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Uplifting workout
Angelica Terrazas
Jeffery Simmons photos Angelica Terrazas works with a kettlebell during Saturday's WOD event.

Setting goals is a standard for fitness. Usually those targets are new personal highs, losing weight or getting in better shape.

Saturday, the Active Heroes WOD (workout of the day) at Warren County High School had a much larger goal. Locals used fitness to raise money to fight against veteran suicide.

“We will do everything we can to reduce the rate of veteran suicide, 22 people per day,” said John Upchurch, Highland Rim Crossfit owner and one of the driving forces behind the event. “Everything about the event revolved around 22 – we started at 9:22 a.m., everybody did 22 reps of 22 exercises.”

All proceeds from the event will go to the Active Heroes – a program which funds a military family retreat center and military family community center in Kentucky. Active Heroes is a 501c3 charity with the mission to support all U.S. military service members, veterans and their families through physical, educational and emotional programs in an effort to eliminate suicide.

This is the third year Highland Rim Crossfit has participated in the Active Heroes WOD, growing from 25 people and $250 two years ago to nearly 100 people and $3,500 this year.

“We had a member in the National Guard who heard about it in 2016,” said Upchurch. “We had only been open a few months, so we did it with a little prep time. Now we have multiple sponsors, lots of participants, got the ROTC involved and worked with service clubs.

“It turned into a much larger deal than I originally thought it could. People in our community love our vets, so they are happy to support the cause.”

Representatives from the VFW, American Legion and Veteran’s Affairs were all on hand Saturday, helping support the event. Participants partnered up to complete 22 reps of each exercise, with the crossfit workouts incorporating weight lifting, calisthenics and conditioning.

Donations are still being accepted and T-shirts ($15) for the event are still available.

To support the cause, contact Upchurch at 615-719-1151.