Michelle Van Buren was born and raised in Mason County, Michigan, a farm and beach community on the west shore of Lake Michigan. She was always active in sports and outside activities, from swimming in the summer to downhill skiing in the winter.
Michelle played basketball, volleyball, and softball in high school, earning ten varsity letters, before attending Spring Arbor University on a softball scholarship. She earned many academic awards along with being nominated for the university’s Female Athlete of the Year during her senior year of college. She also played on the ASA 2001 Women’s National Runners-up team earning All-American awards.
Michelle graduated from Spring Arbor with a degree in Exercise Sports Science and History, with a concentration in Secondary Education. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Nova Southeastern University. In 2005, she accepted a coaching and teaching position at Rancho High School in Las Vegas, Nevada.
In the fall of 2009, Michelle attended her first CrossFit class. From the first WOD she was hooked – it reminded her of conditioning in college, but way more fun! She joined the CrossFit culture right away and hasn’t looked back since!
As an athlete and teacher, Michelle saw the potential to introduce CrossFit to her students as part of their physical education curriculum. With a lot of hard work, dedication, and huge support from her administration, she created Nevada’s first high school non-profit program in the fall of 2011 – Rancho CrossFit. The program started with one class of 35 students. Today the program runs 8 class periods of CrossFit with an average of 200-250 students in the program. She has the following CrossFit certifications, Level 2, Football, Powerlifting, Olympic Lifting & CrossFit Kids.