Success Stories

Please have a read of some of our clients’ experiences below:

Although I have always been reasonably active, I gave up all regular competitive sport whilst still at school – probably at about the age of 14. Forty years on, I have found the aging process less than kind, and currently suffer with arthritis in all my joints making activity quite painful at times. So it would have been easy to dismiss my ambitions to get really fit, by thinking it was too late. The combination of being older than nearly all my classmates, and imagining a macho gym environment had the potential to put me off Crossfit. Not so. I found plenty of other women; the guys are friendly and the atmosphere is very inclusive, meaning that I don’t feel self conscious about my age, or level of ability. Everyone helps each other and I love the way that we all introduce ourselves to newcomers, and the whole culture of support and encouragement.

I will probably never want to go in for serious athletic competitions, but there are many things I do want to do and Crossfit has helped me make great inroads into achieving these. For instance I am sure that the physical confidence that I am developing as a result of getting fitter is what has enabled me to take up horse riding again after a lapse of about twenty years and to start hiking up mountains. Both of these activities make me feel free and energised and like I’m living life to the full. I’ve lost weight and feel great.

After reading Andrew’s post on the Crossfit website about climbing Ben Nevis with Amelia I decided to try and attain a lifelong dream to climb the 3 highest peaks inBritain. As part of my training I recently camped in the Brecon Beacons and set off on the 9 ½ mile Brecon Beacons Horse Shoe Walk which included ascents of Cribbyn, Pen y Fan and Corn Du. It was a blast! The views were astoundingly beautiful and I had a wonderful feeling of achievement. Two weekends later I went toCumbriawith my partner and brother and we climbed the highest peak inEngland–Scafell Pike. It felt fantastic! Thanks Crossfit for all your help – life is so much better.

Cathy Williams, Bristol ( August 2012)



A friend introduced me to CrossFit 7 months ago, after me telling him I was bored at the gym and missed the competitive spirit of pro/semi pro sports which I had taken part in for many years before retiring about 4 years ago. I considered myself pretty fit and in good shape and thought that the times I managed to drag myself to a ‘normal’ gym for basically the same kind of workout every week were doing some sort of good…..then I tried my first taster session at CrossFit Avon.

I was blown away. 5 Handstand pushups, 10 pistol (one legged) squats and 15 pull ups, simple exercises but throw in the 20 min time limit and the competitive streak came surging back. After my session I knew I was hooked. Workouts that are so varied you could never get bored, mixing strength, gymnastic and aerobic training very often against the clock and always against yourself, with expert tuition and motivation from the coaches Andrew, Paul, Charlie and Caz I was in my element.

I thought CrossFit couldn’t get any better, but it does: The people of CrossFit. The community feel is amazing. I know most people’s name in CrossFit Avon and they know mine…..that just doesn’t happen in most ‘normal’ gyms and all these people help, encourage and motivate me and I like to think I do the same to them. Sometimes they are the ones that push me that extra little bit to get a quicker time or lift a certain weight. Whatever it is it definitely works, in only 7 months the improvements have been huge.

Recently I got the chance to go with CrossFit Avon to a team competition in Wales (team of 3 guys and 1 girl). Still being fairly new to CrossFit I didn’t know what to expect. It was a fantastic weekend, encapsulating everything I love about CrossFit. Hundreds of people from all over the country coming together, competing to win by pushing themselves further than they have before, but still cheering on the other teams because we all belong to the same community.
CrossFit works, for so many people on so many levels, for me it’s the constant push of wanting to go faster, get stronger and beat times. I do this every week alongside friends not strangers. That’s the difference of CrossFit Avon.

Matthew van der Velden (Vandy), 32, Bristol (November 2011)


“I really want to thank you for introducing me to the wonderful world of CrossFit!

After following a well known diet for some time and having seen results with my weight loss but not with my body shape, I was looking for something different. I received an email one day from Andrew saying that he had opened a new training facility and he would be facilitating CrossFit training. I Googled it and thought OMG I can’t do that.

I went along to the first session and decided I couldn’t do it and took a step back. Andrew emailed me again though, and encouraged me to come back along to the box, which I did, starting 1 day a week and after a couple of months, 2 days a week. These days, I do at least 3 a week, and would do more if I could.

You are encouraged to keep a ‘book’ detailing your times and scores for all the WOD’s (work out of the day) that you do. I have been CrossFitting for about 4/5 months now and am starting to repeat WODs and in a recent WOD, I completely smashed my score from 199 on a black and red band (pullups, that’s like being hoisted up on an elastic band) to 298 on a blue band (much harder) ….slug to pretty fit all in 3 months between WOD’s!.

