Greetings Relentless Family! Welcome to our first quarterly coaching spotlight! Today, we’re proud to help you get to know Coach Shannon Santos a little bit better. Shannon joined the Relentless Nation in October 2013, and routinely coaches the evening classes (6 and 7 pm).
What was your athletic background prior to CrossFit?
I started coaching when I was 19 years old, so the only athletic background I really had was high school sports. I was a 3 season athlete competing in Volleyball, Swimming, and I threw Javelin. I even earned myself some varsity letters. But after high school I became your average gym rat, hitting up LA fitness every day doing your standard back, bi’s and tri’s.
How were you introduced to CrossFit, and how long have you been doing it?
I actually kept seeing posts on social media that were making fun of CrossFit, and looked into it myself and thought “this is something that I would be interested in doing.” While I was driving to school one day I saw that they were opening up a Box on my way to school and signed up as soon as they opened.
What made you want to be a coach?
I’ve always enjoyed helping others but I never considered being a coach until my coach at the time told me that I would be really good at it. He encouraged me to get certified when I was only a few months into my CrossFit experience. I shadowed and interned under him until he left the gym to move across country.
What are your favorite/least favorite movements?
Most people who know me know my love for the Olympic movements (snatch and clean & jerk), but anything with a barbell has always come somewhat naturally to me. My least favorite movement would have to be running or burpees, but probably running, haha! Given the option to run a mile or do “Fran”, I would rather do “Fran.”
What are your hobbies outside of CrossFit?
Outside of CrossFit I work full time at a medical office. It’s not really a hobby but it takes up a majority of my time. if I’m not training or working or coaching I like to relax, hang out with friends or my dog, go on day trips, things like that.
What is something that very few people know about you?
Aside from doing sports in high school, I was actually a classically trained singer and involved with multiple AP, award winning singing groups.
What is the greatest advice you can give members?
My favorite advice that I give to members is to keep coming, to be patient and to leave the ego at the door. You’re not going to hit a PR every time you lift. What feels good one day might feel horrible the next. The most important thing is to break through those mental barriers and come in, get a good workout in, and go home feeling like you did something that day.
What do you see as the “next step” in the CrossFit world?
I’m not really sure how to answer this question. Over the years CrossFit has grown to be a household recognized fitness routine. At this point I find the industry to be very saturated with Boxes, and it’s not a bad thing. It just makes you wonder what else could they possibly do to make this industry bigger.
What inspires you, as a coach and/or athlete?
What inspires me as a coach is seeing all of the people and members I have known for my whole CrossFit experience and seeing how much they have progressed. Seeing people I whose on-ramps I coached getting unassisted pull-ups, or snatching a weight they couldn’t imagine – breaking mental and physical barriers. Whether it’s a bodyweight clean or jumping onto a box for the first time, knowing that I can have something to do with a members personal victory is what keeps me going. No matter how bad of a day I am having at work or in my own life, helping our members achieve those goals keeps me coming back.
What is your proudest coaching moments?
I’d have to say similar to the previous question, watching the athletes I train make strides that in the beginning they never would have imagined they could do.