4150 Hunsaker St., Suite A, East Lansing, MI 48823 (map)

Our Coaches


Michael Horton

Michael found his passion for fitness and sports early in life but didn’t realize it’s true potential for providing joy and satisfaction as a coach and trainer until joining the rank and file of a 9-5 job after high school.  Michael quickly realized that was not for him.  Michael soon began pursuing a career in personal fitness training that was kick started when he became an AFAA certified personal fitness trainer.  Ironically, it was during that certification that CrossFit found him.  He was finally introduced all at once to everything his previous fitness programming had been missing.  It presented itself in the form of constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensities and it didn’t subscribe to the  gym protocol of mirrors, TV’s and magazine racks that he had been exposed to for so long.  Fran, Helen and Annie revealed their beautiful yet hideous faces to him in garages, playgrounds and anywhere else on the planet that he could think to make meaningful use of in order to push himself and his fitness level.  Michael trained and competed in several triathlons. Michael was featured in Healthy and Fit magazine when he helped his client win a weight loss challenge through the magazine. Michael has also been active in helping to train athletes on local sports teams. Michael has worked with clients at all levels of fitness and loves to watch them meet and exceed their goals and begin the process again with setting higher goals!

Michael is now a Certified Level 1 CrossFit Trainer, Certified in CrossFit Gymnastics, CrossFit Football, CrossFit Mobility, CrossFit Strongman, CrossFit PowerLifting, Attitude Nation Level 1,  USAW Level 1 Sports Performance Coach Certified, CrossFit Striking, CrossFit Level II Coach’s prep course and is the owner of Spartan CrossFit. He would like to add CrossFit Kids in the next two years. Michael believes that a trainer should be willing and able to do everything they are asking you to do.



Candace Gregory

Candace has always been passionate about fitness.  She participated in high school sports and recreational running and weight lifting including training for and completing several marathons, but it wasn’t until she found Crossfit that she truly identified herself as an athlete.

CrossFit brought together the missing pieces of constant variation, friendly competition, motivation and community.  Candace currently holds her CF Level 1 and gymnastics certifications as well as USAW Olympic weightlifting and CF Striking certifications.  Candace has also taken the CrossFit level II Coach’s prep course.  Her philosophy on coaching is one of positive reinforcement and inclusion.  Candace believes that fitness is for everyone and the unlimited scalability of CrossFit is an ideal environment in which to practice this.  She loves seeing the amazing progression of the newest members of the team and the breakthroughs of all athletes as they push themselves to previously unknown limits.



Danielle Tyler

After years of trainng & trying new things, finding CrossFit was like finding long lost family for Danielle. Her obsession for reaching greater heights is thoroughly quenched by the feats this has prepared her body and clients to perform. Danielle feels there is nothing more satisfying than watching athletes and clients achieve more than they ever thought possible. Danielle treats training as a long-term discipline and considers passion and consistency to be essential to success. In addition to providing health and athletic benefits, she believes in training as a means to creating a strong and fulfilling self-concept.
She currently holders her CF Level 1 and now that her MBA is complete hopes to seek out more certifications including USAW Olympic lifting and CrossFit Gymnastics. Distilled down to the simplest terms, workouts are about intensity, variability, and functionality. While currently a full time Compliance Officer she tries to spend every evening at SCF. She is also a dedicated Spartan fan and you will find her tailgating for every home game in the fall.



Pat Deane

I have always been interested in fitness, but  never found the right fit for me. The gym was boring and lasted about two weeks. I found CrossFit online in early 2010. While I instantly loved the WODs and movements, at the time I “couldn’t” do it. Couldn’t do a pull-up, couldn’t lift *insert anything here* and basically felt as though I could not do any of what I found online. Unfortunately there was no local CrossFit affiliate at the time so my search for the right fit continued…on my couch. A year later I came upon the CF mainsite and found a local box had opened, Spartan CrossFit. I sent Michael a message on March 13th, 2011 and started foundations the next day. I remember seeing Murph posted on the white board for the WOD classes during my second week of foundations and thinking, “These people are crazy. Run a mile – do 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, and 300 squats…then run another mile?? Do I get 3 days to finish? No way will that ever happen.” I was wrong. Yes we are crazy, but just because something was not presently possible did not mean that it could not or would not happen. I could do it and I believe anyone else can too.

It took another year of encouragement from Michael, but in September of 2012 I took the CFL1 with Coach Josh at Rogue. I have also completed the Attitude Nation Level 1 Seminar (Weightlifting) and would like to add CrossFit Gymnastics along with additional Weightlifting seminars. I want to use the knowledge I have gained to help others to reach their goals by training smarter and more efficiently.

Outside of SCF I bleed Green; there is no better place than Spartan Stadium. I have a B.S. in Packaging from MSU and will finish my M.S. in Packaging this fall.


Semma Burba

1081987_10201962255324782_1944650008_nSemma has always enjoyed athletic pursuits and tapped into her competitive side regularly from an early age.  At ten, she and her brother started on a summer long quest to set the Guinness Book of World Records mark for the longest handstand walk.  No records were broken, but the summer was well spent getting comfortable upside down.  Semma’s parents were unconventional in their discipline and regularly dolled out push-ups as a form of punishment.  As a track athlete in high school, she became state champion in the mile.  She was recruited to the US Air Force Academy and was a collegiate athlete in track and cross country.  She graduated with a degree in Human Behavior and later earned her Master’s degree in Education.  When she separated from the Air Force, Semma settled down as a stay at home mom with three girls. It wasn’t long before her adventurous side met her need for physical activity and she joined the Michigan Search & Rescue team with her dog, Miles. Not pleased with her neglected physical state, she tried a variety of different diets and exercise programs, all of which led her to walk through the doors of Spartan CrossFit in 2013 at 39 years old.  Her body transformation after 36 weeks was documented by the photos seen here.  

Semma fell in love with competing in CrossFit.  She won her first competition in 2013.   Her performance in the 2014 Open earned her a spot at the Central East CrossFit Regionals where she placed 25th in the region.  That same year she also competed in the Masters Qualifier (40-44) and placed 25th in the world, 5 spots shy of a Games invitation.  In 2016, Semma placed 16th in the Open and 10th in the online qualifier which guaranteed her a spot at the Games.  She placed 4th worldwide in the 2016 CrossFit Games (40-44 division).  All of her events at the Games that year were top ten finishes, with one event win.  She earned her way back to the Games in 2017 and had another event win as well as a 2nd and 3rd place finish.  She placed 9th worldwide in the 2017 CrossFit Games (40-44 division).  

Semma has not only been hard at work as an athlete, she has also been honing her skills as an elite coach.  She runs many of the classes here at Spartan. She holds certificates in the CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Course, CrossFit Weightlifting, CrossFit Competitors Course, CrossFit Kids, CrossFit Judges Course and the CrossFit Scaling Course.  She has also taken Carl Paoli’s Freestyle Connection Movement Seminar.  She is also a certified Nutrition Coach and a certified Mental Toughness trainer.