May Athlete of the Month - Bianca Ouedraogo
Published May 1, 2018
Hi! My name is Bianca Ouedraogo, previously known as Bianca Robinson, aka Bee. I am 29 years old. I was born and raised here in Oceanside, CA. I have been married to my husband, Serge, for 2 1/2 years and we have a 16-month-old son, Francisco.
Growing up I was never really into fitness, but I definitely was exposed to it with my dad being in the military and my mom being a runner. My mom put me in recreational sports to keep me busy while my dad was stationed away from us. I did dance for six years and martial arts for two years. Sophomore year of high school I was invited to try out for the swim team and boy was I excited because I loved swimming. Little did I know at the time recreational swimming was NOT the same as lap swimming. I stuck with it for two years, but decided it was not my thing simply because I am not a competitive person. Just thinking about competing gives me knots in my stomach. I was pretty much in tears prior to every meet. The highest I ever placed was fourth out of eighth place and I was super proud, but definitely came to the realization that competing was just not for me. I was never a fast swimmer but was consistent with my technique.
One day I made the decision that I wanted to lose weight. I told my mom my goals and she said she would help me get to where I wanted to be. She took me to an all women’s gym called Elite For Women. There is where my obsession for fitness began. I became the person that would schedule their work and school schedule around the gym's schedule. My mom and I would take spin and body pump classes together 6-7 times a week. In order to continue to guide me in the right direction my mom thought it would be best for me to work with a personal trainer, Robbie Schulz.
Robbie was my gateway to Crossfit. In our training sessions she would ask me to do what I thought was the impossible from running a mile to jumping on a box (I honestly thought she was crazy when she asked me to jump on a box for the first time). We managed to make do with the limitations we had, mainly lack of equipment. For one of our sessions she asked me to meet her at “The Box,” aka OCF, so we would have access to the equipment that we needed. I remember walking in and feeling intimated, even with no one there (we were there during off hours). We started our session and we were focusing on one specific lift. During the middle of the session in walked Laura (the owner of the gym) and instantly I became even more nervous. She looked like a badass in every way possible and here was little me not knowing what I was doing. As soon as she started talking to me I right away felt at home. She gave me some tips and even let me try out her lifting shoes. I left feeling more at ease, more confident, and just wanting to be more like Laura, a badass.
Not too long after visiting OCF for the first time, Elite For Women shut down with no notice. My mom and I felt abandoned with nowhere to go because that gym was like our second home. After some thought, I asked her if she would be willing to try out Crossfit with me. At first, she was hesitant because she didn’t think she was capable, but after some convincing, she decided to give it a shot and bring my dad along. The Robinson family became members of OCF in 2008 or 2009.
OCF has been a big part of my life for the past 9-10 years (1/3 of my life). I have made many accomplishments, both fitness and personal, with OCF having my back and being a support system. After joining OCF I pushed myself beyond my limits just to say that I can do it. I have done the Triple Crown (Carlsbad full marathon, La Jolla half marathon, and Balboa half marathon), mud runs, triathlons, and one Crossfit competition. Each of these events I did with at least one other OCF member at the time. Also, OCF helped me get through getting both my Bachelor's and Master's Degree. I actually went through the Master's program with another OCF member who became a very close friend of mine. Without OCF I wouldn’t have had a place to decompress and take out all my stresses. It also helped that the members truly cared and would ask me for updates with school and about my plans for the future.
What I like most about OCF is the camaraderie and the accountability among the community. One of the best feelings is sucking wind alongside one of your gym buddies knowing you are not enduring the pain (the good type of pain) alone. Sometimes getting to the box is not the easiest thing to do, but knowing that you have someone expecting you to be at the box (you tend to workout with the same group of people depending on the time you go) and willing to push and motivate you helps tremendously. Even if the person next to you is done with the workout you will usually find them surrounding you, screaming your name at the top of their lungs, and reminding you it is almost over. Not only that but the OCF members are committed and stick together as a community. When I ran the Carlsbad marathon one of the ladies that signed up with me had moved to New Mexico. She made sure to fly back for the marathon, so we could run it together. That is just a small sample of what OCF is all about.
I have to thank OCF for being a place that gave me and my parents something to bond over. To be able to workout next to my parents was a gift. We had a lot of memorable moments and laughs together in the box, which I believe helped us to have the strong relationship and bond we have today.
Throughout the years members have come and gone at OCF, but the friendships last beyond the box. OCF is more than just a place to work out. It’s a place to build lifetime friendships and relationships. Thank you to everyone at OCF who has impacted my life and guided me in the right direction to success.
Back Squat: 218lbs/250lbs
Overhead Squat: 145lbs/175lbs
Shoulder Press: 95lbs/110lbs
Short term goal: Get butterfly pull-ups and bar muscle ups.
Long-term goal: Do an Ironman.