CRC Member Spotlight - Brian Hayes

1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m from Fort Washington, Maryland, which is right outside of Washington, D.C. I’ve been active pretty much my whole life in some aspect or another. For example, I played football in high school. Coming here to Georgia Tech, I’ve changed a lot through the many activities that I have picked up, such as Salsa, running, triathlons, and many other different activities that I had never known about.

I’m studying Computer engineering, and I’m working towards my Ph.D. I came here to do my masters, but then I got roped into it. This is my eighth year, and I’m ready to go move onto other phases. I wouldn’t take back any of the time that I have been here because I have learned so much, done so many things, and met so many interesting people. I have really enjoyed my time here.

2. How long have you been a member with the CRC?

Pretty much since I first got here (8 years ago). When I first got here, I didn’t really know anybody because I came in the spring (most people come in the fall). There was not a big orientation where I could meet any one, so I didn’t know anybody. The one thing I knew how to do was lift weights, so I thought, ‘Okay, well I can at least go lift weights, and that is something to do’. That was my something to do, and that’s how I got started at the CRC.

3. Where are we most likely to find you in the CRC? What is your favorite part of the CRC?

I’m here, usually, at least four days a week. I’m usually taking the GIT FIT classes at noon. That’s kind of where I’ve settled in, so I might be on the fitness floor, on the treadmill in Becky’s class, at the Boot camp class, or Interval Training class.

4. Which dimension of wellness do you feel most connected to while engaging with the CRC (professional, spiritual, social, physical, or emotional)?

Somewhere between physical and social but more so to the physical side. Just looking back at my time here, I started coming to just lift weights. Once I got here, since I didn’t know anyone, I said my first goal was to run a 5k, because I never had. You know, you run a mile, you run for punishment, but it’s not actually fun.  So I said that I’m going to run a 5k. I ended up doing that my first year here, and it was a big accomplishment that I didn’t think was possible. After that and while I was here working with Becky, my father past away from cancer. I said that I wanted to do something that I never thought I was capable of doing.  Later, when I was talking to Becky about it, taking her Treadfit class, and getting a little faster, I told her, ‘Hey I signed up for this marathon.’ At that point, I had never run even a half marathon, but I wanted to do something that was out of this world. So she gave me a plan and made sure I was sticking to it to make sure I reached that goal. Then, on race day, she was out there cheering me on, and I was in a ton of pain, but I finished it, and that made me think, ‘Okay I can actually do these really hard physical challenges that I never thought I’d be able to do’. The marathon has taken me from there to running the Peachtree and Iron Man races. You know, going from one mile to this is pretty cool.

5. What is your most fun CRC story?

My most fun, I guess outside of the classes… I am a part of the Black Graduate Student Association, and they have a flag football team. Before I really got into my own workouts and the GIT FIT classes, I was doing some of the flag football. I had a great time with the sport because I got to bond with a lot of people that I see every day doing coursework but in a competitive way. When we played, we were always undefeated in our graduate division, but when we would get to the undergrads, they would kill us. We could beat all of the graduate students, but when we got to the undergraduates, it was like we were playing division one athletes and we’d get destroyed. But it was a fun time.

6. What else should we know that we have not asked you yet?

A lot of the people I’ve met in the GIT FIT classes are faculty, staff, and students, anywhere from freshman to professors. You get to meet people that you would have never gotten a chance to meet and have friendships and bonds with. I’ll see a professor walking and they’ll say, ‘Hey Brian how are you doing? How’s your progress?’. You know, if I had never met him in the GIT FIT class, he probably would have never known who I was. So that’s a good aspect of it. Like I said, I meet some freshman too. I think meeting the cross-section of people is a good thing. 

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