The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia


September 29, 2013

A new place for CrossFitters isn’t your ordinary gym


There’s a Yeti outbreak in Beckley.

   You may have spotted them running along the Beckley Bypass in a pack. You may have seen them squatting, pulling and pushing their weight around with supreme agility and technique, and maybe you even heard their grunts and howls through the open garage doors of their “box” on Stanaford Road.

They’re strong. They’re primal. They’re ... CrossFitters?  

“We do today what others won’t so we can do tomorrow what others can’t” is the family motto of CrossFit Yeti, the new CrossFit box in Beckley.

Opened by four devout CrossFitters, Shirley “Squirrelly” Adkins, Adam Miller, Dr. Faith Payne and Derick Pugh, CrossFit Yeti is not your ordinary gym space.  

Aside from there being no trace of a treadmill in the building, the rapport between Yetis separates the “box,” a specially designed gym for CrossFitters, from any other gym in the area.

Pugh explained that Yeti founders united and created the box on the common desire of wanting something different for the local CrossFit community.

“We wanted to put our own spin on CrossFit,” Pugh said, which began with Adkins wanting to take a medicinal approach to the box.

At Yeti, each CrossFit session consists of a warmup, a workout and mobility training.

“Mobility is typically one of the things left out of workouts due to time constraints,” said Adkins.

However, Yeti workouts are never finished without a mobility section. “That’s why we don’t have any injuries,” Adkins said.

While the box always completes a CrossFit Workout of the Day, or W.O.D., which are characterized by “constantly varied functional movements performed at a high intensity level,” Pugh said, the difference between Yeti and other gyms is that Yeti works harder to cater to individual needs.

“Our box is different because there’s undivided attention to the individual,” said Adkins.

While the image of a ripped athlete lifting huge weights is often associated with CrossFit, Pugh explained that Yeti workouts are scaled to the individual’s ability level, allowing people of any age or fitness level to be able to participate in CrossFit Yeti workouts.

“CrossFit has standards that say, ‘You should be able to do this,’” Pugh said.

Those standards are referred to as a prescription, or Rx, and Yeti has broken away from that method.

Rather than abiding by the prescription assigned to the masses, trainers at Yeti prefer to prescribe to the individual, modifying prescriptions to be more suited to each person’s goals and athletic ability.  

“Modification preserves intensity,” Adkins explained. “We modify so that you’re always giving all you’ve got.”

Box members can also track their progress themselves by updating their daily personal record each day on the gym’s iPad, which allows people to view their growth and set new goals for their next workout.

“We sit down with all of our athletes when they first come in and talk about what their goals are,” Pugh said, “Certain people have different goals. Maybe they just want to look good naked. Maybe they want to go to the next level and be on the CrossFit games. Maybe they just want to lead a healthier lifestyle and try to live until they’re 100.”

“Probably the most rewarding piece is watching our individual’s grow,” said Pugh.

While the Yeti’s are growing on a personal level, the gym itself is also growing, with more that 40 members currently.

Each class is led by a CrossFit Level-One-Certified coach and is comprised of constantly varying activities that work different muscles. Exercises may include Olympic lifting, kettlebell workouts, core work, squats, push ups and pulls ups, which are often assisted by elastic bands to decrease resistance and allow Yetis to have a full range of motion. Classes are held Monday through Friday at 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. for the early birds, and in the evening at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m.

In the near future, the box hopes to incorporate yoga and jiu jitsu classes into the programming. They are currently inviting those interested in learning more about CrossFit Yeti membership to schedule a free consultation, and members of affiliate CrossFit programs can enjoy a free Yeti workout with the purchase of a T-shirt.

“The rule is that when you’re finished, you can’t leave or put your stuff up until every Yeti is finished.” said Adkins. “You’re having a tough workout, but don’t be surprised if there are five Yetis under your feet encouraging you and yelling, ‘You’ve got this!’”

For more information on CrossFit Yeti, visit their website at or contact them on Facebook.

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