Article

Burpee Mom: Cori Johnson

Published on Thu, 2012-03-01 23:07
By: 
Shelby Levy

CrossFitters love challenges. Walk into any box and you might find a nutrition challenge, a 100 pull-up challenge, or a 2,500 double-unders challenge.
 
When Cori Johnson, co-owner and coach at Carport CrossFit in Birmingham, Ala., was pregnant with 100 days left until her due date, she created the “Burpee ‘til Baby Challenge.” Participants started out with one burpee and increased the number by one rep until baby Johnson was born. Every member of her box participated alongside Johnson.
 

 "I had my daughter on burpee day 67. Everyone was relieved to stop doing burpees."

The Burpee 'til Baby Challenge

CrossFitters love challenges. Walk into any box and you might find a nutrition challenge, a 100 pull-up challenge, or a 2,500 double-unders challenge.
 
When Cori Johnson, co-owner and coach at Carport CrossFit in Birmingham, Ala., was pregnant with 100 days left until her due date, she created the “Burpee ‘til Baby Challenge.” Participants started out with one burpee and increased the number by one rep until baby Johnson was born. Every member of her box participated alongside Johnson.
 
“I participated until day 64. I kept having contractions every time I did my burpees,” she says. “Then I had my daughter on burpee day 67. Everyone was relieved to stop doing burpees.”
 
Johnson, who has been CrossFitting since May 2009 and finished 42nd at the 2010 South East Regional, gave birth to her daughter several weeks before the start of the 2011 CrossFit Open, but decided to give it a shot. “I gained an enormous 70 pounds during my pregnancy. I basically ate my way through nine months of pregnancy,” she explains. “So when I participated in the Open, I was severely overweight. I had never been overweight in my life, so it [was] a huge challenge for me.”
 
Nevertheless, Johnson was able to complete all of the Open Workouts as prescribed.
 
For the past year, Johnson, 37, has been focused on losing her baby weight and training for the 2012 Open. She completed 12.1 with 113 burpees, landing her in 56th place on the South East Leaderboard. “It has been awesome to see that I scored higher than Leah Polaski, and I tied with Michelle Kinney. Who would’ve thunk it?”
 
Her daughter, Macie, now 14 months, has become the unofficial mascot of Carport CrossFit and can often be seen bouncing to the music or stealing members’ jump ropes and chalk. “I recently taught her to squat. Her form is perfect!” Johnson says. “I know the Leaderboard is going to change in a huge way, but I’m going to keep training and keep pouring my heart out each Open WOD that comes up. I might not make it to Regionals ever again, but I don’t think I’ll ever stop trying.”

 

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