Stu Selden

In November of 2009 I made a decision, I chose to live a more active life. I made a list of goals and set out to accomplish them. I decided that a life of mediocrity will no longer apply to me or even have the remote chance of being written about me. All my life I’ve relied on someone or something else to get me to where I want to be. I’ve hiked on glaciers in the Andes, I’ve been spelunking in a remote cave system in Costa Rica, I’ve flown over active Hawaiian volcanoes in a helicopter, and gone under the 3rd largest waterfall by volume in the world on a boat in Argentina. I’ve been to and done some amazing things in my life, however all of these things can be done by mere mortals with the funds support them.

Back when I found you guys in December 2009, I didn’t quite know what I was getting into. I came in for my consultation and got thoroughly crushed by a simple baseline workout that left me sore for 3 days. I soon came to realize that this was the norm. Here is a group of people who have also decided that they are no longer a mortal and strive to be better than they were the day before after every workout. Having only worked out in normal gyms all of my life, I wasn’t used to being around people with this kind of intensity or partaking in those same workouts, scaled to my current ability level. I wasn’t used to pushing myself to the point of feeling nauseous. I wasn’t used to the mindset needed to be that intense. I wasn’t used to being extraordinary.

Pride is a word that can sometimes have a negative connotation. People believe that being too prideful or loving oneself too much is a negative trait. Maybe this is why our current society has record levels of people with depression. Those that are down, want to keep others around them at the same level. They fear that if others get up there too high or accomplish too much, that they will feel worse about themselves and their average life. I know these feelings all too well, having suffered their overbearing grasp in my teenage years.
In my 20?s, just when I was feeling great, a diagnosis of Epilepsy pulled me back down again nearly 4 years ago. My doctor told me that I have an undetectable brain tumor and with any Epilepsy diagnosis comes the possibility of sudden death without any known cause. I had accepted the fact that there would be many things I wouldn’t get to experience in life…..that is until I joined CrossFit Scottsdale and began to change.

My change was not only the external drop of inches, but it was also quite a mental change. Once I experienced the struggles of your workouts and the pride that came in completing them, I set out to challenge myself in new ways with my personal time as well. I’m happy to say that I accomplished a goal last week that I had written down 8 months ago. Last week I did the hardest thing I’ve physically done and climbed to the top of Arizona. Humphrey’s Peak stands at 12,633 ft and the round-trip took me 12 and a half hours to complete. I made it to a place where there’s no road up and no money buys you a ticket to the top. The only way to get there is to use your own two legs, sweat, and have the mental ability to keep pushing yourself in an alien environment where not even a tree dares to grow. There where many times during the climb where I felt exhausted and it’s amazing how you get out of breath from walking 50 ft due to the thin air. I am 100% certain that my success is a direct result of the hard time I’ve served in your gym and the “never give up” and “always do your best” attitude that you guys instill in all students.

Helen Keller said it best, “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure.”

Pride is a good thing. Watch out world, I’m coming to conquer you. Nobody, not even myself, can stand in the way. I am no mere mortal. I am a CrossFit Scottsdale student.