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Ole Glory’s July Athlete of the Month is the very popular and well known orthodontist in the Youngsville and New Iberia area, Mr. Christopher Feldman. Most famous for straightening teeth and correcting overbites, but this doctor works just as hard in the gym as he does at the office.
Feldman learned about CrossFit when it first made it’s way to the Lafayette area from a “brother from another mother, Derrick Stoltz.” When he was a bored Ortho resident living in Jacksonville he decided to finally give it a shot. Once he graduated and moved back home in August of 2013, he immediately signed up at Ole Glory. “I knew Beau from high school and heard of their stellar reputation. It’s been home since then…a part of my life that’s very special.” Although he doesn’t quite remember his first workout, he does recall Push Presses in which he had to use 65#. He stated “I knew instantly that this would be a workout system I could stick to….and here I am 8+ years later with no end in sight!!”
Since beginning CrossFit, Chris has seen major changes, both physically and mentally, especially in 2019. “I’m a small framed guy…its not looking like I’m going to be super buff or super ripped anytime soon, but I’ve definitely achieved what I’d call an ‘athletic dad bod’.” Chris has always been a regular at the gym for the past 8 years, attending class 2-3 times a week. However, in April of 2019 he buckled down and got serious about his health and fitness. He was inspired by one of OG’s Nutrition Coaches, Neil Huval, and began keeping track of his macros and making it a priority to attend classes 4-5 days a week. “2019 was a year of lots of learning and hhhuuuuuge gains for me. I was amazed at how quickly I went from 178 lbs. to 156 lbs. and how much easier things like running and pull-ups became.”
If you know Feldman then you’ll know his “you can do anything you put your mind to” mentality. He now realizes and understands how he chooses to fuel his body and how he performs in the gym are completely up to him. He states “everything in life must be balanced, but in CrossFit I’m no longer just going through the motions…I’m determined to get better and to push myself (safely though) every damn day. The results of this work are showing and the confidence spills over in to other parts of my life. There’s not many better feelings than waking up at 4 AM, going HAM on a workout, coming home to be there when my kids wake up, and then going to work knowing the day was already a success!!”
All of his hard work over the past year has paid off! He achieved a major goal of finishing in the top 10 males that signed up for the CrossFit Open at OG. “Ultimately, I’ll be happy as long as I know I’m doing the best that I can, but it’s great to have friendly competition with my WODnas!!” In the future he hopes to work on his overall strength and his weaknesses. “Everybody at the gym knows that I’m likely to cherry pick, always making it for the heavy cardio days, and then not showing up when it’s weights only.” Once he cuts out the cherry picking, he hopes to increase his snatch from 155 lbs. to 175 lbs., as well as increase his squat from 265 lbs. to 300+ lbs.
Of course any good cherry picker looks for their favorite movements when deciding which WODs to attend. In Chris’ case it’s double unders. “I guess all that elementary school double dutch paid off!!!” Naturally, his favorite workout is the Benchmark WOD Annie (50-40-30-20-10 double unders and sit-ups), plus he loves a good chipper. Along with his strength, Feldman plans on working on pistols which he usually tries to avoid.
Chris’ sports and fitness background includes boxing, soccer, and running track during high school. “I was never great at any of those sports. I was always in decent enough shape to run a few miles, but never excelled athletically or in fitness. I now realize that I could have been much better if I would have worked harder and took practice more seriously…hopefully my kids can learn from these mistakes, because it would have been fun to be a little more competitive outside of the classroom growing up.”
In Feldman’s non-CrossFit life he is 36 years old and married to Krysta Romeo Feldman. They initially met in Las Vegas when he was on a bachelor party almost 8 years ago. They’ve been together ever since. He states “she’s a quiet one, but if you’ve ever seen her and/or talked to her, then you’ll instantly know that I completely out-kicked my coverage and hit the true jackpot while in Vegas!!” Together they have two kids, Ollie who’s almost 3 years old and Emma who’s 7 months old. “The evidence that they’re indeed mine is overwhelming despite the fact that they are also a lot cuter than I am..let’s hope they keep it up.”
As for his profession, this is what Feldman had to say, “if you didn’t know by my shameless and constant self promotion and the Feldman Ortho magnets and t shirts all over the gym, I’m an orthodontist and have offices in New Iberia and Youngsville, both started from scratch in the last 6 years (we do free consultations, so give us a call). Orthodontics isn’t only my job, its my passion. Helping people to become the most confident version of themselves and being proud to smile is very rewarding. Working with children, teens, and adults that want to feel young again keeps me energized and feeling young myself. I try to make sure my job and office environment is fun, but I also enjoy the challenge of a tough case, and I’m always striving for excellence and efficiency in my clinic (much like in CrossFit).”
When Chris is not working or breaking a sweat at the gym he enjoys traveling as much as he can, going on food tours at any city he visits and of course his favorite, going to EVERY Saints game possible. Geaux Saints!
When we asked Chris what his favorite thing about Ole Glory CrossFit is, this is what he said “of course the best thing about OG is the camaraderie. Most of the members are true friends, many have become patients, and all of them are people I respect and admire. There’s very little member turnover at our gym, because its evident that the coaches love what they do and care about the well being of their members. In the past 3 years, I’ve been working out at 5 AM, and have formed somewhat of a brotherhood with the guys I work out with (seems the ladies wait til 6 am to WOD). Our class is full of successful businessmen, amazing fathers, men of God, and all around great people (much like the rest of the members). When I ran my marathon, I wasn’t surprised to see fellow 5 AM’ers, Tyson Richard, Drew Shepard, and Anthony Rogers come out to run with me. Anthony ran a whole 10 miles with me and I might not have made it without him. When my daughter was born, John Domec gave darn near a closet full of clothes that his daughter who shares the name Emma with my newborn had grown out of. These workout partners have become true friends, people that inspire me, and people that push me to be better inside and out of the gym every day. Much love to the members of all classes, that I love to visit from time to time!!”
His favorite words to live by: ”Do Well, But More Importantly, Do Good”
“I don’t know who said it first…I think I read it on a card in Whole Foods one day and it stuck with me. I have no shame in trying to provide the best life possible for my family, but I know that it’s worthless if I don’t do good for others at the same time. I think it’s important to show gratitude for everything you have and for loved ones every day, even on the bad days. OG helps me to stay physically fit, but also those 5 AM endorphins set the tone for me to be grateful and to show gratitude day in and day out. I use the word “inspire” a lot because I try to live my life inspired…I try to learn something from everybody I meet and every interaction we have and I hope inspire others to live their ‘best life’.”
If you’re interested in giving Ole Glory a try, here are some words of advice from Feldman. “CrossFit isn’t a fad and its not going away. People that CrossFit talk about it a lot because of how great it is. It can seem intimidating from the outside looking in, but anybody can do it, and its awesome no matter what level your fitness starts off at. I’ve been extremely blessed since the day I was born, but I still try to make the best life decisions possible. Joining OG CrossFit remains one of the best decisions I’ve made and working out early in the morning is also high up on that list. CrossFit has shown me that I can do so much more than I ever thought I could, but its also keeps me humble (ok…maybe just a little humble) because no matter how many gains I make, there’s always somebody that can make what I do look easy!!!
…and y’all better publish this!!!!…..I’m honored to FINALLY be selected as member of the month….It only took 7 years of membership, losing 22 lbs, running a damn marathon, and agreeing not to facebook while i’m using the bathroom during warmups, but hell I’ll take it!! I love my OG fam and I’m grateful for what y’all have done for my fitness and my life!!!”