Between warm-ups involving his patented 'Jazz' elbows during lateral marches down the gym floor and telling some funny 'Dad' jokes, Jon has made CrossFit Solid Orange his home! He and his wife started at CFSO in early 2018 and have been a staple ever since. It's great to recognize Jon Buchalski as our November Athlete the Month!
Give everyone some information on your background...
I was born and raised in New Jersey, about 30 minutes from the Jersey Shore. I worked at a university a mile from the beach when my future wife, Meredith, got assigned to work on that campus for a few months. We got to work together for a little while before she left to come back to Tennessee. We stayed in touch and she invited me down to Nashville for a Beer Festival. I fell in love with her and the city and officially moved down about two years after that first visit. I now work at MTSU but come home to Antioch to Meredith; our corgi, Maple; and out two cats, Scout and Salem.
What kind of physical activities or sports did you play when you were younger?
I played many different sports growing up, mostly football and baseball; but I played soccer and basketball a few years; threw Javelin, Shot Put, and Discus in High School, and even ran Cross Country one year.
What got you to give CrossFit a chance?
My wife and I had tried to get into at home workout regiments over the years, but always ended up prioritizing other things and giving up on those workouts. She recognized that we needed something that would get us moving and provide accountability so she started looking into CrossFit and found CFSO. She got to try a class before and absolutely loved it then got me to give it a try. I had no idea how much you can accomplish in an hour with a well programmed CrossFit class.
How do you compare the CrossFit workouts with the type of workouts you did in the past?
The only time in my life that I was consistently going to the gym was in high school with the Football and Track teams, but I had no real clue what I was doing there other than trying to lift heavy weights. CrossFit reminds me of that team mentality where everyone is working towards a similar goal, but making individual progress. However, CrossFit is a lot more intentional on how to accomplish that goal. I love the fact that you quickly realize your strengths and weakness, and can strategize to improve and do better in the next workout. You get to work hard today so that you are better tomorrow than you were yesterday.
What was your favorite memory at CFSO?
I think the Women's Power Lifting Competition has been my favorite memory so far. It was great to see the entire gym come together to support the women participating and hitting all of those PRs. It was so much fun and high spirited.
I you could go back and give your younger self advice, what would it be?
Ask more questions. There is a lot you can learn from asking the right question to the right person.
What is your favorite month of the year?
My birthday is in September so it's a pretty great month, but pretty much any of the fall months are enjoyable. It has Football season, not miserably hot, the year is winding down, lots of holidays. The fall is like the "Weekend" of the calendar year: relaxing, you can wear comfy clothes, you get some time off, etc.
What is your favorite healthy meal to make for yourself?
Meredith will correct me if I don't say that she does majority of our meal preparations. 😃
I can say that even though she makes the meals most of the time I have made this meal once: buffalo chicken stuffed peppers. I think she found that it can be keto friendly with the right ingredients, but it is simple and delicious.
Tell us something people don't know about you?
Some people know this but not many, I grew up in a haunted house. I am a very skeptical person but I do believe there were spirits in that house. The house was originally built in 1711 and survived a British occupation during the Revolutionary War, was known to be a stop on the Underground Railroad, the doctor that lived there during the Civil War did treat wounded soldiers coming back from battle in other parts of the country, and when I lived there it had a secret room with a door behind a movable bookshelf. It was said to have had several spirits that remained their in their after life, but the most active was a Civil War Captain that was named Mitchell. We don't know if Mitchell was his first or last name, but he was very proud of that name and did not like to be called by anything else. We know that because my mother, who learned of the spirit at the closing table when we purchased the house, called him Clarence and it upset him so much that he began writing his name in the carpet on the stairs going up to the second floor of the house. He started by writing "M" on one of the risers, then "I" on the riser below and a "T" below that one began appearing before we learned his name by a medium who came to the house. I do not know how he was able to write these letters but I know that my father washed off the "M" when it first appeared to only have it come back a few weeks later. We started calling him by his name and the writing stopped. I have several stories of sights and sounds that make me believe all of this to be true and I will happily tell them to anyone who will listen.
Give us a suggestion for a "Question of the Day"...
Is Freedom free? What does it cost?