Member of the Month: Brendan Dirrane

We are very pleased to announce our new member of the month, Brendan Dirrane! Brendan has been a member of the Southie family for a very long time. Since he joined, he has been a hard-working, helpful and outgoing member in class. You can frequently find him putting in extra time working on his mobility, doing supplemental strength work, and fine-tuning his oly lifts. But above all that, he brings a fun, outgoing, and welcoming energy to any class he is in. He’s always there to support the community, whether it be volunteering at the Showdown all weekend, or making the trip to Hartford for Regionals. We love coaching him in class and are so lucky to have him as a part of our community. Congrats, Brendan!

How did you get involved in CrossFit? What was your first WOD/experience?Greatest Picture Ever Taken
I got into CrossFit back in 2006. I was coaching Muay Thai at a gym when the MMA coach left to start the only CrossFit in Raleigh, NC at the time (a quick Google search now shows about 30+ boxes in the area). The WOD I remember starting involved kettlebells, wall balls and a rower. I’d never used any of them in a work out before and they kicked my ass. I was on my back at the end of it, and needless to say I was addicted. I like to joke that I started CrossFit, when the only people doing it were MMA fighters, soccer moms and soldiers. I am proud to say I was able to keep up with, and sometimes beat, our nation’s most elite and well trained soccer moms.

When did you start coming to CrossFit Southie?
I walked through the hallowed rolling door of Southie Green in the summer of 2012. After having fallen off the CF Wagon for a year or so, I brought my newbie wife the intro WOD with Tina Mo. From there we started hitting 7pm classes, and the rest is history.

Is this the first CrossFit you’ve worked out at / how long have you been CrossFitting for?
I have been CrossFitting in boxes and on my own since 2006. I’ve been a member at a couple different boxes in my time, coached in one while living in North Carolina, and have hundreds of pounds of KBs and bumper plates stored in my basement for random backyard WODs.

When did you realize that CrossFit was right for you?
The very first workout. It started as a way to supplement my kickboxing training, but after college I found myself leaning away from fighting and into WODs.

What are you short-term and long-term CrossFit goals?
Short term, I’d like to get my back squat up to 405, find some kind of rhythm with butterfly pull ups, and regain my lost muscle ups. Long term, I’d like to string muscle ups together and add handstand walks to my repertoire.

Brendan&AlexWhat is your biggest accomplishment?
In the box? Probably getting my snatch to where it is. That movement has always been a challenge due to an old shoulder injury. Working on strength and mobility in that area has yielded positive results that I am proud of. All the coaches at Southie should get some credit for this, as each has contributed something to improving my lifts and general fitness.

Outside the box? Can I be that guy who says meeting his wife? No, I shouldn’t. It’s lame to talk about how important that moment was in my life or what a wonderful person she is. Instead I’ll say ice-fishing in the Alaskan wilderness, which I have never done.

What is your favorite / least favorite WOD/movement?
I hate push-ups because I am very bad at them. I also am very bad at running, which I also hate. I love to clean & jerk and snatch (OLY class represent! Haley B, D-Money, Rachel-Goose!).

What do you do for a profession outside of CrossFit?
I do budget and accounting work for the state and I am getting my MBA in the evening. (There is no way to make a joke about this or have it sound cool.)

What are your hobbies outside of CrossFit?
My wife and I often take walks with our American Bulldog, Rosie, around Castle Island. Doughboy’s runs happen so often they could be considered a hobby.

I love to read, both fiction and history. I am a history nerd. If you want to talk Classical Greece, I’m down all day son. I read historical books and essays for fun and, like Thrasybulus’ uprising against the Thirty Tyrants of Athens, I drive my wife crazy by forcefully inserting random history into everyday conversation.

Over the past few years I have taught myself the guitar. I like rocking out to some alternative and bluesy rock. When asked for comment about my skill with said instrument, my mother said, “I’m proud of you, honey.” And my wife, Ally, has been heard bragging to friends, “He’s actually not bad.” Starting a band and making it big is my plan-B in case finance doesn’t pan out for me. I recently received a used mandolin from a CF Southie friend and have been teaching myself that as well.

Do you eat Paleo or Zone? What is your favorite paleo/non-paleo meal?
Nowhere near strict paleo, but we eat pretty clean at home. I do drink milk however. And I love donuts and salt water taffy, which I don’t think our ancestors ate much of.

Fun facts?
If you want to know more about me just strike up a conversation at the gym! I love to meet new people and find out fun facts about them.

WOD 1 (10 Minute Cap)
Grace @ 75% BW
30 Clean and Jerks

Level 2 (65% BW)
Level 1 (50%BW)

Rest as Needed

1000m Row for Time

3 Rounds
250m Row
1 Minute Plank
15 V-ups

Conditioning Class: WOD
6 Rounds
1 min max cals on rower
1 min max burpees over rower
1 min max double unders
Rest 1 minute

Conditioning Class: Core
Double Alternating Tabata
– Cobras
– Plank Hold


  • Ryan Gould

    06/10/2015 @ 2:54 am

    Grace: 5:45 @ 125# (:21 sec faster than pre-paleo)
    1k row: 3:31.1 (:06 faster than pre-paleo)

    Improved all around but not as much as I hoped I would tonight. Felt zapped on the row.

