang in there and LISTEN to the coaches.

D: Just start! Its undoubtedly the hardest thing you will do at CrossFit – that decision to start. Once you make that choice, everything else gets easier.

What is one word that people often use to describe you?

Rox: Hmmm… Control freak? That’s two words. Competitive?

D: Gorgeous – that’s only if you take every synonym for big and foul mouthed word to describe exaggeration out of the dictionary.

What is something we would be surprised to know about you?

Rox: Probably that I am a recovering drug addict. (That’s why I don’t drink at all :)) I am quite open about it because I know where I was 2 and half years ago and where I am today. I am proud of that, and share my story to hopefully inspire others. I have done a lot of service helping other addicts as well.

D: I’ve been struck by lightning – true story!

Favourite activity outside of CrossFit?

Rox: Oh gosh. We are so boring. We don’t do much outside of Crossfit. I go to an awesome church with a really cool vibe! We also do loads of dinners and lunches with our AMAZING friends.

D: Sleep!

Favourite place to eat a Paleo-ish meal in Jozi?

Rox: We recently ate at Ginko’s. Oh my gosh, best brownies EVER. You have to have their burgers, minus the bun obviously.

D: Gingko in Parkview – Florence makes a good dessert. Closer to home is Calisto’s in Bedford Centre; they make a mean surf and turf and will make it to your liking.

What are 2 things you will always find in your fridge?

Rox: Woolies organic full cream milk (nom nom) and strawberries/pineapples.

D: Spinach and chillies! ( Before the 1st of the July it would’ve been All Gold Tomato Sauce and Oros)

The song that gets you pumped up for a workout:
Rox: Hmmm, 4:30pm crew are always playing the good stuff! House music generally gets me moving the best

D: Spit Your Game – Notorious BIG

Proudest accomplishment at CrossFit?

Rox: Kipping pull ups and my ONE kipping hand stand push up. I can’t seem to string two together LOL

D: Signing onto and sticking to the Winter Challenge. The results have been incredible and in a very short time I have managed to sort out issues doctors were telling me I needed chronic medication for. Also my team has been nothing short of incredible, always there for each other. My own little crew of Avengers -a demigod, a pizzavengi, a pilot (my guuuy!), captain fantastic, a four finger kit kat and my training buddy from 5am, who may not be full of words, but says a lot with the little he says.

Which CrossFit Jozi member inspires you the most?

Rox: Tamarr! Not just at the box but all aspects of her life. She is one smart cookie! I also look to my fiancé for inspiration. His transformation has been epic! It is very hard choosing just one person. I am inspired daily.

D: Got too mention my bash brother Shane, back after an op and eager to get back in, but I have to say the entire 5am crew are awe inspiring. Personally I think anyone that gets out of bed and to a gym by 04:55 am and then takes it to the max is a poster boy/girl for sheer determination.

The most awesome sports movie ever?

Rox: Jerry Maguire just for that ONE part: “Help me to help you!” Ha ha ha. Cracks me up!

D: “You make sure they remember, forever, the night they played the Titans!” Remember the Titans.

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