March Athlete Spotlight: Pia Ruggles


Tell us something about your life outside of CrossFit (career, family, hobbies, etc).

I grew up in Denmark but met my husband at the University of Colorado at Boulder where I spent a year doing work for my PhD in organic chemistry. Since then our jobs have taken us to San Angelo, TX; Copenhagen, Denmark; San Diego, CA and in 2013 we moved to Newtown, PA with our two children, Austin (16) and Megan (19).

My favorite book or movie:

When it comes to books and movies I love historical fiction. One of my favorite authors is Ken Follett and I have particularly enjoyed the Hornet Flight, The Century Trilogy and the Kingsbridge Series. Another great book is The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.
I don’t watch a lot of movies but I do enjoy a good TV series and especially one that the whole family will watch. Lately, we have been watching the Peaky Blinders. On the funnier side we have enjoyed the Durrells in Corfu and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.

My favorite local restaurant:

My husband and I have just discovered the The Grey Stone Fine Food and Spirits on Washington Crossing Rd. Before our favorite restaurant was the Blue Point Grill in Princeton. For lunch I like Jules Thin Crust pizza restaurant.

My favorite band/music genre:

I only listen to music when I drive or workout so I like music with a good beat, something that makes you want to move rather than put you to sleep. I normally listen to the Imagine Dragons radio on Pandora when I drive. One of my favorite artists is Jim Croce, who has some great lyrics.

Tell us something that we don’t know or would be surprised to learn about you:

I spend about a week in the spring tie dying shirts for the whole family. We have made it a tradition to wear tie dye shirts on our vacations and it is my task to make sure that everyone has enough shirts for all the vacation highlights.
I love to photograph and often volunteer my time and camera at different events.

How I was introduced to CrossFit:  

My son, Austin, introduced me to CrossFit. He had been working out with Matt with the high school swim team and thought it would be a great way for me to get back into shape after a period of illness.

My fitness routine before CrossFit:

Before moving to the East Coast I used to swim, mountain bike, hike and do Pilates on a weekly basis. After moving to Newtown I joined a dragon boat team in New Hope and have enjoyed rowing up and down the Delaware river once a week in the summer months. Other than that my workouts have been limited to a stroll with the dog until joining CrossFit.

My thoughts after my first CrossFit workout:  

Who are you kidding?


My proudest CrossFit accomplishment is:

My first 30 sec assisted handstand.


My favorite WOD is:

I like a METCON, especially one that includes some jumping either on to a box or over a bar.


My Favorite Lift is:  

Power clean.


My next goal is:  

Being able to get into a handstand by myself.


How has CrossFit affected your life outside of the gym?

I have so much more energy after starting CrossFit, and I feel so much stronger.

What I love most about CrossFit Newtown:  

I love the encouragement I get from the other members and the trainers. I like that people at different fitness levels workout together, I find that very motivating.


What advice I would give to someone just joining CrossFit Newtown:

Go easy and listen to your body.


Do you have any diet/nutritional advice?

Always eat a nutritious breakfast and drink lots of water.


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