Member Spotlight: Ryan Parkinson

Tell us about yourself!

I have two young kids and a started a company a few years ago so honestly lately that’s about all there is. Been in Hamilton area most of my life other than some stints in Toronto for work. Built a house during COVID and moved basically three times in 14 months so I don’t plan on relocating again for 40-50 years. I love to travel and hope to do that again in 15 or so years.

What got you into CrossFit?

I started in 2012 ironically at the old Alchemy. The only reason I switched to Steel City back then was the fact there were no showers/change rooms at the old Alchemy location. I started mainly as a way to do a group class to stay motivated. I’ve been active all my life and would workout/train alone previously but found it hard with the hours I was putting in at work at the time.

What do you like about Alchemy?

I originally joined for the convenience as I could technically jog over (have yet to do that to date …) I have probably been to 40 or so CF gyms as I used to do drop-in workouts when we traveled (before kids, before Covid) and can say Alchemy is one of the most enjoyable. It’s organized, efficient and low pressure. Alchemy is also very clean which you shouldn’t underestimate. I like using ZenPlanner and being able to plan out my week. I manage everything through my calendar, so I need to block off time personally otherwise something always comes up.

What has been your proudest moment at Alchemy?

Probably just the first class after not doing it for 3 years and being able to complete it. Though I couldn’t walk the next day…

What are your CrossFit goals for the future?

I have a 2 year old and a 5 year old so its basically just survival mode at the moment. For now anyway, the goal is just to stay active and commit to 3 days a week at Alchemy (maybe push it to 4 if the hip holds up.)

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

Likely something with running or rowing. I used to do a lot of workouts at home where I would incorporate both and random other things. I also live close to the Dundurn/Chedoke stairs so something with that incorporated would be fun as well (So, the Alchemy Endurance Loop?!)  

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

It’s always been the commitment and scheduling. COVID was challenging as it was hard to pull away from work during the day and even harder to find the motivation in the evening. It provides structure and discipline that I just don’t have anymore trying workout myself.

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

I like to be active and used to try to do something everyday. Tough lately but golf, yoga, and the stairs are up there. Spending time with the kids but that’s also a double-edged sword since it can also be my least favourite thing depending on their moods…

What’s your favourite local Hamilton food spot?

Tough to pick one and likely the cause of the aforementioned 15. I’ll narrow it to two; Rapscallion or Cima, though Le Tambour is pretty good too.



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