    Congrats Brendan!

  • jason barrow

    06/10/2015 @ 2:02 am

    Yoooooo! Brendan and Ally’s presence at the 7PM back in the day genuinely made classes better. (Shout outs to Tx Drew!) It was seriously a big bumout when they moved down south, a big part of class was missing all of a sudden. I’d see updates online of Brendan killing it at his gym down there, obviously psyched for him every time, but damn did I miss him. Then he came back!!! Get to know him if you don’t already, he has one of the best attitudes in the gym.

    Last Time:
    WOD: 4:51 @ 140#
    Row: 3:32.3
    WOD: 4:54 @ 145#
    Row: 3:30.6
    I looked this up ahead of time and still somehow ended up with 5# extra on the bar.

  • KB

    06/10/2015 @ 1:37 am

    Grace 3:43 @ 75# Last time 2:42 @ 65#
    Row 4:10 up 20 seconds

  • Trevor Crean

    06/10/2015 @ 12:47 am

    Grace: 2:38 @ 115# (25 seconds faster)
    Row: 3:35.4 (5 seconds faster than April, but slower than my all time record)
    Anytime we do % body weight, I’m a huge fan!!

  • Tom Kuchenreuther

    06/10/2015 @ 12:32 am

    Grave: scaled up a bit and did #135 to get a real grace time – 3:18 🙂
    1k: 3:46

  • JBo

    06/10/2015 @ 12:30 am

    Congrats Brendan! Awesome write-up and pic as well! See you soon buddy.
    Even though I didn’t participate in the Paleo challenge, I must’ve picked up on all the good juju floating around CFS and managed to improve all of my scores in the 4 benchmark WODs:
    “Grace” at 65% BW = 110lbs – 4:44 (which is a 22 second improvement from April)
    1000m row: 3:47.6 (which is a 1.0 second improvement from April…but still 1.2 secs off my PR)
    …and from last week:
    1RM deadlift = 375lbs (which is a 20lb improvement from April and 18lb PR)
    “Helen”: 11:54 L2 (which is a 1 minute 16 second improvement from April)

  • Brendan Cottam

    06/09/2015 @ 11:21 pm

    Congrats, Brendan!

    Grace – 3:00 @ 140
    1k row – 3:37.9

  • CashLady

    06/09/2015 @ 5:21 pm

    Grace: 3:33 (95#) – legit the exact same time as before Paleo Challenge
    Row: 4:23 – 11 seconds slower 🙁

  • Mike Quigley

    06/09/2015 @ 4:36 pm

    Grace – 3:34 RX (147#)
    1K – 3:31.3
    Congrats Brendan.

  • Davies

    06/09/2015 @ 3:49 pm

    Possibly the best MotM picture yet… Only thing that would have been better….

  • Brian M. Maser

    06/09/2015 @ 2:11 pm

    Grace: 4:23 Rx (165#) (:14 faster than baseline)
    1k: 3:09 (:07 faster than baseline, but :05 slower than PR)
    Congrats Brendan!

  • Eddy

    06/09/2015 @ 1:54 pm

    Grace: 4:55 @ 137# (21 seconds faster than April 2015)
    1K Row: 3:26.4 (3.6 seconds faster than April 21, 2015…3.7 seconds slower than March 24, 2015)
    Congrats Brendan! Well deserved!

  • Nick Alonso

    06/09/2015 @ 1:34 pm

    Grace: 5:37 @135 71 seconds slower
    1K Row 4:00 14 seconds slower
    Both felt pretty good though

  • Michael Byrnes

    06/09/2015 @ 12:50 pm

    Grace: 2:52 Rx @ 155#
    1K Row: 3:17.9

  • Rob Hassell

    06/09/2015 @ 12:49 pm

    Grace @ 165: 5:44
    Row: 3:16.8
    Both 3 seconds slower than in April.

  • Frawls

    06/09/2015 @ 12:41 pm

    Congrats Brendan!
    Grace: 2:45 Rx @ 125#. Beat last time by 10 seconds

    1K Row: 3:39 Exactly the same as last time.

  • Bish

    06/09/2015 @ 11:45 am

    Congrats Brendan!

  • Mattie Dubbs

    06/09/2015 @ 12:52 am

    Brendan!!!!! Welcome to the club bro!! So well earned! You are the reason I look forward to headband oly lifting class!

  • Tom Kuchenreuther

    06/09/2015 @ 12:49 am

    Solid Member of the month. Love running into Brendan around the gym! Congrats man. Hope to jump in some more oly classes with ya!

  • JonesMike

    06/09/2015 @ 12:18 am


Comments are closed.