November Athlete of the Month || Shan Vonier!!

Each month we spotlight a different CFA athlete who stands out and shows just how awesome they are. What is it that makes up an Athlete of the Month? It may not be the person that finishes the fastest, Rx’s every WOD, or gets a PR every time they walk in the gym. Although we love and celebrate when those things happen, the Athlete of the Month is made up of much more than physical ability. This person shows up, gives their best every time, and then gives a little more. They are hungry to learn and always ready to do the work. They support their fellow classmates and encourage them to reach their goals. This athlete embodies what we believe the CrossFit Austin Community should be about.

Our November Athlete of the Month is Shan Vonier! Shan joined the CFA crew when she and her wonderful family moved to Austin in March of 2021! She’s a morning mama with the 5:30 am crew, but you’ll see her around in the afternoons when she brings her girls to the youth class as well! Shan knows what’s up when it comes to finding balance in her training. She always makes smart choices for how she feels each day. She has such a wonderful heart too and always encourages and lifts up those around her. We’ve loved being part of the journey with her and celebrating the wins along the way! Shan, we are honored to have you as our November Athlete of the Month and as an awesome part of this team. Thanks for your all your hard work and we look forward to seeing all you accomplish in the years to come! Congratulations!

State your Name and/or Nickname please:
Shan – its not short for anything.
Words to live by?
Sometimes the people around you won’t understand your journey. They don’t need to, its not for them. -Joubert Botha
What is your fitness background?
I‘ve played sports my whole life(softball, golf, volleyball). I didn’t like to lift weights and would only run in the gym when I was dragged there.
How long have you been CrossFitting?
I‘ve been going since November 2019 with a break in 2020. Started at CFA in March 2021.
Take us back to your first day of CrossFit… How did you feel? How do you compare it to workouts today?
My first crossfit workout was The Murph 2019….solo. I was nervous, but also I had no real clue what I was getting myself into. I finished and it was the one of the hardest things I had done physically. I didn’t do another workout until the Open, when I did all those workouts, so yeah, I guess I just dove right in. I still get nervous because almost every workout seems daunting to me, but I just try to keep moving and know that it will end eventually.
What’s your favorite part of CrossFit Austin?
The people! We just moved here and living in an apartment and homeschooling puts a damper on meeting people. We’ve really been able to build friendships and make connections with some amazing people here! Its been great for us as well as our 3 girls.
Current Training Goals/PRs?
I‘m working on my pull ups and handstand walks. I recently got a PR for something and got to hit the gong, that was cool.

What advice do you have for folks just starting out in CrossFit?
Do not listen to Ryan. Haha. But honestly, go at a pace that you feel comfortable. There will always be someone who is pushing you and cheering you on, but it really is about you and your goals. Comparison is the death of joy. Do you.
How do you balance staying focused in your training when life gets busy?
I have started paying attention to my body more. When I get that lazy feeling and miss workout or eat junk, I feel it and I don’t like it. I have noticed how much better I feel when I workout consistently, so I try to workout consistently. It’s easier when you have a husband who goes everyday he is town and a group of girls who text you, encourage you to be there and lift you up.

What is your cheat meal go-to?
Spaghetti, salad, garlic rolls and cheesecake for dessert.

How do you use your fitness outside of the gym?
I have 3 girls who are very active and I do like to keep up with them. They will be out lifting me fairly soon, so I take what I can get right now. 

What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced in your fitness journey?
My own mind. Weightlifting, working out, etc has always been associated with losing weight, so I’m still learning about doing this for my health/enjoyment and not just to lose weight. I’ve had to really slow down. Crash dieting and running is easy because you see instant results. Staying consistent with workouts and eating habits does not yield overnight results, but it is sustainable and for longevity(thats what I hear anyways).

Tell us about a moment you felt most proud of yourself during a workout.
Honestly, I’m proud of every workout I complete, because I never think I am going to. BUT, my first rX workout this past summer. I cannot remember the actual workout, but it included power snatch and I did 65#. That was pretty exciting.

If you could create a WOD and name it for yourself, what would it be?

“Lose Yourself”

10 min AMRAP

10 Box Jumps
10 Wallballs
10 Power Cleans

What keeps you going on the days you don’t feel like it?
The one aspect of CrossFit I was drawn to….time. I like how I can show up, warm up, workout and be done within an hour. An hour is really not that long and to be done with an entire workout as well as have stretched, possibly lifted some heavy stuff, chatted with the girls and its barely 7AM…it’s a great start to any day.

What are your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of CrossFit?
I play sand volleyball and golf. I love to cook and read.  I’m really into making focaccia bread these days. If I’m not doing those things then I am hanging out with the fam. I have 3 girls who are into dance, weightlifting and volleyball, so we are usually doing one of those things.

Tell us something we don’t know about you….
I was in 4-H.  I showed dogs(St. Bernard), rabbits, sheep and made cookies. I did it for 3-4 years and I won Champion a couple times. At one point I had probably 10 rabbits. They were Angora, so they had the long hair that was super soft. The first rabbit I bought was gray-blue and his name was Harry-Bob.

Leave the fine folks of CrossFit Austin with some parting words…
I’ll refer back to words I live by and paraphrase….It’s your journey. You do you, boo.