We are nearing the end of the summer and that can only mean one thing…

The 2018 CrossFit Games is upon us. We have all filled out our Reebok CrossFit Games Pick’Em Bracket and we are anxiously waiting for the competition to commence August 1st. Every year, the competition gets more fierce and the workouts Dave Castro programs become more challenging.

It is always exciting to watch the athletes throw down over the course of five days. It is even more exciting when you know some of the athletes out on the floor. Lucky for Reebok CrossFit One members, four people you know and love are competing in Madison for the title of the Fittest Team on Earth.

The team is RCF1 head coach Austin Malleolo, One Nation gym owner Spencer Hendel, nutrition coach Kassandra Aveni, and former second Fittest Teen on Earth (16-17 division) Ashleigh Wosny. This power team of four has been training together for months to prepare for this week and to achieve their goal of winning the team division at the Games. While the team feels ready and excited, the process has not come without its ups and downs. They have worked hard to become one unit. This is what ultimately led to their success at the Northeast Regionals and what they hope will lead to their success at the Games.

Working with a group of people is not always easy. 

Everyone has different schedules, ideas, wants, needs, and opinions and any unresolved conflict within a team can lead to a performance deficit. That is why the past few months, the RCF1 team has focused on addressing these conflicts and finding a resolution so nothing will distract them from their goal.

When talking to Kassandra about overcoming conflict she said, “I think talking about it and resolving things instead of letting them build into resentments has been the healthiest way to overcome people and things and situations that you can’t always control. So we’ve done a good job over the months by building that up and having all those hard conversations that you would rather just avoid.”

Austin followed up by saying communication is one of the most important components to being successful at this level of competition. As an individual CrossFit athlete for most of his career, he recognizes the differences between the team and individual competition. As an individual, an athlete can be selfish, but with a team it is important to be selfless. Everyone’s thoughts, feelings, problems, strengths, and weaknesses need to be taken into consideration. It is hard and it takes constant effort, but they have been able to push through it all because they are all driven by one common goal- to win.

Winning is not the only thing that drives this team.

Winning is one outcome and all four athletes are intent on enjoying the entire journey together. With 20+ hours of training each week, the process can be demanding both physically and mentally. It is not always easy to find the desire to train when the body is hurting and the mind is exhausted. But this team finds motivation within each other every single day. “We motivate each other with work ethic. When you see other working hard, doing well it inspires you to work just as hard,” says Austin.

Both Kassandra and Ashleigh talked about keeping each other accountable and working for the other people on the team. No one wants to let the other team members down because they all value this opportunity and hold their goal with equal importance.

“It’s really less of what you do, but how you do it and who you do it with.” -Austin Malleolo

It is clear there is a lot that goes into this process. All four athletes have been regimented with their training, recovery, nutrition, and mental well-being. When asking Ashleigh how she is handling this process she said, “I think mentally just taking it one day at a time. Everyone keeps saying it’s two months away, but it goes by so fast. I remember before regionals it came before we even knew it. So I think I’m going to approach it the same way I did when I was in the teen division: enjoy every day, be grateful to be there and then work hard.”

Now it is time to put it all out on the floor.

They have put in all the work and they are ready to show the world what they are made of.

All in all, this team is not just four talented athletes working out together. This team is a family backed by their community back in Boston. To keep up with the team, check out the competition schedule and tune in for all of the events. Let’s cheer so loud they can hear you from Madison. Good luck Reebok CrossFit One!

⚫  ⚫  ⚫  ⚫  ⚫

For even more on the RCF1 team, follow this link to check them out on this CBS coverage video.


Article written by Molly Leiker