Building Burgess: Part 2

By Jeremy Podlog and Martin Ray

In CrossFit, HD Videos, Medical/Injuries

July 12, 2014

Video Article

British Army veteran Mike Burgess dedicated himself to becoming fit. The 42-year-old lives with post-traumatic stress disorder but says he doesn’t let it define who he is. Drawn to CrossFit by its connection to the military, Burgess was intrigued when he saw the results CrossFit produces. In this six-part series, follow the trials and triumphs that go along with “Building Burgess.”

In Part 2, Burgess is at CrossFit Calgary preparing for Cindy—20 minutes for as many reps as possible of 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups and 15 air squats. He then moves on to the Shooting Edge for some target practice. Here, he discusses his experience with post-traumatic stress disorder.

“What people don’t get,” he says, “is that in the military, we have seen how pain ends and how to end pain. When someone is not coping, the wheels are coming off, they’re just desperately unhappy … the urge is to take their own life.”

While at the shooting range, Burgess says suicide by firearm has never been an option for him but admits he had thoughts of suicide as a younger man.

As with the healing process for PTSD, Burgess knows CrossFit will never be easy, but it’s worth the hard work to get better.

He says: “I still work on kind of an old elitist principle: If it isn’t hard, it’s not worth having.”

That attitude served him well on Cindy.

“That was pretty tough,” he tells affiliate owner and CrossFit Level 1 Seminar staff member Brett Marshall. “I can’t feel my arms. It’s like I’ve been drinking for a week—my arms are shaking so much now.”

He finished with 8 rounds, 5 pull-ups and 5 push-ups.

Video by Jeremy Podlog and Martin Ray.

10min 14sec

Additional reading: Warriors on the Waves by Andréa Maria Cecil, published April 18, 2014.

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2 Comments on “Building Burgess: Part 2”


wrote …

"If it took you 20 years to get fat it’s not going to take you 10 minutes to get fit"

Classic ! After some 20+ years of nothingness I started crossfit about 5 weeks ago, at the beginning it was very hard, even the warm ups seemed like workouts to me, but the hardest hurdle was walking in the door and making a start.

After week one I realised how important the nutrition side of things are, and with the help of the coaches started to improve on what I was eating.

This Friday (11th jul)I completed Cindy and have ached all weekend, feels like I have been run over by a steamroller !

Keep up the great work and you will soon start noticing a difference.
Look forward to seeing more updates and how you progress.


wrote …

Many koodos to you by talking openly about your feelings

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