CrossFit Bangor Member Spotlight – Brian H. Cotlar

  1. When did you start at CrossFit Bangor:

It was just before Niki and Matt Brazier left for Providence, RI, so I believe it was 2013.  Wow, so about six years ago! I remember hearing about CrossFit and joining as a “New Year’s resolution”. I believe Tony Sutton and Niki did my on-ramp training.  When I joined Crossfit I was about 40lbs heavier and I smoked a pack and a half of camel cigarettes a day. I quit cold-turkey after on ramp day #2.

  1. Proudest CrossFit accomplishment:

That’s a tough question!  There have been so many milestones for me.  I remember getting my first pullup, my first rope climb, the first time I completed a workout BEFORE the time cap (That may have just been the other day 🙂 I was very proud to compete in my first competition and to win the men’s scaled with Michael Lockhard at Hulks & Ninjas a while back.  I was also proud and honored to compete with Randi Mosley at Reindeer Games. Competitions are fun and it’s not even about winning necessarily. I really enjoy how the shared adversity of a workout can bring people closer together and build camaraderie. I guess my proudest accomplishment is that I’m still coming in and still working to get better.  I’m proud to be committed to this type of fitness and grateful that I can come often.

  1. Favorite lift, metcon, or both:

My favorite lift is power cleans (from the hang)…and shoulder-to-overhead is my jam too.  I also love rope climbs in workouts (they make me feel ready for the zombie apocalypse 🙂

  1. A movement or workout you’re hoping to improve this year:

I’m working on my gymnastic movements.  I’m hoping to get better at Bar Muscle ups and Handstand Walks this year.  I’d also like to be able to string together Chest-to-Bar pullups using that groovy butterfly motion I’ve seen others do.

  1. Biggest surprise since starting at CrossFit Bangor:

My biggest surprise has been how much I actually enjoy exercise now.  It’s fun now, and again I also love the camaraderie and culture of supporting one another on our individual fitness journeys. 

  1. Advice for new members or friends who have yet to try CrossFit:

For new members, JUST KEEP SHOWING UP.  Don’t beat yourself up about scaling movements or compare yourself to other athletes.  Listen to our trainers and to your body. Rome wasn’t built in a day. All you have to do is get there and the programming will do the rest.

For my friends, IT’s THE BEST INVESTMENT I’VE EVER MADE IN MYSELF.  Why aren’t you here yet? 🙂

  1. Favorite Maine place to recommend to other members or visitors:

There’s a part of the Appalachian Trail out near Brownville, ME.  It’s about a 4 mile hike to a big tent site on a lake and it’s one of the most beautiful spots and one of my favorite places.  After you get there, there is a side-hike up a ridge and the view is breathtaking. Ask me and I’ll tell you how to get there. 😉  Also, spend time in Acadia National Park. It’s a truly magnificent place with much natural beauty.

  1. Non CrossFit interest(s):

Gee whiz…I hadn’t realized it but I have a lot of interests!  I like old-school Nintendo games and video games in general, I love to hike and camp, I love NFL Football and I’m a lifelong Philadelphia Eagles Fan.  I also enjoy snowboarding though I haven’t been in a long time. Most of all I love to spend time with my daughter Ella who is just about to turn 4. I’m pretty sure she was doing box handstand pushups off the coffee table the other day!

  1. Additional thoughts you’d like to share! 

I want to say THANK YOU to Melinda Metten, Karl, Tiffany, Derek, Connor, Tony, Kevin, Michele, Karen, Courtney, Zach, Emily, Dajia, James, Alex, and every other trainer and member at CrossFit Bangor for being supportive of me.  CrossFit has done more for me than just make me physically better. It’s significantly improved my self esteem and given me the confidence to try new things and work toward career goals which I never thought I’d be able to achieve.  It’s helped me to manage my anxieties and realize my own self-worth. I can safely say that I wouldn’t have had the confidence to take the job at the Chamber of Commerce or to initiate a run for Bangor City Council without CrossFit Bangor and my CFB family, so again THANK YOU!  Plus, I can see my toes again which is great! 🙂 <3