Growing up, Cat Panetta never felt like the “cool kid” and was often reminded by others that “Cat rhymes with fat.”
Cat admits he had a happy, healthy childhood and family life but struggled with his relationship with food. He ended up yo-yo dieting and lost weight at times, but he never quite found a balance and always felt out of control.
During one of his many trips to Hawaii, Cat was convinced by a neighbor that he should check out a free CrossFit class at the small box CrossFit Ko’Olau. The welcoming environment and the instructors’ knowledge of fitness impressed Cat, but when he moved to British Columbia, he relied on food to help him adjust. He reached a max weight of 330 lb. at 27.
Wanting to finally make health and fitness a lifestyle and help others do the same, Cat pushed himself to attend a CrossFit Level 1 Certificate Course and become a coach at CrossFit Otter Point in Sooke, B.C.
Cat, who is also a photographer, believes that CrossFit is “all things that make me into the person I’ve always wanted to become.”
He reminds us all that it never gets easier. We just get stronger over time—and personal growth comes from experiencing hardship.
Originally published – April 2018.