After playing as the starting running back for the University of Washington—and contributing to the team's 2001 Rose Bowl victory—Braxton Cleman began a career as a personal trainer. Two of his then-clients, Bill Plummer and his wife, told him about a new workout they'd discovered called CrossFit. Braxton went with them, tried it out, and loved it. He started using CrossFit techniques in his clients' workouts as well as his own, and soon, he saw his clients improving faster than he'd ever seen them improve—and he was hitting personal bests he hadn't achieved since his football days.
Inspired by his success, Braxton, Bill, and a group of friends banded together to open CrossFit 425. Trainers Braxton and Brent Davidson (also a professional personal trainer) tap into about three decades of combined experience as they lead groups through CrossFit's varied workouts. Their experience has helped earn a nod from Evening Magazine, which named the program Best CrossFit in Western Washington. The trainers time each workout to foster a "spirit of camaraderie and competition," said Bill, adding that in the end, "you're competing against yourself." Every day there's a new routine, which Braxton and Brent thoroughly explain before groups get to work jumping rope, lifting kettle bells, and pretending to ferry wealthy spice merchants across moats with the rowing machine.
All CrossFit workouts are "scalable," Bill said, recalling a member who could only do one pushup when she started coming about a year and a half ago. Today? "I'm sure she could do well over 100," he said.