Pride in self, high personal standards and the iron will to compete with extreme self-sacrifice is the timeless mark of a great athlete. article, Alessandra Pichelli photo article, Alessandra Pichelli photo

Laozi was an ancient Chinese philosopher and writer. He is known as the reputed author of the Tao Te Ching and the founder of philosophical Taoism, and as a deity in religious Taoism and traditional Chinese religions. article, wikimedia photo article, wikimedia photo

Lao Tzu was once quoted as saying, “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”

We have great respect for Alessandra Pichelli, a CrossFit champion for the ages.

She has a refreshing spirit and a relentless will to compete with and against the best.

Including herself. article, Alessandra Pichelli photo article, Alessandra Pichelli photo

At her Facebook she describes herself as a CrossFit and GRID Athlete- 4th place 2013 Games, 3rd place Team 2012 CF Games – sponsored by Reebok, Nutriforce, Incrediwear and Amara.

As you can see from her sponsors, Alessandra is respected in very high places as well.

Alessandra was born in Montreal and grew up in Canada and Japan. She followed in her father’s footsteps, he being a multi-sport high school athlete, setting the foundation for her athletic career we’ve come to appreciate.

Alessandra started CrossFit in 2010 after finishing a career as a collegiate rower. article, Alessandra Pichelli photo article, Alessandra Pichelli photo

She made the Games for the first time with her Diablo CrossFit teammates in 2012 and finished 3rd. Afterwards Alessandra competed as an individual and won the NorCal Regionals.

“I think that players play, and they compete, and it’s not about incentives.”.. David Stern

Her Diablo CrossFit Team is amazing.

Here is how they describe their purpose and thinking at their site “At Diablo, we thrive on the amazing physical transformations of our every-day members who come to us to lose weight, get strong, train for an event, or simply improve their health, including first-time exercisers, weekend warriors, grandparents, stay-at-home parents, and students. And, we celebrate and learn from the incredible achievements of the many competitive athletes who also train with us.

Diablo has been programming & tracking CrossFit workouts for clients since 2005. We have collected tens of thousands of results from members. Those results, along with ongoing client & Coach feed-back has helped Diablo create incredibly effective workout programming for ALL of our clients, including our beginning members, our masters, our teens and top athletes.”

This methodology surely worked wonders for Alessandra.

She had her best finish as a rookie in 2013 finishing 4th.

In an online video she expressed that she pushes her body to the best it could be and it’s not about anyone else, it’s about pushing myself. article, Alessandra Pichelli photo article, Alessandra Pichelli photo

We suspect Mr. Lao Tzu would be proud.

Today, many are proud of her.

“I love to compete. To me, business is the ultimate sport. It’s always on. There is always someone trying to beat me.”…. Mark Cuban  

They sing her praises at her college alma mater, St. Mary’s University where at they proclaim, “Alessandra Pichelli has always been a good competitor. Her former Saint Mary’s rowing coaches and teammates already knew that about the 2009 Gael graduate. As the stroke seat of the 2009 Varsity 8 boat that finished third at the West Coast Conference Championships, Pichelli helped the Gaels to strong finishes throughout her career.”

St. Mary’s and Diablo CrossFit are great San Francisco East Bay organizations.

They are in fairly close proximity to the city of Pleasant Hill. article, wikimedia photo article, wikimedia photo

Since this is a region that Femcompetitor Magazine has traveled to cover female grappling shoots in San Jose, we would love to take you on an electronic excursion there.

Pleasant Hill is in Contra Costa County.  The population was 33,152 at the 2010 census.

Pleasant Hill’s climate is a Mediterranean one having cool and wet winters and dry, warm summers.

We can attest to that. The weather is sunny, warm and the hills are golden. The ride from Nor Cal to San Jose is rich with rolling hills and natural wild life. You could almost forget that it is a stone’s throw from three major Bay Area hubs, San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose.

Mount Diablo is a mountain of the Diablo Range, in Contra Costa County of the eastern San Francisco Bay Area in Northern California. article, wikimedia photo article, wikimedia photo

About those animals.

Commonly seen animals include coyote, bobcat, black-tailed deer, California ground squirrels, fox squirrels and grey foxes; many other mammals including mountain lions are present. article, wikimedia photo article, wikimedia photo

It is a chief remaining refuge for the threatened Alameda whip snake, California red-legged frog. Less common wildlife species include the reintroduced peregrine falcon, ringtail cats, and to the east American badgers, San Joaquin kit fox, roadrunners, California tiger salamander, and burrowing owls. There are also exotic (non-native) animals such as the red fox and opossum, the latter being North America’s only marsupial.

As we said. It’s a rich region. article, wikimedia photo article, wikimedia photo

Alessandra possesses a rich workout which she shares with “”There are many movements in CrossFit that I picked up pretty quickly, but for a long time I was struggling with chest-to-bar pull-ups and couldn’t keep up with the lighter girls (I’m 5-foot-7 and 148 pounds). I’ve worked on them a lot over the last year. At this year’s NorCal Regionals, I was able to prove how far I’ve come by winning the 100s workout that included 100 chest-to-bar pull-ups. Winning an event that included that many pull-ups was extra rewarding because I knew how hard I had worked to get there.”

Very impressive. article, photo article, photo

“People who live in the past generally are afraid to compete in the present. I’ve got my faults, but living in the past is not one of them. There’s no future in it.”.. Sparky Anderson

It’s easy to love the world of female sports. Alessandra is proof the competitive spirit is alive and well. One of the exciting aspects of following her career is there is a sense she is just beginning.

Given her high standards and her mindset of using herself as a measuring stick, in terms of her competitive trophies and accomplishments, no doubt the best is yet to come.

There is a future in that.

~ ~ ~

Sources:, Wikipedia,, FCI Elite Competitor, photos thank you Wikimedia Commons.