November Athlete Spotlight: Carol Barry Marini


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

I live in Newtown, about 5 min from the gym, with my husband Paul and our sweet, weirdo dog Livi. I work as a researcher for a large educational nonprofit, but I dream of quitting my job and opening a bakery selling breads and pastries. I love anything that happens in the kitchen–cooking, baking, eating, drinking–which is why I’ll never have a six pack. I’m constantly ripping up our house in the name of ‘improvements’ and then taking forever to figure out how to actually do them. And this time of year I watch a ton of college football (Go Deacs and Roll Tide!).


My favorite book or movie: 

One of my favorite books is The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan. It changed the way I think about food, where it comes from and what’s in it, and the impact of agricultural practices on our bodies and the planet.


My favorite local restaurant: 

Charcoal in Yardley. Their dinner menu is hands down the best food in the Newtown/Yardley area.


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

Although I happily call PA home now, I spent my first 23 years in NC. So, I’m a southern girl at heart. I like grits, pimento cheese, and hot dogs “all the way” (mustard, chili, slaw, and onions). My hometown’s claim to fame is something called livermush, which is basically scrapple, and yes, there’s a festival for it. My accent went away in college, but if you get enough drinks in me, it comes right back.


How I was introduced to CrossFit:. 

I trained with Coach M and Coach Carrie at another gym for a few years, and I’d heard them talk about CrossFit. I was starting to feel like I wanted a bigger challenge, so with Stephen’s encouragement, I finally got up the courage to drop in for a class.


My fitness routine before CrossFit: 

Aside from horseback riding, I wasn’t into sports when I was younger and didn’t really start working out until after college. Since then, I’ve run a couple half marathons and bounced around gyms doing whatever seemed fun at the time…spinning, kickboxing, yoga. After we moved to Newtown, I did functional training at another gym for a few years.


My thoughts after my first CrossFit workout: 

My first workout was Angie, and the text I sent my husband from the car afterward read:
“Holy f**ing sh*t. WTF was that.
My forearms :( and my hand re-ripped a little. But not too bad.
That was f**ing terrible.
I loved it!”

My proudest CrossFit accomplishment is: 

Strict pullups…it took 4+ years!

My favorite WOD is: 

I love the long ones with a lot of variety, especially if they include running, cleans or clean complexes, and carries.


My Favorite Lift is: 

Whatever feels good that day.


My next goal is: 

To get my husband to come in and workout with us :)  More realistically, get dubs and improve my snatch.


How has CrossFit affected your life outside of the gym? 

Physically, I love that I feel strong. I’m more confident, not necessarily in terms of how I look (I do love those muscles though) but more so in what I can do. And for the first time in my life, I kinda sorta feel athletic, which is fun. Mentally, I feel so much more well-adjusted. Getting a good workout is crazy good stress relief and puts some much needed distance between my work day and my home life. Anything that’s stressing me out or worrying me disappears when I walk through those doors.


What I love most about CrossFit Newtown: 

The people, period. The coaches and members are all so welcoming, nice, and willing to help and offer advice. Everyone really encourages and pushes you to be better, and then celebrates your accomplishments right there alongside you. I also love that no matter how hard the workout is, you never hear people complain. There’s something about pushing through something really hard together that creates a sense of community I’ve never really felt before.


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

1) Listen to the coaches — They are your best resource! They’re super knowledgeable, will help you with your form, can give your appropriate scales, etc.
2) Listen to your body — Only you know how you’re feeling. Scale appropriately. If something hurts, dial it back or modify. Rest when needed. Leaving a little in the tank and being able to come back the next day is better than getting injured and having to take time off.
3) Have fun!


Do you have any diet/nutritional advice: 

Short and sweet: Eat real food and be mindful about how much. Indulge every now and then for sanity’s sake.


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