Tell Us A Little Bit About You…
My name is Abbie and I am a CrossFit athlete. I have been competing for about 2 years.
I currently live in San Antonio, Tx and I’m originally from the Midwest.
Where Did Your Fitness Journey Begin? How Did You Get Here?
I have always been athletic. As a kid I was a dancer, soccer player, gymnast, then later cheerleader, and track athlete. Gymnastics was my first love, I would wish that I had started sooner, only did the sport for about 3.5 years, but moved up levels rather quickly. I quit when I was level 9 just before going into high school. There were many reasons why I ended up quitting, mostly due to injuries.
Cheer became a huge passion of mine in high school, track was well, but track I could only do for 2 years before moving to Texas. This was because in the school district in Texas, the training season was a little different with cheer being a year-round activity, not allowing time for another sport. My old track coach had begged me to continue with the sport in order to become a collegiate pole vaulter and 800m runner (these were my main events) but I did not listen. I decided to continue cheering in hopes of a full scholarship. However, I had broken the same bones in my lumbar spine that I had broken when I was 13 and a second time at 17, which had ended my cheering days and chance of scholarship. But this did lead to other opportunities that went on to change my life forever.
As far as getting into CrossFit? It was actually my husband (boyfriend at the time) Antun who really convinced me to join in 2020. We went to a gym called CrossFit Lethal in San Antonio. He knew I would enjoy it but I also really needed to do something with my time. With the pandemic and not being able to work much nor see people, I needed something going on in my life. It was odd cause with so much closed the local CrossFit boxes seemed to be the only thing “open”. So as a birthday gift for Antun, he bought me a 3-month membership. Yes, that’s how bad he wanted me to go. It’s pretty funny. The first workout I did I believe was toes to bar and running…then apparently I was hooked ever since.
Overall, before CrossFit I was never not fit per se. There was a time right before CrossFit that lasted about 3 years where I was traveling and pretty much living out of a suitcase. But during this time, I would still make time to sweat and workout. No matter where I was at I usually figured out a way to sneak a run in or do some pushups or crunches on the floor in my hostel or Airbnb or wherever I was crashing for a bit. So all in all, it seemed like CrossFit was meant for me.
What Is Your Favorite Part About CrossFit? What Drives You To Compete?
There is so much freedom in my sport. Here’s the thing, in CrossFit, you make as much noise as you want, wear as much or as little clothing as you feel like, and somehow you are always very dirty. And everyone around you just gets it.
The community is what really makes it unique in my opinion.
Because it doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or super advanced athlete, where you come from, or what sort of ailments you might have, it always feels like one big family.
Do You Currently Coach, Or Own A CrossFit Box?
I do not coach, nor do I own my own fitness facility. To be honest, I do not have any interest at the moment. It is something I consider in the future. I could definitely picture myself doing it at some point.
What’s Your Favorite Desert Or Cheat Meal?
Something with a lot of chocolate. I have always been a big-time chocoholic, and even though I am not going to be stuffing chocolate bars down daily, I will gladly indulge every so often.
What Has Been Your Most Memorable Time As An Athlete?
All the friendships I have made since I began this journey. I probably have more people I call friends now than I have in my whole life.
What Are Some Of The Biggest Challenges You Have Faced As An Athlete And What Have You Learned?
I'd say the first time I had my heart broke was by my gymnastics coach when he told me I was not going go to the Olympics. Gymnastics is a sport where you need to start young and be elite by the time you are about 11 or 12. The problem was I didn’t start till I was almost 11. I was moving up the levels quickly, but I just needed more time. My coach had to sit me down and tell me Olympics won’t happen but lets get me a scholarship for college. But then, every time I would get injured I kept getting growth spurts, so eventually I was just too tall to function in that sport. It felt crappy to feel everything slipping out of my control. But, I told myself I had to move on.
When I was doing cheer I knew that was my ticket for college so I put all my focus and energy into that. But then again, it was the same thing with the injuries and doctors telling me if I ever want to walk normal again I need to stop.
So that was it, I was about to graduate and I didn’t have a scholarship for any sport, so it all seemed like a waste. Fortunately, I started modeling (which pays much better than some waitress job) so I could still get through college and clear my debts.
When I began CrossFit it seemed like this was it, this is what I was supposed to be doing. For me, going to the CrossFit games would be like going to the Olympics. So if I have learned anything, I’ve learned to just keep going, things will work themselves out. Take the chances while you got them, but if not, there will be more, there always is. You just need to be open to change.
