My name is Cory Kennedy, and I live in Sandy, Utah. My good friends, Stuart Weichers and Mark Jensen, and I had a really neat experience last year. We’re members of Cub Scout Pack 953, and the three of us won first place in the National Cub Scout Physical Fitness Contest.
Each Cub Scout pack participating in the competition had an eight-year-old Cub Scout, a nine-year-old Cub Scout, and a ten-year-old Cub Scout on its team. Teams compete against teams from other packs in five different events: sit-ups, pushups, the broad jump, the softball throw, and the fifty-yard dash. My dad was our Cubmaster, and in our own pack competition Mark was the eight-year-old winner, Stuart was the nine-year-old winner, and I was the ten-year-old winner. We have a lot of really good athletes in our neighborhood, so our pack competition was tough.
The three of us decided to work out together before and after school. We took turns going to each other’s houses for workouts. Sometimes our parents or older brothers coached us, and sometimes we just worked out by ourselves. My dad let me borrow his stopwatch so we could tell how we were doing. Our families really pulled for us to do well.
We knew we had to score as high as we could in every event, but each of us also had a specialty that we kept trying to improve on. Mark has awfully strong legs, and he could broad jump a long way. Stuart could do more push-ups than the rest of us. And sit-ups were my best event.
When we first started working out as a team, we were doing about forty push-ups and forty sit-ups a minute. Then each day we would add one or two more. We pushed each other pretty hard, and we even made a game out of it. Mark and I are University of Utah fans, and Stuart is a Brigham Young University booster, and we pretended that it was the Utes against the Cougars.
After winning in our district competition, we competed against all the district winners from the Great Salt Lake Council. Boy, were we nervous! But our hard training paid off. Each of us gave it everything he had, and we scored well in all of the events. Just as we had hoped, Mark won in the broad jump (sixty-nine inches), Stuart won in the push-ups (eighty-nine in one minute), and I won in the sit-ups (ninety-six in one minute).
We won the council competition, and our scores were sent to Boy Scout headquarters in Irving, Texas. After a few weeks we were notified that we had won the national championship. We were really excited. You should see the huge trophies we received! Our families are really proud of us, and each of us had a super feeling. I think we all learned a very important lesson in the competition: Nothing is impossible, and you can do anything you want to if you are willing to work hard enough.