TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A group around 15 people stand inside Tallahassee's CrossFit BlackBox gym. Weights sit at their feet. Beneath the music, they breathe slowly, anticipating the coming workout now just seconds away.
Most are young, probably early to late 20s. Well, more than most. All but one.
And regardless of age, Colleen Fahey is going to be one of the best of the bunch.
Fahey, now weeks away from her 51st birthday, first walked into a CrossFit gym nearly three years ago. Today, she's 40 pounds lighter than she was then, and one of the top CrossFitters in the world, ranked fifth in the Masters Women 50-54 year old age group.
"(It's) amazing to see my name on there at all," Fahey beams through a smile, "but 5th is outstanding."
"It's just a dream come true. I can't believe it's me."
If that dream turned reality is hard to believe now, wait until July 22nd, the first day of six in the 2013 Reebok CrossFit Games. Fahey is flying out to California to compete, and she'll be one of the favorites.
"I do have high hopes," she says. "I really would love to get on that podium. It's competitive, it's close, but I know I've improved since the open (qualifier for the games)."
CrossFit workouts consist of several exercises, sometimes repeated, with varying weights and repetitions. The goal: Finish the workout as quickly as you can, improve on your time, and maybe (for the most competitive) beat the group of people around you.
"I've definitely been working as hard as I ever have," Fahey says. "Two or three times a day some days, but I am excited. I feel confident. I feel like I've done everything I can possibly do to be ready."