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Goodbyes are such sweet sorrow…

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Goodbyes are such sweet sorrow…

Miss J funnin' with Dani

Miss J funnin’ with Dani

How do you sum up the past 5 years? Where to even start? It’s been quite an adventure, occasionally a grind, and a helluva lot of fun. That much I know for sure.

In May of 2009 I was fortunate enough to help open a hole-in-the-wall, unknown to most, gym with a very different exercise methodology. This gym was outfitted with a few squat racks, the rig that still exists today (don’t kip on it), some free weights, and a few really amazing members. This gym was called CrossFit Ktown.

In 1000 square feet there’s no space for bulky equipment and with low ceilings there’s definitely no rope climbs and wall balls to a 10 foot target. Saturday classes were packed in like sardines, barbells were at a minimum and yet, we grew. This growth was mainly due to the efforts of Ktowners like Taylor Layman, Adam Shipley, James and Rachael Ellis, Mark and Sam Lane, Erin and Ben Slocum, the early Pilot peeps (Dave Parmly, Susan Fontanez, Whitney Simpson, and Chris Cope), Doug Coffin, and a few other key members.

Throughout the past 5 years I have certainly been able to develop fitness, nutrition, and athletic components for so many of you, but more than that I have been able to develop personal relationships. I have met some of the most fantastic individuals through Ktown; from role models, literal geniuses, leaders in the community, comedians, artists, foodhounds, and my very best friends. For that I am forever grateful.

While writing this post, I considered highlighting some of my favorite/ most memorable Ktown moments, but I realized there are seemingly limitless options. I love the simple moments at the gym, like the looks of pure joy when you all hit a squat (JDawg) or jerk PR (Decker) or when someone gets that first MU (Mak). Obviously, I’ve enjoyed the bigger moments too like setting a world record at Regionals this year, watching Coach G “Gandalf the Grey” a momma bear, bouncing on trampolines at Premier Gymnastics, the chili cook-off, Fran Hahn crushing the Ragnar Relay, “Braers braers braers,” frog rowing in 2011, Oktoberfest at Ktown, the White Elephant “Ktown” shorts, Meaghatron’s winning MU, the Jacked and Tan Classic, CBo’s bug toss in my mouth (you’re welcome Tay), Grand Opening party at 2.0, clothing swaps, marathon cheering, and the list goes on and on. Overall though, it’s the relationships I value most.

From that first day in May until now, I have been truly, unbelievably blessed to witness the growth of Ktown. I wish I could take all the credit in developing it to what it is now, but I cannot. Coach G, Coach CBo, and I initially created an atmosphere, but it was you all and every other coach we brought on staff who keeps the spirit of CFKT alive. The cheering during workouts, support in life and the gym, encouragement to work harder, sometimes a little sarcasm, and a dose of healthy competition must be the mixture for success. Ktown now is in its third location, almost 10x the size of our first spot, and is a constant source of inspiration to me.

With all this being said, I have made one of the toughest decisions in my life to take a leave of absence from Ktown and pursue another job opportunity in Nashville. I will be in and out of the gym the next weeks, but July will be my last month of coaching. While I will miss everything about CFKT, the people, being Jacked and Tan, the programming, etc it is time for me to have an adventure and take this next step. You won’t be able to get rid of me too easily since I will still be back for competitions, big events, and football games (GO VOLS). As a plus, I’m leaving you all in amazing and capable hands. I have had the pleasure of coaching with some of the most knowledgeable and well-rounded staff of any gym anywhere. Keep that in mind when you don’t like the day’s programming or a coach telling you to drop weight.

It should also be known that if you ever need me for a consult, nutrition, programming, or just to fill me in on all the Ktown news, I’m just an email or Skype session away.

Ktown 4 Life,
<3 Coach Miss J


By | 2017-04-25T14:38:08+00:00 June 27th, 2014|CrossFit Ktown Knoxville, Uncategorized|2 Comments


  1. Rachface June 27, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    Jess you and CrossFit Ktown truly changed my life. I can say that with no doubt in my mind at all. I miss ktown everyday because of you, Caleb, Dani, and all the people there. You have changes so many lives for the better and in the meantime given me your friendship which means more than anything. Thank you for giving me the ability to believe in myself and realize my capabilities. It brings years to my eyes knowing you won’t be there but great joy that you will be giving even more people outside of Nashville the same exact thing. People need to know your talent, your laugh, and your amazing personality and I can’t wait to see how many other people you effect positively with your energy. Love you, thank you more than I can say.

  2. G8rDave July 3, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    I abhor hyperbole, and I avoid saying what I am about to say outside of our CF circles for fear of overselling but this is a fact:

    You changed my life.

    Of course, you graciously share credit for that with others, and rightly so. But you, Jessie, personally, individually, by your vision, skill, education, dedication, sacrifice, example, have made me a better person, a person I likely would not be apart from knowing you. You have my eternal gratitude, my affection and my respect.

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