Matt Harrell


Matt Harrell

matt harrell 3Hometown: Emporia, VA
Age: 24
Occupation: Hospital Clinical Pharmacist

When did you first start Strength & Conditioningting? May 2016

What is your favorite movement? Favorite workout?
My favorite workout is Bodyweight Day – I always feel like I get a workout that engages my entire body.

What is your least favorite movement? Least favorite workout?
Medicine Ball Cleans – so frustrating!!

Tell us about your sports & fitness background:
Sedentary doesn’t even begin to describe my childhood and teenage years. I somehow managed to stave off the Freshman 15 when I started undergrad, but the stress and insane schedule of pharmacy school really packed on the pounds. Finally, at my heaviest weight of around 285-290 lbs in the spring of 2014, I knew I had to make a change. Through a series of diet and lifestyle changes, as well as circuit training 3-4 times a week, I was able to shed a good bit of weight before I plateaued after a few months. It wasn’t until I found out that I had high cholesterol and was told by my doctor that I was still significantly overweight in January 2016 that I knew I had get back into it…and that’s when I found Strength & Conditioning Bootcamp!

How did you first get exposed to Strength & Conditioning? Do you remember your first WOD? How did it go?
One of my coworkers goes to a Strength & Conditioning Box in Raleigh, and she was kind of my push to give it a try. My first Bootcamp WOD was Endurance Day with Coach Cindy. I don’t remember all the specifics, but I do remember the WOD started with an 800 meter run. I made it about 400 meters and was already exhausted – I only finished one round of the WOD before I had to give up. Even though it didn’t go so well, I felt like I had gotten the best workout of my life and kept coming back.matt harrell 3

What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting Strength & Conditioning? (before/after)
The changes have been some of the coolest parts of Strength & Conditioning Bootcamp! I have gone down a shirt size, a pant size, and have lost ~15 lbs. My body definitely looks more toned – I’m even starting to see my biceps develop! I now have so much more energy and have found that I enjoy being active more than I ever thought I would.

What impact has Strength & Conditioning had on your life?
I now know that I can take my health and fitness into my own hands and make changes that positively impact how I feel and look. I feel more determined to be the best I can be, not just when it comes to Strength & Conditioning. Going to Strength & Conditioning in the mornings gives me a sense of accomplishment and starts my day off on the right foot. I definitely cannot describe my lifestyle as sedentary anymore!

What is your favorite Strength & Conditioning/CFD moment?
The sense of community and support of my fellow Bootcampers and from the Coach that I experience during each WOD seriously gets me through each workout and pushes me to excel.

matt harrell 1What is your advice for people just getting started or thinking about starting Strength & Conditioning?
Check your ego at the door! Strength & Conditioning is a community that welcomes all shapes and sizes and supports and encourages you to meet your fitness and health goals. Anyone can do Strength & Conditioning!

What are your hobbies, interests, and/or talents outside of Strength & Conditioning?
During the spring and fall, I am a player on a Stonewall Kickball team in Raleigh. I love to travel! My first international trip is in October and I am so excited! I’m very much a foodie at heart, so trying new restaurants and cooking are things I really enjoy. I love going to concerts, and it is very rare that I don’t have a song stuck in my head.