April 15, 2013
As Prescribed: Garry Martin II
By Scott Todnem

“The principles of fitness, through CrossFit, have definitely become an integral part of my life. I share my experiences and try to spread my passion with others who are willing to listen or try.”


Garry Martin II doesn’t want to stand out. Fortunately, his Open workout scores do the job just fine.

“I don't mind staying pretty low key ... (CrossFit) is an outlet and a stress relief,” Martin says.

The humble doctor is in his final year of residency in plastic and reconstructive surgery, and will be undergoing specialized training this coming year to become a hand and micro-vascular surgeon.

But Martin is raising eyebrows at his second-place finish in the North Central and 21st place finish worldwide, putting him in a different kind of residency — among the CrossFit elite.

“As far as balancing my career and training, it's definitely a challenge to say the least. I put in 80ish hours a week as a resident. For those that don't know what residency is, I'd recommend not getting the impression from Grey's Anatomy … perhaps Scrubs?” he jokes. “It’s field specific training after medical school and before one goes out into medical practice.”

Martin sometimes trains at the KU Med Center gym at the University of Kansas Hospital where he resides.

“Most call days, I can't even realistically get a workout in,” he admits.

Squeezing in workouts in his basement has proven a dedication in balancing work and play.

While seemingly no one has been looking, Martin put in a “quiet” 309-rep performance on Open Workout 13.3 and a 123-rep performance on 13.4. Both scores were second highest in North Central.

A former decathlete at the University of South Carolina, Martin excelled in javelin, pole vault, the 1500m, and now finds that competitive edge through CrossFit, completing the Open workouts at CrossFit Kansas City. After a back injury last year, Martin has switched this year's training around a little from some of his previous programming. Going more with a “train how you feel” mentality, Martin claims to be getting more out of his training versus when he was strict and regimented in daily workouts.

“After a long day of work, if I had to do something heavy or intense, previously I would get it done … but now, I'm not sure how much benefit there is in doing something just to do it,” he explains. “I wanted to avoid ‘spinning the wheels’ in training, so recently I have just hit workouts that I feel I would be able to do effectively. I’m achieving more in the long run, saving the intense, heavy days for when I'm a little more rested.”

This mentality makes sense for his profession, too.

“Sometimes I do have to tailor my workout to cases I have coming up … a toasted grip and (unsteady) arms make for shaky hands in the OR, especially for micro-vascular cases,” Martin says. “So the balance takes place in working out when I can, and accepting when other priorities like patient care come first.”

Besides resident surgery and CrossFit, Martin somehow finds time to just chill with his fiancé.

“But by the time that happens, she is usually asleep,” he jokes.

Martin may not want the spotlight, but admits he would love the chance to get to the Regional and compete side by side with the tough competition there. Either way, he seems content with the place CrossFit has in his life.

“The principles of fitness, through CrossFit, have definitely become an integral part of my life,” he says. “I share my experiences and try to spread my passion with others who are willing to listen or try.”

With 167 reps on 13.5, Dr. Martin concluded his shift in the 2013 Reebok CrossFit Games Open.

“I was turned on to an amazing community, and whether I continue in the (competition) of CrossFit or settle into the lifelong fitness aspect, I know I'll keep it a part of my training and prescription to others for a long time.”