Ashe CrossFit Row-a-thon

On Feb. 13, Ashe CrossFit members participated in the first ever ‘Row Your Heart Out’ fundraiser which served as a heart healthy way to raise money for the Ashe Heart Association.

WEST JEFFERSON — Ashe CrossFit hosted a Valentine’s Day Rowing Fundraiser for the Ashe Heart Association on Feb. 13. As a gym, a total of more than 200,000 meters were rowed during the weekend.

The gym is owned by Travis and Maggie Birdsell and Marty and Heather Peters.

“We want this to turn into an annual event and after COVID it will be awesome to see it like at Family Central where you’ve got multiple gyms coming over and the whole community involved,” Travis Birdsell said.

He added that the fundraiser provided a good time for a good cause.

In a Facebook post on Feb. 15, ACF thanked sponsors, donors and participants who helped made the event possible and expressed their excitement to host the event again next year.

According to Maggi Birdsell, Ashe CrossFit has been wanting to host a fundraiser for the Ashe Heart Association for a while and wanted it to involve a heart healthy activity.

“Rowing is actually one of the best full-body workouts out there, it works more muscles in your body than any other activity,” Birdsell said.

She added that rowing is also low impact and people of all ages can participate.

Due to COVID-19 safety protocols and restrictions governing the amount of people allowed to gather indoors, the event was limited to ACF members only this year. In the future, the owners want to open the event up for any community members to partake in the fundraiser.

Those who signed up to participate found sponsors and collected donations prior to “rowing their heart out” on Feb. 13 at the gym. ACF members rowed 500 meters for each $10 that was donated.

According to Birdsell the portion that is going to the Ashe Heart Association will be matched and they will receive that full amount. The unmatched portion of the proceeds will go toward purchasing new equipment at the gym. The gym was closed for almost four months in 2020 due to COVID-19.

“This is just one way that we can not only give back to the community, but also try to give back to our members,” Maggi Birdsell said.

ACF offers classes from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m., which are not just limited to CrossFit classes. Crossfit classes are coached, hour-long classes. There are also 30 minute classes offered around lunchtime and at 5:30 p.m. According to Birdsell, these are more High Intensity Interval Training style and do not use barbells and weights as frequently as Crossfit classes do.

“Everything we do is based on functional movement,” Maggi Birdsell said.

She defined this as everyday movements completed by all ages, from children to elders. Kids classes begin at 5 p.m. and are tailored to age and ability.

The gym recently added an at-home membership option due to COVID-19. This program is $19.99 a month and gives people the ability to access their programming. 30-minute workouts are available seven days a week and do not require much equipment. This includes a virtual platform, similar to Facebook for people to log their activity and the member community can encourage each other.

“It really creates a big sense of community,” Maggi Birdsell said.

For more information about Ashe CrossFit visit the website at, the Facebook page @Ashe CrossFit or call (336) 846-1717.

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