Fitness Challenge 2023: Teamwork makes the dream work

Story by Jim Zang


Photos by Kristy Reimer

It’s just a coincidence our annual Team Fitness Challenge begins right around New Year’s resolution time this year. But it’s a positive coincidence, as our 2023 teams look forward to a happy and healthier 2023.

As always, our competitors are in good hands working with the professionals at Simply For Life and Orange Theory Fitness, who will be providing competitors with the knowledge, individualized programs and support they need to achieve their goals.

Members of the winning team will receive a three-month nutrition program from Simply For Life, plus one month free membership and $200 worth of swag from Orange Theory Fitness.

Follow our three teams as we check-in at the halfway point in our spring issue March 1 to see how things are going prior to announcing final results and winners in our summer issue in June.

Team 1: Spouses

Husband and wife team Tammy Murden and Mike Hughes have a great reason to want to get fit this year, their first grandchild was born last summer.

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“Our first grandbaby was born this summer and we want to be able to do things with her and keep up. I am looking most forward to working with the nutritionist, learning how the food I eat affects my body and how to improve that. I just hope my body can handle the workouts.”


“I became a grandfather for the first time this summer and want to be healthy to spend time with my grandchild and keep up and not be tired. I am most looking forward to getting healthy and hopefully being able to buy clothes at any store.”


Team 2: In-laws

Mother and daughter-in-law Julie and Jessy Crawford aren’t just in-laws – they also live in the same home – along with both their spouses.

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“I want to feel healthy and run with my grandchildren. I want to improve energy and have less pain. During the pandemic, I was home a lot because of osteoarthritis and getting a hip replacement.  Being able to get out with other people and focus on losing weight and working out is something that will help my mental health a lot.  I’m also looking forward to spending time with my daughter-in-law, Jessy, and working on this together.”


“I’ve been wanting to improve my fitness and lose weight for a while since having babies, but I’ve lacked motivation. Recently I have started Keto, but it’s not giving me the results I’m hoping for.  I am looking forward to becoming healthier overall, losing weight, gaining energy, and maintaining this healthier lifestyle long term.”


Team 3: BFFs

Best friends  and self-professed goofballs Aubrey and Kelly say there is literally nothing that will stand in the way of their fitness goals – and that they’ll be the life of the party at the gym.

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“I want to get healthy and create long-lasting healthy lifestyle habits for my son and I!  Nutrition has always been the hardest part of living a healthy lifestyle for me.  Growing up in a family that loves to celebrate with heavy foods, it will definitely be my biggest challenge.  I have a goal to run a 5K race before my next birthday.  I mean, I would also love to wear a bikini for the first time in my life, this challenge would help with my confidence in picking a hot pink one!”


“I want to learn healthy habits, get fitter, get leaner and lose weight. For me, it’s about finding a new way off living and getting off the couch! My biggest challenge will be consistently carrying out food prep and not eating on the fly daily.”