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Nashville Ironman motivating an entire city to live a healthier life

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - You might have noticed driving near the State Capitol on Monday and Thursday evenings, hundreds of people running, sweating and exercising after a long day at the office.

They’re part of a growing group of motivated Nashvillians, from all ages, ethnicities and fitness levels. They gather those nights at 6pm for a free workout, led by a man with a passion to help people improve their lives through fitness.

“I just want to see people healthy, on the road or on the path to getting healthy and to be a better them,” says James Crumlin, dressed in a sharp suit and bowtie, sitting in a conference room overlooking the State Capitol in downtown Nashville, where he’s a lawyer at the Law Offices of Bone McAllester Norton.

James has become somewhat of a Nashville celebrity for his ability to motivate people to endure excruciating workouts, involving long runs, uphill sprints and hundreds of yards of lunges.

“It’s kind of humbling, to have this platform to give back,” he says, absentmindedly dismissing the idea that he’s a local legend.

James lost his mother in 2002, and began running in her honor. It started with half marathons, and has escalated to the epitome of physical fitness, as James is now a six-time Ironman Triathlete.

Seven years ago, he and a friend took their training to the steps of the State Capitol.

“We just invited our friends and they invited their friends and their friends invited friends,” he says.

Today, it’s not uncommon for more than 100 people to show up for a single workout. They gather all year long, in the stifling summer humidity or the bitter winter chill.

The workouts have become so popular, James himself no longer participates. Instead, he takes a more administrative role, planning, welcoming and encouraging all comers.

He’s constantly roaming the Capitol grounds during a session, and seems to know exactly what type of motivation works best for each individual athlete… shouting “let’s go!” to some, while calmly encouraging others by name, with a soft “you can do it!”

With a full-time job as a Nashville business attorney, and a full-time commitment, training for his next Ironman, the question comes to mind… why do this?

The question prompts James to think of a story about a woman who faithfully attends his workouts.

“One weekend she had a heart attack,” he says. “She nearly lost her life. The Doctor said ‘hey, your heart is strong, that workout saved your life’. Without that, she would’ve checked out of here.”

It’s an example of why he shows up. Twice a week. It’s why he’s constantly putting-out an open invitation through email and social media, to anyone, anywhere.

“You could walk the workout. We invite all skill sets to come,” he says. “It’s all about what type of commitment do you have to yourself on making yourself better. If you want to get fit and you’re looking for a free workout, come join us!”

You might have noticed driving near the State Capitol on Monday and Thursday evenings, hundreds of people running, sweating and exercising after a long day at the office.

 

They’re part of a growing group of motivated Nashvillians, from all ages, ethnicities and fitness levels. They gather those nights at 6pm for a free workout, led by a man with a passion to help people improve their lives through fitness.

 

“I just want to see people healthy, on the road or on the path to getting healthy and to be a better them,” says James Crumlin, dressed in a sharp suit and bowtie, sitting in a conference room overlooking the State Capitol in downtown Nashville, where he’s a lawyer at the Law Offices of Bone McAllester Norton.

 

James has become somewhat of a Nashville celebrity for his ability to motivate people to endure excruciating workouts, involving long runs, uphill sprints and hundreds of yards of lunges.

 

“It’s kind of humbling, to have this platform to give back,” he says, absentmindedly dismissing the idea that he’s a local legend.

 

James lost his mother in 2002, and began running in her honor. It started with half marathons, and has escalated to the epitome of physical fitness, as James is now a six-time Ironman Triathlete.

 

Seven years ago, he and a friend took their training to the steps of the State Capitol.

 

“We just invited our friends and they invited their friends and their friends invited friends,” he says.

 

Today, it’s not uncommon for more than 100 people to show up for a single workout. They gather all year long, in the stifling summer humidity or the bitter winter chill.

 

The workouts have become so popular, James himself no longer participates. Instead, he takes a more administrative role, planning, welcoming and encouraging all comers.

 

He’s constantly roaming the Capitol grounds during a session, and seems to know exactly what type of motivation works best for each individual athlete… shouting “let’s go!” to some, while calmly encouraging others by name, with a soft “you can do it!”

 

With a full-time job as a Nashville business attorney, and a full-time commitment, training for his next Ironman, the question comes to mind… why do this?

 

The question prompts James to think of a story about a woman who faithfully attends his workouts.

 

“One weekend she had a heart attack,” he says. “She nearly lost her life. The Doctor said ‘hey, your heart is strong, that workout saved your life’. Without that, she would’ve checked out of here.”

 

It’s an example of why he shows up. Twice a week. It’s why he’s constantly putting-out an open invitation through email and social media, to anyone, anywhere.

 

“You could walk the workout. We invite all skill sets to come,” he says. “It’s all about what type of commitment do you have to yourself on making yourself better. If you want to get fit and you’re looking for a free workout, come join us!”

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Anchor

Chris Miller joined News4 in 2012 as the anchor for News4 Today.

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