November’s Athlete of the Month: Jillian English!

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State your Name and/or Nickname please:

JillianMEnglish <—- that was my aim screen name. Creativity comes naturally.

Words to live by?

Lately I’ve been saying “It ain’t over ’til it’s over…” (famously quoted by St. Louis native, Yogi Berra). It started off as my go-to response to anyone giving me a hard time about the St. Louis Cardinals. But now that baseball season is over, it’s easy to apply to everyday life. It’s about not giving up when things get tough. Things happen that are beyond our control. Things don’t always go as planned. But hey.. it’s not over ’til it’s over. (and it’s over when I say it is!)

What is your fitness background? 

I’ve played sports for as long as I can remember. As a kid I danced, played soccer, volleyball, softball, tennis, golf and swam. In high school I played soccer, volleyball, and was a cheerleader. I began working out (with actual weights, ya know?) on a regular basis my sophomore year of high school. When I went to college I figured that hitting the gym a few times a week was sufficient enough to stay healthy. Unfortunately, lots of partying and lots of eating happened and being athletic was no longer a priority.

How long have you been CrossFitting? 

I started my crossfit journey at the AMLI Southshore bootcamp in June of 2011. I continued bootcamp until it was sadly discontinued in October of 2012. I officially joined the CrossFit Austin family on October 31, 2012.

What’s your favorite part of CrossFit Austin?  

What’s not to love about CrossFit Austin? I love that whether I decide to go to the 5:30am class or the 6:30pm class, I’m always greeted with a smile. I love that in every class I go to, everyone is giving 100%. Everyone may not be able to do muscle ups, or pull-ups, or even a regular push up, but every single person in every single class is giving 100% effort. I love that when everyone has finished the workout except for one person everyone sticks around, equipment still out, cheering on that person to finish. We all have other things going on in our lives, but for one hour a day we come together and work our butts off.

What are your training goals?

I’m at the point right now where my goals aren’t tangible goals that I can record. Right now I’m trying to focus on endurance, pace, patience, and confidence. My biggest challenge as of lately has been pacing myself. It’s been a real challenge for me to not go 100% all out at the beginning of a workout. It’s all become a vicious cycle for me. I start off a workout at 100%, burn out half way through, get impatient with myself, and then lose confidence. So if I can just work on finding a good pace that I can work with, everything else will fall into place. Stronger every day, right?

Favorite sport or activity? 

Well since Miley RUINED twerking for me I guess that’s off my list of favorite activities. I love watching the St. Louis Cardinals play and I love dancing. One day I will combine my love of both and dance with the St. Louis Cardinals.

Recent adventure you’re planning? 

I have about 5 trips to St. Louis already lined up, but I guess I need a real vacation, eh?

Tell us something we don’t know about you… 

I’ve had an alter ego named Ferbus since I was in 2nd grade. Now before you go off and tell your friends that I’m crazy just know that EVERYONE CLOSE TO ME has had a conversation with Ferbus. No one really likes Ferbus. She’s not very nice. She has a really short temper and doesn’t know how to pronounce anything correctly. Growing up I always told people I was going to be on SNL and that my “in” was Ferbus.

Longhorns or Aggies?

Come on. I’m an SMU grad. Pony Up!

Jillian you are the original CFA Bootcamper, and going on your 3rd year at CFA. You’ve unofficially worked the biggest variety of CFA coaches give us some of your highlights with the coaches…. 

Wow. I never thought of it that way. I guess you can say I coached the coaches, yes? The coaches were given their toughest client FIRST. Wes, bless his heart, saw me at my absolute worst. I couldn’t do a full lap around the complex or a push up to save my life. There were times that I would walk into my apartment and just cry because I was so out of shape. Aaron came along and forced me to run. Really long and ridiculous runs. I would complain during every workout. EVERY. WORKOUT. And Aaron would just laugh. By the time Shane came along, I’m pretty sure I had established a foundation of fitness but I was compelled to complain since I had put 2 other coaches through that misery. Shane gifted me with 62 burpees on HIS 31st birthday. By the time Erica started coaching, I had my competitive drive back. I found fitness again. I couldn’t complain anymore because I was too focused on beating every guy in every hill sprint. Erica unfortunately was stuck with the task of chasing my dog when she would take off after runners. Every now and then Tristy or Boone would come fill in, and I made sure not to cut them any slack. I’m pretty sure I told Tristy during planks that I could not lower my butt because it was simply too big. All in all, I think I did a pretty great job training our coaches. You’re welcome, everyone!

Leave the fine folks of CrossFit Austin with some parting words…

I’m honored and honestly a little surprised that I have been chosen as the athlete of the month. An enormous thank you to all of the coaches (old and new) who have been with me throughout my journey. Also a big thank you to all the members of the CFA community. Every day I am inspired by all of the huge accomplishments everyone is making and I’m truly honored to be recognized amongst such incredible talent. CrossFit has changed my life in the best way possible.