From Team Sports & Oreos to Workouts & Oatmeal ("My Fitness Journey," by Cassandra Velez) - Fitness Quest 10

From Team Sports & Oreos to Workouts & Oatmeal (“My Fitness Journey,” by Cassandra Velez)

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Athleticism and competition were both in my blood when I was born. My dad and brother were very athletic and, in turn, competitive with each other, on the field or court, and with me.

From a young age, I was involved in sports and fell in love with softball, in part because I grew up watching my dad coach our girls’ high school softball team for nearly a decade. Starting in middle school, I decided I wanted to be a softball pitcher, partly because I saw that being left handed would give me a unique edge. I began training and practicing year round, while also playing flag football, volleyball, softball, wakeboarding and snowboarding. I loved sports, but running and actually working out on the other hand, not so much! My favorite runs were in the car to Baskin Robbins, rather than on the treadmill. Since I played sports in school, I was able to stay fit and could pick up different sports easily.

I avoided playing basketball in school because of the competition in my family; my brother, 6’3”, was an amazing basketball player for our high school, and when he left I didn’t want to be compared to him being only 5’2”. Finally my senior year, the basketball coach needed players for a game so I joined the team and within a week, I was a starter, that’s the pro and con of attending a small Christian school.

Being naturally athletic and understanding sports helped me tremendously in my high school sports career, but weakened me when it came to actual fitness. Since I was active between sports and training as a pitcher, I looked like I was in good shape. It wasn’t until my senior year, near the time when I joined the basketball team that I wanted to feel like I was in good shape! Having to run for basketball helped me see that I wasn’t in the shape I previously thought I was.

I decided to start hiking, rock climbing, lifting weights, and, the dreaded, running. On this journey, I also started eating a little better! I still loved junk food, but by being more focused about the proportions I ate and began to enjoy oatmeal almost as much as Oreos. I felt much better and even started looking more in shape. Athleticism helped me be able to run and become fit, but for years I used it as a crutch to not be fit. Once I was able to see that I needed to be conscious of actually working out, I became a much happier and healthier person.

Exercise and even running became something I looked forward to doing! Before I started exercising, I wasn’t a morning person, but between sports, school and social activities I decided to wake up early and it stuck! After this, it became easier for me to awaken early and it wasn’t as big of a burden. It’s safe to say that when I found real fitness, my life changed. I still loved and played sports, but I was able to excel because of my workouts and healthier eating. Now that I’m in college, the sports have slowed down, but working out is something that I have stuck with. Don’t get me wrong ~ team sports still call my name and many afternoons you can find me on the softball, football or soccer fields.

Fitness journeys are not a cookie cutter experience, although I still crave cookies, you have to navigate your own way to success.

Cassandra Velez
Marketing/Business Intern
Fitness Quest 10

There is a well-organized medical service with all necessary equipment. SCOTT & WHITE HOSPITAL- COLLEGE STATION.

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