Meet Emilie

emilie headshot
emilie hester | founder + head coach
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em jumprope
em doing double-unders at "WodFest" in Seattle

coaching background.

Director of Performance & Fitness
goPerformance & Fitness & goCrossFit | Nashville, TN

Performance Coach
Institute of Human Performance | Boca Raton, FL

Performance Coach
InnerStrength Sport & Fitness | Nashville, TN

NSCA Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist

One of 13 Certified Level 2 Crossfit Instructor's in Washington State

Certified Crossfit Olympic Lifting Instructor

USA Weightlifting Certified Sport Performance Coach

Poliquin International Certified Practitioner Level 1

athletics background.

7th place
Individual - WodFest - Seattle, WA

6th place
- Team - CrossFit Regionals - NorthWest
14th place - Team - Regional Qualifier - CrossFit Open
Top 50 - Individual - Regional Qualifier - CrossFit Open
3rd place - Individual - Strongest Man & Woman Contest - Rainier CrossFit
8th place - Individual - Gorilla Games - CrossFit Amped

9th place - Team - CrossFit Regionals - NorthWest
3rd place - Individual - CrossFit State Sectionals - Washington
2nd place - Individual - Strongest Man & Woman Contest - Rainier CrossFit
2nd place - Tandem - NW Throwdown - Northwest CrossFit

8th place - Individual - CrossFit Regionals - NorthWest

1998 - 2002
Division I Women's Basketball - University of Evansville | Evansville, IN


Emilie will tell you that she was made for Jogo. Growing up she and her sister were frequently toted along to their dad's trips to the gym and to their fitness instructor mom's classes at the YMCA. She still vividly remembers (with both shock & awe) her mom's various leotards, headbands, scrunched socks, and loud "WOOO's" into her headset microphone while Donna Summer's "She works hard for the money" blared in the background. Ohhh... the 80's. Good times had by all.

Emilie hails out of the great basketball state of Indiana, where she was an Indiana All-Star, and Miss Basketball candidate. She chose to stay in her hometown, to play basketball for the University of Evansville Purple Aces, where her class was the winningest in school history. Their success included two WNIT appearances, one NCAA tournament appearance, a conference championship, and two seasons ranked in the top 25 nationally.

After graduating, she spent the next year traveling around the world doing missions work. First, living out of a backpack in Papua New Guinea and Thailand. Then to Switzerland and Greece, playing basketball with Athletes in Action. And finally onto Egypt where, in addition to playing along the Red Sea in Dahab, she helped her sister in her work with special-needs kids in the Garbage Village area of Cairo.

Professionally, she has worked at several highly regarded performance & fitness organizations, including: InnerStrength in Nashville,Tennessee, a training group known for getting country music's best in shape. The Institute of Human Performance, under JC Santana, in South Florida, which has been recognized by Men's Health magazine as one of the Top 20 gyms in America. Most recently she helped develop goPerformance & Fitness and goCrossfit in Nashville, Tennessee, as the Director of Performance & Training.


AGE: 36

HOMETOWN: Evansville, Indiana. | Fun Fact: Contrary to popular Pacific Northwest belief, not everyone from Indiana lives on a farm.

WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO BELLINGHAM: I wanted to open a little gym amidst the mountains & water in this sweet laid-back town. So in 2007 I sold most of my things, packed the rest in a small U-haul trailer, attached it to my Jeep and made the 2,500-mile drive out here with my mom, as a constant source of entertainment, in my passenger seat.

SOME FAVORITE MEMORIES: Floating out in Barkley Lake with my sister while my dad stood on the back of the boat with his cigar and sang Lyle Lovett songs to us. Looking up in the stands in college and seeing my baby brother (then 4-years-old) completely decked out in his Captain Hook outfit, chasing my assistant coach's son around with his plastic hook. The last two-days of competing with the Jogo team at CrossFit's 2011 NorthWest Regionals.

CURRENT PLAYLIST: Explosions in the Sky. A Boy and His Kite.  The Royal Royal. Shawn McDonald. Sigur Ros. William Fitzsimmons.

FAMILY: Dad, Mom, Stepmom (Donnie, Robin & Jeannie). Big brother, big sister, and baby brother (Gary, Jenifer, and Jacob). Niece (Maya). Nephews (Nathanial & JJ). Grandma (Virginia).

FAVORITE LOCAL EAT: Mount Bakery's Fritatta

FAVORITE BOOKS: The Ragamuffin Gospel (Brennan Manning), The Journey of Desire (John Eldredge) , The Giving Tree (Shel Silverstein), The Four Agreements (Don Miguel Ruiz)

FAVORITE HOBBY: I am totally smitten with CrossFit, lifting heavy things and honing my inner 5ft 11in gymnast. I also adore being out on a trail in the middle of the woods.

FAVORITE LOCAL HANGOUT: My back deck. The trails off of Chuckanut. Elizabeth Station. And of course this sweet little gym called Jogo

LAST LOCAL PURCHASE: a Paleo Box from Acme Farms & Kitchen

DREAM VACATION: I would love to get an around-the-world ticket, and make my way from the states to Japan, down to Australia, up through South East Asia, onto St. Petersburgh, Norway, revisit Dahab in Egypt, over to Brazil and Peru, then back up to Bellingham.

ONE THING ON YOUR BUCKET LIST: Run with the bulls in Pamplona




GUILTY PLEASURE: It's a toss-up between shoes and funny cheap sunglasses.