Athlete of the month

We are excited to announce our athlete of the month, last but not the least of the Ferris’s – Mark  Ferris.

A bit of background from my perspective:
Mark, Kim & Nata have been a huge part of Coastal CrossFit since 2013. Although in the beginning Mark was resistant to the idea of CrossFit -Lucky he has Kim to guide the way and a daughter keeping him on his toes. Sometime over the past 7 years the resistance went and he embraced the CrossFit way.

The past few years and more recently we have seen Mark go from strength to strength due to the following:
Maintaining one of the highest attendance levels this year (thanks to reduced international travel). Mark recently became the newest member of our 1000 CLUB (1000 sessions at Coastal CrossFit- Only 4 people have achieved this).
Focused on improving his weaknesses and movement quality. He has been using ROMWOD regularly (a super proud moment for me) . This has allowed Mark to achieve better positions resulting in many personal best. (Work your weakest link and watch everything else move up as well).
He has a quiet competitive nature (especially against his daughter Nata and Chris G), often challenging my negotiation skills when he throws more weight on the bar than I think he should in order to take a “win”. More often than not – he reassures me he is “slowing down his movements to maintain quality” (Music to my ears) and he is proving me wrong.

Mark, for all of your achievements outside of the box you are one of the most unassuming, humble people I know.
You effort and dedication to being better in the box and all aspects of life are inspirational. We are so happy to have you in our community.
Thank you for your ongoing support, wisdom and friendship. This is sooooo well deserved!!!!!

Mark will receive a gift pack including a treatment from Body Mechanics Myotherapy (thanks to Aden)
a Coastal CrossFit or Maverick shirt and True product thanks to Coastal CrossFit and Maverick Strength and Conditioning Equipment.

I asked Mark a few questions, read below to get to know him a little more (then read my additional notes at the end).

Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I grew up in Zimbabwe and then studied in South Africa. After practicing as a lawyer, I went backpacking in my mid 20’s, which took me to Europe then Japan. Ended up staying there 18 years (!) and built / sold businesses in technology, marketing and outsourcing. Then we moved to Australia in 2013. 

What made you start CrossFit?
I used to try and stay fit through running and playing cricket, squash and golf. It was a bit of a battle… Then Kim recommended Crossfit. I said, “No way! I don’t lift weights, I don’t go to gyms and I don’t need a trainer…” Luckily she is persistent!

What is your most memorable CrossFit moment/s?  It’s good to know you can always improve somewhere, somehow. The other day I got 40 unbroken double unders (after 4 million attempts!!!) 

What does Coastal CrossFit mean to you and how has it impacted you?It’s changed over the years. At first, it was an experiment to gain fitness. But it’s become a way of life and a habit.

Lots of things are fun and memorable (like holidays, YouTube, ice cream and martinis) but they can be fleeting and superficial. Crossfit is more important. It builds persistence, resilience and discipline through well-crafted physical and mental experiences. Those experiences can happen before and after the actual workout and they can be shared. 

I have no problem baking Crossfit into my daily activities. 

As for Coastal CrossFit, there’s a beautiful blend of patience, encouragement, friendship, guidance, competition, fun, rigour and variety. Coastal CrossFit is also on a journey, evolving as a business … which is way more than a business. I’m grateful to be a small part of that journey too.

What is something that most people don’t know about you?
Um…. well… I represented Japan at cricket.  Not exactly a powerhouse cricket nation, but being part of a national team was fun. And I compose a lot of music from serious stuff to silly songs! 

Some additional information from Marie:
Mark is a remarkable man but is never one to spruik his own horn, thankfully I am more than happy to do it!!

Mark would never say it but he is kind of a big deal in the musical theatre arena…
He is the only man I know that has won a “Tony Award” as a Co-producer the Broadway production “Once on This Island”.

Click here to hear Kim & Nata’s reaction when Mark and crew receiving their Tony Award. (Sorry (not sorry) Mark)

Producer and composer for a Tokyo musical “Disturbance” which Nata performed in.

But more important, is the charity work that Kim and Mark started back in 2006. Shine on Kids: Take a look when you get a chance:

Mark collaborated with some famous folks to create a CD that benefitted Mark & Kims charity called Shine On! Songs

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