ORLANDO, FLORIDA (October 1, 2015) -- Through relentless determination and a goal to earn money for their garrison, the Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers council from U.S. Army Garrison Daegu won the inaugural BOSSfit competition in the "garrison" category. The council competed against 35 garrisons to earn the title.
BOSS president Spc. Jamar Butler and Command Sgt. Maj. Ray Thornton were presented with a $25,000 check during the 2015 BOSS Future Leaders Training forum.
The BOSSfit competition incorporated the three main components of the Army Performance Triad-- physical activity, sleep and nutrition -- and challenged Soldiers to assess their performance in those areas using a fitness band device. The device, synched with a mobile application, tracked the participants' number of steps and hours of sleep. Participants also logged their fruit and vegetable intake.
In total, the U.S. Daegu BOSS team, which consisted of ten Soldiers, logged over 12.8 million steps and over 6,500 hours of sleep during a 90-day period.
Teamwork was a big factor to their high numbers. The Soldiers motivated each other to reach their goal of winning, even when they faced technical challenges with the device and lost confidence in themselves.
"Early in the competition, we thought we were behind," said Thornton.
However, encouragement from the other team members propelled them to succeed.
"Staff Sgt. Quentin Galloway-Hilliard [the BOSS secretary] was our team captain," said Butler. "There were days when we wanted to give up. She was always encouraging us to continue on."
According to Sgt. Adam Hughes, the Department of the Army representative for BOSS, the $25,000 reward is a life skills grant. The U.S. Daegu BOSS council plans to use the funds towards more fitness-based and nutrition-based life skills events and activities in their program.
"It's a big deal for us to win this money," said Thornton. "It was definitely a team effort across the whole Area IV and the BOSS representatives."
Inspired by the training, Butler hopes to incorporate innovative ideas and help his fellow Soldiers -- especially during difficult times.
"In December, we are putting on a passport event," said Butler. "December is a high month for suicides, because Soldiers get depressed around the holidays. We want to get Soldiers out of the barracks by encouraging them to come to our events that month."
"I can now take what I learned from the forum and add more activities to make it a bigger event," he concluded.
Fort Detrick, Maryland, and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, were named as the second and third place winners, respectively, in the competition's garrison category. First Lt. Michael Piscetelli, an executive officer in the 53rd Signal Battalion at Fort Meade, Maryland, won the competition's individual category.