Featured Athlete: Joe Gunnels

My CF Journey began a little over 10 months ago. I was driving one evening to the hotel from the plant and seen a group of people jogging in the street. Now most of my family CF’s so I immediately knew why they were running and thought yeah I needed to get into that. Thought I’d stop by, I mean had nothing else to do anyways. Shalyn was coaching and said I had to come back the next day for a class, it was already past the burpee penalty zone. I came the next day and this is where most people say they were instantly hooked, me it wasn’t the case per se. What got me was the competitiveness of the class.

A little background on myself: I am one competitive guy whether you know we’re competing or not. Also as most know I am a big guy, unfortunately I’ve always been one, but I always been pretty athletic and my appearance is deceitful or as I like to say I’m deceitfully fat. See growing up with 5 kids in the family, we competed at everything and in the words of a famous poet “If you ain’t first you’re last.” Now we never played organized sports, taught ourselves everything in the backyard, but could pretty much pickup anything and excel or dominated because we weren’t lazy. At the gym I’m the same way, I may not know how to do it like a pro or have ambitions to go to the games and I know I may not have the engine I’d like but I’m gonna give you my max consistently.

With all that being said, I wouldn’t be able to come back daily if it wasn’t for the people in class. I talk a lot of mess to everyone and anyone, hell I just talk a lot in general. A product of untreated ADHD at it’s finest. The thing about all my mess talk is that it’s never mean spirited or from a position of arrogance. I know my capabilities(or lack hereof) and have many shortfalls but I feel we all strive better than we think we can with someone egging us on. Take the guys I work out with at 5:30, most of them are veteran CF guys but we constantly push each other and strive for our best consistently with tons of trash talking along the way.

A few parting words I always think of when I’m here at CFMC:
“There is a high school kid somewhere right now out lifting you.”
My time here in the Golden Triangle is coming to an end but I know once I’m on my new project, I’m going to miss the people more than the CF. Sure I can do and have done CF in other places, but this place is my second home.

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