Biking, Rowing, CrossFit, & Swimming with Coach Lou of CrossFit Apex
Today We Talk Rowing, Mountain Biking, Kettlebells, CrossFit, and More:
Coach Lou Williams: I am a father of three who grew up in the Harrisburg area, where I graduated from Central Dauphin East High School.
For as long as I can remember I’ve been a lover of all sports, especially those that tested endurance and mental toughness. I was a YMCA national level swimmer, a competitive runner, and a soccer player growing up but also dabbled in basketball, baseball, rock climbing, and triathlons.
I continued my education at Bloomsburg University, where I pursued a degree in Mass Communications (Journalism) while a four-year member and senior-year captain of the Bloomsburg University Men’s Soccer team. It was during this time at BU when I started coaching both soccer and swimming and realized that working with children in an athletic forum was something I really enjoyed.
I moved to the Bucks/Montgomery County area in 2003 with my wife Lauren, who is a Pennridge HS grad. I spent a few years experimenting with different employment, including stints as the head swim team coach and youth sports director at the Ambler Area YMCA.
More recently I’ve stepped into positions as the Aquatics Director at the Souderton Area High School, head coach for the 200+member Souderton Area Community Aquatic Club, head coach of the SAHS swimming and diving teams, and head coach of the Souderton borough summer swimming and diving teams.
My CrossFit “Journey” began in April of 2013 when I was seeking a way to stay competitive in a non-contact sport. Many years of post-collegiate soccer were beginning to exacerbate injuries suffered as a young athlete and I needed a way to stay active. A recommendation from my sister to try CrossFit resulted in me checking out CrossFit Apex, a move that has honestly changed my life.
Among other things, CrossFit has provided me with new knowledge of and excitement for fitness, a ton of new relationships, an outlet for my competitive nature, and a healthy environment to grow as a person.
Top 3 Hot Point Takeaways:
- Health and Fitness Life Balance
- Getting Outside the Gym with Mountain Biking
- Rowing, Kettlebell Training, and More.
Today’s Resource Links from the Podcast:
Our Mentioned Influencers:
Vinnie Tortorich of Fitness Confidential – http://vinnietortorich.com
Watch us on YouTube:
Timestamped Show Notes:
00:30 – Introduction
02:40 – We probably have similar time domains here, Scott, my Level 1 was set to expire this past fall, and I did end up paying $1,000 and getting my L-2. This was important to my everyday workspace both with swimming and with CrossFit. So I started in 2013. So we’re going on eight full years, it took me a year or two to get my Level 1, five years of that though is coaching extensively at the CrossFit Apex gym. So I just got my Level 2, so I guess it’s about eight years in the CrossFit space, but I’ve been in the swimming coach role, in the fitness world too, similar to you and some other areas for a long, long time.
16:40 – CrossFit Apex did a great job of lending out some equipment which I know a lot of gyms are doing which is awesome for them to kind of give that to their members so we can solve for them. So I got a couple of kettlebells from them. I love kettlebell work. I do swings every day, the rower is my go to right now, we’ve been linked into the concept2 logbook I don’t know if you have that app on your phone. I would highly recommend it.
25:00 – Let’s talk some bike stuff. So let’s take my 12-year-old son and then myself, which I would call myself a newbie. I’ve been riding my mountain bike since I was 16-years-old and it’s done the trick for me. But we’ve been looking at different ways to be fit like mountain biking, getting outside, and biking seems to be something that is available right now. I’ve got two bikes. We’ve been doing some mountain biking in the area, and it has been super beneficial. I always tell people I love to hike. We’ve done some Ragnar trail races. I love to be outside in the woods whenever my kids get rambunctious.
30:00 – I just leveled up, I turned 40 in February 2020. So I was anxiously awaiting all the summer comps for this year but that now looks like they won’t happen too. The CrossFit regulations were two years ago and now it’s 35+ for masters.
33:30 – Every mount bike nowadays applied a standard, which all pretty much have a front shock, it’s a no-brainer. The advantage of going to full suspension is you are going to gain some nice squish in the back so to speak. But I will tell you, I can’t beat a beautiful hardtail for climbing. Because when you pedal up hills, that rear suspension is going to lag a little bit and you’re going to lose some of that power displacement on the pedal stroke.
42:40 – The extent of where I’ve been lately is basically Lake Nockamixon. But certainly, I’m familiar with some hiking and biking trails, and Ralph Stover out that way, come up in Green Lane, PA. Tons of stuff on and off the park trail right there.
48:30 – I also recommend Wissahickon, but northeast of there is an area that has a fire tower, called French Creek. They have an entire network of mountain biking trails in there too. I had ridden there three to four years ago but I remembered them because they had a rare and small wildfire. So that’s probably closer to you than obviously my region of Allentown and French Creek is big and it’s beautiful. I think that might also be under the DCNR property as well, I don’t know. I know Lake Nockamixon is definitely DCNR, which is a land preservation organization for the state of Pennsylvania. You should totally check out the trails app called AllTrails.
54:40 – Final Words Shown Below…
Our Final Words of the Show:
I appreciate you referring to me as kind of a leader in the CrossFit space, as a coach, my thing is working hard here and controlling what we can control. I’ve heard tons of people talk about the focus on “I’m important right now”. With the times that we’re going through, I know this may not air to later, but I’m in the space that we’re kind of living into. Just be a hard worker, be industrious, keep moving forward, keep getting stuff done. Keep working hard.
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