WARR ACRES — They come together as a unit for workouts that not just anyone can keep up with. One day it might be carrying another person over their shoulders. The next workout could be on a rowing machine or throwing the weighted medicine ball.
They may be going into the military or already have served, or they just want to be in shape.
About 100 members of the CrossFit Native fitness group are running, rowing, climbing, squatting and working out as one chapter of a worldwide organization.
Randy Dennis, 18, of Oklahoma City, found out about CrossFit Native from a Marine recruiter. Before he went to boot camp, he spent time doing the rigorous workouts.
“Going into the Marine Corps, I figure a lot of what I'll do is a lot of fast-paced movement and I have to have the cardio for it,” said Dennis, a Putnam City North High School graduate. “I just come in every Monday and Wednesday and get my butt kicked by a nice workout.”
Push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups and running are part of the workouts. Dennis said he is working toward running three miles in 18 minutes, but is coming in at 20 minutes now.
“It's a test of how far you are physically,” he said.
Director Kirk Suiter, 38, of Piedmont, opened CrossFit Native three years ago at The Park in Warr Acres — a private, outdoor area that previously was the YWCA's Camp Ione. An aircraft mechanic, Suiter said he wanted to open a CrossFit unit to stay connected to the military and the community.
There are eight other CrossFit groups across Oklahoma City.
CrossFit Native raised about $3,500 over Labor Day weekend with the “Thirty-One Heroes Workout” that benefited the families of 31 service members, mostly elite Navy Seals, who died in an Afghanistan helicopter crash in August 2011, Suiter said.