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Amiee Garatea MOTM Aug 2020

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By Bethany Schmidl

Family: Jesse, Jayde, Elizia, Violet
Favorite Movements: Overhead Squats and Back Squats
First Job: working at Dairy Queen
Current Job: Hair Stylist
Favorite Podcast: Classified Fit Podcast
Favorite Thing to do Outside CrossFit: Go to concerts (just not in 2020)

In September of this year, Amiee will have been a member of Classified for two years. During those two years, she has transformed both inside and out, changing the way she handles obstacles and getting stronger all at the same time.

Amiee was born in Burns, Oregon and lived there for the first year and a half of her life. She moved around a lot growing up which has caused her to become very guarded. It’s hard for her to let people in and when she calls you a friend, you truly are her friend.

Her childhood also helped her develop the belief that childhood is circumstance. She was raised in chaos and abuse and she made that choice that once she could be out of that, she was never going to be that. “You can’t control if you’re poor, you can’t control if your parents are drug addicts, you can’t control if you’re rich,” she said, “So I truly believe breath. When you’re 18, you can change your circumstances. You don’t have to be a statistic”. In fact, at one point she was so determined to break the cycle that she wasn’t going to have children.

Amiee settled in Marysville for her sophomore year where she attended Lindhurst Highschool. She loved highschool and loved when career days would come around. Ever since she was eight years old, Amiee had wanted to be a highway patrol officer. So on career day, they would have classes that were led by highway patrol officers and that is where she would find herself. During her senior year, Amiee was finally able to take a specific highway patrol class offering. It was led by three retired officers and they were real. They told horrific stories about things that you wouldn’t think of and she felt like she wouldn’t have been able to handle it.

So after graduation, Amiee took some time off school and lived on her own while supporting herself. When she was 20, her step-dad asked her ‘what are you doing with your life’ and she didn’t really have an answer. Her mom had been in cosmetology school so he suggested that I do that. It was a 10 month long program and would give her a side job until she figured out what she wanted to do. During that 10 months, Amiee fell in love with hair and 25 years later she has had an amazing career and still loves what she does.

She started at Super Cuts, moved to Great Cuts, took some time off doing other things, before coming back as the manager for twenty years. During this time, she had her daughters Jayde (20) and Violet (4). When she came back from having Violet, changes had been made and things no longer flowed the way they used to. After several conversations, and no changes being made, Amiee began talking to her product representatives about other places that were hiring.

Even though she was scared to death, after talking to the owner of Studio 622 for three months, Amiee made the leap to work for herself and it has been the best decision she has ever made. Here, she can do what is best for her, for her family, and for her clients. And it was here at Studio 622 that she was introduced to CrossFit.

Before CrossFit, Amiee had hopped around gyms until settling at a local one. She would do cardio, take Body Pump and do the circuits. When she was about five months pregnant with Violet, she started feeling weird being at the gym so she stopped going. Six months after having her daughter, she tried going back but just couldn’t get into the groove. She tried again when her baby was one year and she just couldn’t.

At work one day, her friend Jessica was sharing how much she was loving CrossFit after the first week of going with another friend, Olivia. Jessica mentioned how she hadn’t realized how bored she was with her workouts which made Amiee think that maybe she was just bored. Amiee tried the three day pass, loved it, and signed up. She was nervous before her first class but felt more at ease as the coach taught the class how to do the movements properly instead of just saying ‘here’s the WOD’. She messed around with it for six months before doing a nutrition challenge, getting serious with it, falling in love and truly beginning the journey that she is now on.

During that nutrition challenge, she started coming six days a week and really taking care of herself in the proper manner for the first time. Her mindset began to shift, and she started giving herself grace. She began loving her body and the things that it could do. She wasn’t doing some fad diet, but making changes that fit in with her life and worked for her. The challenge taught her the proper food to eat, the importance of being prepared and not to give up. When she would stall, she gave it a few months instead of just a few weeks.

Even during COVID, Amiee maintained her habits. Her workouts were her one piece of normal and she loved that not only did she continue to do something for her, but she discovered that she is able to push herself even when a coach isn’t there. She even inspired her 20 year old daughter to work out during this time.

COVID also helped her realize that she needed to slow down. It gave her time to breath and realize what was really important. She prided herself on being able to get all the things done, but at the end of the day when her four year old asked her to jump on the trampoline she was too tired. And that isn’t the kind of mom she wanted to be. By being forced to shelter in place, she realized she didn’t need to work 5 or 6 days a week. She wanted to be the best mom that she could. She wanted to jump on the trampoline when asked. She wanted to take the time to stop and smell the roses and watch the rollie pollies.

One thing that isn’t changing, is her commitment to CrossFit. “CrossFit is life,” Amiee said. “I love CrossFit…it’s the community and I feel amazing and I love that I can pick up my 50lb four year old in one arm because she fell asleep. I love that if she wants me to carry her through the grocery store, I can do that. Just being an older mom, I like that I can still enjoy my child.”

Amiee is looking forward to making friends with cleans, remaining consistent and to keep learning and getting better.