Phillips gets back to the business of being an athlete

Thursday, September 9, 2004

Jennifer Phillips was buzzing around Cape Girardeau like an athletic bee last year for the week of the Corporate Games.

As the team captain for the 13-member Yellow Book team, Phillips estimates she competed in about 10 of the 17 events that took place in a one-week period.

Phillips will be just as busy in this year's event, sponsored for the second year by the Cape Girardeau Parks and Recreation Department. She expects to compete in roughly 15 events, but this year the Corporate Games will be stretched over two weeks from Sept. 16 to Oct. 1.

"Our whole office, when it was over with last year, we didn't even want to get up and walk," Phillips said. "We were all black and blue. It was hard for a lot of people who don't work out. We're in sales. We drive in the car and eat fast food and talk to businesses all day."

But the local office of Yellow Book, a nationwide phone directory company, had no second thoughts about signing up this year.

"We did it again because it's so much fun," Phillips said. "It brings the office together and you develop relationships with people at other businesses. And it's a good break from work.

"We have a friendly competition with Hutson's and Med Assets," she added. "We talked to the people at Med Assets about taking the trophy from them and holding it hostage. It's fun to talk to other businesses like that."

Med Assets edged Yellow Book for the championship last year in Division I, for companies with 99 or fewer employees. Yellow Book tied for the top spot but lost on the tiebreaker of first-place finishes.

Phillips, a 25-year-old Southeast Missouri State graduate, has an athletic background. She participated in gymnastics, softball, volleyball, basketball and track and field in her youth. After graduating from Fox High School in Arnold, Mo., she accepted a scholarship for track and field at Southeast, where she competed in the long jump and triple jump.

In the 2003 Corporate Games, among the sports she competed in was basketball. "I was the only girl on the team and we had to have one girl on the court at all times, so there was no substitute. But we kicked butt," Phillips said.

This year, she will add the cardio relay to her sports resume. Each team has four participants that ride a stationery bike, run the treadmill and climb on a stepper machine for two minutes each. The total distance covered determines the places.

"The people who did that said it was the hardest thing," Phillips said. "They said by the time they got done, they were about to pass out. I'm going to try it this year and find out."

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: