Member Spotlight: Jackie Penman

Tell us about yourself!

I’m a proud Dundas resident, recent first (and last) time marathon finisher, and juggler of life’s chaos. My husband Rick and I have recently transitioned from a bustling household to a more serene state. With three of our four kids out exploring the world, our home felt eerily quiet—so we got a puppy. 

When not working or working out, I’m busy planning my next grand adventure: a month-long road trip to Newfoundland.

What got you into CrossFit?

I’ve known Anita for a long time and she suggested that I give it a try many years ago. When she came over to Alchemy, I followed her to the gym and haven’t looked back.

What do you like about Alchemy?

The community! I have discovered a group of strong, supportive and amazing women at 6 am who motivate me to be my best. I don’t know if 6 am would be the same without them.

What has been your proudest moment at Alchemy?

That’s easy. Conquering double-unders. It took years before it finally clicked but one day Duncan showed me a trick and that was it. Now I look forward to any workout that has double-unders.

What are your CrossFit goals for the future?

Just to keep moving. I’ve been with Alchemy for seven years now and it is part of my routine. With maturity, I’ve accepted there are things I can do and there are things that I am better to leave to the 20 and 30 somethings! My goal is to age gracefully and keep enjoying life. I recently completed my first marathon and am looking forward to new challenges ahead.

If you could design the perfect workout, what would it include?

An endurance workout with lots of different movements. Slow and steady.

What’s the biggest change you’ve seen in yourself since you started CrossFit?

Accepting strength over size. When I was younger, it was always about being thin and exercising or restricting myself to achieve that. Now, I’m happy to be able to celebrate strength and endurance. If you had asked me 15 years ago if I would ever be able to lift heavy weights, I would have laughed.

When you’re not at the gym, what’s your favourite thing to do?

Travel and spend time with family and friends. Nothing makes me happier than a full table, where everyone is laughing and sharing stories.

What’s your favourite local Hamilton food spot?

There are so many great places to choose from! Really, anything along King William but I have a soft spot for The French.



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