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Our King is the awesome, Jason Modzelewski! We all know him as JAY! Jay is a fierce, competitive athlete that shows up faithfully 5 times a week! Jay is a 10-time Tough Mudder Competitor, Spartan Race Athlete, Two-time Ragnarian and 2016 2nd Place Rx CJP Throwdown. We can always count on Jay to bring the a fun, strategic, and competitive spirit. We most enjoy when he train with his son and Theresa. Thank you Jay for choosing and trusting CJP with your fitness! CONGRATULATIONS Jay!

 

Learn more about King Jay below:  

 

What brought you to East Boston?

Well, I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA. After graduating MIT in 2000, I decided to stay in the Boston area and work in finance. I lived in the Dedham area until 2017 when I moved in with my girlfiend, Theresa, here in Eastie.

What drew you to CrossFit?

In short, it was the Tough Mudder. A coworker of mine back in 2012 sent me a link to the obstacle course race, and I was immediately interested. The websites for these obstacle course races do a pretty good job of scaring you into thinking you will fail. I was beginning to have doubts about the effectiveness of P90X and the other at-home/at-work training I was doing. Early one Saturday morning, I was driving home with my kids from Dunkin Donuts (chomping on a Boston Kreme donut) when I saw a bunch of shirtless dudes outside CrossFit Craic in Dedham lifting what appeared to be 200-lb barbells over their heads. I thought, “Whoa…if I’m gonna take my training to the next level, I need to be doing THAT!” I dropped in the very next day for a Sunday introductory class, and the rest is history – I’ve been CrossFitting 5 days a week since 2012.

What was your expectation on your first day at CJP? How has your perception changed since that day?

We have something at CJP that I see and appreciate at every CrossFit gym I’ve ever vistied: a community of capable, caring judges and athletes of all shapes and sizes united under one goal of helping each other to get as fit as possible. That was my expectation when I showed up here on Day One (June 2015), and that perception hasn’t changed at all in the four years since.

What keeps you coming back to CJP?

The WOD names. But seriously, it’s a mix of everything: the convenient class times, the tough workouts, the coaches, all the friends I’ve made here, the location. CJP just does so many things right.

What are some of the changes you have experienced in your physical appearance, strength, and/or body composition? How have you used this outside of the gym?

My beard is a lot more white than it was when I first joined back in 2015. Honestly, I was doing CrossFit nearly every day for years before I joined CJP. Earlier this year, I competed in my 7th straight CrossFit Open. At 41 years old, I’m not expecting to hit new PRs or milestones anymore. But, thanks to CJP, I am able to keep sharp and not lose what I’ve built. And, every so often, I can surprise myself and get a top score (like Open workout 19.1). Outside of the gym, I still do Tough Mudders, Spartan Races, and the occasional half marathon. And, earlier this month, I attempted to climb Cotopaxi in Ecuador with some friends. I had never been above 10,000 feet elevation in my life before that. That’s one of one of the tenets of CrossFit right there though: Regularly learn and play new sports.

Biggest improvements/struggles with CrossFit?

When I first started doing CrossFit, I could barely do a pull-up. The first time I saw Murph, I laughed out loud and said, “100 pull-ups?! No, really. What’s the workout today?” Now, I do Murph every year with a 20-lb weight vest. I couldn’t do a handstand when I first started. Now, I can walk distances over 25 feet on my hands. Clean and jerk 150 lbs? Not a chance. Now, you could put a 200-lb barbell in front of me, and I could get it overhead even in my work clothes. However, double unders still frustrate me like no other movement. Some days, I can get 50 doubles in a row with no problem. Most days though, I trip every 10-20 reps and have lashes on my hands for hours. And, ring muscle-ups remain the one movement that has eluded me all these years. Maybe next year. Yeah, that’s what I say every year.

If you could create your own WOD, what movements would you use?

I’m 6’2″ tall and 205 pounds, so I’m not the ideal size for a CrossFit athlete. Most of the elite competitors are 6 inches shorter than I. But, being on the taller side gives me an advantage at rowing, wall balls, and rope climbs. And, oddly enough, I’m good at pistols and handstand walks. So, any workout including those movements is in my wheelhouse. Oh, and a barbell. I would definitely choose at least one movement that involves lifting barbells.

Meat head nickname (with explanation)?

Hercules Rockefeller, Rembrandt Q. Einstein, and Handsome B. Wonderful. Nah, I just stole those from The Simpsons when Homer changes his name to Max Power, a name he claims he got off the hair dryer. I don’t really have a nickname – everyone just kind of calls me Jay. At my old gym, there was already a Jay, so I went by “J-Mod,” which was my nickname in high school and my college email address.

If you were to encourage someone on the fence about joining the CJP community, what would you say?

I would tell them, “Despite what you may have heard, CrossFit is not a cult but rather a wonderful community that brings people together. And yes, we do eat bread and drink beer. Quite often, actually. If you’re like me and you get bored of the same old workout routine, then give CrossFit a try. I’ve been doing it for over 7 years straight, and I wake up before 6am every day to do it. So, you know that I must really love it to stick to that kind of routine. Chances are you’ll love it, too.”

Long Live King Jay! 🙂