Members of the Army’s new Warrior Fitness Team competed together for the first time in early March and, not to put too fine a point on it, they crushed it.
Six of the athletes earned first place in the CrossFit Endeavor event, while Sgt. 1st Class Anthony Fuhrman finished in the top 10 at the Amateur Strongman Classic, part of the Arnold Sports Festival held Feb. 28 through March 3 in Columbus, Ohio.
“We were able to overcome a lack of practice, and I think everybody was just so excited to be there,” 1st Lt. Chandler Smith told Army Times in a March 15 phone interview.
At the time, it had only been two weeks since Army Recruiting Command selected the 15 members of the Warrior Fitness Team, who have not yet all made their way to their Fort Knox, Kentucky, headquarters to begin their full-time gigs as Army athletes.
Smith said he had been sending out group workouts, but so far, the team hasn’t been together enough to assess everyone’s individual abilities and work on any shortfalls.
“So we do not have that on our side, but luckily we communicated pretty well,” he said. “We easily bought into the idea of representing the team, and the Army, pretty well.”
Capts. Kasandra Clark, Deanna Clegg, Brian Harris and Ashley Shepard joined Smith and Spc. Jacob Pfaff to compete in back-to-back events, including some that required synchronized movements.
“There are some elements within a functional fitness competition that require four members of a team to move in concert,” Smith said. “That kind of stuff is very difficult to practice unless you’ve all been together.”
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The team members are working on relocating to Fort Knox later this year, when they will have more time to train together, as well as create social media content for the team and do promotional events.
“I would say this is getting the Army out there in the fitness community,” Fuhrman said, showing athletes what it’s like to balance competing with an Army career, while answering questions about what soldiers actually do.
In the mean time, they have some other events lined up. A few members have qualified for The Fittest Experience in Austin, Texas, in May, the same month Fuhrman heads to South Africa to compete in the Arnold Pro Strongman series.