Jarrod Paitz went into the CrossFit gym with an open mind.

The Omaha man was looking for a new challenge to add to his running routine. And after his dad, Bruce Paitz, encouraged him to try CrossFit, he went with it.

Almost two years later, Paitz is a regular at the gym. The workouts challenge and push him every day. Now he has a number of competitions under his belt, including a few with his dad.

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Q: When did you start working out and why?

A: I started going to Climate CrossFit almost two years ago. I was a runner before, and I was looking to add some strength.

Q: Describe your workouts. How many days per week do you exercise?

A: Classes are about an hour long. We warm up for 10 or 15 minutes. Depending on the day, we’ll do some strength training first and then lead into a workout. It varies day by day. You don’t really know what to expect until you see the workout posted for the next day. I’m there five days a week.

Q: What is your current fitness goal?

A: CrossFit competitions are divided into three divisions — scaled, intermediate and RX, which are heavier weight and difficult movements. My goal is to next year do an RX competition.

Q: What has been your biggest accomplishment?

A: Being able to do all of the lifting. When I first started, I could barely squat my own body weight. Now I can do a squat, an overhead squat. I can do my body weight now and all the lifting.

Q: What has been the toughest hurdle and how did you overcome it?

A: Earlier this year, I was working on double-unders (where a jump rope makes two passes each jump). That took me months to figure out. I was going into the gym every day working on it.

Q: What helps you stay on track?

A: At this point, it’s a habit. It’s like brushing your teeth. If I don’t go, I feel like I’m missing something. It’s also a good stress-reliever. It’s nice to decompress and forget about the day and focus on what the coach has planned.

Q: What do you do when you aren’t in the gym?

A: Golfing, hanging out with friends after the gym, playing indoor and outdoor volleyball. Basically anything that keeps me active.

Q: What is the piece of equipment, supplement, clothing, etc. that you can’t live without?

A: Grips for our hands for doing pullups.

Q: What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their fitness journey?

A: Don’t be intimidated to try something new. Sometimes that’s the biggest hurdle getting into any gym. You’re intimidated by what others do or what you can’t do. Don’t be intimidated. Just go for it and give it your best.

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