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.



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 dove head first into competing in CrossFit.  She entered into her first competition just 5 months in and walked away with a first place finish.  Within her first year, she earned a spot at the 2014 Central East Regional where she placed 25th in the region.  She also competed in the Masters Online Qualifier (40-44) that year and placed 25th in the world, 5 spots shy of a Games invitation.  She regrouped after an injury in 2015 and earned a spot at the Games in 2016..and then again in 2017…and again in 2018.  Every year she celebrated an event win and finished in the top 10 worldwide.  Her best finish was 4th in 2016.    

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 training certificates in CrossFit Level 1, CrossFit Level 2, Weightlifting, Competitor Course, CrossFit Kids, CrossFit Scaling, Spot the Flaw, and the Judges Course.  She has also taken Carl Paoli’s Freestyle Connection Movement Seminar.  In addition to all her CrossFit training, Semma is a certified Nutrition Coach (Precision Nutrition Level 1 and Level 2 Masterclass/Mentorship course) and a certified Mental Toughness trainer.