Success Stories

We’re only successful when you’re successful

Here’s our chance to share the hard work and results our athletes have achieved.

Amanda Vollmer

Prior to becoming a mom, I had always been physically fit.  Pregnancy threw me a curve ball.  I had planned to workout and stay fit throughout pregnancy.  Life did not go according to plan.  I was extremely sick with my first child.  And, pregnancies 3 and 4 were both at high risk.  I was told to lift nothing heavier than a gallon of milk, and I had to drive the handicap cart at Target bc I was told not to stand for longer than it took to shower.  Prior to pregnancy, I was 135 pounds.  After 4 pregnancies in 5 years time, I weighed 210 lbs.  I’m 5ft 5 inches,  it hurt.  At this point, I had 3 children, worked full time and my husband had just lost his job.  So we were having a decent amount of stress.  I remember at one point thinking, this is Motherhood, I will never have my pre pregnancy body back.

I couldn’t settle for that, and I needed a stress relief from Motherhood and working full time as a Deputy in Law Enforcement.  I decided to choose me time for 1 hour a day. I am so thankful that I did.  The friendships and lessons I have learned grinding out ridiculous workouts have taught me I am so much stronger than I ever thought I could be and for that, I am down 70lbs.  And this one hour a day is my therapy.

So I get it, Crossfit is terrifying to someone who is just learning, but this Community at Crossfit Papio is second to none.  Our Coaches truly care that you are learning proper form and technique.  They care that you are there and they care about your well being.  Also, I get how painful it is thinking I can’t do this.  I walked into a 5am class one hot August morning weighing 180lbs.  I did step ups, (not box jumps) it was painful, but being that heavy, was painful enough for me to work through it.  I was determined to set an example for my children and regain part of my sanity.  Crossfit and cleaning up my diet in the kitchen are things I can control when life decides to throw me a curve ball, and I am so grateful I found Crossfit Papio.

Ian Pille

We love success stories at CrossFit Papio!  It’s amazing what’s possible with hard work and dedication!  Ian Pille has grown so much over the past year and we are excited to share his success story!  Thanks Ian for being such a positive fun part of our community!

Ian’s Success Story:

Growing up, I was never a really super active kid. I mainly just went out and did stuff because my mom made me, but I would way rather have been on the couch with my nose stuck in a book. I wasn’t what you would call fat, but I definitely could have stood to lose a few pounds. I did do a variety of things, including a year of YMCA coach pitch baseball in 3rd grade and a little bit of summer league competitive swimming in grade school. Then I played football for a club team in 8th grade, and then wrestled my freshman and senior years of high school. At that point, I was in the best shape of my life. I lifted every day after school my senior year, and then when I graduated, it all went downhill. I didn’t really go to the gym at all my first year of college, lost all of my conditioning, and also a lot of strength and muscle mass. I felt tired a lot more and just overall felt less healthy.

Then I met my friend Janeen. She was my sister’s roommate, and she was a member of a CrossFit affiliate at the time, and kept pestering me to join. I was reluctant, because my perception of CrossFit was “all CrossFit people never shut up about CrossFit”, and she was not helping that stereotype. Eventually, however, she wore me down, and I decided to join in January of 2015 as a New Year’s resolution to get in shape. Ever since then, I’ve been hooked. I have more energy, my conditioning has improved dramatically, my strength numbers have improved, and even though I haven’t gained a whole lot of weight, the weight that I did have has changed places. I’ve been able to improve in so many varied aspects of fitness like gymnastics, weightlifting, and cardio, and if I miss a day or so, I start to miss it. One of my goals in the next few months is to actually get certified to coach and then help other people to be able to do what I’ve done.

I am so thankful for the coaching staff and entire community of CrossFit Papio and look forward to hopefully improving even more the next few years!

Kasey Edwardson

Kasey did her first drop in workout close to a year ago and it just happened to be the Filthy Fifty! She struggled with everything and had a bewildered look on her face the whole time. CrossFit has a good way of showing people that they are really more out of shape than they thought and the driven ones use that as motivation to get better. We are so happy that Kasey is determined to improve her fitness and we know she is having fun with us at the same time!

