Most people go to the gym to improve their fitness or for the physical benefits. But when your sport IS fitness, your training looks a little different.
Meet Teanu Rickard. The 23-year-old Lahaina native finished as the top male in Hawaii in the 2017 Crossfit Open, earning him the title of Hawaii’s Fittest Man and a trip to the Crossfit Regionals last month in Del Mar, Calif. To qualify for the prestigious competition, he had to finish within the top 40 in the region. Rickard has achieved the feat twice — last year while still being a full-time student at Southern Oregon University, and again this year after moving home to Maui.
“I started Crossfit in 2013, when I did my first Open. I didn’t really think it was that challenging, but safe to say I was humbled after those five weeks of competition,” says Rickard. “I think I finished 524th in my region and close to 9000th worldwide. I told myself I was going to make it to Regionals and maybe even the Crossfit Games.”
Rickard trains out of Lahaina Crossfit and credits his success to the support and encouragement shared at his gym.
“I used to do the ordinary gym routine, but that stuff never really excited me or gave me the same rush. I also like the community that comes with it,’ he says. “Some might say it’s a little ‘culty,’ but I don’t see it that way. It’s just a bunch of ordinary people who like to come in, work hard, almost die, then high five and make plans to do it again tomorrow.”
Now that he’s no longer a student, Rickard has to balance his workout with a new work schedule — taking advantage of the time he’s able to get in the gym. Looking forward to next year’s competitive season and beyond, Rickard’s focus has shifted to a new phase in his life.
“Next year, my goal is to make it back to Regionals, but I know I’ll decline my invitation, if I do get one,” says Rickard. “I’ll be starting at the Police Academy for the Maui Police Department during the Open season and beyond. My main focus is to graduate academy and start moving forward in my career field.”