SoLa prides itself on having “Great Coaches?"

We believe great coaches have the ability to go beyond the movements and connect with their athletes. We call this the “deeper side of coaching,” which is developing an awareness of your athletes’ potential, building trust and creating an atmosphere of success.

The deeper side of coaching is about establishing and nurturing a strong relationship between an athlete and a coach. And we would argue that this relationship is the foundation of our true goals as coaches: to improve the lives, health and happiness of our clients.

Meet Our Team

Dave Appel

Founder and Coach 

Tim Rawlings

Head Coach & Founder of RAWW Barbell 

Certifications: 
Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology
USAW Sports Performance Coach
CrossFit level 1 Trainer/
CrossFit level 2 Trainer
CrossFit Gymnastics

What do you specialize in?: 
Olympic Weightlifting


What are you passionate about?: 
Olympic Weightlifting and teaching others how to enjoy the sport


What do you love most about coaching your members?: 
I love seeing people improve and hit new personal bests…


What is your athletic background? Any notable accomplishments?: 

Collegiate/Professional Baseball Career-

  • Was 10th in the Nation in hitting with a .456 batting average and 12th in the Nation in Stolen Bases with 39 in 49 games in 2004-2005 Season.
  • While at Augusta State, Led the Division II Peach Belt Conference in hitting with a .420 batting average in 2009.
  • Was featured in the Collegiate Baseball Magazine “Players to Watch” list in 2009.
  • Signed with the Normal Cornbelters in 2010, a professional baseball team in Normal, Illinois.
Professional Weightlifting- 
  • In 2013, was recruited to a professional weightlifting team in Charlotte, North Carolina.
  • Have qualified and competed on the National level since 2013.
  • Currently Ranked 14th in the USA.

How did you end up as a CrossFit coach? What path brought you here?: 
I originally trained athletes and specialized in sports performance. As CrossFit became very popular, there became a high demand for expert coaches, and here I am.


What's your favorite quote?: 
“Every man dies. Not every man really lives.”


Is there anything else you want people to know about you? Funny, interesting stories you’d like to tell?



Best Lifts-

  • Snatch 140kg (308lbs)
  • Clean 190kg (419lbs)
  • Jerk 185kg (407lbs)
  • Clean & Jerk 180kg (397lbs)

Ben Flores

Head Coach and Founder of STAK

CJ Martini

Certifications 
CrossFit Level 1 | CrossFit Judging Cert

Years CrossFitting: 
4 years

What do you specialize in?: 
I love grinding through long chippers and testing my engine.

What are you passionate about?:  
Motivating others to reach their true potential.  Whether your goals are big or small; finding the wall and treating it like a hurdle is key.

What do you love most about coaching your members?:  
Seeing their successes.   There is no greater joy than seeing someone accomplish something they never thought they could before.

What is your athletic background? Any notable accomplishments?:   
Varsity athlete in Tennis in high school.
8+ years in a nationally recognized competitive LGBT softball league
05 Gay Softball World Series Appearances.

How did you end up as a CrossFit coach? What path brought you here?:
I started CrossFit in 2014 while in Salt Lake City, UT at Brickwall CrossFit.  I was bored with the normal gym routine and needed someone to keep me from being distracted.   I instantly was hooked.   I moved to San Jose, CA in 2015 and started working out at CrossFit Silicon Valley.   I was leading their competitor focused members with finding local comps and was sponsored to obtain my CF-L1.   I started coaching instantly and the rest was history.  I moved to Chandler, AZ and began coaching and competing under Tribal CrossFit while facing athletes from well known gyms such as CrossFit East Valley and Zero Machine CrossFit.   These top tier athletes from other boxes, allowed me to hone my skills and push myself harder to become a better individual and coach for our athletes.

What do you do when you’re not CrossFitting?
Softball Tournaments, Traveling and Exploring Austin.

What's your favorite quote?:
Everything’s going to end, otherwise nothing would get started.

Is there anything else you want people to know about you? Funny, interesting stories you’d like to tell?
I have lived in a lot of places and have experienced life.   Never allow fear to become a factor in choosing you happiness – both in and outside of the box.  
Looking to compete? No matter the level, come talk to me and let’s make moves!

Jesse Garule

Certifications:

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer

NASM Performance Enhancement Specialist

 

Years CrossFitting:

2

 

What do you specialize in?

Endurance

 

What are you passionate about?

I have always been passionate about fitness, and what the human body is capable of achieving when you learn to control your mind.

 

What do you love most about coaching your members?

The daily interactions with people trying to better themselves, especially on those cold and early mornings when it would be a lot easier to sleep in.  Those are my people.

 

What is your athletic background? Any notable accomplishments?

Ironman All-World Athlete and Navy Deep Sea Diver

 

How did you end up as a CrossFit coach? What path brought you here?

I had always struggled as a triathlete because I also love the feeling of lifting heavy weights.  When my company sent me to the CrossFit Games in 2017 I became hooked and saw there was a better way to approach the idea of “fitness”

 

What do you do when you’re not CrossFitting?

All of my time outside of CrossFitting is spent with my wife and our two pups, or renovating our RV!

 

What's your favorite quote?

“Don’t sweat the petty things, and don’t pet the sweaty things.”

 

Is there anything else you want people to know about you? Funny, interesting stories you’d like to tell?

Despite being a Navy Diver and Ironman Triathlete, swimming is my least favorite activity! In fact, during training in my final year in the military, we were doing an exercise where we had to tread water with one brick in our hand and the other held over our heads.  I had never been coordinated enough to figure out the “egg-beater” that normal people use to stay afloat, and resorted to scissor-kicking.  I quickly ran out of oxygen and lost my vision.  I stuffed the brick down my shorts and tried to swim to the side of the pool, but couldn’t see where it was.  I eventually saw it and stayed on the side for a few minutes gasping and belching up water until my sight finally came back.