Kasey’s Story:

I’ve always been active to some extent, but never felt like I would see any improvements or changes. Of course, like most of the world I wanted to lose weight. I had always been on the chunky side, and my medical history with Type 1 Diabetes really didn’t help. I tried a few different workout routines, but found them either to be too monotonous or felt that trainers weren’t able to scale movements.

I was terrified to try CrossFit, but took a chance. My boyfriend had suggested CrossFit Papio because he works with coach Bryce Teager. The first WOD I ever did was The Filthy Fifty and it was crazy intense. I couldn’t do a single movement but was coached on how to scale everything. I couldn’t even swing on the bar correctly. Even though I struggled through my first WOD I liked the coaching and atmosphere of people encouraging me and having fun. Most of all I liked the feeling I had after the WOD and knew I was going to join.

At first I could barely lift anything and always resorted to using the trainer bar for almost everything. I did my first competition in April 2015 and I got 14th. Six months later, I competed again and placed 2nd. I still scale almost everything, but I actually see differences in my abilities from before I started CrossFit to now.
My goals changed from losing weight to getting stronger… And man, have I gotten stronger. I’m able to do things I never thought I would be capable of. I may not be the strongest or fastest, but CFP has allowed me to push myself and improve every day.


Jeff Brownfield

My competitive nature must have started when I was very little. I can’t remember when competing in something wasn’t part of my life. Growing up I played basketball, baseball, and football. After high school I had the opportunity to play football in college. Following college football I surprised everyone and trained as professional boxer for many years.

At the age of 38 that all slowed down. Kids and their activities along with a crazy work schedule started
to take over my free time. I did not have the desire or motivation to do it anymore. That’s when it
happened. My non-athletic wife (Sherrie it’s true) joined this thing called CrossFit. That’s all I ever heard
about. Talk of CrossFit drove me nuts!  I gave every excuse in the book why I did not need to join. I even paid for a membership to a global gym for two years only going a handful of times. Finally after my wife participated in CrossFit for five years, I thought I would give it a shot. Truth be told I had to do something because my pants were not fitting anymore. I reluctantly joined CrossFit Papio.

OMG, my first six months were tough. Learning so many different exercises, using muscles again that
had been in a coma. It was so difficult but exciting all at the same time. One of the aspects of CrossFit
that I enjoy the most is the indirect competition. I feel that I am competing not only with myself but with everyone else who is crazy enough to get up at 5AM for class. I am constantly setting new goals for

Since joining CrossFit Papio almost two years ago, I have gotten back my competitive spirit; not
necessarily to compete against others all the time but to better myself. Many people that work out at
CrossFit Papio inspire and motivate me more than they know. Seeing fellow baboons excel and achieve
PR’s is awesome to experience. I can truly say that my fellow baboons have pushed me to efforts I have
not put forth since playing football or boxing in my 20’s.

Big shout outs to the trainers, my 5AM WOD crew (especially my wife who waits patiently for me to get
to the car), and all the people who post on the whiteboard. I am consistently encouraged by you to
work harder.

Jill Rons:

Nothing puts a smile on a coach’s face more than hearing a success story!  CrossFit Papio has been around for 1 year and we have seen so many success stories throughout that time!  If you are comfortable sharing send us your story we would love to showcase your amazing journey!


The following is a letter we received from “Founding Fifty” member Jill Ron’s:


” Hi Guys! It’s a no brainer to sign another year contract with CFP. I’m probably the weakest “un-seasoned” member there still… even after a year but I love it just the same. The fact that I started this journey a year ago and then found out I was pregnant a few weeks later makes me pretty darn proud given I had no clue just how challenging CF would really be. I’m always made exercise a priority and huge part of my life but I can honestly say nothing has been as hard and challenging as this. Admittedly that first month while thinking I was in good shape led me to wonder “WTF did I do? Did I make a mistake?” but neither of those held true. You’re right Katelyn is amazing but you guys don’t suck that much either… Hahahahaha. Just kidding you guys are great.”


