May Member of the Month – Kayla R.

Kayla Runkel

Student / Gymnastics Coach

When did you start Kanna?
May 2021 (I went a handful of times with my mom at the old box)

What are your favorite numbers and why?
4 – the day I was born, 7 – it’s a cool number, 11 – the month I was born

What CF movements do you like?

– kipping handstand push-ups
– handstand walks
– bar muscle-ups
– toes to bar
– pistols
– sit-ups
– rope climbs
– double unders

What CF movements do you dislike?

– goblet squats
– air squats
– thrusters
– wall balls

What sports or fitness things did you do before CF?
I was a competitive level 9 gymnast until the spring of 2019 when a back injury caused me to retire.

How did you find Kanna? What was your first workout?
I found Kanna because my mother forced me to go:) She knew that it would be beneficial for my gymnastics, but I was too stubborn at the time to realize it. This lead to a meltdown at one of my first workouts at Kanna when the gym first opened. I was probably 13 or 14, and the workout was an EMOM of 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, and 15 air squats each minute. The idea was to scale to something feasible to complete in the minute. Apparently, I chose to scale to crying and giving up on the workout haha. Looking back at it, it taught me an important lesson of only worrying about myself and realizing that it’s okay to not always be the best.

What’s your favorite thing about Kanna?
My favorite thing about Kanna is the confidence and strength the coaches and members have helped me build! At Kanna, anyone belongs and strong is beautiful.

What are your hobbies?

– cooking
– baking
– CrossFit
– gymnastics

What’s something most people don’t know about you?
I am my school’s mascot, the SCH Blue Devil!

What PRs or accomplishments are you most proud of?

– out snatching my mom:)
– bar muscle up
– any workout i beat my mom at…

What’s on your CF bucket list?

– ring muscle up
– back squat 200 lbs
– legless rope climb
– make it to the online quarter-finals

What’s on your general bucket list?

– skydive
– travel the world
– go to the CrossFit games (most likely as a spectator)

What advice do you have for new (or experienced!) CrossFitters?
You are your only competition! My dad always tells me how proud he is to come in last, and it is truly something that has taken me a long time to learn. Focusing on what you can do and putting in the work for yourself is the most rewarding!

Anything else you’d like to mention?
I am going to miss Kanna and the Kanna community when I go off to Cornell University this fall! Kanna has helped me build confidence and appreciation for what my body is capable of. I will be sure to visit over all my breaks!

***Kanna members: Kayla’s custom workout will be TBD ***

How does one become Member of the Month? By embodying the Kanna ideals of Learning, Working Hard, and Having Fun. By contributing to the community and supporting others in and out of the workout. By being open to coaching and improving oneself for the sake of being better, not to “win” the workout. By just generally being a good person and having a positive attitude. And a lot more, but you get the idea!

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