Wow, where to start? I guess I will start off like all the previous SBCs in disbelief that I have been chosen as the Spotlight Boot Camper. There are so many Boot Campers that are deserving of this recognition. Honestly, I was not aware of the privilege or honor behind the SBC recognition. All I know, is one day I was tagged on Facebook, congratulated electronically and in person then assigned some homework from Secret Squirrel Channel? “Give me some ideas for your WOD, think of a name, send me a picture and write your Testimony”. Write my Testimony??? I had not a clue what was being asked of me. So, I read the other spotlight testimonials posted on the site. As I read each one, it dawned on me what a unique and special place ABC has become. Each story is different, but they all draw on the same parallels.
Being physically fit was a high priority for me in my young adult years. When I was growing up, I was not physically fit. I grew up in California with my two sisters and my mother. I was always surrounded by women growing up. Maybe that’s why I feel so at home at ABC. I did not have a father figure to relate to in my life. I played few sports due to Divorce. I had asthma and was diagnosed as being hyperactive. I know, Shocker, right? I was put on Ritalin in 4th grade. In sixth grade, my Mom’s second marriage failed and things began to fall apart. My mom was a single parent and she worked all the time to provide for us. She was always tired. On top of this, I was a late bloomer physically. I was a short kid in Middle School and I also began to gain weight. At the start of High School, I was only 4’11 and my weight was out of control. I was embarrassed in PE, my confidence was low and did not attend many social events either. I spent the first half of my teens wishing I was physically like my friends. When I was 16, I quit taking the Ritalin on my own. By the end of that year, I was 7 inches taller and lost a significant amount of weight. When I graduated High School, I was 5’ 9, fit and had a pretty good social life to boot. I treasured my new found physique. I got into weight lifting. In my early 20’s, I was into heavy lifting and body building. I was 203 lbs. of muscle when I joined the Army at 23 years old. I left my hometown for good and spent the next five years traveling. I excelled in the Army. I won the Army Physical Fitness Award three times. I developed into an avid runner and ran some of the most beautiful areas in Europe. I advanced quickly in rank to Sergeant. I was the Training NCO in all my units. I was responsible for running the fitness and obesity programs. My last year they asked me to re-enlist and become a Drill Instructor. I decided to leave the Army and took a job in the Car Business in San Antonio. I met my wife Jennifer five years later.
I started ABC because of my beautiful bride, Jennifer. We have been married for 13 years now and she has been the pillar of fitness in our marriage. I was 32 and 183 lbs. when we met. I was fit and healthy. I ran almost every day and went to the gym. I enjoyed cooking and ate whatever I wanted. By the time Zach was born, the so called “good life” had ballooned my weight to 216 lbs. I was working too much and traveling a lot. I was not working out. I was miserable. The years flew by. Jennifer would take on many fitness regimes successfully. I would not participate. I ran occasionally. She would encourage me to do challenges. I think she even tried to get me to try Jazzercise. Uh, no thank you. I was occasionally successful taking the weight off with dieting. Weight Watchers, Atkins and No sugar fads, you name it, I tried it. I always gained it back. I was lost. I was 42 years old, when Jen said she was trying this New Boot camp program. She raved about the workouts and the instructor was very inspiring. I went with her at our subdivision and really liked the workout. That very week, I tore my ACL coaching my son’s youth football team. I chose not to have it repaired. I was out for the remainder of that year. I came back and ended up having two shoulder surgeries shortly thereafter. Two more years would go by. Not only was I orthopedically challenged, Jennifer would have her 7th, 8th and 9th surgeries as well keeping her from ABC. We were defeated. Jen and I would talk about going back to BC, but we never went. Depression set in. Food became the drug. The weight piled on. I was surely not that fat guy in the mirror. I was 221 lbs. I hurt all over. My life light was dim. How could I have let this happen? I had given up. I talked about going back to ABC for Jen because I knew it made her happy. She was afraid of getting injured and felt trapped in a genetically deficient body. Little did I know how much it would impact me? I bought the punch cards and they sat on my nightstand for 3 months. One morning, I got up and said I am going. I walked in the door. There were many new faces and many more people than I ever recalled. But there was Channel. After four years, she walked right up, smiled and immediately said “you’re going to need a Kettle Bell”. LOL. It was just like I had never left. I was welcomed unconditionally and put right to work. The first weeks were hard, but every workout was an accomplishment. The great thing about the workouts is that you don’t have to think, you just do. My body was responding. ABC became my new life adrenalin. I am now running again. I feel 20 years younger. I have lost 10 lbs. of fat and blew out my performance WOD numbers. I have my life back on track.
Not only has it helped me physically, it has touched every facet of my life. It has helped me in my work, my marriage and my family. It has even touched my soul and brought me closer to my spiritual walk in life. ABC is like family to me. Every person is there for a common goal that we all work on together. We encourage each other. We motivate each other. And we support each other. I have added more friends in my life in the last 6 months than I have in years. ABC is a very special place. Channel is a very special person that God has placed in my life.
Jennifer Wan 7:21pm
Music man! You make bc so fun! You help keep us going and pumped up. Not only with your music but your attitude is great!! So much fun! Glad you and your wife came back! You are doing great. Keep up the good work!
Katie A 10:36am
Sooo excited that you are SBC Kevin!!! Your energy and positive attitude have carried many of us through some crazy hard WODs. You work so hard and it shows!! So excited to do your WOD later... A little scared not gonna lie. :) Anyway congrats buddy!!!
BA and Katie
Amy Cr 11:02am
Congratulations Kevin! You are very deserving of this honor! Great testimony. Looks like a great WOD!
Love that testimony Kevin! It's always fun coaching/working out when you're around! I remember when I first started coaching, there was a wod that I had to call something every few minutes...well, I'm not a great multi tasker and you just started yelling it out for me when I'd miss it! Haha now that I know you were a crazy Drill Sargent, it all makes sense!! You are always encouraging to everyone, love your spunk! Keep up the good work!
Jennifer P 10:02am
How exciting! You are a joy to workout with! Thank you for keeping the environment fun and lighthearted. You are always smiling and positive (and damn funny)! Keep up the awesome work!
Tracy M 1:06pm
Kevin, first, Congrats on being spotlighted. Your testimony really spoke to me....love love love it!!! It really does relay what this place (ABC) is all about. Strong ppl. Also relays what a tough and resilient guy you are!!! Way to fight back through so much. It's great to see ya around more often!! And looking very forward to doing the Low T WOD in your honor. You are amazing yourself ...so ya fit in wonderfully here 💪
Thank you for sharing your testimony! Congratulations on making that choice to walk back in the door (that hit home for me as it was a challenging one for me to make recently also)! Reading about all the impacts ABC is having in your life is very inspiring! - God is doing amazing things here! :)
Carla R 6:35pm
Love ur testimony! Well said. Can't wait for tomorrow, and I agree... the best part of ABC is how we all push each other and encourage each other. C ya in the morn!
Amanda Di 9:58pm
Way to go Kevin! Keep up the hard work ... I'm afraid of what's gonna happen tomorrow. Eeekkkk 😳