Delaina Snider hasn’t stopped surprising herself yet.
Last year, she competed in her first CrossFit Games Open. With just a few months of CrossFit, she qualified for the Canada West Regional and placed 15th overall. This year, her goal was to finish top five in the Open in Canada West. Instead, she found herself at the top.
“I was surprised,” she said. “I was hoping for top five thinking that was a bit of a stretch even. So after the first two weeks when I was in second, I was like, ‘Holy, wow! Maybe I could even get top three,’ and then it just got better. It was way beyond what I expected.”
The 33-year-old mother of two, who works out at CrossFit Fraser Valley in Langley, Canada, has always been active but considered herself more of a recreational athlete.
“I did a lot of running—I ran marathons, that kind of thing. I’ve never been super-competitive in anything, really. Until now,” she said.
Snider met Nate Beveridge, coach at CrossFit Frasier Valley, several years ago when she sought personal training to help improve her half-marathon time. The two became friends, and when he opened his CrossFit affiliate in 2011, she came to check it out. By September of 2012, she committed to CrossFit and jumped into competitive training.
“Since then she has been going full throttle, training five to six days per week and really training hard every time she is in the gym,” Beveridge said. “Delaina is a living testament to what can be achieved with hard work and belief in yourself.”
While Snider works hard, she also works smart. The key factor, she said, in her Leaderboard jump between last year and this was having a personal coach—she hired Robbie Perovich right before the 2013 Open and has been training with him ever since.
“That’s when I really noticed the development,” she said. “He just pushes me way beyond where I ever thought I could go.”
“Delaina is a very determined athlete,” Perovich said. “She's willing to go to that dark, gross place that most CrossFit athletes are afraid of. But she welcomes it and thrives on it.”
In addition to working with Perovich, Snider said her supportive husband, Jason, and the community at Fraser Valley help her succeed. Still a relatively new gym, it has proven a breeding ground for top athletes.
The Fraser Valley Centaurs, led by Beveridge and Perovich, qualified for the Games in both 2012 and 2013, placing 26th and 29th, respectively. This year, four of their team’s athletes finished the Open among the top 10 in Canada West—in addition to Snider’s top finish, Perovich placed fourth, Kurt Baker placed fifth and Beveridge placed seventh.
Although she was successful in the Open, Snider remains focused on the big picture. And competing as an individual at regionals this year is not part of the plan.
“I am 100 percent going team this year,” she said.
Last year, in her “rookie season,” Snider served as one of the team’s alternates. But the experience motivated her to compete on the international stage.
“After the Games last year, I decided with Robbie that I would compete on the team,” she said. “Now at this point, to back out of that team, I don’t feel is the right move.”
Snider said she sees this year as an opportunity to gain experience so next year she can make a run at the Games solo.
“As a relatively new competitor, I want the experience of regionals and the experience of the Games so that next year, when I compete as an individual, I know what it feels like to be on the big stage,” she said.
Snider’s immediate focus is on training with her teammates.
“I’m feeling super excited,” she said. “Of course we aren’t guaranteed a spot at the Games, but we have been doing really well all year and hopefully we can keep that up for regionals. I’m excited to see what the outcome is and hopefully we’ll be headed to Carson.”