Written by C.J. Martin
Invictus is not just a gym, it’s a community. That’s the true secret to our success. This entity of unconditional support and unrelenting encouragement has even been given a name and a reputation – the Sea of Green.
I am not sure how to express proper thanks to the individuals who make up this amazing community. You all are as diverse as any group I could imagine; you all have varying levels of interest in competitive sport; you all have different responsibilities to careers, spouses, children, etc…, and yet you all are completely unified in support of the efforts of each of the Invictus athletes that took the floor over the weekend. Words cannot express how much your generous support of our athletes, and your contributions to creating this community, mean to me and each of the Invictus athletes and coaches. You all are the reason our athletes work so hard year-round, and you provide the inspiration that fuels them to be at their best. Our athletes have repeatedly reported that hearing chants of “In-vic-tus, In-vic-tus” and seeing your green shirts in the stands pushed them to performances they did not believe were possible. But many months before they stepped on the competition floor, you all gave them reason to push their limits in training, to test their boundaries and to be examples of excellence for all of the members of the Sea of Green. Because it just wouldn’t feel like a complete year without a Sea of Green outing to the CrossFit Games to cheer on Team Invictus.
Within our Sea of Green, there are several leaders who are responsible for creating the most amazing support crew that anyone could conceptualize. If you haven’t experienced or at least witnessed what it is like to be an Invictus athlete – or at least a traveling member of the Sea of Green – it is going to be hard to imagine the extent to which these individuals go to ensure that EVERYTHING is taken care of for our athletes. Their hotel reservations are handled, every meal of the day is prepared for them, their clothes are laundered nightly, they have incredible body workers and athletic trainers available to them at all times, they have visualizations prepared for every event, and they even have a team barista to make sure they’re appropriately caffeinated in the morning. It’s pretty impressive…and it is all because of our amazing volunteers.
The true brains behind this entire operation belong to Krazy K, Pops, Courtney, Jen and Jaimie, each of whom have put in countless hours to organize rooms, meals, transportation, etc…for not only our athletes, but also our Sea of Green. They thought of everything we could have ever needed, and more, to spoil us. Simply put, there would be no Sea of Green without these people. They make the traveling easy and fun for all of our supporters. The team of supporters helping them execute this is too long to list, but also unbelievably generous with the time they have invested.
Heidi, Tara, Ian and CP are godsends. Heidi has been our team “healer” for the last two years and is as integral to our training and athlete development as anyone, from working on our athletes’ bodies, to helping to get them centered and prepared for competition through visualizations. Tara and Ian are secret weapons that keep our athletes’ bodies healthy throughout their training and the competition weekend with massage and ART. CP is probably one of the best and brightest athletic trainers in the country, and we’re lucky enough to have her as a friend and volunteer. The work she has done with our athletes at events, and more recently with Josh and Michele has been beyond impressive.
Finally, George Economou has worn more hats and made a larger impact on Invictus than anyone. For the last year George has simultaneously served as our male alternate athlete, assistant coach of the team, director of coaching operations for the gym, organizer of all things tent-city/ice bath/u-haul/etc…, and damn near anything else that I ever needed. To say that he has been my right-hand man would be a gross understatement. He has been the one leading the charge to make me a better coach, to make his teammates better athletes, and to make Invictus a better gym for all of our members. George is moving to Portland, Oregon for chiropractic school in August, and I still haven’t quite come to terms with it and figured out how we’re going to manage without him. This weekend highlighted for me just how much he will be missed. He was everywhere I couldn’t be, and I knew with certainty that he would be doing a better job than I ever could at whatever task needed to be done. He has been selfless in his support of me, his teammates and the Invictus community. I will be eternally grateful for his contributions, and I know his teammates and co-workers feel the same way. While George might be moving away, he’ll always remain an integral part of the Invictus family.