The following measurements were taken in Feb 2010 when I weighed in at 10st 8.5 and still following the well known diet. The after measurements were taken in August 2010 when I weighed in at 9st 7 and following CrossFit and Paleo Diet. The measurements speak for themselves:

Waist was 36.5”, now 31”
Chest was 40”, now 36”, gone from a 36C to a 34B.
Hips 39.5”, now 36”

That’s a lot of inches!

I now have toned muscles that I never thought existed, and I feel so much better about myself in terms of health and life.
When I first started CrossFit training, I couldn’t even do 1 sit up or push up, and over the space of 4 months (that’s all it’s been really), CrossFit methodology, plus Andrew and Charlie’s coaching, has brought me to where I am now a stronger and fitter person. I even managed my first ever unassisted pull ups the other day !!

If you are feeling like I was; doing the diet, but getting nowhere with the body shape….I think you should come on down and join our gym, you won’t turn back. xxx”

Cathie, 41, Bristol (November 2010)

“I started my personal training with Andrew in January 2010. I saw this time as an investment in myself, not just financially and my outward appearance, but also in my self image. Having never followed a diet strictly before I was dubious about my will power to withstand the call of cake!!. However the information that Andrew gave me, along with his consistent encouragement, and monitoring helped me begin what has now become a lifestyle change.

“Over the past 7 months I have met with Andrew once a week to train. The training has always been a lot of fun even with the excess sweat!. It has resurrected my enjoyment of physical exercise, which had been dormant for too long!. Part of the enjoyment has been due to the variety of exercises that Andrew has planned and his enthusiasm. One week it maybe focused more on strength work, then the next a high intensity circuit.  Each time there is a challenge to focus on, stretching my fitness further. I love the boxing workouts and can confess to enjoying planks! Pull ups remain in a different category, I still await that joy to arrive, its more a battle of will power!.

“One of the distinctive characteristics of Andrew’s training is his ability to encourage you in a very respectful way. I have never felt ‘shouted at’ which I incorrectly thought was a trait of a personal trainer!! But rather, supported in a friendly, professional but consistent manner. He has shown continued commitment to me achieving my goals and a belief in my ability when I was sometimes lacking.

“I definitely know I am now not only much fitter physically but also have a stronger confidence in myself, and a greater self belief. I am really pleased with what I have achieved and can easily see that my determination and focus have given me some great rewards. I now have started attending Andrew’s group classes. I’m really enjoying these, not only the training alongside others but also meeting some really nice people. It’s more like a bunch of friends meeting together, which is great.”

My measurements: 
Jan ’10 July ’10
Neck 35cm 32cm
Waist 88cm 71cm
Hip 112cm 99cm

“Sorry I can’t bring myself to divulge my weight! But I have lost 2 stone 5lbs.”

Caroline, Bristol (July ’10)

“Never a natural athlete, I became a fitness enthusiast quite late in life when I joined in with the Circuit training classes Andrew used to run in St Andrews and St George parks. I spent half the first session doubled over gasping for breath, but soon caught the training bug and started turning up regularly.

“The CrossFit workouts we do now at Merton Rd are more intense and demanding than circuit training. Sometimes the WOD (Workout Of the Day) seems beyond what’s humanly possible! But you get on with it and sooner or later you find you’ve done it. The use of different weights etc means WODs can be geared to different abilities, and scores are recorded so you can follow your progress.

“I’ve made a lot of new friends in the class and always enjoy the sessions, usually training at least five times a week. There is an excellent mutually supportive spirit, and everything you do is under expert supervision from trainers who seem to have infinite patience – which they sometimes need to have with me!

“I’m picking up a lot of new skills such as beginning to get the hang of double-unders (skipping) and all the various Olympic weightlifting techniques. Kipping pull-ups and handstands are beyond me at present but we’ll get there.

“I’ve lost 2 stone in 18 months of training in Andrew’s classes and am now fitter and stronger than I’ve ever been before. Where there used to be a paunch is now the makings of a six-pack and my clothes are starting to hang off me. My physique is noticeably leaner yet more muscular, as several friends have remarked.

“I’m sure CrossFit has helped me discover the lust for life that perhaps I was losing before I started – and I hardly ever find myself falling asleep in the afternoons now like I used to!

“All-in-all, at 53 years old I’m in the shape of my life. But I keep chipping away at my personal bests on all the workouts and I know I can keep improving, and having fun doing it.”

Hugh, 53, Bristol (November 2010)

“I lost over 3 stone (19.1kg) in just less than 6 months, with Andrew as my Personal Trainer.

“I felt Andrew got “the measure of me” and trained me as an individual.  I think he pitched my exercise regime and diet just right, plus he increased the challenge and motivation just at the right times.

“Andrew is thoughtful and skilled at personal training and (mainly) the sessions were fun!

“I’ve managed to train without getting injured and he’s told me about a diet that has worked well for me.

“I am delighted with the results achieved and would recommend Andrew to anyone.”

Sophie, 41, Bristol (March ’09)