RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KVEO) — On Monday, the world will soon get to meet not one but two new ninja warriors from the Rio Grande Valley.
They spoke to KVEO about what they gained from competing in American Ninja Warrior.
For two years, Holly Cavazos and Gloria Orta have been training hard at Mission’s Axios Warrior Academy.
“It challenges us not only physically, but mentally as well,” Cavazos said. “We have to face our fears.”
Axios is where they met gym owner and veteran ninja warrior Abel Gonzalez, who encouraged them to audition.
He got his first start on the show in season six and has been returning ever since.
“When I see somebody do something, I don’t think it’s impossible,” Gonzalez said. “I just think if they can do it, I can do it. So, I just started training and made the commitment I was going to try out next year.”
Both Cavazos and Orta entered the gym not knowing much about the sport, but they found the challenge enjoyable.
“Every day that we go in there’s something new,” Orta said. “And it’s just never ending. You can’t get bored of this sport because there’s always somebody creating new obstacles.”
Once they were accepted onto the show out of the tens of thousands of applicants, they ramped up their training.
“Everything had to be on point,” Cavazos said. “Our nutrition, our exercise, our stretching, our recovery. Coach Abel led us through all of that and we applied it all.”
Season 12 was videotaped in St. Louis, Missouri amid the pandemic, which the trio said complicated things but still proved rewarding.
“Just walking up those steps and facing the course looking down on it from that perspective for the first time I was nervous, but I was ready,” Cavasos said. “I had worked so hard for the last two years and I was ready to do what I needed to do and had so much fun. It was amazing.”
Apart from growing as athletes, they said the gym introduced them to lifelong friends.
“I went in by myself, but you definitely don’t leave by yourself,” Orta said. “You leave with a community.”
The trio said they have been overwhelmed with support by the community and hope more people will be drawn to the gym so the Valley’s ninja warrior family can grow.