Athlete of the Month: Neil Delucca

Hometown: Drexel Hill, PA

Current Location: West Norriton, PA

Age: 35

Occupation: Registered Representative at Vanguard in Malvern, PA

College: Temple University How long have you been a CrossFitter? 3.5 years

Did you ever play sports? I played lacrosse and football through my freshman year of high school, but I gave it up to focus on music. I was in the marching band and indoor drumline in high school and then did drum corps in college. In 2005 I was in a group call The Cadets based out of Allentown and we won the Drum Corps International championship. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hsjlyEjd83M

Got some cool (or uncool) hobbies you'd like to share? Did I mention that I was in band? Well, after I was done performing, I went on to teach drums for 15 years. That’s when I had the pleasure of teaching Jenna while she was in high school. I tried to make a full time gig out of it, but it was only really ever a hobby. I still watch a lot of drum corps, indoor drumlines, indoor color guards, and keep up with the activity even though I am not really involved anymore.

What has been your biggest achievement at CrossFit in general? Honestly, it’s that I keep coming back. I went 32 years without ever really “working out,” and now I have been doing it pretty consistently for over 3. I am taking a break coming up for a few months, but I can’t wait till I can come back full time.

What skill had you been working on all during 2018, and did they become successes? Double unders. And if by working on them, what actually happened was Danielle told to me work on them, I didn’t, and then all of a sudden I could. So the moral of the story is, sometimes you don’t actually have to work on anything, you just need Danielle to call you out. I am hoping the same thing happens with muscle ups.

Goals for the whole 2019 year? Muscle ups

What's your favorite WOD? The Mike Roth Memorial Ab Tabata Cash Out. Hahahha, no it’s probably Grace. It has a barbell and it’s over quick.

How about your favorite food/snacks? IPAs (especially New England Hazy IPAs) and doughnuts 

What is the craziest workout outside of CF you have ever done? I’ve run a few 5ks. That’s pretty much it What’s your least favorite WOD? Anything over 20 minutes. Favorite lift/movement? Clean, anything heavy, rowing

What’s your least favorite lift/movement? Gymnastics, anything just body weight, running

What’s your favorite piece of workout "gear"? Anything that I can play with during the workout to make it look like I am not just standing around. You think I am taking a break, but what I am actually doing is adjusting my knee sleeves for the 12,000th time.

What you say is your biggest improvement since starting CF? Within the first year I lost about 40 pounds, which was awesome, but really my biggest improvement was me being able to breathe. With the help of my girlfriend and not wanting to die during the workouts, I was able to quit smoking. I want to say that I can lift more and run faster, but really it is just being able to breathe easier is my biggest improvement. I still have a long way to go before I have an “engine,” but at least I am not making it worse.

Who is your favorite coach? I mostly go to the last classes of the day (hence PM Neil D) so I see a lot of Rachel, Danielle, Jenna, and Justin. I did go to one 7 a.m. class and Tim asked me where I was dropping in from. I told him the night classes. Needless to say we ran a lot, and I have not been back since. Of course, just like everyone else, I cannot name just one person. It really is the coaching staff as a whole that creates such a warm welcoming environment. All of the coaches know your name. If they don’t know your name, they make it a point to introduce themselves. Gordy introduced himself to me about 4 times before he remembered who I was. That says more about me than it does Gordy! Although I do mostly go to the night classes, I have had the pleasure to interact with most of the coaches, and I am sincerely thankful for everything. I would not be where I today without all of you. Thank you.

PR's to mention? Goals Reached? Nutrition highlights?... With every workout I put together a plan. Whether it is overall time, number of reps, check points throughout the workout, or even just a weight to hit, I always have a plan. Now, I would say that about 75% of the time that plan goes out the window in about 15 seconds, but every once and again, I am able to reach those mini goals. With the advantage of testing the same workouts several times a year, or working on similar movements, I am able to reexamine and readjust what I want to achieve. Maybe one day I really slow on some box jumps, but then they come up again and I am able to push myself just a little bit more. Overall that might shed a second or two of my time and to anyone else it may not seem like much, but to me it is a huge achievement. I do this with a lot of different movements and workouts. I try to stay positive. Also, I jerked 275 pounds the other day…

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