Allison Wenglin Belger received a BA in psychology from Dartmouth College, a master's degree in learning disabilities from Northwestern University and a doctorate in clinical psychology from the Wright Institute in Berkeley, California. Allison and her husband are co-owners of TJ's Gym, a community of four CrossFit affiliates in Marin County, California, where they live with their two young daughters.
The Power of Community: CrossFit and the Force of Human Connectionby Allison Wenglin Belger
As co-owner of four CrossFit affiliate gyms, Allison Wenglin Belger juggles management of the family business, her work as a licensed psychologist and fitness coach, and her role as mom to two young daughters. She knows first-hand the importance of community—of having a network of mutual support and human connection in the midst of our hectic, technology-driven lives. A former division-one collegiate soccer player and five-time marathoner, she has also been part of the wilderness adventure community and has trained for various elite athletic events, competing both individually and as part of a team.
Belger takes the reader on a journey from her childhood in suburban New York as she follows her passion for fitness and sport, with pleasures and pitfalls along the way, finding a new dimension in the CrossFit culture and its emphasis on camaraderie and community. She explains the transformative aspects of CrossFit's physically and mentally demanding workouts as performed with others. Drawing on her psychology doctoral research, Belger describes the emotional and physical benefits of participation in an affinity group. She shares the stories of military wounded warriors and everyday heroes who have faced life-threatening illness—all with the help of their community affiliation. She relates inspiring examples of individuals who have created communities and support networks for populations in need, including underprivileged youth and cancer patients.
With her unique perspective as psychologist and athlete, the author explores the mind-body connection and how it can relate to all of us. Through her compelling narratives, each of which intersects with the CrossFit experience, Belger encourages us to examine our own lives and relationships so that we may find motivation and meaning in a world of stress and challenge—if we are open to the power of community.
- Victory Belt Publishing
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- 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)
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I entered Coast Guard Reserve boot camp slightly out of shape and within a few weeks had lost 20 pounds, strengthened my body and found myself more a member of a community than the individual who arrived. 50 years later, reading Dr. Belger's book reminded me of the power of being part of a group. Over the years, I've lived in apartment buildings that have gyms for our free use. It's amazing how easy it is not to go. It's amazing how many of us hire trainers as much to "encourage" us to show up as to teach and push. Of course, mine is just the threshold thought. Dr. Belger's very easy to read book is a wake up call for all of us. She not only tells us the what and why but points the way to a successful solution..........read her book, it's a start.
Dr. Allison Belger's book is inspiring on so many levels. Her fascinating personal journey as a psychologist, elite athlete, fitness coach, entrepreneur and mom draws the reader in and sets the tone for the remarkable stories to follow--of everyday heroes overcoming adversity with the support of their community. Belger's CrossFit gym community serves as an example of the elements of camaraderie and human connection so important in our technology-driven world. The author also makes the point that other groups and communities can work in bringing us closer to our goals, in providing comfort and strength in times of uncertainty and stress. The clarity of writing complements the powerful message and keeps the pages turning in a motivating and compelling read. Highly recommended!