By Andrew McIntyre, Fort Jackson LeaderMay 24, 2012
FORT JACKSON, S.C. (May 24, 2012) -- Many people can probably relate to competing against family members or friends in the back yard to see who was the strongest or fittest. Soldiers at Fort Jackson did just that May 17, during the post's annual Strongman Competition.
This year's overall winner among men is Staff Sgt. Norman Bogdan, a drill sergeant with Company E, 2nd Battalion, 39th Inf. Reg. He said that this was his first time competing and that he had just completed Charge of Quarters duty the night before the competition.
"I work out usually and so I just thought I would put all my hard work to the test," Bogdan said. "I did not show up to fail."
Capt. Kristen Zosel, Medical Department Activity, was the overall winner among women.
"I was just happy to compete against a great group of people," Zosel said.
Zosel said she received encouragement from a co-worker to compete. One of the events she was drawn to was the Humvee pull.
"I was just focusing on the guidance from the crowd to stay low," Zosel said.
Although the rain added to the difficulty of the competition, more than 20 Soldiers tried to claim the title of Fort Jackson's strongest Soldier.
Since 2004, the event has sought out some of the post's strongest men and women to compete for bragging rights. The competition requires Soldiers to complete three tasks of strenuous physical exercises.
The first task is the tire flip. Soldiers must flip a truck tire as fast as possible to the finish line. Men must flip the tire 100 feet, and women must flip the tire 75 feet.
The second task is the stone carry, which factors in the Soldier's weight. Depending on the Soldier's weight, he or she must carry a 100-pound, 200-pound or 300-pound stone in the shape of South Carolina 75 feet and back. Female Soldiers must carry the stone 50 feet and return.
Lastly, Soldiers must pull a 4,000-pound Humvee 100 feet as quickly as possible.