Matthew Pankey

Matthew Pankey


Front Squat: 325lbs

Clean & Jerk: 265lbs

Grace: 2:41

Karen: 5:23

Fight Gone Bad: 388

Total Reps Half Marathon: Sub 1hr 50min


CrossFit Coaching Experience: 4 Years

Coach at Fortius: 2 Years

CrossFit Level 2 Certification, M.S. Health Care Informatics

About Coach

I first found CrossFit back in 2012 in Hoboken, NJ while I stumbled upon the Games on ESPN2 one night and decided to give it a try the next day. After just one beginner's class, I was immediately hooked -- and sore! Growing up playing football, baseball, and wrestling all throughout high-school, I noticed CrossFit filled that competitive & camaraderie void I had been missing, as well as getting an amazing workout! Before moving to San Diego though in 2020, I was living in San Francisco for six years, and that's where I truly learned the most within CrossFit. Whether it was mobility work, olympic lifting, or gymnastics, I saw my passion for CrossFit only grow during this period, and that's where my coaching journey began. I loved being at the gym, connecting with members, learning from other coaches, and really embraced the community aspect. Additionally, I love how CrossFit translates well to activities outside of the gym. Being an avid runner and biker, I always notice the work & emphasis we do in class (i.e., strength training and mobility) only helps to become a more well rounded athlete.

Turning Point

While I started CrossFit in 2012, I did take an 18month "hiatus" in-between my time in New Jersey & San Francisco. It was 2014 and I had just completed a full year of paleo nutrition, was focused on climbing the corporate ladder, and overall just fitness burned out. I decided to take a month off from CrossFit, enjoy my free time, eat and drink whatever I pleased, and see how it went...That one month turned to three, then to six, and before I knew it I was I was "out of the game" for over a year. Going out in NYC every night, hitting the bars, eating late, getting no sleep, etc., all caught-up quick! I had gained 35lbs in that time period, lost all of my strength, and couldn't do a 30min workout without feeling nauseous. When I moved to San Francisco, I was out of breath just from moving boxes up a flight of the age of 25! This was the beginning of my turning point. I signed up for the closest CrossFit gym a week later, took my intro's course again, and started to focus on what was important to me and who I wanted to become. I realized then how important every aspect of fitness really is. Mobility, recovery, listening to your body, nutrition, technique, and mental health all play a vital role to one's success, and shouldn't be underestimated.

Motivation & Passion

As a coach, I feel that it's my responsibility to continuously learn and share that knowledge with our athletes. Whether it's a new stretch, a lifting cue, or even a simple skill, it's always top of mind for me on how I can become a better coach & pass valuable information onto our members. I'd have to say that my favorite thing, or feeling while coaching is seeing an athlete succeed in a new skill (i.e., rope climb) or PR on a lift. That genuine reaction members have when they break through barriers and realize their potential just fires me up!! Helping an athlete realize there's more in the tank or push to that next level motivates me for every class.

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