Get #SHOOTFIT – On Crossfit with World Shooting Champ Athena Lee

Recently I profiled Becky Yackley and how she uses running to get #SHOOTFIT for 3-Gun. This week I am chatting with the talented Athena Lee about her favorite fitness program for staying in top shooting shape.


The first time I saw Athena was back in 1999 at the USPSA Open Nationals in Barry, IL. A tiny spit fire of speed shooting awesomeness I knew the second I saw her compete she was a force to reckon with in practical shooting. In fact she has been one for over two decades now. A 2-time IPSC Women’s Open World Champion she’s always a top contender.

Athena is also a stud-ette off the range. A fan of Crossfit, not only can she squat 200 pounds, she’s also a certified Level I instructor for the popular fitness program.

JulieG: How did you discover Crossfit?

Athena: I pulled my back twice in 2008. The second time it happened was two weeks before the IPSC World Shoot in Bali. I felt something needed to be done. My physical therapist told me that I had a weak back so I started doing some research on back exercises. Being as attention span impaired as I am, I saw Crossfit posts on Facebook from my friend, Dave Re. Dave happens to be a GM ranked USPSA shooter and who also now works at Crossfit’s Headquarters. I asked him about it and resolved to look into it locally when I got back from competing in Bali.

JulieG: So when did you officially start Crossfiting?

Athena: I started on April 2009.

JulieG: With so many fitness programs and gyms out there, why is Crossfit the best for you?

I have tried everything from Bikram Yoga to hiring a personal trainer. Crossfit was the only one I stuck with because: 1) I saw incredible strength gains in such a short span of time, 2) The workouts are different everyday and 3) The competitive environment is so similar to shooting!

JulieG: How has it helped you get in good shooting shape?

Athena: It has made me a lot stronger. It has eliminated any worries I have about being physically prepared for shooting.

JulieG: As someone who has completed Level 1 Crossfit Certification what advice do you have for people who might be interested in giving it a try?

Athena: Just go. All the workouts are scalable to your abilities and it is the most supportive community out there. Ask questions and go for it.

Photo Courtesy of Paul Hyland of
Photo Courtesy of Paul Hyland of

Learn more about Athena and follow her shooting, teaching and fitness adventures on her Facebook page, Twitter, YouTube and at Interested in Crossfit? Check out

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