What Does Your Diet Or Nutrition Look Like?
You really have to eat big in my sport. Up until recently, I would just try to consume as much as possible throughout the day. I am finally at a point where I am not trying to gain weight, but instead just maintain what I got. I don’t count my macros, but I do keep track in my head to an extent. If I ever feel like I am getting off track, then I will start writing down my protein and carb intakes just to make sure I am hitting roughly the numbers I need.
I am about 30 pounds heavier now than when I first started CrossFit. The first 10 pounds I gained came easy, I mean way too easy. I am pretty sure I gained that weight within like a week. And I think it was because my body needed that weight naturally. I never thought I was underweight even though I was constantly trying to be thinner. After all, I was a model up until right when I started CrossFit and my agents would always talk about how “fit” or “full” I was and I did not like that very much.
But I didn’t learn about nutrition overnight. It took me awhile to understand the power of good, whole foods. In sports, my coaches were constantly sitting down with me telling me to eat more. During school lunch I wanted to save my money as much as possible so I would get whatever the cheapest thing was and that was it. This got worse in high school when we had off-campus lunch so food was even more expensive. As time went on, anytime I felt strapped for cash, food was always the first thing I would pass on. I once returned home from a solo trip to Australia and my boyfriend said I looked like a ghost (I only ate 2 small meals per day).
The issue was never that I did not know what was healthy and what wasn’t, I simply did not get enough calories in.
What really changed my mindset with food was the fact that food is fuel. The more fuel you have, the longer you can go, which meant I needed lots and lots of fuel in order to do this sport the way I wanted to. At first it did not matter so much if the food was processed or whether it was fast food or what not. I simply needed more cause I didn’t have anything for my new muscles to eat. And plus fast food is better than no food. Eventually I started becoming more cognizant of what I was actually consuming and being sure to get my micronutrients in as well as my macros.
Tell us a little about your training regimen- do you follow specific training program(s), coaching/ coaches, etc? How do you prioritize your training over other aspects of life to reach this level of competitiveness?
My main programming is Mayhem, where I follow their ‘compete’ programming. However, I have a coach for my weightlifting programing. His name is Mark Khamboonphet. I train in 2 sessions each day for about 5 days of the week. The other 2 days are either complete rest or some sort of active recovery. If I am trying to get stronger and its off season I am more likely to just rest on those days, whereas during the season I will probably focus more on actively recovering my body. I like active recovery because it keeps the blood flow in my muscles and I feel more ready to move quickly and not be as stiff the following day.
I actually train at two gyms on most days. I go to Lone Star Crossfit to train with their head coach in the late morning/ early afternoons, and then to Crossfit Lethal in the evenings because it is closer to my house and less traffic.
Right now training is everything. I have very supportive people around me who understand what I am trying to do and I am so lucky for that. I really couldn’t do this without all the help I get.
What’s the biggest piece of advice that you’ve been given, that a made an impact on you as an individual, that you wish to share with others for their journey?
"Run your own race”. I have honestly been told this many times and in many different circumstances. It really took me awhile to actually not think about what other people are doing or to stop playing the comparison game. But, it really holds true in all aspects of life.
It is your life and your time. You get to choose what you do with it. The people who are in your life now may not be around later, so its really important that you put yourself first every once awhile. You are the one who has to live with the decisions you make, so just do what you want to do and stick to the plan you’ve made. Trust that you know what you are doing and stop doubting yourself.
What are some of your goals for yourself in the sport?
I want to compete at the Crossfit Games as an individual.
Why do you choose to partner with Swolverine?
We share the same goals. Swolverine supplements are performance based and they want their athletes to perform at their best. If these are the supplements that will help me do just better then thats the company I want to work with.
What are your favorite products to use from Swolverine?
So I’d say their kre-alkalyn is probably my favorite product I have tried thus far. When I started using this product I did notice that I felt more powerful in my workouts.
I am also a huge fan of their clean carbs! I was yet to have tried powdered carbs that aren’t just maltodextrin or some other simple carbohydrate. Swolverine’s carbs are made of whole foods from complex carbs only. I really like to drink these before, during or after workouts!
I also love their protein and multivitamins, but what I really like is the fact I have not had any acne breakouts. I tend to have a hard time finding multivitamins that won’t make my skin breakout.
I know they are going to be releasing some new products soon and I am so excited to try them!