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Two members of Ellsworth win fitness competition

  • Published
  • By Airman Alec Carlberg
  • 28th Bomb Wing Public Affairs

Two members of the 28th Medical Group of Ellsworth Air Force Base came in first place during the DEKA Strong Men’s competition Mar. 23, 2024, at the South Dakota Air National Guard Armory, in Rapid City, South Dakota.

U.S. Air Force Maj. Jeffrey Bundrick, the 28th MDG operational support team flight commander, and Carl Wise, 28th MDG OST manager, competed against five other teams, placing them number one in the world for the DEKA Strong Men’s competitions.

The competition consisted of 10 workouts including weighted reverse lunges, 25 weighted sit-ups, 20 ram burpees, and a 100-meter farmers carry with 60-pound dumbbells, all of which were divided amongst the two team members. The pair strategically chose which of the workouts they would each do based on their individual strengths and weaknesses enabling them to pull ahead of the other competitors.

“Being able to split the workouts with a teammate enabled us to push ourselves harder versus if we had to do all the exercises on our own,” said Bundrick. “That’s why I like the team aspect much better than doing individual events.”

Bundrick and Wise prepared for the event at the Ellsworth AFB Bellamy Fitness Center for almost a year, doing extensive strength training at least twice a week as well as DEKA specific training three times a week. Their biggest challenge was the time constraints due to the demanding hours of their jobs. Despite their challenges, they pulled through and dedicated themselves to be more deliberate with what exercises they could accomplish during their training periods.

“We had to overcome our work schedule,” said Wise. “Some days we only had 30 minutes to get hours’ worth of training done.”

As the competition began, they immediately felt the toll the workouts were taking. By the end their bodies were aching in pain, but that didn’t stop them from taking home the number one title.

“It hurt, we felt the pain instantly, but afterwards it felt really good knowing we won,” Wise said.” It was nice to see all the training pay off.”

This win has motivated both of them to continue to compete in competitions. For them it’s more than just winning, it’s about the competitive aspect, overcoming obstacles, and pushing through failures.

“This win fueled me to continue competing,” said Bundrick. “Every time I do I learn something new about myself.”

Bundrick and Wise want other Airmen to take up opportunities like this as much as possible to get out of their comfort zone and stay physically fit. They encourage all Raiders to take advantage of the resources the base offers and to compete in local events.

“I would encourage all Airmen to look into opportunities like this,” said Bundrick. “I cannot emphasize enough how important staying fit is for mission success.”