Chicago, IL

Hi all, I'm Mariel. I've always been active in my life from soccer, field hockey, and now CrossFit.

My journey became a rough one when I started having trouble with breath support and I picked up running to help with that. My autoimmune condition changed the way I approach fitness. I thought I wouldn't be able run, lift, do anything the same.

I was so wrong, all I needed to do was to really focus and send my energy into working out. This transition was not without difficulty because it would take me hours to finish a WOD (Workout of the Day) and that seemed depressing to me.

In addition, I believe in body neutrality and I have pushed myself further then I could have ever imagined. I'm grateful for the body that I have now but that's not without sacrifice and lots of time at the gym. CrossFit gives me a reason to always be curious, try new things, and to be comfortable with the uncomfortable.

Fitness is a way for our bodies to grow and build strength, physical, mentally, and emotionally. Dedication and strength takes time make me resilient to the things life throws at me. Take every day at a time and never let your inner saboteur tell you that you are not good enough.

Fitness let me create a vision for myself to become a stronger individual and not be afraid to be vulnerable. It's okay to be not okay. It's also great to make those modalities into strengths. Every modality can be a strength if we just believe in ourselves.