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Liberty Wing accepts fitness challenge

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An airman assigned to the 48th Component Maintenance Squadron lifts dumbbells at the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge at the Fitness and Sports Center at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England March 17, 2018. The event aimed to challenge the most fit participants to push themselves to their limits. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Shanice Williams-Jones)

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Staff. Sgt. Brandon Witherspoon, a cyber security officer assigned to the 48th Communications Squadron, raises two dumbbells at the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge at the Fitness and Sports Center at Royal Air Force Lakenheath March 17, 2018. Witherspoon and his wife started training in September for the event and both completed the challenge together. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Shanice Williams-Jones)

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Staff. Sgt. Brandon Witherspoon, a cyber security officer assigned to the 48th Communications Squadron lays on the ground after completing the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge. The challenge combined both strength and cardio components to test the endurance of participants. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Shanice Williams-Jones)

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An Airman assigned to the 48th Component Maintenance Squadron rests after completing the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge at the Fitness and Sports Center at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England March 17, 2018. The Airman trained for two and a half month for the challenge and said it was the most difficult he had participated in. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Shanice Williams-Jones)

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A participant of the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge climbs the Jacobs Ladder at the Fitness and Sports Center at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England March 17, 2018. Much like High Intensity Interval Training, the event gave a limited recovery period for participants striving to beat the clock. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Shanice Williams-Jones)

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A participant of the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge performs inclined sit-ups at the Fitness and Sports Center at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England March 17, 2018. Participants were required to complete 10 categories of workouts to pass the test. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Shanice Williams-Jones)

ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England -- Liberty Wing personnel and dependents put themselves to the test at the Bi-Annual Ultra Eagle Challenge at the Fitness and Sports Center, March 17.

Participants competed in 10 categories including cycling, rowing, running and various strength-demanding activities. The challenge is not only an equalizer for testing those who are dedicated to a serious lifestyle of fitness. It can be used as a target to determine a baseline for those striving to be more physically fit.

“I don’t care how much weight you can press or how fast you can run, let’s put them together and see how you do,” said Herman Hicks, a personal trainer and the event coordinator. “Let’s prove who’s really fit.”

Some participants found mental readiness equally important as physical training when preparing for the challenge.

“I was that person that said, ‘no way’, when my husband signed me up last year,” said Jacquline Jaramillo, school liaison officer assigned to the 48th Mission Support Group. “I came second last year so you never know what you can accomplish unless you try, even if you think you can’t, challenge yourself.”

Jaramillo said that this year’s challenge was even more daunting than last year. Hicks is always looking for more formidable obstacles to engage the most fit participant, she said.

“I’ve done two challenges prior to this one and I have to say that this was the hardest,” said an aircraft fuel systems maintenance technician assigned to the 48th Component Maintenance Squadron. “It tested my endurance but it helped establish a principle to see where I am and being out of that comfort zone alone is a challenge."

The next challenge is scheduled to take place in September at the Fitness and Sports Center.

Challengers may contact the fitness center to sign-up, or for more details at DSN: 226-3607 or commercial 01638-523607.