Athlete of the Month


This month’s featured athletes began training at ASF for different reasons – Joshu Creel is a dancer, and Sam Maze is a bride-to-be – but both are discovering just how good strength training feels! Through consistency and effort, they are getting stronger and gaining confidence in themselves and their abilities. We are proud of you!


Otho and client flexing

From Joshu’s trainer, Otho Nash, Jr.:

I appreciate all of my clients here at Austin Simply Fit, but one client who has stood out a lot to me so far is Joshu. He is consistent, has great energy, and gives 100% every time he comes in.  

Joshu is an active dancer in West Coast Swing, going to competitions on a weekly or monthly basis. When he came in for his initial consultation, I noticed that he had tight hips, which is abnormal for a dancer. After his first week, with a strong emphasis on squat, posterior chain, and hip exercises, he noticed an immediate improvement with his hip flexibility and has continually made improvements with his lower body movements. In fact, since starting training with me, Joshu received Second Place in a recent West Coast Swing competition, which is the highest he’s placed in any competition! He’s also told me recently that his body feels “more fluid” as well. 

Of course, with him being a dancer and loving great music, Joshu likes to dance in between exercises, which brings more energy to our sessions. I wish I could keep it going with him over the next two months, but he’ll be back in January 2022.    

Joshu told us a bit about his training with Otho:

Client doing seated row

What do you enjoy most about training with your trainer/at ASF? I’ve really enjoyed being supported by my trainer at ASF. Like many, I struggle with internal motivation and confidence around fitness, especially starting from a place where it’s hard to see progress. But I’ve felt progress every single time I’m training, and I feel like the effort I make to push through is celebrated, even when I (perfectionist) think I should have done more or doubt myself.

What have you been most proud of since you started training? I feel like I’m learning a brand-new body. I do a lot of dance, and I’ve been surprised at how much more flexibility and strength I can already feel in a month of workouts. I’m standing up taller and moving differently and re-learning a lot of my understanding of my body and its limitations, and that’s very exciting and freeing. 

What are you looking forward to? I’m looking forward to working out being something I don’t fear or dread, but something that I find invigorating, and continuing to unlock strength and physical confidence I didn’t know I had!



Vilita with client

From Sam’s trainer, Vilita Cruz:

From the moment I met her, I knew Sam was in it to win it! No one is more motivated than a bride-to-be, and this has been evident all throughout our training sessions. Planning a wedding can be stressful with so many details and so little time, not to mention juggling family opinions. Sam always manages to walk in with a smile and a can-do attitude, ready to work regardless of the wedding planning madness. Sadly, she received upsetting news regarding a close family member which would impact her wedding. Most people would use that as an out to stop training, but Sam used this unfortunate situation to fuel her. 

As a trainer, I don’t get upset with clients for not being able to do an exercise, rather their lack of effort to try. This never happens with Sam. She’s a fighter! We have laughed and cried because let’s face it, life is tough! The gym is where we are able to dish it all out and take it out on the weights, mentally engage and push ourselves to be better and feel better mind, body and soul. 

It is no surprise how strong Sam has become; even on Thanksgiving morning she came in for her workout. She makes every effort to make it three times a week, regardless of what life is throwing at her. I consider myself privileged to be her trainer and to be part of her health journey. 

Sam answered a few questions about her experience:

client doing seated row

What do you enjoy most about training with your trainer/at ASF? I LOVE working out with V three times a week. I genuinely look forward to it. It gives me the opportunity to unplug, focus on something other than work and invest in myself! My trainer has become a good friend to me as well. These workouts have gotten me through a tough time and I’m so grateful for it. 

What have you been most proud of since you started training? How strong I am! I didn’t think I was a strong person, but I can lift some weights and that’s really exciting. I’ve noticed my own progress and the positive impact it’s had on me mentally and physically. 

What are you looking forward to? Continuing working out at ASF and pushing myself in ways I didn’t think I would initially. I started this journey to get “skinny” for my wedding. But along the way I’ve learned that being strong and confident is more important.