Athlete of the MonthJune

Chad Carman

Career: Rural Cloth Owner

Years at FireTower Athletics: 2

Of the various gym’s I’ve attended, FireTower has a very special environment that promotes everyone’s personal goals.

Born and raised in Oklahoma, I played high school and college baseball before a 3-year stint with the Philadelphia Phillies organization after being drafted in the 24th round of the 2012 MLB draft. After retiring in 2014, I worked as a baseball agent while finishing my MBA and ultimately taking a job in Marketing for the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. It was in Missoula that I met my wife, Kelli, whom I proposed to a short 8 months later. In February of 2020, Kelli took a job in Helena that allowed us to relocate closer to our awesome in-laws and join the FireTower family. I now work part-time for RMEF while also running a clothing business that a partner and I started called Rural Cloth. I am an avid outdoorsman, and my latest passion has been training dogs competitively to run hunt tests (if you’re friends with me on social media, I apologize for all of the dog photos). Kelli and I are expecting our first little boy in January, and we couldn’t be more excited!

I started CrossFit solely to impress Kelli. She told me she did it and I thought she was insane. But, I enjoyed spending time with her so much that when she invited me to go to a class, I went and bought a $120 pair of reebok’s and started going. Shortly after, my competitive nature kicked in and before I knew it, I was loading up weights and throwing them around with the big boys in Missoula. I took a few months break from CrossFit after injuring my neck snowboarding, then nearly an 8-month break after re-injuring my low back picking up weights off of a rack. I’m back at it full time now thanks to some recovery from Brus and Noah at Peak PT.

Motion is lotion! That was the motto from the physical therapy crew. After a slew of injuries and nagging aches and pains from my time spent as a catcher (back surgery, sprained ankles, terrible rotator cuffs), I’ve found that continually going to CrossFit is what keeps me feeling healthy. After all the pain that I experienced from the last re-injury to my back, I was certain I would have to undergo a fusion in my lower back. It would limit a lot of the outdoor activities I love. By focusing on proper form and pushing myself in a controlled manner, I feel like I am back to my old self again and capable of being an athlete. I don’t need to deadlift 315 lbs., but I like to be prepared when I want to pack two elk quarters out of the woods…

It varies somewhat, but on days that Kelli can attend we go to the 5:30 AM crossfit. I work from home and usually start responding to emails/clearing out tasks by 6:45-7:00 am before all my other coworkers get on. Between RMEF and Rural Cloth, I usually work until 5ish, but try to take at least 20-30 min throughout the day to get outside and train my dogs. I think Kelli likely thinks I work too much… Some nights of the week include men’s REC league softball, thanks to Noah, and others include evening dog training sessions before casual family couch time with the pups. I’m sure this schedule will change drastically come January….

Of the various gym’s I’ve attended, FireTower has a very special environment that promotes everyone’s personal goals. The coaches encourage those who want to go all out to do so, but also make sure those that just want to be a little healthier get the right level of encouragement too. It’s something that should not be taken for granted.

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