Doctors Said it Was Impossible: Elise Metts

Published on Tue, 2012-04-10 14:01

"I am chasing a level of fitness that most people just watch from the sidelines. So to me, I have already won."

December 29, 2003 is a day I will never forget. I was in a deadly car accident. And I survived. 

With five transverse processes broken completely off my spinal column, seven fractures in my pelvis and a cracked tailbone, I was told the following:

•    You will never be able to run again.

•    You will never be able to carry a child full term.

•    You will be on bed rest early.

•    You will never be able to do strenuous activities.

•    You will never be able to have a child naturally.

Needless to say, thinking I had to live my life with restrictions was devastating. For five years, I didn't workout. I didn't run. I didn't lift heavy weights. I restricted myself to an elliptical, a stationary bike or walking. I had it in my head that I was never going to be able to do anything more.

But more than eight years later, I am competing in the 2012 CrossFit Games Open.

Four years ago, my husband, Justin, and I discovered CrossFit. I started following and doing workouts at home, scaling them to my abilities. I was doing kettlebell swings with a boulder!

Then we found out there was a CrossFit box opening up close to our home and I was ecstatic. We started working out at Desoto CrossFit and I was instantly addicted.

I was scared at first, thinking I wasn’t going to be able to do much. But I worked hard, dealt with the pain and got stronger. And I get stronger still with every workout.

Fast forward to today and I’m proud to say:

•    I ran my first 5K in less than 25 minutes in 2008.

•    I carried a healthy baby boy, with no bed rest, to full term. I even worked out the week before.

•    I delivered him naturally, without any complications.

•    I can deadlift 260 pounds.

•    I can back squat 200 pounds.

•    I can front squat 130 pounds.

•    I can flip tires, push a truck, swim, do double-unders, pull-ups, push-ups … get the picture?

•    I am pain free.

I have successfully done everything the doctors told me was impossible. And I am not finished.

With the help and encouragement of Justin and the amazing athletes at CrossFit Eastern Shore, I am competing in the Open. I may not be the strongest, the fastest or make it to the Games. I may not make it to Regionals. But I am chasing a level of fitness that most people just watch from the sidelines. So to me, I have already won.

I am living proof that the impossible, is possible. You just have to work for it.


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