Jill is a remarkable CrossFit athlete, not because her scores are always on top of the leaderboard, but because she is consistent, aware of her body, aware of how hard to push, and communicates well with the coaches.  Jill’s attitude is always pleasant and she is always eager to learn new ways her body can move.  Recently she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, and through her pregnancy she always communicated her needs and we worked together to form an appropriate scaling option for the workout.  She has recently made her appearance into Baboon Nation again after giving birth and is eager to continue keeping her body healthy and strong.  Everyone has there “why” when they come workout at CFP, and it is clear that Jill wants to be the best mother she can.  Being a good role model for her children and staying healthy are important to her and it is fun to be a part of that daily in the gym!

Chris Fisher

Chris has been physically active her whole life – gymnastics, swim team, cross country, and track; she’s done them all.  But she started her CrossFit ‘journey’ in July of 2009 against her will.  Her husband Randy (CFP #AngryBaboon) took her to a CrossFit gym to see what it was all about. According to Chris, “I told him he was crazy if he thought I was going to do that.”  But as many of you have experienced, that fateful visit had Chris hooked!

Fast forward 5 years and 1 month to the opening of Crossfit Papio. This was when everything started to click for Chris. Before CFP, she was unable to do pull-ups, handstand push-ups, and rope climbs.  But she wanted to change that and was looking for some serious strength gains.  She found that the programming and coaching at CFP was a good fit for her and her fitness goals.  Not only can she now do all the above, her CrossFit training has helped her recover from an achilles rupture she suffered back in July of 2012.  Since joining CFP, she has started running again, doing box jumps, and even double-unders!

Chris adds, “One thing that a lot of people overlook is nutrition.  That has been an important part of my success also and I truly want to thank all the CFP coaches for helping me and sometimes pushing me past my comfort zone to reach my goals!!”

We couldn’t be more proud to have Chris (and her awesome hubs, Randy) as part of our Founding 50 and members of our #BaboonNation!  Congrats on all the success, Chris!  Keep up the good work!

Cliff Watson

For 20 years, I smoked two packs a day. One day, a doctor said: “I’m sure a lot of doctors have told you to stop smoking. If you don’t stop now, though, I’ll probably be the last.” So I quit. A few years later, I started running.

Initially, I ran a lot of 5Ks and 10Ks. After two years, I signed up for a 50K. I was immediately hooked on distance. I ran 50Ks, 12-hour runs, and even a 16-person relay across Nebraska from the Wyoming border to the Missouri River. After this year’s Lincoln Marathon, though, I was done. In an instant, it no longer provided any joy, so I walked away from running.

Thankfully, I soon stumbled upon CrossFit. More specifically, I was lucky to find CrossFit Papio.

I get bored very easily, which makes the ever-changing nature of WODs perfect for me. I also like to push limits, and I haven’t met a WOD yet that hasn’t provided the opportunity to do that. But that’s just CrossFit. The best part is our specific gym.

I haven’t lifted weights or done any general fitness training since high school baseball tryouts. That was 1986. (Didn’t make the team. Being a slick defensive first baseman doesn’t make up for being a weak-hitting, right-handed first baseman.)

As a fairly lean-muscled (read: scrawny) guy, I was uncomfortable walking into a globo-gym. I didn’t want to be judged by a guy who could bench press a Mini Cooper, but I needed to do something. I took a leap of faith and walked into CrossFit Papio on the recommendation of my girlfriend who knew Jonathan and Monica. It was the best move I’ve made in a long time. The training from the coaches and the support from the folks in the WODs has helped me feel good about just doing what I can do—and constantly trying to do more.

-Cliff Watson-

Cliff Watson is a great guy and an amazing member of CrossFit Papio. When I first started working with Cliff, I could tell he was a person who was going to work hard.  Running a 50K takes some major will power.  The problem with running 50K’s was, Cliff’s mobility and strength were neglected, and we had to work really hard to even get Cliff down into a half squat position.  Over the past month and a half, Cliff’s mobility and strength have considerably improved.  Now, when we do a workout, Cliff is able to move correctly in almost all of our movements.  Another huge improvement has been his muscle strength and stamina.  Cliff’s strength numbers have doubled since starting CrossFit Papio and I have no doubt that when we check back with Cliff in a year from now, he will be in the best shape of his life and feeling great!

-Jonathan Pingel-