As summer break approaches, many teens look forward to days at the swimming pool, sleeping in late, or a part-time job. But Not Mallory O’Brien.
O’Brien is strong, and at 15 years old she is one of the strongest teens in the world.
“When people ask me what I do, it’s kind of complicated because it’s just working out. No I’m here every day for three hours trying to be the best I can be,” said O’Brien.
O’Brien has qualified herself for her second CrossFit Games, an international competition held in Madison, Wisconsin, to crown the fittest on earth.
“It feels really good because last year it felt like a learning experience. And this year I feel like I am going to win,” said O’Brien.
Obrien started as a gymnast, but after finding CrossFit and her coach Elijah Muhammed, he knew she had what it would take to go far in the sport.
“She said she wanted to qualify for the Crossfit Games. A lot of kids say that and I was like, ‘OK show me what you got,’ and I immediately was like, ‘OK, you can qualify for the CrossFit Games,'” said Muhammed.
Muhammed, who has been to the Cossfit Gmes twice, is not only her coach but also her training partner.
“She doesn’t want me to coach her. She wants me to train with her. She wants me beside her training, so it’s like I have to keep getting fitter,” said Muhammed.
When most teenagers are worrying about spending summer days by the pool, O’Brien is back in the gym.
“Well, I really love what I do, so I would rather be here than hanging out with friends or just doing teenage stuff, but it doesn’t really feel like work, it makes me the happiest,” said O’Brien.
“She finds a way to make bad days good days. When I talk to people about her, I can’t say enough good things because every single day I watch her train and watch her workout. She surprises me a little bit more,” said Muhammed.
It is that extra effort that makes her more than just an athlete.
The CrossFit games are the first week of August and O’Brien will be one of ten girls in her age group competing for a spot to be called the fittest teen on earth.