In this episode of Road to the Games, we follow California Regional champion Josh Bridges and reigning Fittest Man on Earth Mat Fraser. We also catch up with 2015 Fittest Man on Earth Ben Smith, along with his younger brother Alec, a rookie Games qualifier in 2017.
When Fraser—who placed second the previous two years—took the competition floor at the 2016 Games, he was not subtle about his intentions: He was there to win. In 2017, Fraser continues to live by a mantra.
“’Hard work pays off,’ for me, is putting in the work now, doing stuff that isn’t fun,” Fraser says. “It’s pretty much on a loop in my head … knowing that down the road, when it counts, when people are watching, that’s when this is going to pay off.”
Bridges finds the training between Regionals and the Games to be the most enjoyable of the season, and he’s focused and motivated.
“If you don’t enjoy this, you’re not going to be good at it. That’s a given,” says Bridges, who lists winning the Games as one of his many motivators.
Perennial Games athlete Ben Smith was actually bested by brother Alec at the Atlantic Regional, and the two are elated to be heading to the Games together.
“We were always competitive, we were always challenging each other, and we’re always trying to beat each other,” Ben says. “We always get really mad when we lose. But it’s all good, it’s all healthy.”
Video by Ian Wittenber, Heber Cannon, Marston Sawyers and Mariah Moore.
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