Featured Athlete: Stephanie Viator
I am Stephanie Viator, formally known as BOWMAN (Thanks Neal, it stuck). I am honored to be the next featured athlete. I started this journey over 6 years ago with my, now husband, DJ…yes that’s right…6 years. I have always been pretty athletic. I started playing sports at the age of 4, or maybe I was picking flowers. ??♀️. Although I was athletic, I was very stick figurish. I was always told I could hide behind a pole, or even my finger. Yeah, it was a joke, but jokes get old. After graduating high school, I quit working out and just ran occasionally which lead to some unwanted weight gain. For women…that’s not a fun phrase to say. I gained about 30 pounds in two years.
Back track to my first experience walking into the gym in 2011. Stefan was the first coach I had. I’m sure he got frustrated with me and my clean form. I HAD a love/hate relationship with those things ?. But he had assured me it would get better. One of my first wods ever was the loathed wod, Fran. I can’t even remember how long it took me to complete this work out. My thin, fragile legs barley managed a 15# bar, as well as a green and red band for pullups. I just kept trucking along wanting more. I used Fran
as my baseline for a while. After a year or so, I gained my first kipping pull-ups and Fran just got a little bit easier.
I competed in my first competition, local of course, at Crossfit Beaumont and won. Who doesn’t like winning? Another reason to just want more of that Crossfit kool-aid. I was up against the local badasses like Miranda Prosperie. She was definitely someone I looked up to when I first started.
Then came another competition and a few more after that. Oh and of course that first muscle up! That was off the chain! And to mention the amount of strength I’ve gained in my legs! Okay okay, back to the story…at one point a few years into my journey, Elyse Brack sat next to me at Rancho saying she looked up to me. Boy have the roles have turned…and I wanna be as strong as that lady there. After 4 years of competing, daily workouts, and the community, I decided it was time to start coaching just for fun.
Fast forward to now…I have ten times the amount of confidence than when I started. Turned my weight gain into muscle gainsssss. I have met some of the best people within our community (that’s saying a lot with my RBF). I can’t thank the coaches and the support system enough for the confidence they gave me. I am currently working and going to school more hours than I want to mention, but I don’t let that get in the way of just on hour in the gym. It definitely helps when moving and lifting patients. It is definitely satisfying when the males call for my moving help ?. I wouldn’t have my “FAM” without Crossfit. I hope to be just as encouraging to all the new members as all of my past coaches and athletes have been to me.