Prior to joining CrossFit Central I had experienced a series of health issues, and I was sidelined from much of my life. I could not exercise and I couldn’t do the everyday things that I had become accustomed to. From a mental perspective, I was searching for answers for my illness since I had always thought I was in good health and that I kept good eating habits. I was frustrated that despite having kept my disease in check for so long, I was now dealing with it again.

About 15 years ago, I was diagnosed with diverticulitis. I kept it in check with diet and avoiding certain foods that could irritate the condition. In early 2013, that all changed and I found myself in awful abdominal pain. I was ultimately diagnosed with peritonitis and had to have 10 inches of my colon removed. Following the surgery, I had a blockage and infection (which is a low percentage risk with the surgery) and had to wear an ileostomy bag for a few months. The bag bypassed my intestine all together but required a small part of my small intestine to be outside my body. The 2nd surgery required that the original incision be reopened so I could not be restitched up. Instead the wound was left open and I had to have a nurse visit me regularly until the incision closed on its own. l literally could not go to the grocery store without assistance and I could not except myself. Finally, I had what is referred to as the takedown surgery which removed the bag, and redirected my digestive tract to my large intestine. I had three surgeries in 3 months and it took another 6 weeks before I could begin any form of physical activity. Over a year later, I visited my doctor to discuss what I thought was scar tissue from all the surgeries. As it turned out it was an incisional hernia and the doctor recommended surgery. I was skeptical since I was not symptomatic but took his advice and had the surgery and I am so glad I did. I realized that I was operating with only a portion of my abs.

I was physically weak but emotionally, in hindsight, I was depressed. I had to rely on so many people to help me with my everyday routine. When I was able to begin physical activity I started doing short TABATA and HIIT workouts at home, but was looking for more of a challenge. I also needed to find a way to get my workouts in quickly. I had friends recommend CrossFit Central, and I decided to give it a try.

Laura lost 29 lbs. and 13.7% body fat


I am so much stronger and according to my doctor, I am in the amazing health. My metabolic panels and blood test show that I am not only physically stronger, but I am healthy inside and out.

Most of my workouts in the past were heavy cardio. I trained for distance running or bike rides even triathlons but I was always intimidated by weights. Not anymore. I even took one of Zach’s Barbell Sport sessions to help me become more familiar with olympic barbell movements. I feel like my time has given me the confidence push myself when it comes to weight training.

I became a Mom later in life – like way late. So my 5 year old keeps it interesting. He has no idea that at my age, running around chasing him was not easy. Now, it is a non-issue. I also find that I am able to manage the stresses of our family life better. We not only have a 5 year old in the house, my stepson lives with us and he has a severe disability and his needs are great. I am able to manage through those challenges because I am more mentally sharp than I have ever been. I juggle lots of community activities and my household does not work if I don’t meal plan and prepare for my week(s) ahead. My coaches and friends at CrossFit Central not only inspire me to plan what I am eating but they encourage me and celebrate it.

What’s next? I am focused on getting stronger, faster and leaner. I am also tackling a pull-up with no band, a kipping pull-up, a rope climb, and will continue to work on my double under.