She normally gets up at 5:30 or 6 a.m. and won’t get home until around 7:30 p.m. to do homework.
Aufiero gets home so late because she spends four hours after school training as an elite gymnast. She competes at the highest level of the Junior Olympics with Deltchev Gymnastics and was the Nevada state champion with a No. 2 ranking in the region in 2009.
Aufiero lives with her family in Spanish Springs, but will call Logan, Utah her new home next year after signing a letter-of-intent last week to join the Utah State gymnastics program with a full-ride scholarship.
“I’ve been doing it since I was 2 years old, so it’s a lot of work. It’s definitely a reward to get a full-ride scholarship for something I have done my whole life,” Aufiero said.
She said she liked how the USU program is up and coming and wanted to be a part of that. However, she chose the Western Athletic Conference school for a more important reason that is close to her heart.
“My dad is a cancer survivor and he’s an amputee because he got his leg cut off. So that’s something that really inspired me to go into oncology and help people through that,” Aufiero said.
She said her favorite part of gymnastics is the lessons you learn everyday and the relationships she forms with her teammates and coaches. She also likes digging deep to come up with the determination she needs in order to overcome all the challenges that come with gymnastics.
Her competition schedule lasts from January to May, and then the national competition starts at the end of May or June. Aufiero competes at a state level until March and April is for regionals.
In order to become one of the best gymnasts in the country, Aufiero has made many sacrifices. Friends and school functions take a backseat to training. She trains for four hours a day, five days a week, for 51 weeks of the year.
“It’s actually really hard. You have to give up a lot,” Aufiero said. “I practice four hours a day, five days a week. Gymnastics comes before friends or before social events at school. I still manage to have time to do other things since I was nominated for prom queen as well as homecoming queen.”
It’s taken a huge commitment from her family as well. Sylvia Aufiero, Breyanna’s mother, gets up at least an extra hour early to prepare meals each day, so her daughters can stay on a proper diet while at school and for training after the school day. There’s also a lot of traveling involved and Aufiero ends up going to places like Chicago, New York and Florida.
Still, the commitment makes it even more rewarding to see her daughter achieve her dreams.
“Our hearts are glowing. It’s amazing,” Sylvia Aufiero said. “The collegiate recruiting process is an experience you can’t explain to someone unless they’ve been through it. I actually have two gymnasts. I have another one right behind her, and they both go to Manogue, so the commitment is huge.”