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Hi athletes,

Coach Dan has been coaching at COTH/CJP for almost two years now. He is an integral part of our coaching staff and community. I had the pleasure to get to know Danny outside of the gym but I am not sure if you guys had the same opportunity, so I asked him to share a little with our community. I hope you enjoy getting to know Coach Dan.

What do you do when you are not coaching at COTH?

My full time job is as the Pastor of Compassion, Mercy, & Justice Ministry at Cornerstone Church of Boston. Basically that’s our fancy way of saying that my primary responsibility is leading our church in efforts to help the needy and suffering people of the world. I do things like organizing fundraisers to support causes, leading teams of volunteers on service projects, and doing training sessions and seminars on why we should all play a role in alleviating suffering in this world. Some of the examples of things I’ve done are leading a team on a Habitat for Humanity Trip, I’ve taken volunteers numerous times to the Boston Rescue Mission to provide dinner for the homeless, we’ve adopted the multiple disabilities classrooms at Blackstone Elementary School in the South End, and we’ve even fundraised enough money to build a fresh water well in Rwanda.

Do you have a pet? What its name?

My family dog is named Bella. I only get to see her once in a while because she live with my parents. She is a half long-haired half short-haired chihuahua. She absolutely loves people and is such an awesome dog. You can see her picture on my instagram!

Who inspired you to do CrossFit?

In 2011 when I was studying for my masters degree I had a friend who was at the same school who we nicknamed “the greek god.” He got that nickname because the dude was a physical specimen who was good at everything. He ended up doing CrossFit and introduced it to me. It looked intimidating and I didn’t fully understand what it was about, but I was ready to do anything this guy was doing because I wanted to be as physically fit as he was. I got hooked immediately because of how hard it was. I hated going to the gym and leaving not even breaking a sweat and feeling like I didn’t accomplish anything. Doing CrossFit with him was the hardest thing I had ever done so I never stopped.

Have you inspired someone to do CrossFit?

I’ve talked about CrossFit so much since I started and have encouraged almost everyone I know to do it. Unfortunately it’s not always successful! But yes, there have been a few friends who started CrossFit because I encouraged them to do it. They tried it out and got bit by the bug and are now faithful CrossFitters!

What is your favorite CrossFit story?

My favorite CrossFit story is of the first time I did “Fran.” I didn’t know how to clean at the time so I took the bar off the rack and would re-rack it while resting. It took me 12:31 and after I finished I stayed laying on the ground for a good 15-20 minutes before standing up and putting the equipment away.

What is your favorite WOD?

I don’t have a favorite benchmark WOD because the nasty girls are…well…nasty! But I enjoy chipper style work outs and movements that I like to see are: overhead presses, pull ups, overhead squats, and handstand push-ups.

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Coach Dan after 15.3!

What movement are you working on now?

I’m hoping to be good at handstand walking one day. My biggest weakness is probably deadlifting. It’s one of my weaker lifts and also makes it harder for me to be good at cleaning heavy weights.

What was your most recent PR?

Today (April 6, 2015) I PR’d my snatch. I got 150# and I weigh 145# so I’m super pumped about that. It definitely made my day!

What is your challenge for the COTH and CJP athletes?

I’d love to encourage COTH and CJP athletes to approach life with as much energy and intensity as you approach a work out. I hope that you get as many figurative “PR’s” at your job, family life, and relationships as you do in the gym. Working out is a hobby that should contribute to the benefit of our real lives so kick butt in your main responsibilities and do it while respecting and loving everyone along the way.