The Road to Iron Cat

CrossFit Austin

My name is Illianna Degollado, and I have recently become a competitive Olympic weightlifter. I have always been active in sports like basketball, track and cheerleading; but it wasn’t until I started CrossFit where I began to understand strength training. In the past, I have joined gyms like Planet Fitness and Golds, where I would run for 60 minutes on the treadmill, and pretend I knew what I was doing with the dumbbells.  I started CrossFit three years ago, and I finally saw the results I always wanted. I had the proper instruction to help me learn step-by-step, and I gained muscle!

CrossFit to Olympic Weightlifting

Last year, I decided to test my abilities, and compete in my first CrossFit competition with other members from my gym. We competed in the Iron Belle hosted by CrossFit Central in downtown Austin, TX. When we entered the gym, I instantly felt my nerves race and doubt filled my mind. I saw what seemed to be Amazonian women sporting crop top t-shirts and six-packs—lifting barbells without any difficulty. My first thoughts were, “Yup, that was fun, time to go now. You’re about to embarrass yourself out there.” But, I wasn’t the only one in the competition, so I needed to buckle down and silence those thoughts. My team and I fought hard and placed third in the competition. Even though we made the podium, I couldn’t help but recall my moment of uncertainty. After the competition, I decided to ask myself, “How do I become better? How do I get stronger?”

2017 Iron Belle


During the competition the nerves hit me hard, but why? It was like I lacked confidence. The light bulb came on, that was it, I wasn’t confident in the Olympic Weightlifting movements. After the competition, I decided to commit to Olympic Weightlifting. I have been weightlifting for five months now, and I am so excited to share my journey. I still can’t believe I am able to lift 110lbs over my head—from a girl that couldn’t even do a push-up at one point, it still blows my mind.

I know there are multiple blogs, vlogs, and youtube videos involving health and fitness; but what I hope is to provide another tool for anyone interested in Olympic Weightlifting. I will be posting my experiences, competing in my first weightlifting meet, interviews with seasoned weightlifters, and my nutrition program. I hope to hit all the questions first-timer’s wish to ask, and add another outlet from the traditional work-out regiment.




Published by Illianna Degollado

Hi, my name is Illianna! And I'm from Austin, Texas. Fun fact about me, yes already into the first sentence here's a fun fact, I am what the locals call a "unicorn." I have lived in Austin for 28 years now, and have yet to love another city as much as this one. Do I need to get out more? You betcha! I live with my fiance, Matt, and our two doggos. My two-year-old Boxer named Katrin and my 10-year-old miniature dachshund named Marley. And, yes, it's never a dull moment with a dog that doesn't know she weighs 65 pounds and the other who still tries to own the house at a whomping 15 pounds. When I'm not escaping the beautiful traffic of Austin, I am a local marketer for an up and coming marketing consulting agency. I specialize in helping clients with their LinkedIn Marketing Strategy to drive more sales, brand awareness and become a thought leader for their field and network. I love my job for one reason, I love helping people. My passion for marketing, pr and social media started in my late teen years. I was going to high school and was blessed to have hard-working parents. So much so, they would own their own businesses and become entrepreneurs. I saw the struggle and the difficulty it took on both of my parents, and what made it even more frustrating was the passion and skillset for their profession, but their marketing efforts weren't executed effectively. Now, we swing it back to today! I love my field and I love what I do. There are sooooo many thought leaders, influencers, content strategist that tell us all the time...this is the correct formula to follow to reach "X", but in reality, just like technology, it's always changing.

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