Favor to ask of Chalk Bucketeers: I'd like to send military CrossFit boxes (on base, CONUS or OCONUS) a copy of Learning to Breathe Fire, as a gesture of respect and thanks. The book is about the spirit and ethos of CrossFit, and several of its main characters are veterans. If you're a coach at a military functional fitness facility, send me the (formal or informal) name of your box and an address (or post to comments) and I'll have Crown Books send you guys a copy. Fire also has a FB page, www.facebook.com/LearningtoBreatheFire
Some reviews from military readers so far:
“Learning to Breathe Fire is a brilliant book describing CrossFit's grass-roots beginnings and its early adoption by the military and first responder communities…You don't need much to do CrossFit; a small space, some ammo cans, a tactical vest and 100,000 cubic feet of heart and lungs to achieve the desired thrashing. Herz captures the magic of CrossFit’s simplicity, and with the skill of a trained sniper, delivers a truth about what the human spirit can accomplish. This is a must read.”
-Tim Kennedy, Pro UFC Fighter, U.S. Army Special Forces Veteran, and Trauma CrossFit Co-Owner “Essential reading for the avid CrossFitter as well as the novice gym goer who has lurked outside CrossFit box windows staring at the madness occurring inside. JC Herz's story of the rise of a fitness program that has built a passionate community around it is an engaging reminder of the reasons that keep people flocking to the box!” --Jason Sturm, US Army sergeant (retired), CrossFit Walter Reed coach, adaptive athlete and Working Wounded Games competitor “Learning to Breathe Fire brought me back to my first WOD as a brand new member of a Special Forces team. Exactly ten years ago, I simultaneously started my career in SOF and CrossFit; in my mind, the two are symbiotic -
I can't imagine one without the other. JC perfectly captures the physical and emotional epiphanies that occur as someone experiences the Crossfit metamorphosis. She also poignantly demonstrates the strength of the CrossFit community’s bonds, particularly the link between the military and civilians; this is what makes this movement truly powerful. Learning to Breathe Fire shows how empowering it is to transform one’s mind and body. But it also expresses the raw emotion involved in breaking through limits that previously seemed impossible. This important book will reshape the CrossFit movement by bringing it back to its early roots."
Nate R, US Army Special Forces Officer “With each page of Learning to Breathe Fire the reader receives a prescribed dose of inspiration and comes to appreciate the struggle to push through discomfort. Like a motivated coach, J.C. Herz magnificently stirs our emotions – her words a stimulus to take us to the next level. Fair warning: while reading about the characters in this real-life story you may find yourself alternately astonished and fighting back tears. For me, this book was a walk down memory lane, reconnecting me to how my special operations career thrust me into CrossFit and turned on the fitness 'light bulb', stoking my appetite to read and learn more. I highly recommend Learning to Breathe Fire. It will awaken your dormant fitness DNA, ‘stoke the coals,’ and lift you to a new level of commitment.” -
Duncan Smith, US Army Special Operations Officer, casual CrossFitter and rugby enthusiast