We are proud of the diversity of backgrounds our oUTAthletes come with, and we work diligently to provide them with the resources they need to succeed in fitness, health, and wellness.
get to know their stories here.
“Hello everyone! My name is Lucas (He/They) and I am a transmasculine latin individual. Outside of being a trans athlete, I am an advocate for the Trans & Non-binary community, creating events and safe spaces for communities nationwide. I am also a health care worker and a researcher specializing in community-based research with TGNB communities.
The OUT Foundation has helped me find a passion in CrossFit as a trans person. I am not used to seeing people that identify like me at Crossfit gyms, but with The OUT Foundation, I was able to take up space and be a visible Trans person of color in these spaces. The OUT Foundation has been a key organization that has helped me find a place where I can workout and feel affirmed of my identity.
With the tools I have gathered through this program, I have created Health & Wellness classes and campaigns for Trans & Non-binary individuals to feel affirmed and safe at no cost. In the current state of this country (where the existence of Trans & Non-binary individuals is under scrutiny time and time again) and being in a state that is a safe haven for the Trans community, it is important for me to be visible for those that cannot be and to advocate for the injustices taking place. Thank you, The OUT Foundation, for allowing me the space to be myself and to be visible for my community.”
“Growing up, I was the kid who couldn’t sit still. Athletics became a space where my speed and movement were praised. It’s where I learned the importance of communication, collaboration, and hard work. It gave me my first sense of purpose.
I was also the kid that was targeted with homophobic attacks before I even knew what the words even meant. They followed me no matter how hard I worked to prove myself. The more I allowed myself to live authentically and be proud of my identity, the more prevalent these experiences became in my perceived safe athletics spaces.
Athletics became overshadowed with hate I couldn’t outrun. I became a husk of an athlete, remaining dedicated out of the same principal sport taught me, but unable to achieve this same sense of purpose or passion felt before. This absence was felt in all other aspects of my life.
Discovering CrossFit Harpoon and The OUT Foundation was the exact community I needed to re-spark this passion. The support this team has shown me has given me the tools to put the pieces back together myself. I have never felt physically fitter, mentally stronger, and more secure of my belonging both inside and outside of the gym. It’s my daily reminder that I’m not only doing this to support myself but to support the people I choose to surround myself with.
I strongly believe in the manta, “Be the person you needed when you were younger”. The OUT Foundation has given me the platform to represent queer visibility in athletics that I needed to see before. I will never stop representing all the other baby Matthew’s in the world who are going through what I did. Strength runs deep, and I’m forever grateful for this process to be a daily reminder of my own.”
“Sylvia was born and raised in the Dominican Republic and moved to Maine at the age of 16 to pursue her dream of attending an American college. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, a feeling of belonging sometimes didn’t come easy, but sports helped her navigate this part of her identity. Sports played an integral role in her life as she used them as an outlet to express herself and create a community around her while growing up where being a good athlete was all that mattered. At the end of the day, she always felt like something was missing.
In 2020, when the whole world was frozen by COVID-19, finding a community became harder. That is when she found The OUT Foundation and applied to become an OUTAthlete in hopes of finding a group of likeminded LGBTQ+ individuals who viewed health, wellness and fitness as a way to improve themselves physically and mentally while being welcomed in fitness spaces as their true, authentic selves. Being part of the program has helped her see how health, wellness and fitness can be more than finding an outlet for self expression, as it can also be a great tool to share the experience with those who are just starting out their fitness journey. One of her favorite parts of the program is mentoring other athletes who are in different stages or have different goals, helping them navigate through them so they know they’re not alone and watching them try out new things. Her journey has evolved from a “one woman show” to a community of people who work together and are there to support each other to succeed.
Sylvia’s always looking for her next challenge, whether that’s entering a powerlifting meet, running a half marathon, or hiking Mount Kilimanjaro. She does this in hopes she can inspire other LGBTQ+ folks to show up at their nearest gym, lace up their running shoes, or try that fitness thing they’ve been meaning to try for a while, so they too can knock down the barriers that stand between them and living a better life. Everyone’s fitness journey looks and starts somewhere different. What will yours look like?”
“When I talk about being an OUTAthlete, I often tell the people in my life that it goes so much deeper than just CrossFit. The OUTAthlete program was the first program to help me instill a regimen in my life that has had the most positive benefit on my well-being and mental health. When I started with The OUT Foundation, I was recovering from a back injury and struggling to stay motivated with properly eating and balancing my workouts, as well as dealing with declining mental health as a result of high stress from college, poor time management, and constant lower back pain. It was also hard for me to exist in a regular gym space where I often worried about my transgender identity impacting my safety or ability to grow.
When I joined this program, I had no idea the amazing impact it would have on my life. Over the past year and a half I have learned about how to properly fuel my body, how to plan my schedules so I have time to workout, cook, and (most importantly) sleep enough every night, and learned how to train for success. Properly eating, sleeping, and staying active has had such a profound impact on my well-being, and the past year and a half has made me such a happier and healthier person.
Besides these aspects of the OUTAthlete program I have gotten to be a part of a community that emphasizes both lifting each other up and educating each other on not only fitness, but a lot of the issues impacting the LGBTQ community in sports. With all of the anti-trans legislation passing it has been amazing having a community of other LGBTQ athletes, especially other transgender athletes (as I have always felt isolated from my community before this program) to lean on and learn from during these times. This program has been such a positive experience in my life and I am so grateful every day that I get to wake up and be a part of it.”