Coach Spotlight || Mark Celis
My fitness journey began at a very young age, beginning with sports. My parents
exposed me to many extracurricular activities as early as elementary school, where I began to fall in love with human performance. Of course, as a young boy, I didn’t see it as human performance but rather, more of a time to play. My first exposure to organized sports began with playing on my first tee-ball team around the age of 5 (cute pic on the right) and my love for sports only grew from there.
Growing up, I quickly recognized that I shared a love for most sports and desired to be involved in as many as I could. From basketball and track throughout middle school, to baseball and ultimate Frisbee in high school, I always found a way to use my fitness and athleticism. I eventually decided that I would focus most of my attention on baseball in high school. That’s where I had my first taste of weight training, where it gave me the opportunity to enhance my abilities on the field. Little did I know that I would actually begin to fall in love with the science behind why we were lifting weights and its benefits not only as an athlete but as an individual.
Three months prior to my senior baseball season, I fractured my distal fibula and had to run around in a cast and with crutches. Because I knew it would hinder me from practicing hard before the start of the season, I was very discouraged. Regardless, I kept my chin up, drank my milk, and did what I could to make sure I would still perform for my team by the time we started. It was during that process that I was reassured in my decision in pursuing a degree in healthcare.
After graduation, I made my way to good ol’ Lubbock, Texas where I attended Texas
Tech University (wreck em’). I pursed a degree in Kinesiology (with a Pre-PT track) because I
knew I wanted to work in the field of physical therapy. It was there that I found the sport of
Crossfit and where I met some awesome people that encouraged me to pursue physical
therapy. Among those people in the Crossfit community were a professor with his PhD. in
exercise science, and a DPT who taught me a lot about the profession. I eventually interned at
several PT clinics but the one that had the biggest influence on me was Lubbock Sports Rehab
that was connected to the D1 sports facility. That experience helped affirm my passion and
desire to work with athletes and sports rehab.
Once I earned my four-year bachelor’s degree, I moved back home to begin the very
long process of apply to PT schools. After a small waiting period, I was finally accepted to the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences and moved to Austin, Texas. I quickly became a member of Crossfit Austin and eventually became a “Coach For Life”. It has been such a blessing being a part of a genuine coaching staff that actually cares about their members. I have seen a ton of development being a part of this crew. It’s allowed me to practice my professional skills with clients and has helped me develop that “coach’s eye” while assessing movement. I have seen a ton of growth in my life and I am FIRED UP to continue my development as a coach, athlete, and hopeful physical therapist!